Stars and Pinwheels QAL – Block 9

Susan 9 (1)

This is block 9 in Susan’s Stars and Pinwheels QAL, called Arizona 2 with Flying Geese.

I’m continuing on this QAL to make a different small project with the featured block each month.  I reduced the size of the block to 7 inches to make it a good size for my mini quilt rack.

susan-top (1)

I used scraps from a lace curtain over fabric to make the setting triangles and found some pretty braid to embellish.


With Valentine’s Day approaching, I added a vintage mother-of-pearl pin to the center.

Susan 9 (5)

This was an easy block and turned out so pretty.

Country Fair Mini-Quilt – Table Topper


When I gave my youngest daughter an anniversary mini-quilt and rack in October, I knew I would be supplying new quilts as the occasion arose.  I made Thanksgiving and Christmas quilts, then realized mid-January she didn’t have a quilt for her table topper.  I made what I call an “interim quilt” which means it would work out for non-seasonal, non-holiday display.

Last year about this time, I spent some time making some of Judy Martin’s variations on LeMoyne stars.  I particularly liked this one called “Country Fair“.  The block I made is far from perfect and convinced me I didn’t want to make a big quilt from this block, but I still think it’s nice as a mini-quilt with some strips added to fit the rack.


I quilted it to a fleece backing, added sleeve, label and binding – and my daughter has an interim quilt to display until time to put up the Valentine’s Day decorations.


A 70s Turkey Mini-Quilt Table Topper

When I gave my youngest daughter a mini-quilt and rack for her anniversary in October, I knew I would be making some more mini-quilts for her.  I wanted to give her something with a Thanksgiving theme and remembered a pattern I had picked up in Ohio Amish country several years ago.  It’s a fused turkey design that I used to make a wall hanging.

Since my daughter is definitely a child of the 70s, I made up a mini-quilt for her with a very cool turkey, using all of the frantic 70s fabrics left over from other projects I’ve done for her.

I used wide black zigzag stitches to give it an even wilder and crazier 70s look.

Of course, she loved it and it’s in her family room along with a big stuffed orange and green owl and some other 70s stuff.

The pattern is by Becky and Me, #T-1044.  Address:  5811 Valley Ave. E, Fife WA 98424 – (253) 380-2284.

Autumn Mini-Quilt Table Topper

When my daughter and I went to the International Quilt Show here in Cincinnati last spring, I chose an embroidery piece for my daughter to do for me – Autumn – Cherish it!  My sentiments exactly.  She did her usual beautiful embroidery on it with little scenes of birdhouses, pumpkins, flowers, apples, a church, a harvest moon, etc., and I assembled it this past week to make a mini-quilt table topper.

I tried three different approaches  and settled on this one with the green gingham which did not overpower the embroidery.  I used decorative stitching for the quilting and added some vintage and decorative buttons.

It shows everything I love about autumn.

Click on pictures to enlarge.

An Anniversary Table Topper

I wanted to make a table topper for my youngest daughter’s 17th wedding anniversary.  Over the past 17 years, I’ve used the picture of the bride and groom many times.  This time, I wanted to use just the picture of the bride and found the perfect block on – an Inverted Star.

This block in a 12-inch size gave me the large center portion to insert a picture of my daughter as a bride printed on  June Tailor Sew-In Colorfast Fabric Sheets.

For the four center blocks I wanted to use a picture of her bouquet and my oldest daughter was able to place the bouquet on a doily and maroon background  to give the flowers the right design elements.  She worked with both pictures to make them perfect for this piece.

I used my daughter’s wedding colors of white and burgundy in this topper and quilted with simple machine stitching.   I had made the dresses for the wedding for the bride, the maid of honor (my oldest daughter) and for me as the mother of the bride. The label includes the remaining small scraps of fabric from each of our dresses.

I was able to buy an Ackfeld 12×14 single scroll stand at a recent quilt show to complete the gift.

My son-in-law could care less about quilts and always receives a check for his gift.  My daughter was very pleased with the table topper when I gave it to her on Sunday, October 14.

Honey Bee Table Topper–Mini-Quilt

My daughter gave me an embroidered piece she had made several years ago and I wanted to make a table topper quilt out of it.  I didn’t want anything too colorful or elaborate to draw attention away from the beautiful embroidery and decided on strips of Civil War reproduction fabric with the deep, rustic colors that are in the panel.

I quilted the topper with machine embroidery along the edges of the strips.  The backing is one of many I have stored away made of scraps.  As beginner/ender projects or just as some mindless sewing to do when I want to relax, I make up backings from scraps and orphan blocks.

I’m glad to have another honey bee item to add to my collection.

Pie Contest Table Topper–Mini-Quilt

In the 1990s, I did a large painting of our county fair pie contest.

I took a picture of this painting and printed it on June Tailor Colorfast Fabric for Inkjet Printers.  I left the backing paper on while I touched up the acrylic paint and re-inked the picture.  Then, I removed the backing paper and sewed on strips of fabric plus rick-rack to complete the top.

I used all scraps for the backing and completed a memory piece for my table topper rack.

The little pie was hand carved from wood by a good friend and I borrowed one of my daughter’s miniature blue ribbons for this display.

In 1995, I had used a version of this painting to make a floor cloth for my daughter.  It has been in constant use since that time and I’m going to freshen the paint and apply another couple coats of clear acrylic so it will be bright for a few more years.

In 1993, the original design was on a sweatshirt which won a blue ribbon at our county fair and at the Ohio State Fair.

My inspiration for the sketch was my first pie contest in 1983.  The story is posted here.

As hectic, hot and tiring as the experience was, it stands out in my memory as one of the highlights of my life.

My oldest daughter, who was there at the time and has entered contests herself, has a delightful poem about pie contests on her blog.

County Fair Table Topper

In a previous post, I wrote about resurrecting some old decorative art sketches to make pen and ink panels for a tri-stand quilt rack.  That post is here:

I thought I’d give another favorite sketch a try and made a panel for my larger mini-quilt rack using a design from 1996.  I thought it would be nice to do a crazy-quilt border using actual fair award ribbons.  Although I have a box full of county and state fair ribbons I‘ve won through the years, I didn’t want to cut those up.  Luckily, my daughter found a box of Montgomery County award ribbons (Dayton, Ohio) in an antique mall and I used some of those.

It’s rather ironic that I’m using ribbons from this fair because it was a major event that we attended all the time I was growing up in the 1930s-40s.  I even posted about their big Labor Day Fair here:

I added strip borders and quilted in gold thread to match the lettering on the ribbons…

…and a sleeve, label and binding.

Back in 1996, I had made several wood projects with this design to sell in our craft mall booth.  It was like meeting an old friend again after all these years.

Click on pictures to enlarge.

July 4th Parade Tri-Stand Mini-Quilts

In the 1990s, my oldest daughter and I had a booth in a large craft mall in Cincinnati.  My contributions were mainly decorative art painted on vintage wood pieces and enamelware.  We had the booth for over 4 years and I made and sold countless pieces with designs sometimes from pattern books but mostly from my own sketches.  I’m not painterly at all and just did my thing with pen and ink accentuated with acrylic painting.

Although I haven’t painted anything since 1998, I kept all of my sketches and designs and thought I might be able to incorporate some of them into pieces for wall hangings or my mini-quilt racks.  First, I scanned the sketch which was bigger than I wanted for this project ….

…and then, using a light box, I went over the basic elements of the sketch with pencil.  I then scanned this sketch, made it the size I wanted and printed it onto June Tailor Colorfast Fabric Sheets for Ink Jet Printers.

I left the paper backing on the printed panel and painted the design with acrylic paint thinned with water.  When the piece was dry, I went over it and added details with an ultra-fine point Sharpie pen.  Then, the piece was pressed to set the colors and the paper backing was removed.

These panels were combined with strips of fabric to make them the correct size for my Tri-Stand table topper.  I added batting, binding, a sleeve and a label to complete the panels.  I also added a patriotic button to each that I found half-price at Joann’s.

I was pleased with how the panels turned out and since I don’t intend to wash them, the colors should stay vibrant for a long time.  It made me happy to be able to use an old familiar sketch again and to be able to do a little painting.

This particular design was used for 5 different projects which were sold from our booth.