far and wide
February 14, 2013
craftsy class
February 20, 2013
far and wide
February 14, 2013
craftsy class
February 20, 2013
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odd bits again

Hello all, Mary Ellen here on this blustery day.

I just blew in from a round of errands. Went into BJ’s to get printer paper and ink in a little drizzle, came out to blowing snow. I thought that was to come later today?! Winter in Buffalo I guess.

Well Downton Abbey fans! Season 3 is over-what do you think is coming next? Spoiler alert-don’t read further if you haven’t seen the season-ender yet.  About a month ago I had read in some publication about the demise of 2 characters with no reference to who those characters would be. Of course I had my own theories of who was going. I must say I didn’t have this one on my list of possibilities. I didn’t cry my eyes out, as I am reading many other fans did. Or do you think they have may have left the door ever so slightly open, that the character may not truly be gone?! And to think we have to wait until January to find out! Those 6 episodes really went by way too fast.

Another one of my stops today was at Barnes and Noble. I was looking for the Generation Q (oops!, corrected!) quilting magazine-they didn’t have it. But of course I did buy some others instead. Jenny Doan, of Missouri Star Quilting, has her second issue out. Haven’t done any more than flip the pages yet. Bought one I haven’t tried before-Sew Somerset. Its subtitle is “the art of creative sewing with mixed-media”. Looks interesting. Will let you know.

I’ve recently finished up a version of the jelly roll 1600 quilt done with a batik assortment. It’s such a fast technique-I got the top done in less than 2 hours. Even with finagling the pairings since the roll I was using had 2 each of 20 fabrics instead of 40 different one, I still was finished lickety-split. If you aren’t fussy about which fabric lands next to which, and you sew pedal to the metal, you can finish this in under an hour. Two quilters working together, each on half of the jelly roll, can do this in no time and it makes the length of the pieced strips more manageable. If you don’t know what I mean by jelly roll 1600 (40 strips x 40 inches each), have a look at this video. It’s a good technique to have in your quilter’s bag of tricks for an “emergency” quilt to be made in a flash. Some quilters don’t like the look of the long strips in the finished tops. There are more and more tips appearing in blogs about how to break those up, and still make a very quick top. My number 1 tip, having made several of these now, is to make sure you are using 40 different fabrics. This will reduce-not eliminate-blocks of the same fabric appearing in your top. If you want to know how to use this basic technique to produce a top of a particular size, this blog entry from Scrapendipity Designs may be helpful. It’s rather “mathy” though. I know some of you don’t like that!  🙂

Lastly, here’s a link to a free e-book of Modern Quilting patterns from McCall’s Quilting. There are 3 patterns in the book. Each is nice-although not every one is my personal idea of “modern”. As you have certainly discovered if you’ve been exploring this topic, everyone seems to have their own definition!


  1. Paula Foerder says:

    I hadn’t seen the 1600 jelly roll quilt before. Quite interesting and it would be a quick gift. I just saw Generation X magazine at Wegmans.

  2. Marija says:

    Hey ladies – I love how both of you said “Generation X” magazine – LOL! Gen. Q…right? 🙂
    Oh and talking about pre-cuts and strips, Tonga Treats (Timeles Treasures) just announced that for spring 2013 they are having new “treats” – 6″ pre-cut strip packets! Imagine those 1600 quilts – a bed size one in no time! LOL
    here is the link:

  3. Loretta says:

    I was wondering if you were going to talk about Downton Abbey. I had read that something “bad” was going to happen on the last show so thought I was prepared. I was sick, and mad at the writers. Oh, well. I have to tell myself it is just a show, afterall.

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