Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Luminous Layers QAL Cutting Instructions

For me, the best part of putting my designs out into the world is seeing others' renditions. So I am super-excited to see your fabric choices, which is why we have a linkup today at the end of this post. If you don't do social media, then please email me a photo and I will add you into the linkup. I will draw one name for a PDF copy of Luminous Layers, or if they've already bought it, a free PDF of their choice.

If you are still undecided (that's me in most projects) as to what colour palette you are going to use, then I have a few quilt photos for inspiration for you to check out.

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Luminous Layers QAL Fabric Requirements

It's time to talk fabric, our favourite subject, right? This week I'll be going over the fabric requirements for making either the small or large throw quilt and giving you some ideas as to how to go about choosing your fabrics, hopefully from within your own stash. Then it's like you've got a totally free quilt at the end: free pattern and 'free' fabric!

If you're 'in' with us, grab that icon and post it to your blog or Instagram or FaceBook (I don't do FB, but it's totally fine if you want to post your progress there). Do you have to have a social media account though to participate? Nope! Email me any photos when it's time for a prize draw and I will enter your name. All are welcome here.

Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Luminous Layers Quilt Along Schedule and Sponsors

Welcome to the eighth annual quilt along here at mmmquilts! I am so glad you are here, and I do hope you will join in with us for yet another year of fun sewing and prizes galore! If you are new to the blog, welcome! I hope you'll peruse the tabs up top, check out some of the activities and makes of mine. Be sure to follow me (see the 'Get new posts by email' buttons for the blog and Instagram on my sidebar) to be notified of new posts over the next few months of the quilt along.

Once again, the free Quilt Along kicks off on my birthday, April 3, and ends on what was the birthday of one 'famous Canadian', (explanation further along) my dad, June 15. The pace is nice and relaxed, so I hope you can squeeze in a little star- (a few little stars!) creating with your other quilt commitments.

Here is the graphic for the QAL. I hope you'll pop it on the sidebar of your blog and/or post it in your feed and stories on Instagram.

This is a quilt I designed for Island Batik in 2019 when I was an ambassador for them. It was a most rewarding three years sewing with their beautiful fabrics. At the time several people asked if I'd write up the pattern and I had planned to, but those were busy years sewing for Island Batik, and it did not happen ... until this year!

Sunday, March 31, 2024

The Partner Placemat

For the last Project Quilting challenge I made a placemat for our dear friend John. I’d also started a second one for his former wife, with whom he is still very close. Here it is.

Partner placemats. Sharing similar characteristics but able to stand alone as well, as good friends do.
Like John’s I did the Irish Chain block for Pat’s. Like John’s, hers has stars using the triangle-in-a-square block. They share a common colour: green. They share Cypress but she has Leprechaun. However, you can see that where his used purple for the stand alone triangle, hers used the background fabric and I used green for the side triangles. Same exact block just coloured differently! Pat's favourite colour is red.

Friday, March 29, 2024

Gratitude and Glimmers #82

I have put off writing this post for a month, probably because there is just so much to write, and I knew it would take me some time (and it did, more hours than I care to admit) but mainly because it would be so painful to write. Dayna gave me the idea to write it as my Gratitude post, because when you sift through all of the good (so much good) and all of the bad, it comes down to gratitude and love.

The love between a medium-sized Staffy-terrier mix rescue dog and her humans and fur brother.
May 23 - 27, 2021

This is a tribute to this wonderful little peanut who, much too soon, on February 26, went over the Rainbow Bridge. She taught us so much about patience and trust and compassion in the all-too-short time she was a part of our family. 

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Project Quilting 15.6 Irish Chain

For whatever reason, maybe a lot going on this past week, this last challenge for Project Quilting gave me pause. We were to work with the Irish Chain quilt block.

I first played around in my graph paper design book, originally planning a quilt for myself, baby size, as another of my take-to-yoga-class quilts, or else a placemat for my good friend John. I knew I would do a triangle in a square in the alternating squares. I made a quilt with this design in a 9-patch exchange about 20 years ago and I just love the effect. It was a busy week and although I plan to do that yoga class quilt or 'Baby Boomer Blankie', a placemat, hopefully two, it had to be. (Baby Boomer Blankie is a term coined by my friend Rose, and since I am born in the last year of the Boomers, I guess it can apply to moi as well), 
I finally got to my sewing machine on Friday and by Saturday around 10 pm (gulp) I had one complete. 

Of course I had to make delicious soft ginger cookies, a recipe Brady shared with me. Brady also gave me that mug. The cream and sugar pottery is now 45+ years old, a pre-marriage gift from Pat, my SIL. It’s all about the photo shoot right?!

Friday, March 22, 2024

Rainbow Fish SAHRR Complete

It was another fun year of brain work in the Stay At Home Round Robin hosted by Gail of QuiltingGail, along with several co-hosts who gave a directive each week as to what to do for that specific round. My forlorn fish and heart blocks have grown into this adorable baby/toddler quilt and I just love how it all came together.

When I drove down Main Street earlier this week, I spied that mural and thought I think I should use it for a quilt photo of my fishies quilt! Thanks to some ‘rough surface’ tape, I was able to tape it to that wall. Don’t worry: I first checked in a small corner that it wouldn’t harm the mural. Eeee! I did a little squeal when I stepped back to snap the photo. It is good!

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Eighth Annual Quilt Along Heads Up!

Happy first full day of Spring to those readers in the Northern Hemisphere where the Vernal Equinox occurred last night at 11:06 EST. Happy first well due to getting this out later than planned, make that the second full day of autumn to my Southern Hemisphere readers, where the Autumnal Equinox occurs at 2:07 AEDT. In both hemispheres the amount of daylight and nighttime is almost exactly equal. The world is totally in sync!

If you are looking for my Villa Rose Designs post, click here.

So today is an auspicious day to announce that exactly two weeks from today marks the kickoff of my eighth annual quilt along, and I am excited to give you a little teaser of what we are doing this year. First of all, here is the graphic:

Feel free to grab it for your sidebar or for other social media. At the end of the post is another graphic to post on your Instagram stories or wherever else you post if you are participating. I appreciate the help in getting the word out about my free, yes completely free, QAL!

Saturday, March 16, 2024

Villa Rosa Designs Blog Hop

Welcome to my stop on the hop! I am Sandra of mmmquilts, which came about from the original name of my blog which I started in 2013, Musings of a Menopausal Melon. It was started when I quit teaching because my husband took early retirement, and I was certainly not going to work if he wasn't. Along with that major decision we made a major move across Canada, and the blog (I love to write) became my way of keeping in touch with family and friends afar as I mused about our new direction in life, life in general, and quilting, which led to a whole new journey in and of itself! When quilting became the predominant subject of the blog, I shortened the name to mmmquilts, all one word, lower case. I also design patterns, which have appeared in several publications, and you can also find them in my Etsy shop, SandraJaneQuilts. On April 3, my eighth annual Quilt Along begins, running through June 15 at a nice relaxed pace. This year it is once again free to participants, with some great prizes to be won.

I was thrilled to be invited to participate for the second year of this hop which showcases five fast and fun quilts to make. The one I chose came together from start to finish within a few hours!

Rufus, my quilt model

This design is named Gypsy Rose, but I’ve named my quilt Around the Block for a couple of reasons. Read on for that explanation, as well as to enter for your chance to win some truly fantastic prizes, many of which are open to quilters around the globe this year.

Sunday, March 10, 2024

Project Quilting 15.5 Wearables

I actually was excited about this prompt because I felt it would be the impetus to get me doing a little garment sewing again. I still have kept a few pieces of yardage in the thought (hope) I’d sew some clothes again one day. 
Here is the top I made!

A couple of years ago I made myself a pair of pajama shorts using the same pattern as we’d used when Brady was here visiting to make his. I originally had a dress in mind for this fabric but, since I had scads of yardage and I really liked the print, I decided to make the shorts. They turned out great and I thought why not make a top to go with them? A top would be a faster make since I only had from Thursday on to get something together before the deadline.

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

SAHRR Round 6 Letters and Numbers

And just like that, another Stay at Home Round Robin is done. This was my second time participating, and once again, I really enjoyed the work for my math and creative brain, and really enjoyed where the quilt ended up, as much a surprise for me as those watching!

Many thanks to Gail of QuiltingGail for dreaming this up and being the main host. 

Friday, February 23, 2024

SAHRR Round 5 “Four”

This round’s directive was given to us by Gail at QuiltingGail. She said the theme this week is ‘4’. We could do whatever we want but it has to have an element of four in it. I decided to make 4-patches, and my first plan was to put them in the four corners. Here is how my quilt ended up:

Read on to find out how it got there.

Monday, February 19, 2024

Project Quilting 15.4 Hourglass

I had told myself to make a little less involved of a project this round of Project Quilting at Persimon Dreams. When I saw the final graphic that Trish had posted, the idea to make a placemat, and thus have a rectangular based hourglass was born.

I have tons of green and tons of blue strips so I at first figured I’d do the side triangles in blue strips. It didn’t take long to realize that that would be a whole lot of seams regardless of whether they met or not, and on the bias. Not such a great plan. A little thinking ensued.

Sunday, February 18, 2024

SAHRR Round 4 Square in a Square

I had intended to add more fish in a subsequent round, and this round was perfect for it! Brenda of Songbird Designs is this week’s host who gave us the directive: add Square in a Square blocks in this round. 

Along with the fish which are the SiaS block, I made three more plain SiaS blocks, pulling in two fabrics from previous rounds as well as introducing the bubbles shimmery water-like fabric.

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Special Makeup Bags

It seems I am constantly making makeup bags, but I do love making them so it’s never a problem. I have two to show you today, one which has been half done for a couple of months, just waiting for me to finish it up, and the other was a DrEAMi (Drop Everything And Make it!)

You may recognize the fabrics in the one on the left; they are the same ones I used to make my big tote bag for Project Quilting 15.3 this past week. 

Sunday, February 11, 2024

SAHRR Round 3 Triangles

I made my first paper-pieced fish on Tuesday but didn’t get a chance to get back to my Stay At Home Round Robin until Saturday because I was working on my Project Quilting 15.3 challenge. So here is round 3, Triangles.

This is an inside shot because the outside shot I took was minutes after the sun had dipped behind the neighbour’s house across the street, so it’s very blue. This one is excellent for showing the true colours.

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Project Quilting 15.3 Inside Out

For this third challenge we were to create something that thematically or literally shows the aspect of being inside out. I think of expressions like Wear your heart on your sleeve, or My eyeballs fell out of their sockets. You could have exposed seams, which made me think of the old jeans and flannel-backed quilt I made years ago with raggedy edges from sewing the layers wrong sides together. A bag would work, Trish said, because it gets sewn with right sides together and then, as she said, 'birthed', pulling the outside of the bag through the inside-out lining. That bag idea was it, and I knew right away what one I would make. After last challenge's challenges (ha) and missing the deadline by a few hours, this one was going to be Simple Simon, no getting all fancy.

As soon as I read the directive for this challenge, I knew I would make my Positive Flow bag pattern. I sold the one remaining in my shop a little while ago, so with the intention of making one to replace it, I was off. Well, as much as one can be off with a dog recovering from ACL surgery and tag-teaming with one’s husband so that one of us is with her 24/7.

This ensures her safety and keeping her as quiet and immobile as possible for the first 3-4 weeks. Still, I got it done on Friday in time for an outside photo or two in the (are you sitting down?) sunshine!

Monday, February 5, 2024

Hashtag Naptime

In August I participated in Cheryl Brickey‘s book release blog hop for Just Two Charm Packs Quilts. I made a baby quilt size version of her design Diamond Hashtag, which you can read about here. I had the behemoth 150 Canadian Women quilt on the frame at that time, so it did not get it quilted and it has sat waiting patiently ever since.

I may have a lot of WIPs and USOs, but one thing I am pretty good at is keeping on top of finished tops getting quilted. This is the last of the two tops from last year.

Saturday, February 3, 2024

SAHRR Rounds 1 and 2

Although I had formed an idea of what I would do with Round 1, Signature Block, prompt, I never did get to do it what with spending a lot of time on the Project Quilting challenge that week and with the stress of Xena's torn ACL. So this week I made sure to get that round done as well as Round 2, which threw me a bit I must say. Anja of anjaquilts gave us a pretty much wide open prompt : use just two colours and do whatever you want. Sometimes those wide-open directives can be problematic for people like me who are rule followers. I've always loved challenges where your creativity gets stretched, and both PQ and SAHRR are wonderful activities that do just that.

Here is what I did with Round 1.

It's interesting how my brain works on these prompts in the background of my mind. I honestly do not remember exactly what/where/how I came up with this idea, but one signature block it is, bubble-type fabric in turquoise on either side, with bubbles coming up from the swimming fishies.

Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Rainbow Connection: RSC 2023 and 2024 Progress

This is my original Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilt of 2023. I had three ongoing projects, and just have one left to get into a flimsy and quilted up for a donation quilt. This one will be donated somewhere too.

The original dark blue blocks were in this post. It is a quilt from Quick & Easy Quilts August/September 2022. Mine is a scrappy version of the Saskatchewan designer's quilt.

Monday, January 29, 2024

Project Quilting 15.2 Sky Color

I got SO excited at this week's prompt for Project Quilting because I am a bit of a nut when it comes to watching the skies. I have a lot of it to see from my sewing room windows which face south, east and west. Yep tons and tons of light. Our house is pretty much like that, one of the main reasons I agreed to buy it is that it is filled with light thanks to lots of windows.

Here is where the challenge ended:

It had some definite growing pains along the way and missed the deadline by a couple of hours.

One of the things I love most about PQ challenges is getting to paw through my glorious stash. This challenge was no different. So we were to make a project that evokes sky colour (I use Canadian aka English spelling) with only 10% cerulean. Love that word, a beautiful name for the colour sky-blue. Blue is my favourite colour, so making a quilt about the sky without it at first seems strange, but not when I think of the sunset I saw Sunday night, hours after the challenge was posted. Look at those fiery pinks and oranges and the reflection in the clouds overhead. This is pure Mother Nature, no filters or enhancement.

or the sunrise on Monday, again no filters or special touchups:

Thursday, January 25, 2024

Gratitude and Glimmers #81

Let another year of being grateful, consciously grateful, begin. It's so true that little aha, or wow moments of gratitude give you a little glimmer, whether that glimmer is a lift to your spirits or a little squeeze of your heart or a secret smile. You can find more posts from like-minded grateful peeps at Not Afraid of Color.

1. Dogs are the BEST! Cats are a close second, but sorry Bella and Harper, they do come second. I love dogs, and am proud and honoured to say I have been and still am owned by several of these beautiful souls over the 43.5 years of our marriage. We actually got our first dog, Rex, about two months before we were married, and he lived with my husband for a bit, and with me at my parents for a bit before we were married. Anyhow, THIS--?!!! You will be amazed and moved by Ruby who saved her master's life.

Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Christmas Garland Runner

I seem to be on a roll of finishes this month, and here is another. Dayna made several requests last summer and I do believe I've now fulfilled them all, though in the other day's conversation mention was made of her needing a heart quilt... She had requested two table runners, one in pink and another in traditional Christmas colours. You've seen the flimsy in the pattern release post. Well, here it is complete.

Dayna loves it. Mission accomplished!

Monday, January 22, 2024

Harper's Heart Quilt

Another long-standing request of Dayna's is a quilt for Harper. Yes, I made her a cat mat a few years ago, which she loves, but Dayna wanted an actual quilt for her. When I was making the pixellated heart quilt for Millie, Dayna's BFF's daughter, I made one using 2.5" squares that ended up being too small. I made the second one, using 3.5" squares to get it to a better size. The small pixellated heart has been sitting for almost exactly two years, waiting patiently for something to happen with it.

When Dayna and Tyler were in Detroit for last week's game against the Rams, which the Lions won, woot woot, we met them at Toast, a family-owned restaurant in Windsor (no relation to Toast in Ferndale, Michigan across the river). Meeting up with them was the impetus to check off this item on her list of quilt requests.

Saturday, January 20, 2024

SAHRR and RSC Progress

I posted some of these photos on my Instagram @mmmquilts but it's good to keep a record here on the blog too. I'm leaving comments off this post since a lot of it is what's been shown there.

I joined in with the Stay At Home Round Robin or SAHRR hosted by QuiltingGail for the first time last year and it was a blast. A good brain workout and good push for the creativity! Here is my centre block for this year:

It measure 17.5" x 16.5".

Friday, January 19, 2024

Rosebud Garland Pattern Release

Ta-da! May I present Rosebud Garland! I am very excited to release my first pattern of 2024, which technically is my last pattern of 2023, since it was in the previous issue of Make Modern, issue #55 to be specific. One of the many things I love about this magazine is that they only keep the rights to your patterns until the next issue comes out, in other words, just two months.

What you won't get in the Make Modern issue is the pattern for the accompanying placemats, as well as a tip in this post to make an extra-long runner if you've got a large dining table, as does my daughter, Dayna. Read on to find out and also to check out the low price at which it's being offered.

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

W-EVdnesday #7 - Power Grids

First of all, I have made a tab at the top of my blog which, if you click it, takes to to a page where you can find links to all of my W-EVdnesday posts.

Last week Alberta issued an Emergency Alert:

Screenshot courtesy of our daughter Brianne. 

My first thought was well, I guess I can see that; I mean earlier Brianne had sent us a couple of screenshots of unbelievably cold actual temperatures and insane windchills:

But my nano-second close second thought was wait, 'delay charging electric vehicles?' That is what they are purporting to be one of the significant drains on the grid? 'Berta gonna 'Berta as they say these days...

However, it’s not just Alberta; this narrative is all too common. 
“Our power grid won't be able to handle all these EVs coming online.”

So MacGyver and I had a little chat, and he told me about Tim Weiss, @TimWeissAB a professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Alberta (yay, my alma mater) who he follows who had this to say about that very thing.

Friday, January 12, 2024

Project Quilting 15.1 Bird House

I am always excited to kick off the year with challenges to my creative spirit. Project Quilting, along with the Stay At Home Round Robin, aka SAHRR, which starts this coming weekend, do just that!

Our first challenge is to make something that evokes "the myriad places a bird calls 'home,'" as explained by Trish at Here is my finished piece. Read on to see how it evolved.

Thursday, January 11, 2024

TGIFF! Postcard from Sweden Finish

Welcome to TGIFF! This is a celebration of finishes, and I'm happy to be back hosting the second one of 2024. I am also very pleased to show off my second finish of 2024, my third Postcard from Sweden quilt.

Like the first two, this one is not going to live with me, and that is just fine. Like the first two, it is on its way to a good home where I know it will be cherished. If you are interested in hosting TGIFF go here to pick a date to sign up. It's super-easy.

Friday, January 5, 2024

Sofia’s Quilt

This was the second quilt commission that I got in 2023. One of my neighbours asked me to make a quilt for another neighbour who had a baby girl in the middle of December. Technically the quilt should’ve been easily finished by December 31 but the flu that weekend prevented that from happening so it only got completed on January 2.

I gave some glimpses on Instagram during the construction and quilting process. It is the third time I’ve made my pattern, Sunset strip, which you can see on my sideboard where there is a link to it in my Etsy shop.

Thursday, January 4, 2024

2024 Setting Intentions and Summarizing 2023

I decided to put some of my intentions for 2024 into words this year; last year they were in my head, rather nebulous and definitely not prescriptive. I did enough of those kind of goal-setting missives complete with measures and strategies over 30 years of teaching! Although the main reason for starting my blog was to keep in touch with friends and family, as well as keep a record of my creations, it certainly has evolved over the ten years I've been writing it. Yep, I hit ten years (wow) in September 2023. It has evolved into such an enriching exciting part of my life and I couldn't be more awed or grateful for all the directions I've gone.

A brief recap of what I'd sort of expected of 2023 is worth noting. My previous post was The Best Of, and it differs from this recap of expectations I had, something I didn't realize until after I'd made my notes, and then thought whoops, have I repeated myself... strangely, no, except for one item!

1. I had hoped to get a quilt or two published during the course of that year, since I hadn't had any published designs in 2022, and so I submitted to two publications, Golden Peak Media and Make Modern. Both submissions were accepted, Tinker Toys in Love of Quilting September/October and Rosebud Garland in Make Modern November/December.

The pattern for Rosebud Garland will soon be released as I get the rights back when issue 56 is published, on January 12. 

Monday, January 1, 2024

My Best of 2023

My dad used to say that when he was a kid, the days would go so slowly from one weekend to the next, and it would take forever to get to his birthday or summer vacation. Now that he was retired, months passed like days, and a year was gone in a blink. I understand exactly what he meant! How is it three, no, coming up on four years since the world locked down for the pandemic? I feel my brain wanting to explode.

Regardless, another year has marched on by, and I am joining in with Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs for a look back at things to celebrate in 2023. I usually start by flipping through all the posts I wrote - 81 - to see which ones got the most views. 

1. The most-viewed post was The Art of Riding Thermals, a quilt I made for the Villa Rosa Designs January blog hop I was asked to be a part of.

This quilt lives with my niece, Sheila, in Edmonton, where it keeps her Postcard from Sweden quilt company.