Scrapbuster of a Scrap Quilt

Scrapbuster of a Scrap Quilt

It’s the last challenge of the year (“Scraptastic”) for season 9 of Project Quilting, and if you’ve been following along you know I’ve entered every challenge this year so far. However, for this one I’m really in a time crunch. I think my real challenge will be to finish it in time! The entire quilted item must be started and completely finished (yup, quilted & bound) within one short week.

I’ve got bins and bins full of leftover fabric from years of sewing. Some are so old, I think they might be considered “vintage “…maybe you’ll recognize a few of these prints. I gathered my beiges, browns, threw in a few reds, greens, and blues, and made a plethora of half square triangles.

As I was pinning them up on my design wall, secondary stars began to appear in the pattern…so I purposely went back and placed light contrasting hst in white or beige in those areas to help the stars shine.

You really need to stand back to see them.

It’s a very simple pattern once you lay the hst and squares out to make one block at a time…

It’s a 16 block made up of hst and squares, and depending on where you place the lights and darks, it creates the stretched star.

Here I’ve done a little better job of alternating the beige and white stars. Each block measures 12-1/2 inches (12 inches finished). It’s a great stash buster, but as you can see on the table, half square triangles seem to multiply like bunnies when you’re not looking! The clock is ticking, so to get done in time, I’d better stop now and use those extras in another project.

I found a great backing in my stash, and here it is on my trusty Tin Lizzy ready to quilt. I’m planning to do straight lines around each of the stars and then fill in with meandering and loops between the stars with swirls inside the centers…leaving the star points unquilted so they pop.

I decided on a faux flange binding.

And here it is…finished just in time!

Hope you’ll stop by Project Quilting and vote for your favorites Mine is #50, hint-hint). Voting begins Sunday, March 25, 2018 (I think voting runs through Friday).

It’s now for sale in my shop here.

Until next time,

Happy Quilting!


Mulberry Patch Quilts

Project Quilting Stitch in Time Entry

Project Quilting Stitch in Time Entry

So…I thought about the challenge for Project Quilting this week…A STITCH IN TIME SAVES NINE. And nothing came to me for several days. I thought this would be the week I just didn’t enter.

Then, as I was thinking about the time change this Sunday…and about having more daylight, …the sun was shining (even though we did get more snow a few days ago)…and the birds were singing outside. They weren’t singing their usual winter chirps, but their special beautiful spring time songs! Then I thought about how I should be saving bits of colorful ribbon, yarn, and little strips of fabric and putting them outside so the birds could use them because they’ll be building their nests soon. And the idea for the challenge came to me…

I started to equate “a stitch in time” with the little birds getting their nests “stitched” together with bits of string and twigs. And then I started to visualize nests made out of fabric selvages and bright fabric strips. And the idea started taking shape!

I used scraps from my stash to flip and sew the background, and fused the appliqué shapes on top. Then cut up a bunch of my selvedge edges I’ve been saving and quilted them down to create the nest.

I even found the Stonehedge fabric selvage from their fabric called “a stitch in time”!! What are the chances? Totally unplanned! How cool was that?

So here’s my entry for Project Quilting Season 9, Challenge #5 “A Stitch in Time”. I hope you’ll stop by the website to vote for your 10 favorite entries. Voting starts after noon (Wisconsin time) on Sunday, March 11, 2018 and I think it runs through Friday, March 16, 2018.,

Until next time…HAPPY QUILTING!


Mulberry Patch Quilts

Road Trip to Bayfield & Orchard’s Ridge Quilt Shop

Road Trip to Bayfield & Orchard’s Ridge Quilt Shop

We decided to end the summer with a road trip to Bayfield, WI.  We’ve been there several times over the past 5 years, and have always loved it.  If you’ve never been, you have to put it on your “bucket list”.  For a community of only a little over 500 people, it’s brimming with things to do and see.  Fabulous shops and food, too.

Some of the things we’ve enjoyed on our visits have been

  • The boat tours put on by Apostle Island Cruises.  Our favorite so far was the “Grand Tour”, which takes you all around the islands–all the way out to Devil’s Island.  You can experience the views of the sea caves, lighthouses, and shoreline.  This time we tried the glass bottom boat shipwreck tour.  Unfortunately, the recent storms/wind created murky water, so we didn’t see anything through the “glass bottom”, but we did have an enjoyable cruise and saw a couple of shipwrecks in shallower water.
  • Cornucopia (at the tip) to hike the trail at Meyer’s Beach back into the sea cave area.
  • The Bayfield Ghost & History Walk is a lot of fun–the guide (dressed in costume) weaves a few ghost stories into the history of the lighthouses and Bayfield area as you walk through town and see the sights at dusk.

There’s so much more to do, and we still haven’t taken the ferry to Madeline Island or caught a show at the Big Top Chautauqua.  I’d love to kayak the sea caves.  And I bet it’s beautiful with the trees turning in fall for the Apple Festival or the Lighthouse Festival.  And in the winter there’s the ice caves (if conditions permit).

But of course the trip wouldn’t be complete until I stopped at a few of the local quilt shops!


From their website

My first stop was at Orchard’s Edge Quilt Shop, which used to be located at the edge of an actual orchard out in the nearby countryside, but has recently moved to downtown Bayfield.  It’s the cutest little 2-story building on the corner of Broad Street & Rittenhouse Avenue.

Bayfield Qu1

Facing away from the Lake

Only a few blocks from the docks of the Apostle Islands Cruises and the Madeline Island Ferry, you can see views of Lake Superior from their front door.

The store is charming and jam-packed with great inspirational projects lining the walls and shelves.  Fabulous fabrics and kits, everywhere I looked I got distracted from all the beautiful things to see.


Bayfield Qu2

Joe–co-owner of the shop.

I met Joe, who co-owns the store with his mom.  I was so impressed with his quilting knowledge.  For example, I was looking for a particular Moda fabric to finish a quilt and just with a description, he knew the name of the line, who designed it, and where it had been in the store (before it was sold out, unfortunately).  And we talked extensively about different pattern and fabric designers, several he had met.


Front of the shop–lots more in the back.

I highly recommend stopping if you’re in the Bayfield area.

I’ll share another stop with you on my next post.

Until next time, HAPPY QUILTING!


Mulberry Patch Quilts

Winter Quilt Retreat at the Jones Mansion Retreat Center–Priceless

Winter Quilt Retreat at the Jones Mansion Retreat Center–Priceless

I just got back from a week-end quilting retreat at the Jones Mansion Retreat Center in beautiful Mineral Point, Wisconsin.  The February weather was cooperative–no icy or snowy roads to contend with.  Mineral Point is only an hour’s drive southwest of Madison, but I still hate to drive on icy roads.  I’ve been coming to the Mansion for over ten years, and every time I step over that threshold I feel like I’m being transported in to a simpler, more peaceful time in history and instantly feel relaxed.  What a great place for a quilting retreat!

Front Entry to the Jones Mansion in Summer

Front entryway to the Jones Mansion in summertime

This retreat was organized by the owner, but there are other retreats to join in with–or you can create your own.  For this retreat, I came with a friend, and others joined us–some I knew, some I met for the first time.  (Aren’t quilter’s the best people?)  We all brought our own projects to work on, and because the third floor has been made into the perfect work space, we can easily share ideas, chat, and just enjoy the creativity going on in the room.


I’m an early riser (still PJs)–anxious to start a new project.


Looking at some “show & tell”









We’ve got the freedom to quilt whenever we feel like it–early in the morning, or late into the night.  There’s several tables in the room with extension cords, Ott lighting, and the dormers each have large ironing stations and cutting tables with mats (which means less to pack!) 🙂  It’s fun to see what everyone’s working on.


Cutting table in one of the dormers (ironing station on right


View from the 3rd Floor in Fall

I was in my favorite room this time–“the Master”, although I’ve stayed in almost all the rooms at the Mansion and love each one.  Every bed has a hand made quilt…some share bathrooms, some have adjoining bathrooms, most have 2 twin beds, one has 3, and a few are single rooms…but all are very comfortable and welcoming.  I don’t have photos of all the bedrooms, but here’s a few…   the Mansion will hold up 12 very happy campers.


Each room has its own personality


Each bed has a hand-made quilt


Claw foot tubs & beautifully renovated fixtures


This room looks out onto a porch.

Each of us shared the cooking responsibility–we had Saturday night (soup and salad)…simple.  We all eat in the downstairs dining room.  Such beautiful woodwork and hand-painted wallpaper (original).  Lori (the owner) can tell you all about the history of the house and how she so lovingly restored it back to its former glory.


Notice the beautiful built-in cabinets


…hand painted wallpaper (orig), fireplace & deep window seats

Sometimes we relax with tea and snacks in the sitting room.  And at night (one of the perks of being there in the wintertime), Lori can start a wood fire in the fireplace.  We bring our knitting and handwork and enjoy it.


Friend (Jean) enjoying tea & treats.


Sitting room with fireplace & large window seat.


Becky showing us her new quilt

My favorite spot in the Mansion is the front staircase with the large balcony overlooking the first floor entryway hall…


2nd Floor Balcony overlooking the first floor entry fireplace with stairs behind

And if you look up, you’ll see the beautiful stained glass skylight that floods the second floor with light.  Each of the bedrooms have large transoms that filter light into each room.  Wasn’t the builder forward thinking for 1906!


Close-up–this would make a great quilt!


Stained Glass Skylight

Here’s what it looks like from the third floor…or course there’s a quilt on the wall!  …and a photo-op with the lovely owner & hostess, Lori Bartol.


3rd floor view of skylight (stained glass is below)


Lori (the good looking one on your left) at summer retreat

Wish I had taken more photos–once I’m there, I’m so wrapped up in talking with people, sewing, and eating I forget to take any.  Lori has wi-fi at the Mansion, but I hardly checked my email.  In February it was so cold outside, but so cozy warm inside the Mansion that we didn’t want to leave, so we didn’t go downtown for a shopping spree this time–but downtown Mineral Point has a lot to offer in the way of unique shops and restaurants.  However, we did manage a quick side trip to the quilt store in Platteville called Hidden Quilts.  It’s not as “hidden” since they moved to a larger location on Main Street, and it’s always fun to go there.  I didn’t do too much “damage”–but couldn’t get away without buying something.  Be sure to stop if you’re in the area.

We also missed going to Hook’s Cheese, but if you ever go to the Mansion on a retreat, you HAVE to stop downtown Mineral Point at Hook’s Cheese on the day they make the fresh cheese curds!  …wow!  They also have award-winning Blue Cheese.


Making the fresh, squeaky, cheese curds at Hooks. YUM!

I’m coming home refreshed with all kinds of new ideas.  Isn’t it great to spend time with other quilters?  Each time I go I get what I like to call “Pearls of Wisdom from the Mansion”.  This time I learned about a new quilt store to check out in eastern Wisconsin that just opened, and learned how to create an apron from a recycled men’s shirt (Lori showed us how).  So cute.


“Modeling” our new aprons (Lori, Jean, me & Kathy)

For more history on the mansion, see the website on the history of the William Jones House.:   (But note that many of their photos are not up to date; they show the mansion in various stages.)

I can’t wait until the next time.  If you’d like more information, contact Lori at: The Jones Mansion, 215 Ridge Street, Mineral Point, WI 53565   (608) 332-7210, e-mail:

The Jones Mansion Retreat Center Website

Until next time,



Mulberry Patch Quilts







My Crazy Christmas Trees Quilt

My Crazy Christmas Trees Quilt

I can’t believe all the snow we’ve gotten in Wisconsin over the past few weeks, and it’s not even Thanksgiving yet!  But, two good things have come of it:  (1) I’m grateful I can keep warm inside and work on my projects, and (2) it puts me in the mood to begin a project for Christmas!

Snow covered bird feeder

Snow covered bird feeder with birds








I’ve been interested in a pattern by “Pieces from my Heart” for a beautiful crazy patchwork Christmas Tree quilt and just bought the entire fat quarter line of fabric from Moda called “Winterlude” by Three Sisters (see below) that might work perfectly.

Winterlude Fabric Moda

I arranged the fat quarter pieces (cut down to 12×18” rectangles) into three piles:  reds, greens, & creams.  (The blues will be saved for a future project.)  I ironed the freezer paper patterns to the top piece of fabric in each pile.  The hardest part was cutting into the fabric…slicing into 10 pieces at a time with my rotary cutter.  Yikes! …what are the odds I’d cut something wrong?  But it worked…happily there were no surprises.

After cutting, I “shuffled” the individual pattern pieces, and then began sewing.  It’s like putting the pieces of a puzzle together (I love puzzles)…

“Numbering” each piece or pieced set helps keep me keep organized so I can piece ten blocks at a time…I use the round stickers from the dollar store.

Piece by puzzle piece, the lower half is done…it’s fun to see it progress.  Each block takes on a life of it’s own.

Ta da! And here’s what one block looks like complete.  The blocks still need to be trimmed to size, but I have to wait until after all of the 30 blocks are done.

Ten green blocks down, twenty (ten red, ten cream) to go!

Until next time, keep warm!  and HAPPY QUILTING!!


Mulberry Patch Quilts

Art Quilt Wallhanging of Devil’s State Park

Ever since I was a little girl, the family (first with my own mom & dad, later with my husband & children) loved to take the trip up to Devil’s Lake State Park in Wisconsin and hike the bluffs.  The quiet lake is so serene, and the bluffs change color with the seasons.  I wanted to make a quilted wall hanging of a scene from the lake path viewing the opposite side of the lake in full color.

I found the perfect watery batik fabric, and then searched through my stash of hand-dyed and batiks to come up with the colors I needed.  Then started cutting and “pasting” the horizon and water.


To create the land on the opposite side of the lake, I cut up the fabric (confetti style) and carefully placed the different colors across the fabric base, adding tulle netting and pins to keep everything in place.


Then very carefully took it to my sewing machine to quilt the layers together, so none of the “confetti” fabric moved.


After quilting the sky & water, I wanted to add a rocky shoreline in the foreground.


I tried piecing individual rocks to the foreground, but the cut fabric just wasn’t working.


Then, in my stash, I found the perfect rock fabric–and cut it into sections to replicate the shoreline.


It wouldn’t be a trip to Devil’s Lake without seeing the turkey vultures soaring over the bluffs!  So I just had to add them.  So I hand-drew and then thread stitched a close-up of one, with several smaller ones “soaring” in the background sky.


Here’s the finished, bound quilted wall hanging–about 15 x 20″ finished.

It’s at my shop on Etsy.


The “Go Pack” Baby Quilt


During the Wisconsin Shop Hop, I found these great Wisconsin fabrics at my favorite quilt stores.  The green and yellow just screamed Green Bay Packers–so I had to find a few other fabrics to go with them into a “Go Pack” Baby Quilt.

Have you discovered the spectacular YouTube Tutorials from the Missouri Star Quilt Company?  (If not, be sure to click the link on their name to view them).  I just love Jenny–she’s inspiring and fun.  Anyway–Even though I used her YouTube Tutorial on the Disappearing Nine Patch I had to “sketch” it out myself on the computer using EQ7 (Electronic Quilt 7 software) first to be sure of the size and amount of material:

EQ7 Go Pack Quilt

Then I cut out the squares…


…sewed them into 9-patches (first rows, and then sewing those rows together).


Don’t you just love the football-theme fabrics?  As I mentioned, several of them are from the Wisconsin Shop Hop (designed by Kim Schaefer for Andover Fabrics).  One has the names of Wisconsin cities printed on it).  There’s also a referee-type stripe, some random green & yellow circles/stripes, and even green turf with yard lines.  I added some fabrics with footballs and helmets (Robert Hoffman).  Fun.

The next step was to cut each of the 9-patch blocks right down the center–both ways…


And then put them up on my design wall and scramble them–making sure no two seams matched…


My backing wasn’t wide enough–so I had to add a few strips of fabric, which just screamed–add the words “Go Pack” in green on the yellow strip!  So I fired up my Cricuit to cut out some paper templates, traced and cut them out of green fabric, and added them to the backing with a zig zag stitch.  Now the back is big enough…


I think deciding what design to quilt is the hardest part.  Do you agree?  I always get stuck.

I decided to follow the fabric designs–going around the little helmets, footballs, and do an overall loop-DE-loop in-between.


It was fun to make, and is now for sale in my Etsy Shop.


Next time I give this a try, I might do it in pastels — I loved the scalloped border that Jenny used in her tutorial, so sweet.  (hmm…I might need to get that special scallop ruler… Can we ever have enough plastic rulers?)

Thanks for stopping by!