Dust Off a Quilt Book

Hi Quilting Friends,

Welcome to the “Dust Off a Quilt Book”, hosted by our quilting friend Bea at “Be A Quilter”. Our challenge was to find a (dusty?) quilting book, look through it, and (maybe) find a project to make. This is going to be fun, and we’re excited to see the books and projects this week.

Sharon here today. My quilting books aren’t totally dusty, since I recently reorganized my quilting things and moved into my “new” studio. However, I did find several quilting books that I hadn’t opened in quite some time.

My first thought was to dust off this book, first published in 1997, because one of my miniature quilt designs is published in it-

My adventure in quilt publishing began with a contest sponsored by Miniature Quilts magazine, way back in 1994. I entered my little quilt in the contest, and they responded with a request for permission to publish the design in Issue #26. I didn’t win a prize, but this was very cool! I shipped the quilt off to them for photography, and I was really excited to see my little quilt on page 23 of Issue #26.

Miniature Quilts Issue 26

A few months later the publisher got in touch again, this time asking for permission to include my pretty little quilt in a book about foundation pieced miniature quilts, followed by a display of quilts from the book at the International Quilt Festival in Houston. Of course, I said “yes”, and I sent the quilt back to them. It was really fun to visit that exhibit, and to see my little creation hanging in the George R Brown Convention Center. What a fun ride! Here’s “Amish Square in Square”, which usually hangs in our entryway, as featured on page 33 of that dusty quilt book-

So, yes, I could have gone with my initial idea and used the project that I had finished already. But I’m not one to take the easy way out so I decided to try something new, from this book, instead-

Amish Inspired Quilts Tradition with a Piece O Cake Twist

I have ALWAYS been a huge admirer of Amish quilts, with their bold colors and intricate quilting, and the project photos in this book are beautiful. I don’t remember when I purchased the book, but the publication date is 2006.

My project is called “Circles Fragment”, featured on page 52. I chose this project because I really like the design, it isn’t too big or too complicated (deadlines!), and it provides an opportunity to continue developing and practicing my FMQ skills. I have a small-ish collection of solids, which was supplemented by a visit to Susan’s extensive private textile collection to “steal” the rest of the colors that I needed. Here’s the piece in its current state-

I echo-quilted around each of the appliqued circles, then added more echo quilting to fill in the background around them. I added some straight parallel lines with varied spacing in the green outer borders, some horizontal and some vertical to keep things interesting. I intend to add a little quilting inside those circles, and I’m challenging myself to learn how to do FMQ feathers in the fuschia and maroon borders, so that’s why they aren’t finished yet.

I’ve watched several instructional videos about FMQ feathers, and they all suggest drawing the feathers first, to develop muscle memory. So, I’ve been drawing feathers on scrap paper whenever I have some time to sit and doodle!

The next step was to practice sewing feathers on fabric sandwiches made from ancient calico and scraps of batting. I used contrasting thread and the wrong side of my fabric, so I can clearly see where I’ve stitched. My skills are improving as I practice, so I’m nearly ready to try it on my quilt.

Spring break starts next week, so I will have some extra time to play. I admit to being a bit nervous, and excited too. I promise to share a photo of my finished quilt, eventually.

UPDATE! March 12, 2023

I spent a little more time with Princess Nina, practicing the FMQ feathers. I decided that I was ready to go for it! Here are the photos of my finished quilt-

  • Circles Fragment B by Sharon @ Ms P Designs USA
  • Circles Fragment C by Sharon @ Ms P Designs USA

The feathers aren’t perfect, but I cant see the bobbles in my stitching when I stand about 3 feet away. I’m pleased with how they came out!

I hope that you’ve enjoyed seeing my project! Please leave a comment; it makes our day. Links for today’s participating bloggers are listed below, so keep on scrolling.

Happy quilting,

Sharon & Susan

Today’s Participating Bloggers

LC’s Cottage

Cynthia’s Ark

Ms P Designs USA (You are Here!)

Just Let Me Quilt

Blog Hop Schedule @ Beaquilter

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25 thoughts on “Dust Off a Quilt Book

    1. Thanks Lynn! I’m going to get right on it during my spring break next week. The last two practice runs looked pretty good when I take off my glasses and stand back about 3 feet, so I feel ready now. ;o)


  1. The feathers are looking good! I’ve also heard always have a double spine (which I don’t adhere to perfectly) and always echo the feather (ditto). All feathers take practice, and the drawing really does help! Your piece is different, and can’t be mistaken for Amish, but I see the influence of both Amish and Piece O’ Cake. =) Plus your unique individuality. Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love your Amish inspired quilt. It has such a modern flair to it and your quilting is perfect. I have tons of hand dye fabrics, that I’ve done in the past and am thinking this book would be perfect for all of them. Hummm…I see my list of to-do’s growing! LOL!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. How fun to have that little quilt featured in a magazine! It’s so pretty! And your new quilt is awesome! Your free motion feathers look really good. I love feathers, but they are not my strong suit in quilting! I love the echoes of your circles as well! Fun project!! It’s very modern looking!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I never could get those feathers down. Yours look great! I don’t get that magazine but it would sure be a fun one! I have an issue or two that were given to me. How cool to have a quilt featured! Bucket list item for me!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I’m going to go for it with the feathers as soon as I have some free time next week. I subscribed to the “Miniature Quilts” magazine for several years, and I still enjoy paging through them from time to time.


  5. I love this – such a fan of Amish quilts and Amish modern quilts are so much fun. I am sure you will do fine with the feathers. And, I am sure you know this, but if you wash/block it, you will loose any of the “glaring” wobbles!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I am a fan of Piece O Cake designs and Amish quilts, too! Your version is looking great! There is such a variety of feather designs, and your practice looks good to me. I think you are ready! Congrats on your little mini being featured! That is just way cool! I have quite a few mini mags…I think I need to have a look see…maybe I have these issues! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. So I went upstairs to check my mag collection and I had only one from 1994 (not the right issue). Evidently I didn’t start collecting these issues until the following year. Sigh.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Great quilt, and your feathers are looking lovely. My feather’s aren’t perfect, I just do them anyway. Congratulations on your mini being published!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’ve never sewn feathers because they look to scary. I guess I’ll have to try them since yours look really good. The quilting on your Amish quilt looks incredible…love it!

    Liked by 1 person

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