Category Archives: Merciful Quilts

The Positivity QAL – Link Up Number Two

Hello Everyone! I am happy to be hosting the second link up for The Positivity Quilt Along, hosted by Preeti of Sew Preeti Quilts. As you probably know, many of the quilts made during the QAL are destined to be donated to Mercyful Quilts. We are so thankful to Preeti for hosting this event and to all of you who have made, or are making, quilts for Mercy. I realize some of you have chosen to donate your quilt to a different organization and that is also wonderful! Your creativity, time and effort are hugely appreciated!

If you haven’t yet started, don’t worry! The blocks are a breeze to make and quilts are ALWAYS needed at Mercy Hospital. You are welcome to join in and make one whenever the timing suits you. As for my quilt….. I have been making very little progress. Summer has been so busy with lots of family time. In all honesty, I have only made eighteen blocks at this point. But, like I said, the need for quilts is on-going and I will get mine done.

Obviously, I don’t have a finished flimsy (quilt top) to share with you today. However, I do have some finished quilts to show you!

This quilt was sent to me by Rachel who is from Orgeon. She was the first person to send me a finished Positivity Quilt. She was really quick!! I love the colors and the arrangement of her plus blocks!

Rachel made a pieced backing, using some extra blocks she had. I think she did a great job with balancing the pieced blocks with the large pieces of fabric.

OK – on to the second Positivity Quilt that has been received (also from Oregon)! This one was made and quilted by Cyndy of Quilting Is More Fun than Housework. We all know Cyndy is a master when it comes to scrappy quilts and this is certainly no exception. Her use of turquoise and orange with a scrappy gray background is wonderful.

The HST quilt shown above was also donated for Mercyful Quilts. This beauty was made by Jolie D. of Oregon and quilted by Cyndy. I really like the color selection Jolie chose here. These earthy tones are warm and comforting.

It has been wonderful to replenish the supply of quilts for Mercy Hospital. The staff and the recipients of the quilts are always very thankful for the donations we provide. Thank you so much to each of you who have sent, or are soon to send, quilts our way!

Let’s share the flimsies that are made. There are prizes for this link up too! On July 25th, names will be drawn to win one of five different gifts. Each of these prizes are PDF patterns donated by these very lovely quilt pattern designers.

1. One PDF pattern of your choice from Cynthia of Quilting is More Fun than Housework
2. One PDF pattern of your choice from Jayne of Twiggy and Opal
3. One PDF pattern of your choice from Denise of For the Love of Geese
4. One PDF pattern of your choice from Debby of Quilter by Design
5. One PDF pattern of your choice from Melanie of Mell Meyer

Please link up below. If you don’t have a blog, you are welcome to email me a picture of your flimsy so I can add it to this post. Your picture will count as an entry to win!! Linky will be open through Saturday, July 24, 2021.

Here is a flimsy made by Rochelle S. Love the blues and greens. Does it remind you of seaglass?

This quilt top was made by Nikki M. Notice that the pluses are basically the same tones as Rochelle’s up above. But change that background color and it is a whole new. sunshiny look!! Love them both and can’t wait to see them all quilted up. 🙂

A Bit of This and a Bit of That

Life has been fairly busy around here – lots of garden time, some visiting with friends, reading books and, of course, some sewing. Let’s see what I can share with you today!

First up, I received two incredible quilts for Mercy Hospital! These were quite unexpected and I am thrilled to have them. My friend, Stephanie, is a local long arm quilter with a passion for purples and blues and a strong love of Kaffe Fassett. When she offered these two quilts to me for Mercyful Quilts, I was over the moon. Want to see them?

Isn’t this stunning?

This quilt is so, so pretty! Love the design, the fabric and the quilting. The backing is the same fabric as the outer border. I love it and I am sure someone will be so happy to have this as a remembrance of their loved one.

Stephanie doesn’t do custom quilting. She uses edge to edge designs. She does a lovely job quilting her pieces.

Another pretty quilt!

This quilt was made with a jelly roll. These fabrics have a bit of a metallic shimmer to them and the theme of the line is dragonflies. The backing is a soft purple flannel. Lush!

Pretty Dragonflies are quilted along with a looping design.

I looked for some information on dragonflies because I know some cultures feel there is a symbolic meaning to the dragonfly. I loved what I found.

From Dragonfly-Site.com:

“The dragonfly, in almost every part of the world symbolizes change and change in the perspective of self realization; and the kind of change that has its source in mental and emotional maturity and the understanding of the deeper meaning of life. 

The traditional association of Dragonflies with water also gives rise to this meaning to this amazing insect. The Dragonfly’s scurrying flight across water represents an act of going beyond what’s on the surface and looking into the deeper implications and aspects of life. 

Reading this, I couldn’t help but think this quilt was meant for Mercyful Quilts. The recipient of our quilts may very well be struggling to understand a deeper meaning of life as they grieve the loss of their loved one. It is always our hope that Mercyful Quilts bring comfort during this process.

As for my own sewing, I finished a baby quilt that will be shared in a week or so as a part of the celebration of Cheryl Brickey’s newest book; Just One Charm Pack. The quilt is adorable and you’ll just have to wait a bit to see it!

I am also working on matching outfits for my grand daughters. I have one outfit done, for the younger one.

I also have a pair of shorts finished for the big sister. \

There is even a little label on the back to help her know which way to put them on. I have yet to cut out or sew a shirt. I am hoping I can figure out how to do this with the remaining fabric. (The leftovers are in odd shapes and sizes). Cross your fingers for me! If it all works out and the outfits actually fit the girls, I will share a picture later on.

Last fall we bought some new furniture, including the chair you see above. I wanted something to rest your feet on but the ottoman that matched the chair was too big for the space and too pricey for my wallet. Some years ago, I bought this little footstool thinking I would one day re-upholster it. Of course it sat in a closet ever since. But it was the perfect thing for this chair so I ordered matching fabric to cover it with.

It was a fairly simple project and it didn’t hurt any that Ray did most of the work. A staple gun and a fair amount of hot glue was all it took – and the muscle to be able to staple gun into this very hard wood. I don’t think I could have done it, truth be told. But I was a very helpful assistant. Honest! He actually covered it during the Christmas holiday but again, it sat. Waiting and waiting for us to make and attach a band around the perimeter to hide those staples. That finally happened last week and it is finished. This project took much longer than it should have!

It is that time of year when the garden is producing in full force! Ray dug up potatoes twice already; there is an abundance! Tomatoes are starting to really ripen as are the green beans and cucumbers. For some reason the crook neck squash are weirdly small. He yanked that plant out as it really isn’t worth picking those miniature bits.

Check out the size of this boysenberry!! We have the hugest berries this year. Yum – sooo good! Both the boysenberries and the blueberries are about finished for this year. We were able to freeze about twenty pounds of blueberries which is far more than usual. It is so nice to have them all year though.

Let’s take a look at some silly girls, shall we?

Dad decided it was time to play with water balloons for the first time! This picture couldn’t be better – he caught the splash as the perfect moment!

I love this (slightly blurred) picture showing the girls playing together. Little sis will do anything big sister says. Here they had a little game going on that reminds me of a Conga line! They are so funny.

The clearance sale continues! Prices are now discounted by 25%!

I am getting closer and closer to retirement! The sale is now set at 25% off so be sure to come take a peek!!

Linking to my favorites. Check them out at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

Shipping Orders, Sewing, and Cute Kid Pics

Hello there! Life is still quite busy here. The fabric sale continues and customers are keeping me busy. I am happy to say the stack of empty bolts is still growing and the shelves of bolted fabric are shrinking. Thank you all for supporting me as I clear out the shop in anticipation of closing it.

In between shipping orders, we have had a lot going on. I haven’t been able to get a ton of quilting done but I do get to the machine now and then.

I am working on my blocks for the Positivity QAL. The other day I suppose I wasn’t paying attention because the block wasn’t assembled correctly. Ooops! Luckily it took little time to unpick the stitches and fix it (the upper left block). The blocks are super easy to make and I am enjoying it. People are starting to post their progress on Instagram under #thepositivityqal. Check them out to see! If you want to join in, there is time. The QAL is just getting started!! Sure some people (Preeti and Cheree, I am looking at you!) are finishing flimsies but others (ME) have all of five blocks sewn. Also, for those of you who are already into this, remember the first link up for showing progress shots is this Sunday. Preeti and I have decided I will hold the link up here though. So come back here to link up on Sunday, ok?? (Note to self: go figure out how to host a link up since you haven’t hosted one in several years. Haha)

I have also had some time to work on the gray and blue monster I am making for my bed. We have a king size bed so this is certainly the largest quilt I have made yet. (I have made four queen size quilts though and this isn’t too much bigger than those). I am very happy with this project though. My husband chose the fabrics and helped me select the pattern. Mainly I need to work on the sashing strips and then assemble the rows and add borders and baste it and quilt it and bind it and wash it. See – I think I am almost done!

The garden is going nuts now. Zucchini, cucumbers, green beans, bunching onions, boysenberries, and blueberries are coming in fast and furious. Tomatoes are just starting to turn color, the shallots look great and the pumpkins are happily growing.

Before I close (which I really need to do so I can get downstairs and ship orders), here are some smiles for you. The girls are growing like crazy and I am feeling the urge to see them again! It has been just over a month and they seem different already, especially the one year old. At that age, there is something new almost daily.

Hmmm, I am sure there is some way to make this thing go.
Daydreaming. Remember doing this as a kid in the summer?
Silly girl, wearing Dad’s hat.

OK – I will be back on Sunday with a link up for you! Come and check out the quilts people are making or link up your progress shots.

Coin Quilt Finish

Today I want to share the finish of this pretty coin quilt. This quilt started out on a whim one day a couple of months ago. I was cleaning my sewing room and attacked a pile of scraps, cutting them into rectangles measuring 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″. I decided to concentrate on specific colors and then use the rectangles at a later date for a coin quilt. Green, yellow, pink and blue were the colors I selected.

Yes, the quilt has a bit of an Easter egg vibe but who doesn’t love Easter eggs? I chose a mottled blue fabric from the shop as the background and a pretty green wide back (also from the shop) to finish it up. The binding is the same as the background. I might note I find myself really drawn to using a binding that matches the outer border when possible. I like the look of it. Maybe because it feels less busy to me.

With my trusty quilt holder, Julia, I was able to take a few photos of this pretty quilt in our yard. When I quilted it, I outlined the coin columns and then stippled the blue background. I have been using Glide thread and finding my machine loves it. I had very few hiccups and those I did have were due to bobbin winding issues. Glide is slippery thread and (for me anyway) it can be a challenge to wind the bobbin with it.

My husband always leaves a patch of California poppies go in the field, not mowing them down until they finish blooming. The poppies are such a pretty pop of color for us. Anyway, this quilt is destined to be a Mercyful quilt and is also my contribution to the 2021 Hands 2 Help event run each year by Sarah Craig, Confessions of a Fabric Addict. I also have a quilt in the works for her Hometown Hero idea but it won’t be finished by the deadline. I will post the story behind that quilt soon as it is finished.

Yesterday my husband and I took a day and hiked at the Gray Lodge Wildlife area. It is gorgeous out there. Usually it is a haven for waterfowl but this late in the season, there isn’t a whole lot of water so the number of birds out there is far less. We were lucky to be out there and enjoying ourselves before it gets too much hotter. This is in a fairly toasty area an hour or so from our house. We plan to go back during the winter months to see the birds.

There are tons of rice fields out in this area too. At this time of year the fields are heavily irrigated and bright, bright green. So gorgeous. Because the fields are so wet, there are lots of white heron out there. Try as I might, I didn’t get any pictures of these pretty birds.

At home we are busy picking, cooking and eating artichokes. This year is a bumper year for our artichoke plants. However, it is supposed to really heat up over the next week which should slow the plants down quite a bit. I haven’t counted how many are out there but I bet we have about twenty left to pick, after eating several and sharing some with my neighbor.

So pretty!!

Ok – that is it for now. I have lots in the works! I am joining in with Sew Preeti Quilts Positivity Quilt Along which begins this coming week. I love the pattern for this quilt and look forward to sewing along with Preeti and many others. At the same time, I am making a quilt to celebrate the upcoming publication of Cheryl Brickey, of Meadow Mist Designs, new book, Just One Charm Pack. The book comes out toward the end of June and there will be a blog hop later in the summer to share the quilts several of us are making. I have the pieces cut and hope to start sewing tomorrow. Hope all of you enjoy the weekend!

Psst: Be sure to come back and read my next post. I have some big news to share!!

Linking up with Cheryl’s Favorite Finish as well as other favorites – check them out at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

Bloom with Grace

A while back, when the Bloom With Grace fabric first arrived in my shop, I knew I wanted to use some to make a Mercyful Quilt. It seemed so perfect for bringing comfort to a grieving family. The colors are gorgeous and the sentiment is very sweet. I took a panel and cut the four main blocks apart. Then it sat. This seems to happen quite often in my sewing room!

After a bit, I cut borders from some of the coordinates in this line. I added these to the four blocks and alternated the colors when I placed the bocks together. After stitching those up, I added a narrow pink border with tiny green cornerstones. Thinking it cute but a bit small, I cut up some scraps and added a patchwork border to the top and bottom. There. Now it felt finished!

Using a vintage sheet seemed like the perfect backing. A soft floral was the right complement to the colors and vibe of the quilt top. Each square block is quilted with a crosshatch and the borders have basic straight line quilting. The patchwork at top and bottom are stitched in the ditch to hold it all in place.

I am really pleased with the finished quilt. It isn’t huge, finishing at 44″ x 46″. With some additional pieced blocks between or around the four main panel pieces, one could make it quite a bit bigger if desired.

After taking some pictures I put it in the wash and now it is all soft and crinkly, ready for Mercy Hospital. Most of you are familiar with the Mercyful Quilt program but just in case you aren’t, I organize a program where quilts are made and donated to Mercy Hospital in Sacramento. Their palliative care team offers a quilt to families who are comforting a loved one who is dying. The family often chooses a quilt and uses it to cover their family member. After the person has died, the family takes the quilt home in remembrance of this special person. It brings great comfort to the person and to the family. I have received (and shared here) many thank you notes from both families who have received quilts as well as the team at Mercy who distributes them. I would love to have more donations for them. If you feel called to make one, there are just a few requirements. Your donation must be lap size, made with adult fabrics (because this hospital doesn’t treat children) and must be a new, unused quilt without any fragrance, especially not cigarette smoke. Other than that, the quilt can be as simple of complicated as you like. All quilts are hugely appreciated!!

This is the completion of my February OMG and I will be linking up to Elm Street Quilts. This is also to be a donation used for the 2021 Hands2Help hosted by Sarah Craig. I will link it up when that event opens up. For other link-ups that I enjoy, take a look at the top of the page and click on the Link Ups tab.

Wednesday Words

I fear I have become a lazy blogger. No fair to just read all of your posts and then never write one. Becomes a bit of a one-sided conversation. Here is a quick update for you.

Julia and I were called to jury duty on the same case – a faux pax on the part of the jury selection system I suppose. Anyway, we both went and answered their questions as well as filling out a huge questionnaire. Fortunately neither of us were selected. It was an ugly case involving domestic violence, rape and more. I know this stuff happens and it is horrible but listening to this case for three weeks would have been quite unpleasant and we were both just fine with not being picked for the jury.

This is the road we have been using for our walk/jog program. So pretty!

Last week we both (Julia and I) decided we need to up our exercise game. We walk most days which is nice. After tossing it around a bit, we downloaded the Couch 2 5K app. This is an app that adds short segments of jogging to the walk and eventually shortens the walking segments and lengthens the jogging. Today will be the 3rd day of it. (We walked on the days in between doing a segment of C25K). I have used this app before to get into running and it works quite well. In the beginning, where we are now, it is basically a warm up, then walk 90 seconds, jog 60 seconds, and repeat for about 20 minutes, ending with a cool down walk. My legs are a bit sore but that is to be expected. So far I can’t say Julia is loving this but she is willing to keep at it for a bit.

In the sewing room the other day, I wasn’t feeling like working on the myriad of projects I needed to be. So instead I decided to try something different – I wanted to learn something new. I decided to make a pair of underwear. Not the normal project for me but I had fabric that would work as well as some lingerie elastic. Needing some cotton fabric for the crotch lining, I went to Ray and asked if I could cut up one of his white undershirts. He looks at me and says sure you can, but why? I told him I wanted to make underwear. He got such a funny expression on his face and says, ‘uhh… for me’? Hahaha, nope. For me. Anyway, I made a pair and it worked quite well. The only problem was I cut the elastic for around the hips too big which means it didn’t gather correctly. While they fit reasonably, I think they would feel like they were slipping down. So, I am going to try again. It was fun to do something different. No pictures because I am just not much on modeling underwear!

The Bloom with Grace quilt that I am making for Mercy Hospital is coming along great. I am just over 1/2 way done with quilting it. Shouldn’t be much longer and this will be a finish to share. More on this one soon.

My sweet Vermont native was beyond thrilled to have snow in her new home in Washington state. This girl loves being outdoors and cold has never been an issue for her. She was so excited to have snow to play in for a couple of days.

For my other sweet girl, snow was a completely new experience. She isn’t quite walking yet so when plopped down, there she stayed. I don’t think she quite knew what to make of this cold stuff! Luckily her parents have tons of snow gear in all sizes from her sister so they were well prepared.

Finally, I finished the dolly quilt for the snow bunny up above. I need to take some pictures and I will share that soon. It is adorable!

In shop news, you might have seen this cute bolt of wide back fabric in a rainbow of polka dots I shared on social media last week. Well, after I shared it there were a number of orders for it. (Thank you so much!) As I unrolled the bolt to start cutting orders, I noticed all of these teeny tiny white spots splattered on the fabric. At first I hoped it was just the one area. I unwrapped the entire bolt and checked it. This is no small feat with 108″ wide fabric! The spots were all over the place. Ugh. I returned the bolt to the manufacturer and they said they were having trouble with this run of that particular fabric. So sad because it was super cute. Anyway, if you wondered what happened and why I took down those posts, now you know. Customers were very gracious when I explained the discovery and canceled their orders.

I spent some time cleaning up yesterday. For my bargain hunting customers, there are a number of new bolts added to the Clearance section. Plus quite a few new remnants were added to the Remnant section. Be sure to take a peek and see if anything catches your eye!

That’s it for now. I hope you are all staying warm wherever you are located! Such a crazy winter this is for most of the country.

Linking up with Stitch Sew & Show over at Life in the Scrapatch.

Project Updates

Somehow almost two weeks have passed since the last post. Not sure how that happened, but here we are. I have actually been in the sewing room quite a bit so I will do a quick update on what has been in the works.

First and foremost, I have been working on a cute baby quilt for my niece. It is just about done – I have a few more inches of binding to stitch down and then into the wash it goes. Once she receives it, I will share it here. I am 99% sure she doesn’t read the blog but since I haven’t taken photos of it anyway, it will have to wait.

Additionally, I decided to make a quilt for Mercy Hospital. If you are new here, I coordinate a program called Mercyful Quilts and you can read more about it here. It seemed like a good way to start off the new year by making a quilt for them. I have a panel (by Three Wishes) in the shop that is very pretty. It has four large sections and each has a quote. I thought, for people who are going through the process of saying goodbye to a loved one, this quilt would provide comfort. The prints are reminiscent of a water color painting.

Being a panel, this was a simple quilt top to create. I cut the panel into four sections and used some of the coordinates to create borders around the squares. (Looking at the squares, I think these would also be fun to use for a tote bag for bible study.)

Now that it is all put together, I am thinking it might be a tad small at 49 inches square. Just trying to decide if I add another border or go ahead and get it basted. Decisions, decisions. I am thinking of using a soft vintage sheet for the backing. I hope I have one in the right colors for this.

In the on-going saga of pretending to clean the sewing room, I started playing with a stack of leftover HST’s from the Mosaic Mystery Quilt I participated in last winter. (The top is still in the closet, patiently waiting for me to get it finished up.) As a result of piecing that top, I have a large stack of 2 1/2″ HST’s that I want to use for something. I poked around that wonderful rabbit hole, aka Pinterest, until I found some inspiration. I am working on a mini. I haven’t made a mini in quite a while. I remember making a bunch of them when I first started blogging but seems like it has been a while. So this will be finished up soon and I will share it with you then. I am thinking it may need to be hand quilted.

OK – that is it for now. Sorry to have been remiss in posting. I have been reading tons of posts and am loving the Stay at Home Round Robin that is going on. Have you seen the posts about this? It is being hosted by Quilting Gail and I am enjoying it. Check it out – maybe you have the perfect orphan block to build from.

Linking up to Stitch Show & Sew as well as a few others. Check out my Link Up tab at the top of the page.

Thank You from Mercy Hospital

Below is a letter I received from the Palliative Care team at Mercy Hospital in Sacramento, California. They are so grateful for all of the quilts you have made and donated to their program.

Dear Stitchers,

We are writing to thank you…words cannot explain how important these lovely Comfort Quilts are to the family of our dying patients.  When we deliver them, a look of relief and gratitude immediately takes the place of sadness and loss.  For our families to be able to take home something that their loved one has worn is amazing and unforgettable.

Thank you for all of your skill, hard work, and obvious love that is sewn into each and every quilt; our gratitude for this kindness will never end.  Please know that you are making a difference in someone’s life.  Thank you, again. 

Sincerely and warmly,

The Palliative Care Team at Mercy General

Lisa Seo, Palliative Care MD
Sameera Sandhu, Palliative Care MD
Lori Marsh, RN
Emma Cook, LCSW
Elizabeth K. Mohrherr, MSW
Lucy Zang, SSC

Could it be?? Another Finish?

Yep – it’s true. I have another finish to share. The very small, almost non-existent, silver lining to the fires and smoke we are experiencing is having to stay inside. The smoke is thick and the air very unhealthy so we have been indoors continuously for a long while. This means I can sew!

OK – I started this quilt ages ago. The fabric was leftover from the twin size quilt I made for Julia’s bed in our Downieville house (which we sold this summer.) I made that quilt back in early 2016.

Downieville Quilt

This was a huge quilt as I wanted it to hang over the edge of the bed by a ways. I had planned to make two matching quilts for that bedroom but the second one never happened. However I had already cut many squares intending to make the second one. I decided to use the leftover fabric to make a Mercyful quilt for the families at Mercy Hospital in Sacramento. I matched up a number of the squares, making sure each was partnered with the tan solid and made large (10″ finished) half square triangles with (some of) the leftovers.

Quilt Top Completed!

I made the quilt top in November 2018 and promptly stashed it away – for almost two years!! Why?!?

Basting the top – Finally!

In my last post, I shared I was basting the top and planning to finish it up.

Marking my lines with painter’s tape.

After some thought, I decided to go with simple straight lines for the quilting. Marking the quilt with wide painter’s tape, and starting from the center, I did a two lines of stitching with my walking foot. I used the width of the walking foot to mark off the separation for the second line in each set. This, naturally, went very quick.

My quilt holder, aka Julia, and I took some quick photos on the deck. Didn’t want to stay out long because it was too smokey! I am so pleased with the way this quilt looks.

For the off-centered diamond, I did some extra quilting on the diagonal. I didn’t measure this accurately and my center line is a bit funky. Such is life. I am not overly bothered by this.

The overall effect is good and as we know, I am not one for precision.

A peek at the backing.

For the backing, I used one of the vintage sheets I have stashed. I know many quilters dislike backing with sheets but I have not had a problem with it. They quilt up fine and I have washed the finished quilts (those I have kept) many times without issue. I love how the soft purple and greens complement the darker shades in the quilt top.

This quilt is headed to Mercy Hospital and I hope the family it is given to will take comfort from it.

Unfinished Quilt Tops

About two weeks ago, I made this collage of the unfinished quilt tops I have. I have finished two of them since then which makes me so happy. I haven’t decided which one I will tackle next. I think I need to decide on backings and see what I have available.

For my next project, I need to make a bunting (with the letters of her name) for my youngest grand daughter. When we were up in Seattle, my son reminded me I had made one for older sister before she was born yet this baby is nearly 6 months old and I haven’t made hers. Yikes. Better get on it!!

Take care everyone. If you are affected by the fires (and pretty much everyone in the west is) please take care and be safe. If you have extra rain, please send it to us. We are all in dire need.

Sharing at:

Brag About Your Beauties, Finished or Not Friday, UFO Busting, and Can I Get a Whoop Whoop