Category Archives: Fabric

My Latest Obsession

UPDATE: Etsy seller Chenille Amour saw my post and wants to offer my readers a 10% discount in her shop. Um, can you say awesome?!?! Use coupon code “vintagemodernquilts” at check out. {Visit Chenille Amour on Etsy.}

As if my love of fabric isn’t bad enough…I have developed a new textile crush.

Vintage chenille!

Years ago, I found a plain white King size vintage chenille bedspread at a flea market and used it in many baby quilts.. It was perfect for backing (cheaper and prettier than minky) and it made great little loveys/rag quilts.

It comes in all of those sweet 1940s/50s shades of butter yellow, pink, celery green, and aqua.

Even the more 60s/70s hues are beautiful:

I think a chenille patchwork throw would be so nice this fall/winter. Not a rag quilt, but something simply pieced, and most likely tied or stitch-in-the-ditch. Would you or have you made a chenille quilt?

Photos via Etsy:

Masons Cottage
Alora’s Adorables
Chenille Amour

American Patchwork & Quilting Radio with Pat Sloan

APQPodCastBlogButtonsGuest250What a blast! I had a short and sweet chat with Pat Sloan today. We talked about some of my favorite things – fabric, the Moda Bake Shop, fabric, how I started quilting, fabric, the Dallas Modern Quilt Guild, fabric, working for Moda, and fabric. Do you see the theme there? I could have talked to her for an hour. Next time!

If you’re visiting from APQ or Pat’s blog, welcome! One of my quilts we talked about today is Cotton Candy:

Cotton Candy Quilt

You can read the full details about that quilt and see more photos here.

The podcast is available {here}.

Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Breaking Up

Breaking up fabric bundles that is. It’s no secret that I love fabric (what quilter doesn’t?) and I also love bundles of fabric! Beautifully organized, folded, tied, rolled…however they can be prettily bundled together, I like it.

But I struggle with Moda fat quarter bundles. They’re so perfectly tied and I know the fabric is irreplaceable. It’s a lot of pressure to open that sucker up and use it! But I have to use one of them this year. It’s getting to be ridiculous in here.


{PB&J by Basic Grey, Wonderland by MoMo, S’More Love by Eric and Julie Comstock, Dear Mr. Claus by Cosmo Cricket, Lush Uptown by Erin Michael, Recess by American Jane, Urban Cowgirl by Urban Chiks, Sweet by Urban Chiks}

I’m thinking I need to use one of the older ones first.  Which one would you pick? And what would you make? No holds barred. Let’s hear those fabric fantasies.


It’s been a busy few weeks! I’ve been teaching several sessions of my Boho Patchwork class at Urban Spools. I love teaching that class. Students are always so thrilled to be able to create a unique quilt top in one 6-hr workshop. I even sewed along with the group I taught on Sunday, using a bit of this {SPECTACULAR} Suzuko Koseki print as my starting point:

{image via Superbuzzy}

I couldn’t stop sewing even after I went home Sunday evening so you’ll probably be seeing the finished quilt in a few weeks.

I’ve also been perusing Ebay for treasures, including this bit of vintage quilt:

Vintage Quilt Scrap

{purchased from this shop, which I highly recommend. She shipped it super fast and her photos were accurate. My expectations were definitely met, which is not always the case with Ebay.)

It literally is just a bit of quilt but its so darling. The piecing is very good and the quilting is pretty utilitarian though it looks great from the back.

Vintage Quilt Scrap | Back

The stitches on the front are really tiny and uneven but they’re longer and more consistent on the back.

The binding is kind of a mess.

Vintage Quilt Scrap | Detail

She was not at all worried about her stitches showing! I also noticed that the binding is pieced straight edge instead of at a 45 degree angle. You’d think with all of that careful piecing on the front, she would have done a proper binding. Is that typical of old quilts? I wonder. I’ll have to look at my other finished ones.

But these are the kind of imperfections I love about vintage quilts and this one really is wonderful. My initial thought was to make it into a pillow. but now I might round off all the corners and bind it as a mini quilt. I hate to cover up the quilting on the back and that deliciously faded green (which is almost exactly the same green that’s in Bonnie and Camille’s new Scrumptious line. The perfect retro green!)

What do you think? Pillow or mini? Or something else entirely?!

Organization = Chaos


My lovely long vacation at the lake is over. I’m officially back at home this week and it has already been a bit of a kick in the pants with something planned every day through the middle of next week. Teaching, designing, working, socializing, and speaking at the Dallas MQG meeting (tomorrow night at Half Price Books on NW Hwy. 7 pm)…But how awesome is it that I am doing all of those things and staying home with my little munchkin every day instead of working for the man? Pretty awesome.

My husband came home two weeks before Ben and me and I was impressed at how tidy the house was kept in our absence. He’s a better housewife than me. The two of us rapidly turned our spaces into utter chaos. Ben’s tools of chaos and destruction are books and toys and poky plastic things.

VMQ Studio | July 2013

My chaos is fabric and paper and patterns.

VMQ Studio | July 2013

The chaos comes not only from the obvious sources of working/designing/quilting that happens in my sewing room but from organization itself. I always seem to be stuck in some state of partial organization.

VMQ Studio | July 2013

There’s a plan and some stages of execution, but I lack the focus/energy/time for completion. Organization creates mess! Did you know that? Organization Creates Mess. It’s like a law of physics.

I added a long-desired second fat quarter storage shelf to my sewing room this week. It’s above the computer in a space previously occupied by arty quilty things. I needed the storage more than I needed the arty quilty things.

VMQ Studio | July 2013

It’s another Pottery Barn Cubby Organizer to match the one I bought a few years ago.

VMQ Studio | July 2013

They don’t make the cream version anymore so I begrudgingly went with black and now I like it better than the cream one. My plan was to hang them side by side so my rainbow of fat quarters would be continuous.

VMQ Studio | July 2013

The Hubs said he didn’t think that would look right. I think he was not actually all that concerned about the aesthetics but more with having to measure and hang two of them.

VMQ Studio | July 2013

Can’t blame him since I hung exactly zero of the shelving units in our entire house. But I just might outsmart him and get a second black one and then have him hang them black-white-black on the opposite wall. Better let him have a few months off DIY first though (he just built a super awesome loft bed for our son.)

VMQ Studio | July 2013

Plus I’ll need some more fabric to fill up a third one.  ;)

Craftsy Review: Quilt-As-You-Go Patchwork Bags


I recently had the chance to review Tara Rebman’s (aka Tinkerfrog) Quilt-As-You-Go Patchwork Bags class on Craftsy.  I’ve signed up for a few Craftsy classes and this the first one I finished. Hooray!

Tara is a great teacher and I had serious Juki-envy while watching her sew,  I need a Juki to come live in my sewing room. Tara’s class is filled with a lot of helpful tips about the quilt-as-you-go technique and some really, really cute patterns! and ideas for using the method. She guides you through making some simple potholders and then you move on to the big enchilada – the Tinker Tote:

Tara Rebman Tinker Tote

I love that bag! I can see myself using it for a diaper bag. library tote. retreat bag. There are patterns for two size options included with the class.

I’m feeling kinda silly for not having taken any of my other Craftsy classes yet because their virtual classroom setup is pretty awesome. It’s interactive and easy to navigate. It’s also super convenient to go back and review a part of the pattern when you need a refresher or want to make the project again. Not having to keep track of a printed pattern is so nice!

I’ve done a few quilt-as-you-go projects over the years and Tara’s class inspired me to sew some of my scraps together. I played around with the log cabin style QAYG technique she details in class:


Considering how much quilting there is on that block, it was pretty fast to make. Not sure what I’m going to do with it though making it gave me another idea….


These are made with some scraps from my overflowing string basket. It’s going to be something for my son (but you’ll have to come back in August to find out what. Such a tease!)

Reluctant Destash

Spring cleaning my sewing room. I feel a BIG destash coming on! Details to come.#quilting #fabric #destash

So none of my fabric purging methods have been truly successful. I’ve donated it. I’ve given it away. I did a mini destash on Etsy that was a big mess and a huge pain. The fact remains that I still have TOO MUCH with MORE COMING IN  and there are awesome new lines coming out EVERY DAY and EVEN MORE awesomeness is coming after QUILT MARKET. I’m feeling inundated with fabric and it’s time for spring cleaning. Instagram seems to be a good place so I’m going to try that instead of Etsy. I’m destashing good stuff – quilt-shop quality, all new and unwashed…Amy Butler, Hope Valley, Nicey Jane, Paula Prass, Tula Pink, Sherbet Pips…to name a few. This sale will be mostly fat quarters and some tasty Moda pre-cuts (shown above).

Here are the rules:

1. Follow me on Instagram (username: vintagemodernquilts) It’s an iPhone app, but if you don’t have one you can follow and comment on the web at the link above.

2. I’ll post photos of destash items and the first person to comment with their PayPal email address is the one who gets it. I’ll invoice for cost of the bundle plus shipping. Invoices must be paid within 24 hours or the fabric goes to the next person in line.

3. The destash will start tomorrow (Friday, April 5) at 2 pm. (US Central time).

4. Each lot will ship in a flat rate envelope so keep that in mind (shipping is $5.75 to anywhere in the US).

5. Once a lot has sold and been paid for, I’ll delete the photo on Instagram.

I am open to international shipping, but the prices are high: flat rate envelopes are $19.95 to Canada and $23.95 everywhere else. I know it might be worth it compared to fabric prices in other parts of the world so if you are willing to pay that, I will ship to you.

See you tomorrow on Instagram! I have a lot of fabric cutting and sorting to do…

Retro Whimsy Bella Solids

Retro Whimsy Bella Solids

Moda Fabrics has a series of free patterns designed for solids called the 12-Pack. I’m working on a pattern from the new set using the lovely stack of Bella Solids above. I like to name my fabric stacks because I’m a nerd like that so this one is called Retro Whimsy. The colors are sort of dreamy and cupcake-like.  I’m seeing strawberry cake and chocolate frosting. Mmmm.

{These are available exclusively for quilt shops so ask your favorite LQS if they stock the pattern.}

The Bella Solids shown (from top to bottom) are:

Pale Pink | 9900-26
Sisters Pink | 9900-145
Pink | 9900-9900-61
Popsicle | 9900-143
Citrine | 9900-211
Pesto| 9900-233
Gray | 9900-83
Stone | 9900-128
Betty’s Brown | 9900-125
Robin’s Egg | 9900-85
Seafoam | 9900-191
Turquoise | 9900-107
(shown twice, one piece is for the binding)

So that’s what I’m working on today. And now I need a cupcake.

Share the {Fabric} Love

VMQ-Share-the-Love-largeI’ve been trying to clean out my sewing room and scale back my fabric (and crafts!) stash for…at least a year. I’ve given lots of unfinished projects and fabric to my guild, but I still have too much. And with my work at Moda and trips to quilt shows, etc., there is always more coming in. (At least the Moda pre-cuts are easy and pretty to store…)

I’ve used up LOTS of yardage making quilt backs and bindings for all of my WIPs, and I even did a few de-stash sales on Etsy. (That is not fun. Taking photos, writing listings, answering questions, mailing packages – not for me. I also accidentally switched two packages so one went to Australia and the other went to Canada. UGH!) I’ve come across a lot of quilters via Instagram and an idea came to me yesterday…why not share my stash with someone who is just starting out? I didn’t pay full retail for most of my stash thanks to sales and buying wholesale (back when I used to make and sell quilts at craft shows) so why not just give it away? The important thing to me is that it’s going to someone who will use it. I easily filled up three medium flat rate boxes with fabric and they are all set to go to new homes. Yay! It makes me happy to think someone else will finally use that fabric, and it’s a relief to make some more room on my shelves. I’m going to keep a box in my sewing room and add stuff to it each time I make a project.


If you feel inspired to give away some of your excess stash or if you’d like to receive some fabric, join this  Flickr group. I imagine there will be more seekers than givers, but maybe I’ll be surprised.

Local Quilt Shop

Today is visit your local quilt shop (LQS) day. My LQS is a contemporary shop called Quilter’s Connection. They used to carry mostly repros, batiks, and novelty fabrics but have slowly been adding some modern designers to the mix. I hadn’t stopped in for several months so I was very pleasantly surprised today to find so many modern (especially Moda) fabrics and a good selection of well-priced solids.

I picked up just a few things:

A couple of charm packs of Mod Century by Jenn Ski, two mini Bella Solids charm packs, and a yard of Clementine (also Bella Solids). I was thinking of combining the Mod Century + Clementine with some Bungle Jungle by Tim & Beck charms packs I have.


I love how they look together. This might derail me from my WIPs for the weekend.