Holiday Handmade Placemats — Traditional vs. Modern Quilting (Or, How to Save Time on Cutting and Piecing)

This year I made placemats for a few people on my Christmas list. After going a traditional route for the first set, I realized I'd be sewing my fingers to the bone WELL past Christmas if I didn't find a way to hurry it along. 

Enter the best time-saving method ever: Modern quilting. I had three fat quarters of beautiful blue fabric ready to go, but it killed me to think about cutting it without measurements. But I took the plunge, made the first cut and hacked each one into four pieces. After piecing them with a neutral fabric and slapping on a binding, the modern mats became my favorite set!

So lesson learned: Save yourself time by cutting fast and trusting your gut when piecing. Striking ideas and designs will surely follow.

Here are the carefully constructed placemats — which came out great! Don't get me wrong. But they took forever... 

And here are the modern placemats, which went to my easy-going grandmother in Colorado...

I did also made placemats for the woman who taught me how to quilt (my other grandmother), but to make her proud they need to showcase my best work. Sooo, they aren't quite done. Turns out modern quilting doesn't solve all your time-crunch problems... :)

Happy New Year!

Felt Kitty Cats

Occasionally I house-sit for a wonderful crafty lady and her husband who have two precious kitties. So as a Christmas gift, I decided to make a few felted kitties for them. Here's Lil Bud and Huey in felt form!

I contributed a pattern and tutorial for these little guys for the very first Spring issue of Fresh Quilts, which will be available in early February. I can't wait to show you the finished project!


P.S. When I was house-sitting for them earlier this month, I slept under the finished red and white quilt! The quilting turned out beautiful.