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March 23, 2018
Easter basket! from Texas Quilting

I grew up in a family with several children, and one tradition we had was like many people – we hit every available Easter egg hunt in a 20 mile radius of our house. That may be a slight exaggeration. There was the year I won the golden egg; that was thrilling. 20180322_215853837030446.jpgThen there was the one we went to where they used real hard boiled eggs – except we ended up with some that weren’t hard boiled and when I started to peel one in the car to eat on the way home…well you can probably guess how that ...

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March 22, 2018
Surprise Nose Job! from Gray Barn Designs

In my March 12, 2018 post, “New Motto”, I shared with you my efforts to tame my scrap bin by cutting all my scraps into 1.5, 2.0 and 2.5 inch squares.  Since I’m now super prepared and organized, I started a new design with my 1.5 inch squares.  Yes, it appears that all is well with my design wall BUT (cue drum roll….)


Guess who decided to stick her nose onto my design wall and sniff the fabric?  Yes, it’s true, my trusted sewing gal pal, Norma, gave my design a real nose job ...

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March 19, 2018
Pre-Spring Review from Gray Barn Designs

Only 24 days until Cindy and I meet up in Chicago at the International Quilt Festival and Market. I cannot wait! I’m trying to hold off on purchasing any quilting supplies or fabric so I can blow my budget there. My fingers are itching to touch some new fabric.

I shall count for you the things that I’m working on in the meantime:

  • With the promise of spring in the air, I’ve been piecing True Blue, still reaching for an early May completion date. There are 100 blocks in the quilt. I’ve been trying to design ...

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March 15, 2018
Blues in the Winter from Gray Barn Designs

Spring!  It will arrive on March 20th…yippee!  Until then, it’s winter here in Central Ohio and I’m still working on getting my fabrics organized.

As I looked at my organized fabrics, I realized I had very few blue fabrics…GASP!  How can this be??!!


Limited Selection of Blues

Thank goodness, in my travels this morning I drove by Quilt Trends, a great quilting shop here in Columbus.  My car careened off the main road and found its way into the Quilt Trends parking lot.  What choice did I have but to enter the shop and search for ...

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March 13, 2018
New Motto from Gray Barn Designs

My Dear Friend (DF) gave me this awesome AND unbreakable wine glass for Christmas.  As I was sipping a beverage this weekend, thinking of quilting (of course!), I decided this will be my new quilting motto.


How to always be prepared you ask?  Well, Sandy is always prepared!  She has scraps all cut out in different sizes, just waiting to be added to a quilt creation.  Me…not so much!  This is what my scraps looked like…and there was another bag overflowing in the closet!


Even Norma, my Bearded Collie, was saying, “Please do something with these things!”  OK ...

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March 9, 2018
Lost and Found from Gray Barn Designs

Am I the only one who occasionally frequently loses pieces of quilt projects? As I move from room to room, sometimes spools and blocks and pattern pieces and pins get left behind.

I had such great plans to make my friend a True Blue quilt, but somehow I misplaced a big pile of cream colored squares that are essential to the pattern. I looked for them for a while, but finally gave up and resigned myself to having to buy 12 more cream/tan fat quarters and do all the cutting once again.

And then, lo and behold! I found ...

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March 6, 2018
A Little Update from Snow Country from Gray Barn Designs

Winter Storm Riley dropped a bomb on us last week. We spent a couple of days involuntarily “camping”.

Lordy, I love modern conveniences like working light switches and showers and warm food. Cindy and I come from hardy stock — you know the kind that never invests in generators or tractors with plow attachments nor are we people who remember to fill buckets with water prior to the storm so that they can flush. Too much detail, right? Oh well, apologies requested, but without electricity things get very real, very fast.


15″ of snow fell overnight Thursday night into Friday morning ...

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March 1, 2018
This Just In: Free Table Runner Pattern! from Gray Barn Designs

This past weekend, I was nursing a terrible cold and had lots of time on my hands with nowhere to go.  Alas, I got to sew with no holds barred!

I decided to use this cute Easter fabric to make a table runner…isn’t it adorable?  The bunny fabric line is called Hop to it!    ;  designed by Shelly Comiskey for Henry Glass & Co.  The green fabric is called Modern Melody Basic Filigree Geo Lime  ;  designed by First Blush Studio for Henry Glass & Co. 


I am debating about giving away this runner as an Easter gift…but I also think ...

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February 26, 2018
Super Heroes to the Rescue! from Gray Barn Designs

I needed a quick gift for a 7 year old boy.  BUT before I went shopping for his gift, I decided to do some shopping for me, in a fabric store of course!

Look what I found!  Super Hero fabric…how perfect for Mr. 7 year old!  With all these cool super heroes sporting bright colors,  I decided to make a pillow for him.


Apparently, Flash is his favorite super hero.  Flash is right here, ready to….well….ummm do whatever Flash does!


Flash got to fill four spots on the pillow but I have to admit I am partial ...

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February 24, 2018
a finish and a quilt binder set from Texas Quilting

20180224_114707692796631.jpgugh hers was made from silk and mine is cotton, I liked the way she had hers quilted with just straight lines throughout.  I did decide to mix mine up a bit, varying the widths throughout.  I also sewed 1/4″ border around each of the blocks, and then filled in the middle with a different pattern to mix it up a bit.

It’s really windy outside today, which is where I normally snap photos of my finished quilts, so a chair in the house will have to do but hopefully you can get the idea.  It’s a ...

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February 22, 2018
POOF! An Instant Project from Gray Barn Designs

I need a new quilting project.  I just finished all my Valentine mini quilts and asked  myself what I should do next?  POOF!  Just like that, a forgotten project an instant project magically appeared this morning from under a pile of fabric…in a bin…on a shelf…in my closet.

When I was in Alaska during August 2016, I bought this cute panel with coordinating fabrics.


I love the panel because of the colors and the joyful people celebrating the cold and the snow.


This could be my favorite.


Well, maybe this one is my favorite.


I want those ...

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February 20, 2018
Pterodactyl Bait from Gray Barn Designs

What do you do when you have an intimidating quilting task in front of you? Do you dive right in and tackle it like you are the boss of that big, bad task?

Or are you like me? You play dead. You avoid. You dust (you know it’s bad when I start dusting instead of quilting). You sort your leaders and enders by color. Etc. Etc.

Or you maybe you start cutting out a new project?

That would be me this weekend — happily watching TV from my kitchen island, and starting a new project as I reveled in my ...

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February 16, 2018
quilt show lessons from Texas Quilting

20180216_120856.jpgOur guild is having a quilt show in a couple of weeks and they were hoping to get 200 quilts to hang but were short a few from what I heard. There are plenty of people who make quilts specifically for shows – we have an art quilter in our machine quilting bee that I think that’s the bulk of what she makes is for shows – but I wasn’t that organized. I do have a couple of original designs in my head but I’m still committed to not starting anything new until I’ve cleared out my UFOs ...

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February 15, 2018
Forgotten Flower Garden from Gray Barn Designs

I put my Grandmother’s Flower Garden hexie blocks in a bin and forgot about them…for almost a year.  Time to bring them out and use them for an “airport project”.  Nothing like English Paper Piecing while waiting to catch a plane!


I now have 13 blocks with a white hexie border.  I want to join all these blocks together with a fabric reminiscent of the 30’s.  I tried a few print fabrics but the print competed with the prints in the flowers and my eyes went bonkers!  I am interviewing this solid green fabric as a “joiner ...

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February 12, 2018
Sewing in the Rain from Gray Barn Designs

It was a rainy weekend here in Ohio and I was recovering from a terrible cold.  I was down but not out!  I just sewed and sewed and sewed.  Here are some of my masterpieces (if I do say so myself)!

I made this Sweet Heart Mug Rug for my friend who loves cats (you can download our  free pattern by clicking on this link:  Sweet Heart Mug Rug).  Aren’t these cats the cutest?  They are left over from some Cotton + Steel fabric scraps I had on hand.


Here’s another mug rug using pink, white and lime green ...

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February 8, 2018
It was a dark and stormy night from Gray Barn Designs

I had the opportunity to have a mid-week mini vaca on Tuesday night. Ahead of an approaching snowstorm, I scrambled around and found bed and breakfast lodging so that I could be certain that I would be available to convene my class on Wednesday morning.

The B&B I selected for my nighttime lodging was a huge brick home. The proprietors greeted me kindly when I arrived at about 7:30 pm and they proceeded to give me a mini tour of their mid-1800s home which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The proprietress graciously showed me ...

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February 5, 2018
Valentine’s Day Sweet Hearts from Gray Barn Designs

I am obsessed with making mini quilted Valentines this year.  The pattern for my mini Valentines is actually my free mug rug pattern.  You can click on this link to download the pattern:  Sweet Heart Mug Rug

I searched through my scraps for interesting color combinations that are “just perfect” for family and friends.  Here’s my stack of Valentines so far;  I’ve popped some of them in the mail already.


I had some left over fabric from the Strawberry Fields Revisited fabric collection by Fig Tree & Co. These colors match the decor in my youngest sister’s house ...

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February 1, 2018
Foxes in the Man Cave from Gray Barn Designs

My husband’s birthday is coming up soon and I wanted to give him something unique.

He really liked the Fancy Forest Wall Hanging I made for my DF (dear friend) so I decided to make a “manly” pillow for him using the fox block from Elizabeth Hartman’s  Fancy Forest Pattern

This green batik makes an eye catching fox, don’t you think?


I think the blue print resembles wet fur.  I’ll have fun quilting this blue boy…mistakes will be hidden by all this texture!


Doesn’t everyone need an orange fox?  Hey, are those mosquitoes flying ...

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January 29, 2018
Bonjour, Mes Amis! from Gray Barn Designs

I’ve added a little side hustle to my work-a-day life. I was offered the chance to teach a Workplace Communications class to adult learners. The course takes place every Wednesday for 8 weeks on the college campus in Brockport, NY. I’m excited about the opportunity to lead the class because these students have been identified as those who have strong potential to move into management from their current positions — plus I get to geek out on effective communication theory and techniques for several hours each class meeting.

Happily, I’ve discovered that Brockport has a homey quilt shop ...

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January 25, 2018
Free Pattern for Sweet Heart Mug Rug from Gray Barn Designs

It’s almost Valentine’s Day and I wanted to make something special for mom.  I had some extra fabric from my Heartland Modern 01 10 18 quilt and thought I would make a few mug rugs/coasters for her.  Below is my finished product, isn’t it a sweet heart?  (Pun intended!)


Mom’s favorite color is pink and she likes to drink tea.  I thought I would test this mug rug today, strictly for quality control purposes, of course!  Yep, it passed the test!


I put my trusted Bernina to work last night.  I pieced it AND quilted ...

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  • miscellaneous
  • Page 1 of 4 ( 74 posts )