Friday, December 31, 2010

Spoonflower Love

Earlier this month Spoonflower ran an amazing special on Fat Quarters.  I took the plunge and bought six of them.  It was hard to pick which ones to get!  I wanted some fabrics that were quirky, colorful or different.  If I was going to go out of my way to get this special fabric, I wanted it to add some character to my projects.

When the fabrics arrived, the first thing I noticed was that they were as great as I imagined.  Also, Spoonflower's "business card" included in the order is made out of fabric.  That makes complete sense.  Since then, I have discovered that Julie of Jaybird Quilts uses Spoonflower to make her fabric quilt labels.  Brilliant!  Totally stealing that idea someday (when I miraculously learn to design a label).

Without further ado, here are the fabrics I chose:

Hope you enjoyed the fabric porn.  If you're like me, you're not even reading this anymore because you've already clicked over to Spoonflower...

Also, just a note that I don't have any relationship to Spoonflower nor am I receiving anything in exchange for a glowing review.  Besides my one order, they don't even know who I am. I just sincerely love the concept of fabriholics being able to design their own fabric and have it printed relatively affordably and in a jiffy!  Go check it out and let me know what you think.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Mom's Quilt

I finished a quick Verna Charm Square quilt for my mother this Christmas.  She has been begging for a quilt and has even purchased fabric for me to make one for her.  The muse hasn't told me how to make a quilt with her particular fabric yet but I ALWAYS know how to make a Verna quilt and a Charm Square quilt!  So I patched these babies together and sewed my little heart out in order to give it to her on Christmas Day.

This is the first pieced back I've made.  I just had to use those pink owls out of my stash since they have been hooting at me for a year now from the shelf!  I tried to quilt it with light pink thread but the thread kept breaking.  Due to my rush, I switched to white to get it done.

My favorite part is the binding.  The fabric is an Alexander Henry stripe.  Delish!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Scenes from Christmas

Many of you know that I lost my stepfather, Doug, three days before Christmas.  He had late stage cancer and severe COPD but it was still awful and "sudden".  We had to make some terrible decisions the week before Christmas and say goodbye to a gentle and loving soul.  He passed away on the 22nd and his service was on the 27th.  This brought all of us together for Christmas.  My two sisters and their husbands along with my two stepbrothers and their wives.  And all the kids. Doug would have loved it!

We gathered at my mom's house in Greenville, SC.  More shocking than anything was the heavy snow that arrived on Christmas day.  My sisters' families and I actually stayed at my dad's house since my mom's house was full of other family.  My dad's house is on a mountain which made for an even more gorgeous snowfall.
My three kids are in red and green pjs.  The other three boys are my sister's.  They live in Minnesota so they were not impressed with our "blizzard".  You can only imagine how magical Christmas morning was with six children between the ages of 3 and 8!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Placemats and Potholders

Here is a better picture
For the potholders, I added a small hanging loop when I attached the binding.  Here is a close-up of how I had to figure that process out by trial and error:
Many of you commented that you like to see both the good and bad side of quilting.  So I decided to let this "bad" loop stand.  I wanted to show you that it's not that big of a deal.  It's a handmade item and it's ok for it to look like a handmade item.  Now I've learned a better way of doing the loop (the one on the right) so I'll know for the future.

Basically, the first loop I did, I tried to sew the binding behind the loop.  The second one, I sewed the binding onto the loop itself.  In both cases, I machine sewed the loop onto the raw corner of the quilt sandwich first.  I'm sorry I didn't take pics of this process at the time.  I was racing to get it done and sent out to the winner.

I have lots more pictures to share on the blog since I bought a new camera for Christmas!  Stay tuned for updates including the quick Verna quilt I made for my mom for Christmas, the completed Verna quilt I made for myself, and more progress pictures of the Michael Miller Christmas quilt I'm still working on for the Old Red Barn Co quilt-along.

Have a wonderful day!

Edited to add:
A post on Twitter helped me to realize that this placemat project is very similar to a Rachel Griffith Moda Bake Shop tutorial for a table runner.  This was completely unintentional and I have removed the placemat instructions in an effort not to offend anyone!  I am a huge fan of both the Moda Bake Shop and Rachel Griffith of ps I quilt.  I came up with these placemats when Sew, Mama, Sew announced their giveaway.  At the time I was working on my Michael Miller Christmas quilt and had some leftover jelly roll strips but not alot of time.  My sister had recommended giving away placemats as a tie-in with my first Moda Bake Shop placemat recipe that same week.  Great!  I'll just sew these strips together quick and easy.  It never occurred to me that someone had created and posted a design putting strips together as a placemat.  So if I stepped on anyone's toes, please accept my heartfelt apology!  As you can see from my blog archives, I try always to give credit to fabric, pattern, and tutorial designers whenever I make something with them.  Thanks!


This morning I overheard my 3 yr old yelling at the Christmas tree:

Saturday, December 18, 2010

WINNER! generated the winning number for the placemats and pot holders.  I have emailed the winner but wanted to share her comment here.  It looks like you guys love TUTORIALS and pictures!  So stay tuned for more of both.  I got a new fancy camera for Christmas and I can't wait to share some nice pictures with you.  Now, on to the winner...

Number 62 is BESS from james and bess!

james and bess said... :

these are so cute! in a sewing/quilting blog, i love tutorials and fresh sewing project ideas. :)


Thank you to all 268 of you who stopped by to enter.  Thanks also to all of you who checked out my first Moda Bake Shop tutorial.  Stay tuned for more in the new year :-)


Giveaway Update

I have closed the comments on the Giveaway post and will announce the winner this weekend. Thank you SO much to all who entered! Your feedback was tremendous and very much appreciated. Good luck on this and all of the other giveaways you participated in!

Thursday, December 16, 2010


What an honor to be selected to present a project over at Moda Bake Shop!  Today you can click on over there to see my first Moda Bake Shop Recipe which is a set of 6 personalized holiday placemats.  I used charm packs of Kate Spain's 12 Days of Christmas fabric but this project is adaptable to any fabrics or themes.  Um, just in case you didn't know it, I'm Kate Spain's dedicated stalker fan.  I LOVE her designs and can't get enough of them!  And as for charm packs, don't get me started.  They are so easy, it's a little bit like cheating don't you think?  I love Moda pre-cuts.  Every time I pick up my rotary cutter I feel a bit like I'm playing Russian Roulette.  Either a three-year-old pops up underneath my arm or a cat tail swipes nearby just as I'm releasing the safety switch.  I'm sweating just thinking about it.  Should we repeat?  I LOVE MODA PRE-CUTS.

If you like what you see, don't forget to become a follower of my blog here at Frecklemama, follow Frecklemama on Twitter, or subscribe to feeds.  I would love some feedback! 

Also, just a reminder that my Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway is open through Friday.  Please be sure to comment on the Giveaway post for a chance to win your very own Holiday Placemat set!

Monday, December 13, 2010


Welcome to Frecklemama!  Thanks for stopping by.  This week is Sew, Mama, Sew's Giveaway week.  In celebration of Giveaway week and an exciting announcement coming to my blog on Thursday,  I am giving away a set of four Michael Miller Christmas placemats with two matching pot holders.

Here is a photo of one of the placemats.  My camera is broken so I will update the post when I get some better pictures!

To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment about what you look for in a sewing or quilting blog.  What makes you follow one blog over another and what kinds of content do you like to find when you visit your favorite blogs?  I will select a winner using the Random Number Generator.  One entry per person please, and make sure there is a way for me to contact you if you're the winner!

Please be sure to visit Sew, Mama, Sew to find many more bloggers offering fantastic giveaways this week!  The comments will be open until the end of the day Friday.  Once I select a winner, I will try to ship the package out as quickly as I can.  This giveaway is open to both domestic and international participants.

Subscribe to feeds or follow me on Twitter for new blog post updates.  Thanks for visiting Frecklemama! 

Monday, December 6, 2010

Sew,Mama,Sew Giveaway Day Coming Up!!!

Sew, Mama, Sew is hosting their fantastic Giveaway Day on Monday, December 13th!  I am thrilled to announce that I will be participating in the Giveaway. 

Stay tuned for more information and be sure to check out the master list of participants when it's published at Sew, Mama, Sew!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Layout of Old Red Barn Co Quilt Along Quilt

Layout of Old Red Barn Co Quilt Along
Originally uploaded by Frecklemama

Yes, I know this is years in the making. It's a little tedious working on a seasonal quilt when it's not the right season. Now that it's Christmas again, I am happily working towards a finish. I am currently adding white sashing between blocks to make it a little crisper and larger.

Cherry Delight Fig Tree Fresh Cottons

Cherry Delight Fig Tree Fresh Cottons
Originally uploaded by Frecklemama

Progress on Fig Tree Fresh Cottons Cherry Delight kit.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

No, you're not lost!

I have adopted a new look for the blog just to spice things up a bit. It's still your same old Frecklemama, just with a new fancy dress on ;-)

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.

Stay tuned for some exciting news!


Far Far Away II Bolster Pillow

I ordered a yard of Heather Ross' gorgeous Far Far Away II Rapunzel fabric. I didn't have a plan for it other than making something for my daughter. And so it sat on my quilting table for a couple of weeks.

I realized last night, stupidly, that she has an uncovered bolster pillow on her bed that keeps her from falling between the bed and the wall. Voila! I'll make a cover for her bolster!

So here it is:

Yes, my pictures are terrible! It is cold and rainy outside so the indoor dim pic is all I could get.

Here is a closeup:

It's a little too long but I was more concerned with quick than perfect. I made a tube then turned the end hems in to make a tie channel. I made a length of bias tape (although straight, not on the bias) out of the fabric scrap and then sewn into a tie. I fed the bias tie through each channel to make a tie for each end.

It took less than an hour from start to finish.

We went to see Tangled in the theater on Sunday so the timing of this is perfect! Should I hide it until Christmas or just give it to her now?...


Monday, October 25, 2010

Toe Attack via Fig Tree Fresh Cottons

Toe Attack
Originally uploaded by Frecklemama

I am making the Cherry Delight quilt by Fig Tree Quilts using her Fresh Cottons line. I am a Fig Tree Fan to almost groupie proportions! Something about Joanna Figueroa's colors and style really connects with me.

I made a twin sized quilt using her Whimsy fabric earlier this summer as a graduation gift for our favorite babysitter. I'll share that soon. For some reasons the pictures I took aren't that great.

Anyway, while pressing the quilt top, I leave it hanging from my pressing table. When I step up to pin on the next row, my feet are often attacked by the Fresh Cottons Monster.

Glace' Quilt Top

Glace' Quilt Top
Originally uploaded by Frecklemama

I can't remember if I've posted pictures of this quilt top yet or not. This is a simple squares pattern using Three Sisters' Glace' Fabric. This fabric is delicious! It feels so good and has been a pleasure to work with.

This quilt top is awaiting basting, quilting and binding. Story of my life, right?


Laptop sleeve

Laptop sleeve
Originally uploaded by Frecklemama

Beware! Now that I've discovered how to blog directly from Flickr, you're in for a treat :-) No more fussy moving the photos around in Blogger.

Ok, here is a photo of a Laptop Sleeve I made this summer using OhFransson's tutorial by Elizabeth Hartman.

I used a couple of random fat quarters, velcro, fusible fleece. Easy peasy!

Verna Quilt Basting

Verna Quilt Basting
Originally uploaded by Frecklemama

Here is an update on my beloved Verna quilt. This is a picture of the basting (which is my most dreaded step in the quilt-making process!). The quilt is quilted and I am now stitching the binding to the back. I do my binding stitching in front of the TV in the family room, so even though it's not quite finished, we're already using it as our sofa quilt LOL!

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this quilt and have already received a ton of compliments on it.


Monday, May 17, 2010

Khaki Quilt, Flag Quilt, Verna Quilt - Updates!

I have lots of quilting goodies to catch up on. I've been lazy about taking pics, and really who wants to read a blog post with no pics?

First of all, I'm almost done with the Khaki quilt (can we think of a more boring name please?). Just have to hand-sew binding to the back:

Many quilt bloggers seem to have a problem with cats on their quilts while taking pictures. I've always thought that was kind of funny. Like the cats have nothing else better to do than get in the way of a photo shoot. Well, apparently it's true:

Also, while my machine was in for service, I used a friend's machine to make a simple flag wall hanging. I haven't quilted it yet, but I'll go ahead and share a picture of it. The stars are hand appliqued using an easy technique. Put cheap muslin and your feature fabric right sides together. Sew them together in your shape (ie, complete star), cut it out leaving a small seam allowance. Cut slit into the muslin (CAREFUL not to cut your feature fabric!). Turn inside out and press. Now you can applique the shape on without fiddling with that pesky turn-under seam allowance.

Here is a close-up of one star:

Next I have been working on a Verna quilt. For those of you who haven't heard me shout it from the rooftops yet, "I LOVE KATE SPAIN'S VERNA FABRIC!!!!" So I went to her blog to tell her that. Just my luck, I encountered yet another blog giveaway that I was not going to win. I entered it anyway, because, c'mon, it's KATE SPAIN's VERNA! And... I WON! I received the Layer Cake and knew exactly what I wanted to do with it. I wanted to showcase the fabrics with a simple patch quilt design but then add a new technique to it by trying prairie points for the first time. I had been inspired by this Moda Bake Shop quilt.

So far I have sewn together the layer cake squares:

And pressed some of the points:

And as if that isn't enough, I have also cut the fabric for a quilt I'm making for our beloved babysitter. She is graduating from high school on Saturday! Obviously it won't be done in time, so thank goodness she lives across the street :-) I will post pics of that when I make more progress on it.

Whew! So, you see there? I have been quilting and fabric-loving since you heard from me last. I've just been lazy about posting it. To be honest, I enjoy reading everyone else's blogs more than updating my own!

If you're a quilter and/or fabric-lover like me, hop on over to Sew,Mama,Sew to check out their huge Giveaway Day.

Have a great week everyone!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Trucker Quilters in Wall Street Journal

For all of you quilt lovers out there, check out this great Wall Street Journal article featuring truck drivers who quilt in their spare time. It's a great testament to the soothing, creative head-spinning nature of our hobby!


Thanks to my dad for sending it to me this morning.

FYI, my machine is still in for service. It's actually ready but I haven't made the 30 minute trip to pick it up yet. Hopefully tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Sick machine.

I have a Viking Sapphire 870 sewing machine. I've had it for a year and it's time for a service. Not to mention that it's breaking needles and skipping stitches while I'm trying to free-motion quilt. Frustrating! So being without my sewing machine is a complete drag. I feel like I'm in time-out.

For those of you who also have a Sapphire machine, check out the Yahoo Group for Sapphire users. I've gotten wonderful advice and ideas from that group!

Just to keep you entertained on this fair Tuesday, here is a pic:

This is my mom with her grandkids. It was taken last summer at the beach and is one of my favorite pictures. I wanted to add it to the blog to give it a permanent home.

Also, in case you haven't heard me brag about my sister enough, her NEW BOOK The Dead-Tossed Waves hits the bookstores today!!!

Carrie's first book hit the NY Times bestseller list (March 14th edition) and we are SO PROUD of her!!!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Jenny's Quilt

One of the first quilts I made (2001 or 2002) was this Snowball Quilt for my older sister Jenny. This is machine pieced but entirely HAND QUILTED. That's right, I'm proud. Can you see me strutting my stuff? Ahhh, those were the days before children...

I LOVE this quilt. I love the colors, the design, and the fact that it was lovingly stitched for someone so important to me. I love knowing that this quilt has been on her children's beds, thrown over the sofa, and smushed under toys. I love that this quilt is being used the way it was meant to be.

When Jenny moved from our South Carolina hometown to blustery Minnesota, we thought she would surely freeze to death. I love that this quilt is symbolic of keeping her warm while she's so far away from me.

The snowball blocks are quilted with a snowflake design:

Jenny's three boys (Alex 6, Corey 5 TODAY!, and Robbie 3) are the ones posing with the quilt. On this Valentine's Day I hope that they know just how much I love them!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

I am a dummie.

Several bloggers have mentioned recently their inability to contact some of their followers. They have thoughtfully instructed their readers on how to correct this in their Blogger settings by selecting "show email address". I kept thinking "ah, there must be a bunch of newbie dummies out there who haven't caught on to this whole internet thing". Hahahaha.

And then I realized that I'm one of them.

...palm to forehead...

Friday, February 12, 2010


Talking to a two-and-a-half year old never gets boring.

Audrey: it’s snowy.
Me: yeah, it’s pretty isn’t it?
Audrey: where’s James?
Me: he’s at school.
Audrey: where’s Rhine?
Me: he’s at school too.
Audrey: oh.
Me: who do you like better?
Audrey: uhhhhhhhh… me.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Quilt Top Finishes!

Yes, I am one of those slow bloggers with lots of excuses. The main one is intimidation. I spend time everyday savoring all of the wonderful blogs out there about parenting, quilting, etc and am amazed at people's creativity and prolific productivity! I can't keep that pace so I feel like I rarely have new things to share.

In November and December I added a part-time retail job to my full-time mom-of-three job so the quilting projects went on major hold. Now that I'm done with the job, my machine is seeing action again. I've finished two quilt tops and several blocks for others.

First of all, here is a quilt I am making for MYSELF:

A closer look at a block:

This is a basic log-cabin using Moda Glace' by Three Sisters. I LOVE this fabric. The colors are lovely but the feel or "hand" is scrumptious!

Next we have a quilt kit I ordered after seeing in the Summer 2009 "Quilts and More" magazine:

You'll have to excuse the bad pics and wrinkles! Here is a close-up:

Finally, some pinwheel blocks because I LOVE the Moda Rouenneries line by French General:

So there you have some updates to my progress finally. I have to admit, I spend way more time admiring quilt bloggers' projects than working on my own but it provides wonderful inspiration as well as delicious eye candy!