Monday, March 2, 2015


Welcome to Keep It Simple Make It Fun (KISMIF).  I sure enjoy your projects.

It is a great week!   I have a brand-new quilt pattern to announce this week.  It is called "Under the Nordic Sky" and was published and chosen to be the cover-feature quilt in Make Modern Magazine Issue #4.
This is the cover photo, shot at the J. Ruben Clarke Historic Farm in Grantsville, Utah USA--which is really far away from Make Modern's publishing in Sydney, Australia!

My husband and I had a great time with the photo shoot.  Here are some other pictures (some of which did not make the magazine).
The combination of black and white filter and the antique farm in the background makes this new and modern styled quilt look antique.

The same photo without the black and white filter.

Here is the quilt on an antique cow milking stand.  I love the weathered old wood--gratefully it was clean.

All of this old antique farm machinery gave so many photography options.  It was fun.  We'll have to take some pictures here again.

We then went into the Grantsville City Rodeo Grounds and took photos on their livestock chutes.  Very different photo shoot, but I like it a lot.
I went all-out quilting this project.  I pre-marked all of the straight lines and curved cross-hatching lines for spacing.  I also pre-marked a scalloped border and then back-filled with feathers.
The back-ground areas have micro-swirls while in between the Nordic Blocks I did pearls.  Also, all of the stars have white-thread feathers in them.

Close-up of the quilting.

Another close-up.

I really like the way the quilting turned out.  The extra effort really transformed this quilt into something I feel proud about.  I'm amazed that it turned out so well.

The curved cross-hatching created spectacular results.  It really sets off the Peerie border (X-O).

Well, that's enough about me, now it's all about you. 

My favorite project from last week was this beautiful flying geese pillow.  Great fabric choices.

Now it's your turn to share your projects.  What have you done to "Keep It Simple, Make It Fun" (KISMIF).

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Charm Square Quilt Along Part 7

Hello everyone! Welcome to this week's block in our Charm Square Quilt Along.  I am enjoying all of your blocks you are sharing on flickr and in the link party below.  All of these color arrangements are inspiring!

Charm Square Sampler Quilt Along

If you are new to this QAL, visit the old posts.  To get fabric requirements and ideas, click HERE.

STEP ONE: Layout 16 of your HSTs that were created in part one.

STEP TWO: Sew vertical columns together.  I like to pair column two on top of column one so that all HSTs are in the correct orientation when I take them from the layout to the sewing machine.  Then repeat with column 3 on top of column 2 and then complete with column 4 on top of column 3.

STEP THREE: Pressing seams and pin-match points.  By now, you know that I am picky about this.  I enjoy the "X marks the spot rule"--but I also know that it is important to press seams to avoid bulk.  No one wants to quilt through 8 pieces of fabric together! 

How the seams are pressed to avoid bulk in the row intersections.

X marks the spot!
See where the threads cross?  "X" marks the spot!

Now, these work great for our "beginner blocks" but in this block and the last block, we have a "hidden X" to pin through to avoid blunting our seams.  It has to be this way or there will be too much bulk in our intersections.

Here is a close-up of  what I call the "hidden X".  You can still see where to pin.
The top row will have two "hidden X" to pin-match.

STEP FOUR: Sew the three rows together and press it open.  All done!
VARIATION:  If you were to swap rows 1 and 2 with rows 3 and 4 in your final row seam, you can get this variation instead (outer rows are now inner rows).  It's fun to play around.
Row-swap variation.

Now it's your turn to share!  Enjoy!
Share your projects here:


Link party:

Monday, February 23, 2015


Welcome to Keep It Simple, Make It Fun!

All this week, I have been binding 5 quilts.  So, not too much to show you as they are patterns that haven't been released yet.

Thank you for your patience when I got behind by one week on the QAL and all of your good wishes.  Yes, my exam went well enough, I scored 87%, so I'll take it!  I was telling my husband last night I'm not sure why I am attempting graduate school with 4 kids, preparing our yard for horses and still quilting...just a little nutty!

Also, I still have the fabric giveaway open until March 14th.  Your comments have me laughing so hard!

Some of the funniest ones so far:

Machine quilting is like.....

Like wrangling a small child into a sweater that they're on the verge of growing out of!
eating chips, just one more motif before I quit. Aggghhh! Ran out of bobbin!
...wrestling an octopus.

Ketty Nester

machine quilting is like a scary story... I want to do it, but don't know how it will end!  
Pretty funny stuff!
My favorite project shown on KISMIF last time was by Afton Warrick.  Her pillow to accompany her Layer of Charm blog hop quilt was adorable and a great use of leftover half-square triangles. I'm choosing to feature her this week and as such she can choose a free PDF download pattern from me by scrolling through my Craftsy and Etsy shops.

Now it's your turn...what have you been up to do "Keep It Simple and Make It Fun" (KISMIF).

Friday, February 20, 2015

Charm Square Quilt Along Part 6-Diamond Block

Hello folks!  I apologize for missing last week's installment.  If you remember from the beginning, I am currently working on a Master's Degree and said the schedule was "tentative" pending on any crazy things that may come up.  A combination of a major exam and myself and my children fighting Bronchitis--well, it didn't happen.

But this week is great!  here is this week's next installment.

I changed the diamond block from the original diagram.  I like this version better.

Charm Square Sampler Quilt Along

To get fabric requirements and ideas, click HERE.

STEP ONE: Layout your HSTs.  If you look at the original quilt layout, I have rotated the four corners.  Initially they pointed in to the block and I changed my mind and made the block with them pointing out so the diamond is more visible.  Use your creative license to do this to fit your personal preference.
STEP TWO: Sew the columns together.  Sew column 2 to column then, then column 3 on to column 2 and then column 4 onto column 3.  Do not clip threads.  This trick will keep your HSTs in the proper orientation for pressing, pin-matching and later sewing the rows.
STEP THREE: Press your columns.  If you have done the previous blocks, you know that I like to look for places where the threads will cross each other to make an "X".  I call this "X marks the spot".  You can simply press seams of rows in opposite directions, but you will miss the "X".  This block is complicated and you will miss some "X".  I choose to press my seams to show as many as possible.  Even if you can't see the "X", you can look at the right side of your HSTs and see where the "X" would be.

The goal of pressing the seams is also to nest as many seams as possible.  Sometimes this doesn't work out.  In the yellow circles, the seams will not nest.  Do your best to pin-match

Purple arrows are seams to press up.  Green arrows are seams to press down.

A close-up of "X marks the spot".  Some of these will not be visible in this block.  the seams will have been pressed over.  However, you can still see where your thread "X" is and pin through that spot.
STEP FOUR: Pin match seams.
STEP FIVE: Sew rows together and press open.

Now it's your turn to share your work.  Thanks for participating!

Also, don't forget to enter my blog's giveaway.  More details can be found HERE.

Share your projects here:


Link party:

Fabric Giveaway Time!


I have a Charm Square pack from Moda Fabrics to give away this month! It is open through March 14th, 2015 and winners will be announced that day.  It is Lulu by Chez Moi for Moda.  I love the colors in this pack, it is so cute and will make a great project.

Okay, so I am just laughing today!  I just met with a machine quilting customer and she asked me to explain how I machine quilt using my Mix 'N' Match technique by free-hand.  I don't use a computer and can get more accuracy by using rulers and other things.  How do I describe it?

Humm...machine quilting is like....cursive hand writing?

Kinda...but unless I'm doing an "e's and L's" border--then not quite so much.

Humm...machine quilting is like....being put on hold on the phone and you're bored and doodle? Yeah, it's a lot like that, but who wants to admit that you're only half-way paying attention?  LOL

So, to enter this drawing, leave me a comment answering the statement:

"Humm...machine quilting is like..._________________."  I love good humor!

Please, if you are a no-reply blogger, leave me your email address.

To get an additional entry, sign up to be a new follower and if you are already following, let me know by what service you use.  And last but not least, I finally created a Facebook page for my quilting company and you can "Like" Modern Tradition Quilts on Facebook. and leave a comment there too.

BTW, you can find more fabric giveaways here:

The Giveaway Roundup!