Category Archives: roll-it-up pillowcases

Charmed, I’m Sure

Third time’s the charm, they say. It took trips to three local quilt shops before I found the perfect print for the outer border on the reproduction ’30s quilt top I bought at my quilt guild’s recent silent auction:

The delicate floral print is from the “Aunt Grace Basket of Scraps” line designed by Judie Rothermel for Marcus Fabrics. It’s shown with one of two blocks in the quilt (out of 30) that have a similar colorway. This is the other one:

I brought the quilt top with me so I could audition border fabrics with it in hand. One thing I noticed right away is that reproduction prints in quilt shops now have whiter backgrounds. When this top was pieced 20 years ago or so, the prints were creamier. I’m confident the border fabric will work well, though.

After choosing the border fabric, I strolled around the shop looking for a vintage-y print that would work on the back. I found some lovely ones but none that had that ’30s vibe. Guess what I came back to. Yep — I bought enough of the border fabric to make a backing. I actually bought the rest of the bolt — almost 10 yards — thinking I might want to make a pair of pillowcases to go with the quilt.

As a reminder, here’s a look at the entire top (I’ll add lavender strips to the sides to complete the narrow first border):

Each of the 30 blocks was made with a different print. Most of the prints are floral but several represent characters and scenes from children’s storybooks (think Humpty Dumpty and Little Bo Peep) and a couple prints are of kittens chasing balls of yarn. You know I like to name my quilts. I’m thinking of calling this one Vintage Vignettes.

 

 

 

Posted in cats, roll-it-up pillowcases, update, vintage quilts | 8 Comments

Linda’s DWR Quilt

Greetings! We’re one week into the official start of summer. Hope yours is off to a good start. I’m popping in to show you how well the pillowcases I made for Linda, one of my 10th Blogiversary Giveaway winners, go with her stunning Double Wedding Ring quilt. See for yourself!

Linda was kind enough to send me a photo and she gave me permission to post her photo here. In addition to the pieced wedding rings, the quilt contains appliqué in the borders that she did using the needleturn method. And she hand quilted it herself!

Linda made this beauty to celebrate her 40th wedding anniversary. I’m so happy that the pillowcases I made for Linda are keeping company with her heirloom quilt!

Posted in appliqué, Giveaway, needleturn appliqué, roll-it-up pillowcases, update | 6 Comments

10th Blogiversary Giveaway Update

The three winners of my recent giveaway — Linda, Chipper, and Bridget — had their choice of three bespoke items: a pair of pillowcases, a rotary cutter coat, or a pair of oven mitts.  Much to my surprise, all three winners chose pillowcases.

After a few back-and-forths via email with the winners, taking careful note of their color and fabric preferences, I got to work. It did take me a while to get the pillowcases made, what with teaching quilt classes, working outdoors alongside the Dear Husband to get the garden up to speed after a verrrry long and wet spring, and welcoming visiting relatives to the Portland White House.

But the cases are done, I’ve sent “sneak peeks” to the winners, and am happy to report the cases are, as they say, “in the mail.” Do you want to see what the end results are? Of course you do!

First up are Linda’s cases. As a reminder, Linda’s comment on my 10th Blogiversary post was this: “What a lovely and generous way to celebrate your blog’s anniversary! So hard to pick a favorite color combo, but pretty much any combination of blues and greens is hard to beat.” Linda’s cases contain — surprise! — blue and green:

The body of the pillowcase is a subtle white-on-white dot. Fun fact:  the fabrics were chosen to complement a stunning Double Wedding Ring quilt that Linda made — and hand quilted! — to celebrate her 40th wedding anniversary.

Chipper, my second winner, said “I love blue and white. Congratulations on 10 years!” Here are the cases I made for her:

Fun fact: there’s an amusing story about how I wound up with the blue and white floral fabric you see in the body of the pillowcase.

My third winner is Bridget, whose comment on my blog was this: “Ten years and I have loved so many of your posts! Congrats! I am not sure how this happened, I hate orange but right now I am liking orange and cream combos or maybe orange and yellow…um 😉 Oh, hey, maybe it is a lack of sunshine this spring! lol”

Fun fact: When I showed Bridget a few prints as possibilities for her pillowcases, she jumped on one for a very special reason: her nickname is “Birdie.” Check out her pillowcases:


And take a look at this close-up:

All of the birds have orange beaks! It was meant to be, right?!

My thanks again to all who helped me celebrate 10 years of blogging by entering my Blogiversary Giveaway. I am grateful for each and every one of you. Here’s to the next 10 years!!

 

Posted in family, Giveaway, home dec, oven mitts, roll-it-up pillowcases, rotary cutter case, tutorial, update | 4 Comments

Another Churning Star Block

My Sea Sampler quilt begun last year is slowly taking shape. I recently finished this block:

The simple Churn Dash block nestled inside a Sawtooth Star has become one of my all-time favorite star blocks. I first saw this particular combo in a book by Jenifer Gaston. She called her quilt Churning Stars so that’s what I call this block.

It joins these six other blocks, all of which finish at 12″ square:

The blocks will be combined with some others that finish at 6″ and 18″ square. Eventually I will get a top put together but for now this project is on the back burner.

All three winners of my recent 10th Blogiversary Giveaway requested pillowcases — they had their choice of three handmade gifts — so I have been putting together fabric combinations for their review. Once their choices have been finalized, I’ll get the pillowcases made and mailed. As I’ve told the winners, it’s been fun getting reacquainted with my stash. But it’s been hard narrowing down the choices because there are so many possibilities. What does that tell you about the size of my stash??

 

 

 

Posted in Churning Stars quilt block, Giveaway, roll-it-up pillowcases, sampler quilt, update | 5 Comments

Announcing the Giveaway Winners

I’m popping in to announce the three winners of the giveaway connected to my 10th Blogging Anniversary aka 10th Blogiversary. I asked people entering the giveaway to tell me about their favorite color combination. Using a Random Number Generator found online, I was able to identify the the three winners very quickly. And here they are . . .

Linda B., who wrote, “What a lovely and generous way to celebrate your blog’s anniversary! So hard to pick a favorite color combo, but pretty much any combination of blues and greens is hard to beat.”

C. Cullen, who commented, “I love blue and white. Congratulations on 10 years!”

Bridget, who said, “Ten years and I have loved so many of your posts! Congrats! I am not sure how this happened, I hate orange but right now I am liking orange and cream combos or maybe orange and yellow…um 😉 Oh, hey, maybe it is a lack of sunshine this spring! lol”

Ladies, I will email you to find out which giveaway item you would like me to make for you — a pair of standard or kingsize pillowcases, a rotary cutter coat, or a pair of quilted oven mitts. I’ll also ask you to give me an idea of your color preferences for your item of choice so I can send you photos of some fabric combinations to consider.

My thanks to each and every person who left a comment on my blog. It was fun to read about your favorite color combos. And many of you wrote such nice things about my blog! I am so very grateful for your interest and support. You all are the reason I reached my 10th blogiversary.

In my post announcing the giveaway, I noted that family members could leave comments but would be ineligible to win. My sister Reigh left this comment: “I wanted to win oven mitts in blue and yellow! First time it’s ever been a disadvantage to be your sister! Oh well, I wouldn’t change a thing. Love you!” Dearest Reigh, your wish is my command. You couldn’t win the giveaway but you’ll still get your oven mitts. Love you, too!

 

 

 

Posted in family, Giveaway, home dec, oven mitts, roll-it-up pillowcases, rotary cutter case, tutorial, update | 6 Comments

Giveaway Extended!

I’ve decided to extend the giveaway celebrating my 10th blogging anniversary (aka my 10th Blogiversary) through Saturday. I’ll be out of town for a few days so it makes sense to wrap things up after my return. If you meant to register for my giveaway (announced on my blog on May 1) and let it slide, you have a second chance.

I’m in Portland, Oregon so you can enter up until midnight Saturday, May 14, Pacific Daylight Time (PDT). Winners will be announced on Sunday. The giveaway is open to both domestic and international visitors to my blog.

I’m giving away three prizes made by me – a rotary cutter coat (pictured above), a pair of oven mitts . . .

. . . and a pair of standard or king size pillowcases:

But wait – there’s more! The winners get to pick the item they prefer — and the fabrics. I’ll find out what colors they like and give them some choices. If the handmade items I’m offering don’t appeal to you, think about them as gifts for friends or family members. Oven mitts, in particular, make great gifts. There’s even a hashtag for that: #ovenmittsmakegreatgifts.

To enter the giveaway, all you have to do is go to this post and respond in the comment section to the question: “What is your favorite color combo?” It’s been fun to see the responses so far, many of which mirror the color combos near and dear to my heart.

I’m sorry to say I’ve spent precious little time in my sewing room of late. What could possibly take me away from My Happy Place? The answer: the White House Garden. I have been helping the Dear Husband get our front and back yard ready for planting. I have to be honest: spending time in the garden is at the very bottom of my list of things I want to do. But we’ve had such a cold and soggy spring in Portland that I feel I have to help the DH take advantage of the (fairly) dry and (partly) sunny days to make up for lost time.

My DH moves a bit slower than he used to so I’m stealing time away from my sewing room to help him do the thing that makes his heart sing. I will always be a reluctant gardener but . . . I must confess:  there is a great deal of satisfaction to be gained from getting a few feet of land freed of weeds, an overgrown bush trimmed back, a lawn and leaf bag filled and hauled to the curb. I just don’t want to make a habit of it!

I’ll be back on Sunday with the names of the winners. Good luck!

P.S. Instructions for all three prizes are included in the Tutorials page on my website, which you can find at this link.

 

 

 

Posted in family, Giveaway, home dec, oven mitts, roll-it-up pillowcases, rotary cutter case, tutorial, update | 3 Comments

A Blogiversary — and a Giveaway!!

Tomorrow is a big day for First Light Designs. Ten years ago — on May 2, 2012 — my very first blog post was published. (You can read it here.) What better way to celebrate my 10th blogging anniversary than by having a giveaway?

I’m going to pick three winners at random and offer each winner her (or his) choice of three prizes:  a rotary cutter coat, a pair of standard or king pillowcases, or a pair of oven mitts — all made to order by moi. Examples are shown above but they are not the giveaway items. I’ll find out fabric preferences and give each winner a choice of combinations curated from my (ahem) rather extensive stash.

To be entered in the giveaway, all you have to do is write a comment at the bottom of this post responding to the question, “What is your favorite color combo?” No need for you to subscribe to my blog or follow me on Instagram (though I would be delighted if you chose to do either. To subscribe, enter your email address above the SUBSCRIBE button on the top right side of the First Light Designs home page. To find me on Instagram, click here.)

One entry per person. I will mail anywhere in the world so international readers are welcome to enter.

Family members are invited to leave comments but are not eligible to win.

The giveaway will remain open through Wednesday, May 11. On Thursday, May 12, I’ll use a random number generator to pick three winners who will be notified via email.

Good luck, everyone! And thank you for keeping me on my blogging toes for the last 10 years. Seven hundred posts later, I’m still going strong.

P.S. If you are not one of the lucky winners, you can make your own version of these items. All are available as free tutorials on my website:

8. Perfect Pillowcases (Oct. 23, 2013)

11. Rotary Cutter Coat (Oct. 10, 2014)

21, Oven Mitts that Fit: Prequel to the Tutorial (April 13, 2021)
21, Oven Mitt Tutorial from First Light Designs, Part 1 (April 18, 2021)
21, Oven Mitt Tutorial from First Light Designs, Part 2 (April 19, 2021)

 

 

Posted in Giveaway, oven mitts, roll-it-up pillowcases, rotary cutter case, tutorial, update | 45 Comments

Sock It To Me!

You must be wondering what on earth a pair of socks has to do with quilting. Let me explain. The pattern on these socks is one of the prints from designer Katarina Roccella‘s new line, “Capri,” which is in quilt shops right now. If you missed my recent post about it, here’s a look at the line of quilting cottons from Art Gallery Fabrics:

(You don’t see the lemons-on-stripe print in the photo above because it’s one of two designs in the line that were printed on fabrics other than cotton.)

If you’re a regular reader you know that I ran off in high spirits last month and bought 10 prints from the line. So far I’ve only made a pair of pillowcases using three of the fabrics. I’m still dreaming about what to do with the remainder.

In her March 27 post on Instagram (instagram.com/katarinaroccella), Katarina mentioned that several designs in the “Capri” line, including lemons-on-stripes, were available on a huge range of products through a website called redbubble.com. I was intrigued. Following a link in her profile, I visited the website and learned that Redbubble is a global online marketplace for print-on-demand products based on artwork submitted by independent artists. An image isn’t printed on an item until an order comes in so there’s no waste from overproduction. When someone orders a product, the artist gets a portion of the proceeds.

I decided to give Redbubble a try, ordering a pair of socks and two coffee mugs with the lemons-on-stripes design. My socks arrived six days later! (The mugs are supposed to be delivered tomorrow.) I’m very pleased with the quality of the socks, which are made from a blend of recycled polyester, nylon, cotton, and spandex. They’re super soft and fit very nicely. Based on the quality of the socks, I placed an order today for a travel mug with the same lemons-on-stripe design — you know I have a thing for lemons! — and a mouse pad with the main fabric in the “Capri” line, a landscape of the Amalfi Coast.

If you are intrigued, too, you can click here to see Katarina Roccella’s designs on everything from leggings to smartphone cases to shower curtains to journal covers. It’s pretty amazing! By the way, I don’t have a financial interest in Redbubble nor do I accept any sponsorships on my website/blog. I’m writing about this because I believe making purchases that support artists like Katarina Roccella is a worthwhile thing to do and the items are things I will enjoy using.

I made another purchase recently that benefits a different but infinitely worthy cause. I saw the March 18 post on Instagram of Pat Sloan (instagram.com/quilterpatsloan) wearing a t-shirt featuring a beautiful sunflower image designed by Kate Spain. The tees are for sale on Kate Spain’s website, with proceeds going to support Chef José Andrés and the World Central Kitchen for relief efforts in Ukraine and Poland.

Kate’s design is called “Sunflowers in My Heart” and quilters who purchased t-shirts were encouraged to post photos on Instagram wearing theirs. Here’s the photo I posted:

Kate Spain herself commented on my post! You can check it out here.

Thank you for stopping by!

 

 

 

Posted in roll-it-up pillowcases, update | 4 Comments

“The Isle of Capri”

I’m bringing a little sunshine to the Portland White House with these pillowcases made from “Capri,” Katarina Roccella’s new fabric line for Art Gallery Fabrics. I fell in love with the line when I spotted it in Hawthorne Supply Company‘s weekly email newsletter a couple of weeks ago. It took a few days of daydreaming about it before I yielded to impulse and placed an order.

I was telling my students in a quilting class last week about my — ahem — rather large purchase, which I referred to as “a shopping accident.” One of my students said, “You didn’t have a shopping accident, you had a shopping adventure!” That sounds ever so much better, don’t you think?

I confess: I wound up ordering 10 prints from the line — and I may not be done yet! Just take a look at the fabrics:

Can you see why I fell in love with it? I have no earthly idea what I’m going to make with this luscious array but I did order enough extra of the aqua lemon print to make those pillowcases for the Dear Husband and me. (I used the burrito or roll-it-up method for the pillowcases, using my own tutorial which you can find here.)

I am lucky to have visited the tiny island of Capri several years ago on a trip to Italy with the DH. These pillowcases will be a fond reminder of that trip. They are a fond reminder of something else. When my siblings and I were little, our father used to sing to us. One of the songs he sang was “The Isle of Capri,” whose first two verses go like this:

“Twas on the Isle of Capri that I found her
Beneath the shade of an old walnut tree
Oh, I can still see the flow’rs blooming ’round her
Where we met on the Isle of Capri.

“She was as sweet as a rose in the dawning
But somehow fate hadn’t meant her for me
And though I sail with the tide in the morning
Still my heart’s on the Isle of Capri.”

According to Wikipedia, “The Isle of Capri” was a #1 hit in 1935, the year my father turned 12. The music was written by Will Grosz with lyrics by Jimmy Kennedy. The tempo is described as a tango foxtrot but my dad sang it like a ballad. I love those old romantic songs as much as I love pretty pillowcases.

I’m going to put the new cases on our pillows tonight. Maybe I will dream of Capri!

 

 

 

Posted in family, home dec, roll-it-up pillowcases, update | 12 Comments

Toile Pillowcases, Take 3

This is the third and final pair of queen-size pillowcases made from a lovely toile fabric from Timeless Treasures that’s been in my stash for a few years:

The first two pair were made last year, the first pair as a gift and the second for my own home. I made these pillowcases last week as a hostess gift, planning to deliver them to my twin sister Diane when the Dear Husband and I make our annual Thanksgiving trip to Georgia in November. (Of course we will be taking every precaution while traveling during the coronavirus pandemic.)

I made the mistake of telling Diane about the pillowcases and she cajoled me into sending them in advance. I’m glad I did because she promptly put them on the pillows in the main floor guest room and sent me pictures. Here’s a close-up of the cases:


There’s something special about toile. I was really sorry to use up the last of that fabric. I actually searched for more on the Internet but came up empty-handed.

I did not make the accent pillow on the bed; Diane had it made at a specialty shop using fabric left over from the bedskirt. But I do spy four things in the photo above that are “me made”: the pillowcases, the quilt at the foot of the bed, the bedskirt, and — hard to see but look at the reflection in the mirror in the bathroom for a glimpse — the shower curtain, made in 2011 and embellished in 2012. You can read about that here.  (There’s one more thing I made that you can’t see in the photo: tailored valances. I wrote about that project in this post, also from 2012. By the way, the pillowcases were made using my photo-laden Perfect Pillowcases tutorial.)

The DH and I will be sleeping on these pillowcases soon! This year’s trip is a very special one as Diane and I will be celebrating an important birthday, one of those big ones ending in a zero. Here’s a hint: we will become septuagenarians.

 

 

 

Posted in 4-Patch Wonder, bedskirt, family, faux-kaleido quilts, home dec, roll-it-up pillowcases, shower curtain, update, valance | 3 Comments