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What You Are Making

The Freshly Pieced Flickr group has been up and running for a few months now, and I love seeing what you all have been doing with my patterns and tutorials! If my graphic design career has taught me anything, it’s that creativity doesn’t exist in a vacuum. So the innovative twists that people have put on my designs very often inspire me right back.

Here are just a few of the beautiful things that have popped up in the Flickr group recently. If you’ve made something inspired by a project you saw here on my blog, please join the group and add your photos!

Ribbon Star from Freshly Pieced
UllaBee’s Ribbon Star block really sings in solids

Hexagon Quilt
Very cool hexagon quilt by CraftyJak, using my Hexing Around block

My Supernova Quilt Top
Brooke’s version of my Supernova quilt using Castle Peeps

Mosaic
Mosaic block quilt by Debbie of Esch House Quilts

my new favorite block
One of Ara Jane’s fabulous Arkansas Traveler blocks

Quilted Herringbone Pillow
Sew Crafty Jess‘s Herringbone pillow

Hexagon mug rug closeup
Hand-quilted hexagon mug rug by Sarah of Fairy Face Designs

Kissing Koi 2011
“Kissing Koi”—Patti (Retired to Quilt) made this take on my Kissy Fish pattern

Thanks, everyone, for sharing your creations!

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Christmas Swap Round-Up

So how was everybody’s Christmas? Is the whirlwind done at your house? It is for me—we had a lot of fun and the girls looove their gifts, but I can’t say I’m sorry it’s over now. : ) I actually have a few moments to breathe again!

But before we usher in 2012, I need to share a few last swap goodies from 2011. I swore off most traditional swaps a few months ago, because I seem to just spend way too much time on them, but Sukie suckered me in with her Twitter Secret Santa Swap. We weren’t required to send a handmade item, but of course when it came down to it, I couldn’t resist making something. After all, my partner was the amazing Katy of I’m a Ginger Monkey and Fat Quarterly! Send her a secret santa gift that didn’t include something homemade?? As if.

So here’s the gift package I sent to Katy (which she finally received yesterday, so now I can show it to you!) Thangles, a Clover marking pen, some hand-dyed perle cotton, and a FQ from Denyse Schmidt’s Picnic and Fairgrounds line from Joanne’s. (I was thinking those prints may not be available in the U.K.?)

And I made her this mug rug using Badskirt Amy’s x-and-plus tutorial and a newspaper-print fabric. I used wavy-line quilting on it because that’s one of my favorite quilting tricks, and I learned it from Katy! I hope she enjoys it!

 

 

My Secret Santa swap package came from the talented Amy of Stitchery Dickory Dock. Check out the incredible stuff she sent to me: How adorable is this notebook?? I’ve loved this fox paper-piecing pattern for ages and she totally nailed it with the colors and prints.

 

And that’s not all—she also sent me this coffee cup cozy, the travel mug that’s in it, and she filled the mug up with candy! Whew!

I love the cozy’s Half-Moon Modern prints and handstitching. (You can find a Moda Bake Shop tutorial by Amy for this very cozy right here.) And it just so happens that I have another one of these Copco mugs
and it is my absolute favorite, so I’m thrilled to have another one. It fits in my Keurig coffee maker (many travel mugs don’t) and it’s nice and simple, functioning like a basic Starbucks disposable. Except that this one has a reclosable spill-proof lid, which I’ve never seen on a Copco mug, and I couldn’t even find it on Amazon! So yes, I love it—clearly, the fact that I’ve gone on about a mug for an entire paragraph should indicate that I will treasure it forever, LOL. Thanks, Amy, I love it all!

I also swapped recently with Becky from My Fabric Obsession. I designed a new blog header for her and she sent me these fun goodies in return—a Jane Market Bag in Neptune, and some coordinating FQs! You guys—it’s Neptune! I love this collection so much. I bought a layer cake way back when it first came out, but frittered most of it away on some pillows that I didn’t even end up liking (this was back when I still didn’t really know what I was doing). I used most of the remaining scraps in my Single Girl quilt. So I’m super excited to get a second chance with this hard-to-find collection. Now I just need to decide what I’ll do with it! And the bag is so roomy and useful—I’ve already used it probably a dozen times. I even packed some stuff in it when I went out of town for the holidays. Thank you, Becky!!

And here’s one more Christmas present for me (and my girls). I won a giveaway from Kylie of My Addiction to Quilting. She sent me this soccer ball entirely hand-pieced from hexies! The girls love it—it’s so nice to have a ball they can freely chuck at each other, LOL. Kylie also sent some beautiful purple fabrics, and I seem to be eternally short on purple in my stash, so they are much appreciated. Thank you, Kylie—you are so sweet to send these all the way from Australia!

One of my favorite things about having this blog is how I’ve been able to send items all over the country and the world, and receive things right back. Australia, the U.K., Europe, Canada–what a wonderful exchange. Here’s to more swaps in 2012.

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Strip-Pieced Zig-Zag Mug Rug

Welcome to my turn at Mug Rug Madness! Thank you to Erin at Two More Seconds for inviting me to be a part of this round. This is a fun blog hop and I’m so excited to be involved!

I’ve got this fun little zig-zag mug rug for you today. But don’t worry, no half-square triangles involved here! This one’s strip-pieced and can be put together while you’re waiting for a batch of holiday cookies to finish baking. I made mine using the Ready Set Snow collection from Moda—the bright colors of this collection lend themselves all kinds of design possibilities. Ready to make yours?
1. Cut the following:
Blue stripe
• 1.5″ x 7.5″
Red Christmas tree print
• 1.5″ x 2.5″
• 1.5″ x 7.5″
• 1.5″ x 10″
Green stripe
• 1.5″ x 7.5″
• 1.5 x 10″
White snowflake print
• 1.5″ x 2.5″
• 1.5″ x 7.5″
• 1.5″ x 10″
Red swirl print
• 1.5″ x 7.5″
• 1.5″ x 10″
Blue dot
• (4) 1.5″ x 2.5″
• 1.5″ x 7.5″
2. Pair up the 7.5″ and 10″ strips that you just cut, using the photo above as a key. I.e., the blue stripe goes with one of the Christmas tree print strips, the other Christmas tree strip goes with a green stripe strip, etc. The 2.5″ strips do not get paired up. Sew each pair of strips together.
3. Cut your sewn strips into 2.5″ sections. You should now have 17 2.5″ squares, plus the 6 additional 1.5″ x 2.5″ pieces.
4. Arrange the squares (plus the extra 1.5″ x 2.5″ rectangles) as shown above.
5. Sew the squares together into angled rows.
6. Sew the rows together, aligning the vertical seams to get the correct placement of each row.
7. Trim your mug rug by lining up one of the angled seams with the 45 degree line on your cutting board, as shown.
I trimmed mine to 6.75″ x 8.75″.
8. Quilt and bind you mug rug. I quilted straight zig-zag lines 1/4″ from the seams.
9. Pour yourself a cup of coffee, relax, and enjoy!
Again, thanks again to Erin for hosting Mug Rug Madness. Hop over to her blog to see lots of other cute holiday mug rugs, plus tips and tricks for making your own.