2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop

I can’t believe that we are at the final week of the New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop! It has been a fantastic few weeks of meeting so many talented quilters. And now, it is finally my turn to say hello!

But first, I want to give a big thank you to our hosts

If you head over to any of their blogs, you can enter to win some wonderful prizes.

Life is so very Good!

Hi! I’m Tracy, and I am from Arizona where it seldom snows, and quilts are more for show than for necessity. I blog because whether it is quilting, crochet, sewing, or baking, I enjoy having a place to share my creative passions.

I am a very social person. I truly do love being with others and basking in the light they shine all about them. I can think of no better way to spend a morning or afternoon than with a friend sewing or creating something beautiful together.

When I thought about what I wanted to share with you today, I knew it had to be a few of my favorite quilts that I have made with my friends, either in person or online.

Farmer’s Wife Quilt

I have a friend who assured me that we could not call ourselves true quilters until we had made a Farmer’s Wife Quilt.  Lol!  Well, I guess I am officially a quilter now!

Pins and Stripes-

I have a niece and several online readers who wanted to learn to Quilt. I designed this Pins and Stripes quilt along to teach them the basics of quilting. It was so fun to answer their questions and watch their quilting skills bloom!

Long Time Gone Quilt-

This quilt was a double dose of quilty fun. I joined a Long Time Gone Quilt Along online, and then a friend of mine said she had joined along as well! We had so much fun sharing techniques and finished quilts:)

The Splendid Sampler

This was an adventure in Quilting online with 50,000 other like minded quilters! Some of us were more experienced than others, but it didn’t matter at all. I met some wonderful people and learned that I really like embroidery on my quilts:)

Mystery Quilt Along

My online friend Cindy @ In a Stitch Quilting and I started a unique Mystery QAL.  It is unique in that the FABRIC is the same for all of the quilters, but the PROJECT is left to whatever you, the quilter decides. It is really fun seeing how the other quilters are using the same fabric you are!

The Be-Attitudes Quilt

This is my current, in person, QAL. I quilt with a good friend of mine every Wednesday. She always has such fun ideas for quilts to make, and I’m always willing to join along. This quilt is no exception.

I am sewing mine with a bright color pallet for a class room while my friend is sewing hers in the warmer muted tones that match her home.

Isn’t it fun to see the difference color makes? They both are beautiful and we are having such a good time:)

What has been your favorite QAL? I would love to hear about it!

1.  Have an extra sewing machine on hand for a friend to sew along beside you. ❤️ — How many machines do you have in your sewing room? I actually have six machines and use each one for different purpose. Hey, we don’t just have one cutting knife in the kitchen, do we?:)

  • My main stay Juki 2010Q for piecing
  • An old Pfaff for the zig zag that the Juki does not have
  • A Janome 9500 that I am babying for the embroidery feature
  • An Imagine serger
  • A Singer Featherweight for travel sewing
  • A Gammill Long Arm quilting machine.

2.  You do not have to point out your mistakes.  If a point is off, or you had to piece the fabrics together for enough fabric to finish, it’s okay!  We won’t even see it.  Enjoy the beauty of the 99% you did get right!

I have so enjoyed meeting you today! I hope you will take a few moments and visit the other wonderful bloggers in this week’s blog hop as well.

Tracy @It’s a T-Sweets Day! —That’s me:)

Joni @For the Love of Thread.

Cherie B. @Cherie’s Quilting Journey Blog

Cindy K. @Gray Barn Designs

Karen @The Quilt Rambler.

Sarah @9658 Textiles

Terri @Meanderings Along Lizard Creek

Liz @Savor Every Stitch

I am sure you and I are going to be great Quilting friends. Please feel free to click the follow button and join the fun!

How to Shade Fabric

Good morning! I have had several people ask me about how I add the rosey cheeks to my Be-Attitudes quilt blocks. It is really much easier than you might think!

I use two different methods for shading. It usually depends on which item is closest to me at the time. Lol!

Method #1– Blush

This is the easiest method. All you need to do is go into your make-up drawer and get a cotton swab and your blush.

Who knew?! Well, now you do! It’s as easy as placing a bit of blush on the swab, and gently rubbing the color onto the cheeks or area that you want color.

How cute is that?! I used this method on a doll I made for my daughter years ago. She slept with, and played with that doll for years, and the blush stayed on.

Method #2 – Crayon Color

This method is a little bit trickier, but I like this method because the colors are only limited by your selection of crayons:)

It is not really hard, it just takes a light hand. I suggest practicing on a scrap fabric first. Once you get the hang of it, it is very simple to do.

Once you have colored your shading, there is an added step of heat setting the crayon. Place a paper towel on top of the color and then iron it.

There you have it! Isn’t she so SWEET?! I added a bit of color to her hands as well.

I hope these shading techniques will help you with your next appliqué project. Here are the pictures of my final two Be-Attitude blocks.

Woo hoo! The next time I post about this quilt will be for the final photo shoot. Yea!! I think joyful and happy is a good description of how I feel about it😊

Thank you so much for dropping by today. I hope you have a wonderfully SWEET rest of your day!

A Totally Tipster Bias Tape Tip!

I am making A LOT of 1/4″ inch bias tape to use as vines for my Down the Rabbit Hole Quilt. Yes. You read that right. This bias tape finishes at 1/4″!

My, oh my that is teeny! But never fear. With the right tools it is easy to make bias tape is many different sizes.

I’m sure many of you have heard of or even own a bias tape maker. They are easy to come buy and work so well. They come in different sizes to make different widths of tape.

The picture above is my 1/4″ tape maker. I cut my green fabrics in 1/2″ strips along the bias. You don’t really have to cut on the bias, but I want these little vines to curve this way and that, so I definitely cut on the bias:)

The next step is to snip one end of a strip on an angle and push it into the metal.

On the bottom side is an opening that you can use a straight pin to drag the fabric out just a bit. You only want it a little way out because you want to be able to iron it as it come out.

If you place your tool with the flat side against your board and your iron right up against tip of the opening, you can pull the tool very slowly by the hook and move your iron slowly at the same time.

It works GREAT!

Just look at those cute perfectly folded little edges! It was easy to make a pile of tape in no time at all:)❤️

But how do I remember the size to cut my fabric the next time I want make 1/4″ tape and how can I store these handy tools?

Here is a Totally Tipster Tip for you— I mark my bias tape makers with a scrap piece of fabric!

On the back of the fabric I write the size of strip I need to cut and the finished size it will make. Then I cut a small slit in one end and thread the other end through the slit around the pull. PERFECT!

Now it is easy to know which bias maker to use for the width of tape I want to make.

I have attached sticky hooks to the inside of my cabinet to hang them on. They are easy to find and take up no room at all. Now that is Totally Tipster for sure!! In fact, I call it SWEET!❤️❤️

I hope this Tip is helpful to some of you. Thank you so much for dropping by today. Until tomorrow,

Why You Need a Portable Design Board and How to Make One!

It is Scrap Happy Time and I have just the project for you!

Moving cut scraps from the cutting board to the sewing table can be a bit tricky. The pieces can shift and move or even fall to the floor! I like to place my pieces on a fabric covered board as I cut and design my block.

The batting makes it so I can design my block and move it with ease. How cool is that?!

I have been using my old design boards for over five years and they are still going strong. They have quite a few strings attached, but that just shows that they are well used and well loved.

A reader of mine asked me about them a day or so ago and I thought that maybe a few more of you might be interested in learning how to make one or two of these fantastic boards for yourself. Plus, I was just thinking I could use a few more boards. They are so quick and easy!

The items needed are probably all just lying around your house anyway, so why don’t you gather them up and let’s get started? 🙂

  • A large cardboard box
  • Scraps of leftover fabric and batting
  • A marker
  • A razor blade
  • Clear packing tape
  • Spray glue

Now that’s not much, is it? This is going to be EASY!

  • First choose a box with a piece that is large enough to cut a square from.
  • Mark the size of square you would like. I cut two. One is 12.5″ and the smaller one is 7.5
  • With a ruler and a razor blade, cut your squares out
  • Next we will be using the packing tape

  • Cover one entire side of the square with packing tape. This is so you can layer them on top of each other without the fabric sticking to the cardboard back of the board above.

  • Now we are going to be using our scraps of batting and spray glue.
  • Cut your batting the size of your boards
  • Lay a piece of scrap paper down to cover your work area
  • Spray the non shiny side of your board with glue

  • place your batting on top of the glue on the board

They will look like this. Now it is time to make some binding from your fabric scraps

  • Cut 2″ strips the width of the fabric.

  • Sew the strips together by placing the fabric together as shown above and sewing from corner to corner.

  • Fold the edges to meet in the middle and press.

  • Fold the strip in half and press to make binding.

Next we are going to be sewing the binding to the boards. You will be sewing through the cardboard. Don’t worry, it will work! 🙂

  • Set your machine to a wide zig zag stitch and starting in the middle of one side, fold the fabric over the board. Stitch through the fabric and board. If the left side of your stitch is at the edge of your binding, it should easily catch the back of the binding as well.
  • Stitch just to the edge of the board. Back stitch and cut your thread
  • Pictures 3 and 4 go together. Lift the board and pull the fabric down on the next side making a miter. You may want to add a drop of glue to hold the corner in place. I just held mine. Sew the next side down . Repeat for all four sides.

  • When you come to the end, cut the binding about 1.5″ over the starting point. Fold the binding back on itself and stitch to the end.

Yea! You are finished! Don’t they look great?!

I can’t wait to use them with my next Delilah project. There are always so many pieces to cut and carry!

And how do I store all of these boards? I have a fun Totally Tipster tip for you today as well. SWEET!

I have a letter holder next to my wall that holds my favorite rulers and these boards.

It takes very little space and they are all ready to be used at any time. I just love multipurpose objects!

I hope you will make a few of these boards for yourself. I would love to hear about it if you do:)

Until tomorrow!

Totally Tipster Lantern Fun

This week’s block for the I Wish You a Merry Quilt Along is this beautiful lantern by Diane Lomax @Cwilt Fabrics and Haberdashery What a fun word — Haberdashery! 🙂

The instructions were a bit different than other quilting patterns. Usually the strip measurements are given for rotary cutting, but this pattern gave the pattern pieces to cut out individually.

I used a bit of rotary strip cutting by measuring the width of the strip and then using the pattern to cut the angles. It worked for me:)

Sewing the base up was quick and easy!

Next came the fusible web appliqué. I like fusible web, but it can be a bit tricky getting the paper off of the back. It is especially hard when the pieces are small. I have a little Totally Tipster trick that does help though.

After you have ironed your webbing to the wrong side of your fabric, let it cool completely. When it is cool, drag a pin across the paper to score it a bit. It is easy to bend the paper and pull it apart now. Easy!

I pressed my pieces to the lantern and then got ready to sew them in place. I always, always use stabilization on the back of my machine appliquéd pieces. If you don’t, the fabric will pucker. Yuk!

Now for a Totally Tipster#2! I find that an easy and affordable stabilizer is a paper towel or two!

I place it on the back and sew around my pieces. It works great and is simple to tear away as well:)

After I was finished though, I wasn’t crazy about my window stitching.

That center line was a bit wonky because I had to adjust to make sure the fabric was all stitched down. I didn’t like it.

So… I made a 1/4″ binding tape and covered that middle line. I like it MUCH BETTER❤️

I think I like that added piece better anyway. I’m glad I was a wonky seamstress. Happy accidents are the best kind of accidents!

This has been another fun Christmas Block. I sew appreciate you reading my blog today. I hope you have a SWEET rest of your day or evening!

Until next time,

Road Trip Eye Candy

It’s road trippin’ time!  I just love a good road trip❤️❤️.  My DH and I are going up to help my #1 son move to school.  It’s what parents do, right?  

I love driving through Arizona and Utah in August.  The weather is a little cooler and the rains have come.  It is picturesque at every turn.


My favorite part is the view of the Grand Canyon from the Highway 89.  The land is cracked for miles and miles.   

It is GRAND indeed!   I like to stop for a minute and drink in the beauty and majesty.  

And as if that isn’t enough, the other side of the highway is nestled into these tall, smooth, red rocks.  If only I were a rock climber like my son! 

I know, I know,  we are all gaining spiritual weight with so much beauty, but wait, the dessert is still to come!


Lake Powell is just a little bit further down the road!  Can you believe it?!  I am truly happy today.  

Of course a happy road trip would not be complete unless I had some fun hand work to keep my hands busy.

I am on the last few blocks of my Stardust Melodies Afghan.  I will definitely have them all done by the end of the trip.  Oh yea!!



Driving in the car also teaches new techniques because necessity is the mother of invention.


I forgot my stitch markers at home, so I have learned that a hair clip  works GREAT!  In fact it is easier to use because as the name implies, it just clips on.  How cool is that?  Its TOTALLY TIPSTER:)!


Road trips really help me get caught up on projects. But best of all, I get to sit by my cute husband and enjoy his company.  SWEET!!❤️


I hope all of your life roads are leading to happy places filled with people you love:).  

Thank you joining me on my road trip today!

Totally Tipster- How to Organize a Button Box

Hello!  It’s a Totally Tipster day around my house today.  I have been making blessing outfits for my grand babies, and came to the button part of the pattern.   Oh no, ugh! —  this is always such a chore because my button box looks like this:

Come on, I know that most of yours look very similar to this as well:).  Now, I like the look of a button jar or the feel of running buttons through my fingers, but this is not a decorative button box.  It is supposed to be a working button box.

I dug around looking for matching small white buttons for about 30 minutes, and finally said, “Enough already!! It’s time to fix this!”I took out a package of large safety pins that I had in a drawer and got to work.

I divided the buttons by color and then started pinning button sets on pins.   It really didn’t take that long, and they look so pretty!

Not every button had a matching set, so I left those  alone in the box for single button projects.   

I just love LOVE LOVE how easy it is to find buttons now!  Pick a colored pin and off I go:)!  SWEET!!

I hope this Totally Tipster Tip helps some of you get your button collection under control too.  Please feel free to leave  me a comment if you do:)!

Until tomorrow–


 

Totally Tipster – How to Make a Super Quick and Easy Ironing Board Cover

Ok, this post is going to be a little bit embarrassing for me because it shows my lack of emphasis on keeping everything clean as a whistle in my sewing room, but hey, I’m creating here, right?  

So… I go through ironing board covers in record breaking speed.  I like a hot iron with a lot of steam.  That puts a lot of wear on my cover.  Here is the embarrassing part… this is what mine looks like after a few months worth of quilting.  Yuk!And here is another just to make you feel good about yourself today.  I will take the prize for worst ironing board cover!I don’t even like the fabric.  It is what I had in my cabinet at the time, but it is too loud for my taste.  My quilt  blocks kind of get lost on this board, and I can’t really take a picture of anything while ironing because everything clashes with the cover.  It is definitely time for a new one:)

A friend gave me this bolt of canvasy type cream material that is now going to be designated the ironing board cover material.  I have years of covers here!  Thank you friend!!I am going to love the plain, neutral color.:). 

So here is the Totally Tipster Tip—  I don’t sew anything.  I cut out my fabric and pin in over the original cover.  Easy easy, fast, fast, easy!  What took me so long?

  • Here is a picture of the underside of my ironing board with the pins holding the fabric in place-
  • I removed all of the pins, there were about 25 or so.
  • I used the old cover as a pattern for the new one.  This will be your first time, so just use a piece of newspaper and trace the top of your board.  Lay it on your fabric and add 5″ all around.  It doesn’t have to be exact, just make it bigger than your board.
  • If you like, add a little bit of batting for extra cushioning under the cover.  I put it on top of the original cover that came with the board. 
  • Trim it around the edges.  No perfection needed.  I just used batting scraps.  Whatever I had:)
  • Lay your fabric on top.  I have to fold my fabric at the end because my board is attached to the wall cabinet 
  • Start at the nose and start pinning under.  I pin one way and then the other to make it tight.  I don’t worry about the pins coming back up.  If the fabric feels secure, I keep going
  • I like to use the long corsage pins, but there are a lot of yellow headed quilting pins under there as well.
  • Just keep pinning all the way down one side and then go to the other and pull tight and pin as well
  • Keep pinning, tightening any loose spaces as you go.

All done!!  Doesn’t that look better?  It’s Totally Tipster! It literally took twice as long to write this post as it did to cover my board!  

New resolution–I will NOT let my board get so messy next time!  I have even cut out extra so I’m ready to go.  

I have one more bonus ironing board tip for you-  

  • I sew while sitting on a rolling chair, I have placed my ironing board to the side of my sewing machine just high enough for me to roll over and press while I am still in my chair.  It is SWEET !!!

There you have it, a super fast, super easy ironing board make over.   If you give this a try, I would love to hear about it:)

Totally Tip-ster! – On the Go Fabric Organizer

Happy Tuesday to you!  Like many of you, I like to work on hand work at night while relaxing and watching a show.  I bet you do too, right?

But sometimes those little pieces can be a bit tricky to transport and keep organized from my work station to my evening chair or to the car for traveling.  Well, I have a Totally Tipster Tuesday tip for you today:)

I am guessing that you have an old coupon organizer laying around your house.  I did.  But if you don’t, these handy organizers are just a dollar or two at your local Walmart or corner pharmacy.A coupon organizer is the perfect size for those small appliqué or paper pieces. Plus, it fits in your purse for easy take along sewing. SWEET!It even comes with handy dividers to keep sections separated so you won’t have to dig around to find the pieces for each flower or leaf etc.  For very small paper pieces, I  recommend putting them in a small envelope and then in the divider so the don’t migrate under the dividers:)When each piece is turned, sewed, or pieced they fit happily back in their divided space.  They can easily be carried back to my normal working area without falling to the floor or getting mixed together.How easy is that?  They look so pretty all separated and organized by color and style.  It is so Totally Tip-ster!!  

I hope this helps and inspires some of you.  If you have any fun ways to transport your projects, I would love to hear about them:)  

Have a super SWEET day!

Totally Tipster! – Thread & Bobbin Storage

I have quite a few thread spools.  Maybe not as many as some of you and maybe quite a bit more than others.  I am sure you all have your own working system on how you like to store yours. 

For years I have used two wooden thread racks  that I mounted on the wall behind my machine.  I love to look at the pretty colorful thread when I enter the room:)

Here is my Tipster Tip-

  1. Buy extra bobbins for your machine. – I bought 20, but will be buying more.
  2. Invest in a peg rack.- they are about $20. on amazon.  –SO Sew worth it!!
  3. Store your thread and matching bobbin thread together on the same peg.
  4. If your spool is too tall for the bobbin to fit as well, cut a straw to your desired length and place it over the peg to lengthen it.

Now that is Totally Tipster!!  What an easy fix!

I lengthened my smaller rack the same way, but my pegs are too wide for my bobbins.  Bummer…  oh well, there is a bobbin rack attached to the top of my board.  It works but not nearly as well as the skinnier pegs on the other rack..

I like how the straws give stability to some of my more awkward embroidery thread.

Storing my thread this way has been such a time saver for me.  It makes finding that matching bobbin a SWEET dream!  No more holding up bobbins to see if it is the thread.  Just grab and sew!

Thank you for dropping by my blog:)