Thursday, August 30, 2012

An Update from My Bedroom

Ooooh!  Doesn't that sound naughty!  

Sorry, it's just an update on my bedroom curtains.

I've been sewing the rows together.  Here's a clothesline shot of the largest piece so far.

I'm really liking the way the snowballs look, put together randomly like this.  It's scrappy, fun, and it moves your eyes around a lot.

When these are finished I will have two panels, each 11 blocks wide and 15 blocks long.  I live in an old farmhouse and we have large windows!  Each curtain I'm making is like a whole quilt in itself.

Here's a picnic table shot of a few of the rows stitched together.  I can't wait to see the finished product.  It will be so much cozier in my room this winter!

Until next time...please visit the Curlicue Creations Shop...and have a super day!

Get Creative!

Jennifer Schifano Thomas

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Log Cabin Time

 Autumn is on the way.  The trees are just starting to think about turning, the kids are back in school, and the air has that first hint of coolness in it.  I love this time of year, and everything that comes with it.  The colors, the spicy scent of a pumpkin candle, or an apple pie baking in the oven, and the new fall fashions, boots and such.  Our little log cabins seem to fit right in with it all.

The Quarter Seamers quilting group I attend started working on a new fall project.  It's a table topper, Log Cabin Pumpkins, by Suzanne's Art House.  This is the center block.  It's a courthouse steps style log cabin.

Here's my first pumpkin block.  It still has a few more rounds to go.  It's more of a traditional log cabin  type block.  

The pumpkins will be set all around the center block, with a few leaves added into the corners.  This is going to be so cute on my kitchen table.  I don't have anything like it.  Will it be finished for this Fall?  Or the next?  I'll keep you updated on the progress...

Until next time...please visit the Curlicue Creations Shop...and Get Creative!

Have a super day!

Jennifer Schifano Thomas

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

New Quilt Block Patterns

Four new quilt block patterns have been added to the Curlicue Creations Shop this week.

This pattern teaches you how to make a quick, easy, and fun 4" Hourglass quilt block.  Make as many of these classic blocks as you like for a "timeless" look.   

Thinking about those Christmas projects?  Now is a great time to start.  The Frosty the Quilt Block pattern produces a 6" on-point style block.  This could be used in a variety of projects, including trivets, table runners, quilts - you name it!  Dress up a plain apron with a Frosty block for a quick and handsome gift.

The Evergreen Quilt Block Pattern is also 6" and set on-point.  It pairs nicely with the Frosty the Quilt Block Pattern.  This block is paper pieced in two sections.  

This is another easy, classic quilt design to add to your collection.  This block is 7" finished size, and is also a paper pieced block.  I believe another name for this block is "Windblown".  This is a great block to make scrappy and do some stash busting.

Pinwheel X Quilt

When you put the Pinwheel X quilt blocks together, you get a marvy secondary pattern, as in my Pinwheel X Quilt.  I used all red scraps and some muslin.  I simply added a blue border and a red border to finish it off.  Patriotic and classic.   I love this quilt in my living room.

Today I'm working on some new floral applique designs for you.  To see all the quilt block patterns available, check the Quilt Block Patterns Section of the shop.

****Reminder:  It's time to clean the lint out of your sewing machine!****

Until next time...have a super day...and Get Creative!

Jennifer Schifano Thomas

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Organizing UFO's

If you've been quilting for a while, you've likely accumulated a few UFO's.  UFO's are UnFinished Objects.  I've been quilting long enough that I have more UFO's than finished projects.  Embarrassing!  Also very messy.  It came time to do some organizing.  Here's how I did it.

 First, I went through my studio and made a master list of all the projects I have going on.

Most of my projects are in plastic boxes like these, stored on shelving.  I marked each box with a strip of masking tape and a Sharpie marker.  No more hunting to find what I want to work on.  Also, this way I can see in a glance exactly what I need to do.

Most of my UFO's are unfinished because I simply got to a point where I needed to purchase something to continue working on that project.  Instead of running out to the store, I put it aside, and start on something new.  To combat this bad habit, I made a shopping list for each project in this cute little notebook that I can easily slip into my bag.  It goes everywhere I go, so I can consult it at anytime to see what I really need.  By the way, I won this notebook at a UFO party.  Perfect.

I also made sub-lists of all my projects (from my master list) in another notebook.  These lists show what stage each project is in.  I made one for cutting, one for piecing/applique, one for quilt tops that need to be marked, one for needs to be basted, one for quilting, one for binding, sleeve, and label, and even one for design ideas.  This is really helping me to see what I have going on.  If I want some hand-work to do while watching the Panthers slam the Jets in the NFL preseason game this Sunday night, I can just consult my list.

That's as far as I went with the UFO organizing.  But additionally, you could also organize your boxes to match your sub-list, by putting together all the quilts that need to be quilted, etc.

I hope this helps!  It's making a difference for me.

Until next time...please visit the Curlicue Creations Shop...and Get Creative!

Jennifer Schifano Thomas

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Shopping Spree

Time to share the shopping spoils again.  Yesterday I wrote a post about vintage fabrics.  Today, I'm showing a soft palette of modern fabrics I've been collecting.  This is going to make a gorgeous quilt with tones of yesterday, maybe I'll add some of the vintage fabrics to this, too.

Modern Fabric Fat Quarters

 Yardstick Holder

This is not a really great picture, sorry.  This yardstick holder is made of some kind of burlap-y material.  The fruit motifs are felt appliques.  They are stuffed, giving them a 3-dimensional look.  There is a hook on the back for hanging.  I love this.  My yardstick will never get lost again.

Big Box of Crochet and Embroidery Thread

Fun, fun, fun, in a box!  The DMC pearl thread is perfect for hand stitching around the edge of wool and flannel appliques.

Box of Vintage Dress Patterns 

Even more fun.  I love looking through a "new" box of vintage dress patterns.  The clothing styles and hair styles are so interesting to view.

1970's era patterns

I especially liked these two 1970's patterns.  They would make unique Halloween costumes.  Hmmmmmm.......

Until  next time...please visit the Curlicue Creations Shop...and Get Creative!

Jennifer Schifano Thomas

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Vintage Fabric Fat Quarter Collections beloved fabric stash.  What quilter doesn't have one of these?  It's heavenly to add to my collection, and daydream while looking for that perfect slice of fabric for my current project.  I also love vintage textiles.  They add so much depth to my stash that I can't achieve by shopping only for modern fabrics.  I love the modern fabrics, too, but vintage....well, it's special.

Here are a few fat quarter collections of fabrics that I have cut from my vintage collection to share with you.  These are all available in the Curlicue Creations Shop in the Fabric Section.

A rainbow of 14 different fabrics to really help round out your stash.

Just four fat quarters for just four dollars.  Perfect for a little sample.  

A variety of six luscious cuts to play with.


Pretty pastels, perfect for a baby quilt, or to soften up a room.  Fun to have, soothing to look at.  

I have more than I need, so I'm offering these fabrics at bargain prices for all to enjoy.  Check back in the Fabric Section of the shop for more vintage fat quarter collections coming soon!

Until next time...Get Creative!

Jennifer Schifano Thomas

Monday, August 20, 2012

Block Testing for Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks, Volume 5

Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks, Volume 5 came out in May.  This is the last issue that I had the privilege of making test blocks for and I loved every minute of it.
 Wedding Chapel Windows Quilt

My sampler quilt, Wedding Chapel Windows was featured in a block giveaway contest for this issue.  I used the Mosaic fabric collection by Timeless Treasures.  The entrants had to identify which nine blocks I used in the quilt to win.  The contest is over now, so I can finally reveal which blocks I tested & how it went.  Here they are:

 Crossroads in Life

This is block #466, by Carolyn Goins.  It's a beautiful design & was fun to piece.

 Diamond Mine

This is block #474, by Faith Jones.  I sewed this block on the same day that I became engaged to Wesley Warren Thomas.  A fitting block for that day.

 Window Panes

This is block #458, by Jennifer Dick.  Another Jennifer - Oh Yeah!  

 Diamond Eyes

This is block #459, by Monique Dillard.  Another diamond block.  You can see how I was inspired to make the quilt.  Diamonds, Window Panes, the Mosaic fabric collection really made these blocks look like stained glass, and a wedding is certainly a Crossroads in Life.

 Icicle Star

This is block #416, by Sheri Diesburg.  Wow - take a look at her version in the magazine.  It's really gorgeous!  This block is paper pieced.


This is block #454, by Emily Cier.  This block features a lot of long, skinny strips.  It was a little challenging for me.  I had to make it twice, but it was worth it!

 Circle of Friends

This is block #420, by Carolyn Cullinan McCormick.  This is a great block to use a lot of little scraps from your stash.  I would love to make a set of these for a quilt.  I'll bet they would look great put together.

 Fresh Flowers

Block #406, by Cheryl Haynes.  She is one of my favorite designers.  I just love her applique blocks.  I tested one of hers for the last issue, too.  I really like the way my color scheme came out on this block & I'm in the process of making a little wall hanging featuring this block.  This block is a lot of fun with all the little yellow french knots and the butterfly button, too.

 Old Town Star

Block #448, by Katie Blakesley.  This was also a quick and easy block to piece, and it has good visual impact, too.  It was fun to incorporate the bat fabric into this block.

 Flower Burst

Block #476, by Debby Kratovil.  Okay, I used the bat fabric again in this block.  It's called Flower Burst because Debby did a fussy cut of a groovy pink flower for the center circle of her block.

 May Showers

Block #421, by Jennifer Ofenstein - Yes!  Yet another Jennifer - Go Jenns!  I had a tough time with this block, and I did not go back and fix it.  You can see, the girl's hand is not lined up correctly with her sleeve.  It's an adorable block, though, especially if you love paper piecing.

 Star Light Star Bright

Block #487, by Scott Murkin.  I just love this, because Scott thinks in such a different way than I do.  I really like his geometric designs.  I squeezed the bat fabric into this one, too.  I tried to use a couple of fabrics that looked like the night sky to go with the theme.

 Ray of Sunshine

Block #407, by Mary Andra  Holmes.  What a fun design.  It just looks like a super-duper dance party to me!  This block is done in needle-turn applique, but I fused it.  I forgot to reverse the orange shapes, so I had to cut them out twice & I still have the extras in my fabric stash.  I'm not sure what to do with them, but I know I'm going to use them someday....really!

Polka Party

Block #429.  This is my block for the issue.  Please note again - I did get married & changed my name from Jennifer Schifano Eutsler to Jennifer Schifano Thomas.  I did not test my own block...another group got to do that.  What an honor it is to have a block in this issue with all these great designs.

I used a few other blocks from this issue in my Wedding Chapel Windows quilt, too.  Can you pick out which ones they are?  

Until next time...please visit the Curlicue Creations Shop...and Get Creative!

Jennifer Schifano Thomas

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Mulberry Square Quilt...Ten Years and Counting

Mulberry Square was the first quilt design I ever submitted to a magazine.  I was thrilled beyond belief, when it was actually published in Quiltmaker issue No. 86, July/August 2002, and again published in Quiltmaker's All Time Favorites, Spring 2007.  It was so exciting to see my idea in print, and to think that others might be inspired by it.   I wish I could see some of the quilts other quilt makers have made based on this design, especially since my quilt may never be finished!

 Mulberry Square Quilt Top

I recently pulled out the box for this quilt UFO.  I have pieced the whole top, as shown in the above picture.  I wanted to make the same version that was published in Quiltmaker.  I spent some time looking it over, and decided to use their quilting design, too.

 I made templates for the quilting design out of some old X-Ray films I've been keeping for who knows what?!  They worked really well for this.  I traced the design onto the film, then used an OLD rotary cutting blade to cut the slits into the films for tracing.  So far I've marked a little more than half of the top.  I'm using chalk pencils for the marking.  Ten years and counting on this project.  

Here's another version of the Mulberry Square quilt that I did finish.  It's all scrappy, without the borders and extremely simple, straight line quilting.  I actually finished this in 2002.  I still like it, but WOW - it's fun to see how much your quilting can improve in ten years time.

Until next time...please visit the Curlicue Creations Shop...and Get Creative!

Jennifer Schifano Thomas