New Pattern: Tuxedo Cats
I am back! And I chose the right day to fly back, there was snow here last Friday, and it snowed again yesterday but when I landed in Vancouver on Saturday, the roads (and runways) were clear. We are currently under an Artic Outflow Warning, schools are closed today, and traffic is a mess. It was a bit too warm yesterday before the artic air moved in, and there is a layer of ice underneath the snow which makes driving a nightmare. The highway is in really bad shape, lots of cars in the ditch, and there are still people driving like maniacs. Do they think winter tires alone make them invincible?
With temperatures around -12°C (approx. 11F) the weather is perfect for staying inside, drinking hot tea and sewing. Or writing patterns. I finally uploaded the full Tuxedo Cat pattern, both in English/Imperial and German/Metric and also updated all the direct links in the previous posts. I am not really happy with the picture of the quilt since it isn’t straight at all but there is no way I am going outside to take another one. Finished is better than perfect (says the perfectionist without really believing it… ), I will fix it when the weather cooperates. For those who missed most or all of the blocks and have been waiting to purchase the full pattern, it will be available with a discount until January 20, 2020. Enter the code TC2020 during checkout for 10% off.
I would also like to thank all of you for your comments of comfort and sympathy. I usually try to reply to every comment individually but in this case I just didn’t have the time. The internet can be such an ugly place sometimes, even the quilting community can be quite nasty once in a while, which makes me appreciate the kindness and thoughtfulness of those who left a comment on the passing of my Dad even more.
TAGS: Appliqué, Custom Quilting, Quilt
New Pattern: O Christmas Tree Mug Rugs
Wasn’t that a great Virtual Cookie Exchange Blog Hop last week? So many delicious recipes and inspiring projects, many thanks again to Carol who organizes this event every year. And thank you to all of you who visited my blog and took the time to leave a comment. I always enjoy reading them, and I try to reply to every single one. This was the first time I ran a giveaway with Rafflecopter that I set up myself. I have had a few for the annual Row Along events but in these cases I just added the code I was given to the blog post and had nothing to do with the setup and drawing of the winners, so I wasn’t at all sure how any of this works. It turns out it is super easy and straightforward and not difficult at all. The winners have been drawn this morning, and the patterns were emailed to them. If you are a winner and didn’t receive an email, please check your spam folder. If you still can’t find the pattern, please let me know. Congratulations to
|– Helen B.|
|– Joan K.|
|– Karen M.|
|– Nancy L.|
If you didn’t win but would still like a copy of the pattern, it is now available for purchase in the store section. And again I wrote a German version although I said I wouldn’t. Because as soon as I said I wouldn’t offer German/metric patterns anymore, people started buying them. Some kind of reverse Murphy’s Law? I don’t know but I am certainly not going to question it LOL. In any case, if I have time and the project is small I might still add a German version but as a general rule I am going to focus on English/Imperial patterns.
TAGS: Appliqué, Mug Rug
Virtual Cookie Exchange 2019: More German Cookies and Pattern Giveaway
Thank you so much, Carol, for hosting the Virtual Cookie Exchange once again. I have collected so many interesting cookie recipes during this blog hop, I will be busy for years trying them all out! I have only been living in North America since 2013, and German Christmas baking is very different from North American Christmas baking. And while I enjoy trying new recipes, our Christmas baking is still mostly German, and I will be sharing another of my favourite German recipes.
Today’s recipe is called “Haselnussblüten” which literally translates to “Hazelnut Blossoms”. They do not look like real hazelnut blossoms though, just flower shaped cookies with ground hazelnuts in the dough. Ground hazelnuts and almonds are staples in German Christmas baking, and while I can get ground almonds at the grocery store here, I have trouble finding ground hazelnuts for my baking. There is a store in Vancouver that carries them but it took a while to get used to having to drive 100 km for some ground hazelnuts. The recipe calls for ground cinnamon and cloves, just a pinch of each. I usually add more. It really depends on what you like, and I love the taste of cinnamon. (I also double the amount of spices I put into my pumpkin pie, not just cinnamon but also ginger and cloves.) Feel free to add more or less, depending on what you like. The original recipe also calls for some hazelnut glaze that you can buy at German grocery stores. I have never seen anything similar here, not even at the German deli, and we substitute semi-sweet chocolate for it which works just fine. My husband is usually the one who decorates the cookies, and he has developed his own system of how to use the liquid chocolate to glue the hazelnut to the cookie which always makes me laugh.
A Christmas tradition that I very much appreciate is baking cookies together with my son. I started getting him involved as soon as he could stand, guiding his little fingers with the cookie cutters, and we made cookies together every year. He turned 20 this year and is in his third year at the University of British Columbia. He will be coming home next week, and I really enjoy that he still wants to bake cookies with me… and not just eat them 🙂
A few words of caution/disclaimer: This is a German recipe. Germans measure only liquids by volume, solid ingredients are measured by weight. And everything is metric, of course. With the help of the internet I have provided the imperial measurements but there is no guarantee these are correct… it’s the internet after all. So if a number looks suspicious to you, please double check the math. Another difference are North American ranges. Having to choose between “bake” and “broil” doesn’t really translate to German full convection ovens. So please keep an eye on the cookies and decide for yourself if they need longer or are done faster in your oven than required by the recipe.
Being a longarm quilter, this is my busy season, so I haven’t had a lot of time for working on my own projects. But I came up with a little mug rug design that I call “O Christmas Tree”. The pattern will be published next week, here is a little preview. And I am also giving away five digital copies of the pattern. If you would like to win one, please leave a comment and enter the giveaway. Entries will be accepted until Sunday (December 5, 2019, 11.59 PST), and I will draw the winners on Monday and email the patterns. The patterns will only be availabe in English and with Imperial measurements. This is my first time hosting a giveaway with Rafflecopter, and I hope it all works as planned. If there are issues, please be patient and let me know, and I will try to fix them ASAP. Please scroll down to the end of the post for giveaway rules and guidelines.
Comment moderation is turned off for today to make it easier for you to enter the giveaway. But please don’t leave your email address in the comment text. It is not necessary to do so, and the spam protection software will kick in and not publish your comment, so it will have to be moderated after all. I will be happy to manually publish it but please keep in mind that I am in the Pacific time zone and will still be asleep when this post publishes.
Thank you for visiting today, and please make sure that you visit all the participants of this blog hop and look at their fabulous projects and mouthwatering cookies. Once again here is the full schedule of all five days of this event.
Giveaway Rules and Guidelines
Please take the time to read them.
- You must leave a comment to enter the giveaway. If you don’t leave a comment, your winning entry will be ignored and cancelled.
- You are only allowed to enter once.
- The winners will be announced either on Monday, December 9 or Tuesday, December 10, 2019.
- You must give a valid email address when you enter the giveaway. Any email returned to me loses the ability to win automatically.
- I will email the digital patterns to the winners right away. Please check your spam folders if you are announced as one of the winners and didn’t receive an email. Especially Gmail likes to send anything I send straight to the spam folder.
- No purchase whatsoever is necessary.
- You must be 18+ in order to win a gift.
- All winners are chosen at random.
- All winners will be announced on the blog via the Rafflecopter entry form and a post. All winners must allow for their first name and first initial of their last name to be announced on this blog.
- Odds of winning a prize are based on the total number of rafflecopter entries.
- This giveaway is void where prohibited by law.
CATEGORIES: Blog Hop
TAGS: Appliqué, Christmas, Mug Rug
Tuxedo Cats BOM – Block #12
Welcome to December and the last block of the Tuxedo Cat BOM. This pattern includes instructions on how to make the sashing and assemble the quilt. If you missed downloading any of the blocks, now is the time to get them. The Black Friday coupon code is still valid for 20% off until tomorrow. (Scroll down to see the Black Friday Sale post for the coupon code.)
In other news, I am not going to start another BOM on January 1. I really, really want to but I have decided to be reasonable and not jump into another big project right away. All year long I have been complaining about how busy I am and how I am always behind. In addition to that I have been having health issues for the second half of the year and I also took over as president of the Chilliwack Piecemakers Quilting Guild. Don’t ask me why… somebody had to step up and do it, and I like doing it but it does add to my workload.
But the main reason is that I just need to take some time to catch up. If you downloaded all my BOM blocks you might have noticed that I changed my layout earlier this year. I had a reason for this, and a big one as well. My patterns were accepted by QuiltWoman.com last December for sale on their website. If you haven’t heard about them, they sell patterns in digital and printed formats, and they sell to everyone – retail, wholesale, distributors and also chains like JoAnn’s. But they have certain format requirements including fonts and page layout. Almost a year has gone by, and I haven’t managed to edit very many of my patterns to match their requirements. So instead of working on new things (which would be much more fun, I admit) I will take the time to edit my patterns for their website before another year comes and goes and I still haven’t made any progress. We will see how long it takes, I am hoping that maybe by April I will be ready to start another BOM project. But if not, I will just work on it for as long as it takes. (And for those who keep telling me I don’t owe any of you an explanation… I know 🙂 This is mostly pep talk for myself. My main business is still longarm quilting but I almost enjoy the pattern part more and have to keep telling myself to focus.)
But enough of my ramblings, here are the links to the last patterns with the finishing instructions.
EDIT: The December pattern has moved to the store and is available for purchase if you missed the free download. Pattern bundles for blocks 10, 11 and 12 and for blocks 7-12 are also available. And I finally uploaded the pattern for the full quilt, direct links can be found below for both versions (English/Imperial and German/Metric).
CATEGORIES: Block/Pattern of the Month
TAGS: Appliqué, Quilt
New Pattern: Coffee Break Mug Rugs
Yay, I made my self-imposed deadline… this is the last unpublished pattern that I have been selling at quilt shows in the paper version. This is actually the oldest one, I have been selling it for over a year. As you can tell by looking at the mug rugs, this is the first pattern I designed after buying the Brother ScanNCut last year. I was so excited by the possibilities that I didn’t consider how difficult it would be to manually cut out the words “Coffee Break” in that fancy font I used. I ended up selling two versions of the pattern, either printed pattern only or printed pattern with the precut words included. Since I am only offering digital versions of my patterns online, I have added the cutting file for the words to the pattern download, in both SVG and FCM file format. They are included as a courtesy to those who have cutting machines, and there is no additional cost. If you don’t own a fabric cutter, just ignore the additional files.
TAGS: Appliqué, Mug Rug
New Patterns: Pansies, Snowdrops and Sunflower
Today I am publishing three new patterns at once. Two of them are not particularly new, the Pansies and Snowdrops are based on postcards I made about ten years ago and then recreated for the Quilt Canada Postcard Challenge in 2017. I resized them and turned them into wall hangings. The Sunflower is a completely new design that I created this August. Our neighbours had some beautiful sunflowers in their yard that I could see when I was sitting at my desk working at the computer, and I thought they might make a nice addition to the flower series. At the quilt show in October somebody asked if I had a Poinsettia as well. I didn’t, and I still don’t have one but I still have some of the background fabric I used for the appliqué, and I like the idea of adding more patterns to this series, so I have made a note of the Poinsettia request and will wait for inspiration.
TAGS: Appliqué, Wall Hanging
New Pattern: Sleeping Kitty Pillow
As promised (or at least as planned), here is the other Tuxedo Cat pillow pattern. My favourite block is block #5 with the sleeping kitty. I am really happy with this design, I still think you can almost see her paws twitching, and those little pink paw pads are just adorable. This will be the last Tuxedo Cat block to be turned into a separate pillow pattern. As with the other pillow, I enlarged the block to 12″ instead of 10″ to make handling those small pieces easier. I have four more patterns left to publish and two weeks to go until Black Friday, I will try to have them all up on the website by then.
TAGS: Appliqué, Patchwork, Pillow
New Pattern: Tuxedo Cat Pillow
Here is the next of the patterns that I finished quite some time ago but never posted on the website: a Tuxedo Cat Pillow. If you have been following the Tuxedo Cats BOM, you will recognize this kitty from the first block that I published back in January. It is just a 12″ block instead of a 10″ one, and the Flying Geese border is 3″ instead of the 2.5″ from the quilt. I had planned to do a separate pillow pattern from the beginning. Not everyone is such a cat lover that they need a quilt with twelve different blocks, and this is also a great gift for the favourite cat lover in your life. I started selling the printed pattern at the Abbotsford show back in April, and it was a big hit, the patterns sold out right away. Over the summer I turned another block of the quilt into a pillow pattern, I am hoping to post this one next week, so stay tuned.
TAGS: Appliqué, Patchwork, Pillow
Tuxedo Cats BOM – Block #11
For the first time ever, I am publishing a block early. I will be busy square dancing all weekend, and I don’t want to have to deal with it first thing next week, especially since the Christmas rush is picking up speed, so here is a nice little treat for Halloween. Well, maybe not… it still is October 31 here as I am writing this, and the trick or treating hasn’t even really started yet but for most of you it is already November. Can you believe there is only one block left? I am still undecided if I want to do another BOM next year. I have more ideas than I can ever handle, I just have to decide if I want to put that pressure on myself for another year. I will think about it this month, stay tuned. For November, we have a jumping kitty. Isn’t it amazing how high they can jump just like that? A very long time ago, when I was living in my first apartment back in Germany where we don’t usually have built in closets, I had a big wardrobe in a nook near the entrance door. When I moved out and we took it apart, I discovered paw prints in the dust on top of it. I still don’t know how my silly cat managed to jump up there, I would have sworn it was too high but still she did it. She also managed to fall behind a china cabinet once and get trapped there but that’s a story for another day 😀 The November block will be available for free download until the end of the month and move to the store section when the final block is published in December.
EDIT: The November kitty moved over to the store section. If you missed the free download, it is now available for purchase.
CATEGORIES: Block/Pattern of the Month
TAGS: Appliqué, Quilt
New Pattern: Boo! Mug Rugs
As promised in my previous post, I am working on adding my new patterns to the website. Today I am starting with the newest, a Halloween pattern that I just finished writing, it isn’t available in a printed version yet. We did a mug rug swap at our guild meeting this month, and although a Halloween design wasn’t required, this is what I came up with. These little guys make me laugh, aren’t they super cute? They don’t take long to make, you can still finish them in time for Halloween.
Dieses Muster ist auch auf Deutsch/metrisch verfügbar. Ich weiß, ich weiß, ich hatte gesagt, ich veröffentliche keine deutschen Muster mehr, aber dann setzte plötzlich ein Run auf die Ginger & Fred Mug Rugs ein, also habe ich probeweise doch wieder eine deutsche Anleitung geschrieben.
TAGS: Appliqué, Mug Rug
Quilt Show Impressions
I was busy all day with my booth but I went in early on Saturday morning to take a quick look at the show that I had helped set up. Quite a few quilts in the show had been quilted by me, and I tried to take pictures of the others, so I would have something to show that you haven’t seen here before. It was a great show, lots of amazing quilts. The only big quilt I had in the show was the finished sample of the Tuxedo Cats. Two blocks haven’t been published yet but here is a preview of what the finished quilt looks like.
My booth was right next to the entrance, and everybody had to pass me on their way to the hall with the big quilts. It started a little slow but around lunch time on Saturday things got very busy and stayed that way almost until the end of the show. Looking at the pictures of my booth, I realized that I have several patterns that I have been selling at shows but never uploaded to the website or even mentioned here on my blog. I will start working on that… we’ll see how that goes with the Christmas rush coming up. One gentleman was in awe of my Pansies pattern, he loved the colours and how realistic the flowers look, and after he had seen the show he came back to my booth because he wanted to vote for my Pansies as Best in Show 🙂 He was very disappointed when I told him he had to find another favourite quilt since my sample was not part of the actual show.
Encounters like this one make up for the negative parts. Somebody actually stole from me this time. Three patterns went missing and haven’t turned up. I also stopped someone trying to walk away with another three and made them pay for what they picked. It might have been an honest mistake but judging by their behaviour (which had made me watch them in the first place) I don’t think so. I usually just have one bin of patterns out for people to dig through, and that makes it easy to watch and pay attention to where the patterns go. This time I had three, apparently that was too much for the busy time. Next time I will be prepared and go back to just one bin.
But enough ranting, it was a great show, we had a lot of fun, and I enjoyed those two days very much. Here are a few impressions of the show, I hope you enjoy them as well.
CATEGORIES: Quilt Show
TAGS: Appliqué, Embroidery, Patchwork, Quilt
I Woolly Love Ewe
Isn’t this just the cutest quilt? I was thrilled when Wendy asked me to custom quilt it for her. There was so much negative space to fill, block background, sashing, borders, I had a lot of fun playing with it and coming up with different designs for the different areas. Wendy provided the picture of the finished quilt, and I have permission to share it. I agree with the little girl, the black sheep was my favourite too 🙂
Several people have asked for the pattern, I didn’t design this quilt, I just quilted it. The designer’s name is Janet Stone, and it was published in Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting magazine, in the Jan/Feb 2009 issue. It looks like it is still available as a digital edition here.
TAGS: Appliqué, Custom Quilting, Patchwork, Quilt