What I’m Working On…

I’ve spent most of my free time in the sewing room as of late.  With some of my projects wrapping up, I’m eager to clean things up as much as possible.

I figured out I had 7 blocks left over from my Crooked Courthouse Steps quilt.  I must have counted wrong.  Late night sewing will do that.  So rather than pack them up, I decided to keep them out a make more blocks.

Here’s where I am with that….


This is all sewn together except for the last block.

I’m so excited.  Once a new baby is born I will make a wonky ABC letter of their first initial, then add pieces onto to make it look like a Courthouse Step block.  Then I’ll sew the block in and add the borders to have a finished baby quilt.  I’m so impressed with myself for thinking of doing this.  I cut all the border already and even pieced a backing.  YAHOO!!

Now I’d love to make a girl version and do the same thing.

I also sewed this up….

This is the precut squares I bought from the thrift store.  I paid $1 for the squares.  I did go in and raid my fabric to cut a few more.


There were quite a few white ones in the bundles and I didn’t want to add white.  I like the darks and oranges.

This will be sent on to the ladies that are doing the Tanzania baby quilts.  If anyone has time to help the ladies out, I’m sure they would love more simple quilts like this.  All it is 225 squares cut to 3 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ then sewn in a 15 x 15 layout.  It’s a great way to use up scrap…help someone else out and a way to sneak a few of those “what did I buy that for” fabrics.

I really love the color combo in the little quilt top.  I’ve very tempted to cut another bunch up and leave it by the machine to sew as a leader and ender.  It feels good to sew for charity and to sew up something simple like this.

On my quest to make Christmas quilt for my kiddos…I’ve decided on making this.  I told you yesterday that I bought fabric to make another one.


I have these 20 blocks that were leftovers….


I’m well on my way to making more.  All the triangles are cut and already sewn.


…and they are already pressed.


I set this up in the kitchen too.  I pop my mat on the island and iron away.  Kelli called me one night and talked for about an hour.  I put the phone of speaker and ironed away.  I LOVE my mat and couldn’t be happier with it.  The sale for these is on through the end of the month.

Winnie the owner of the company is being super generous with all of you.  She’s offering a discount price on her mats again!!  Here’s what she said, “We have created the code JOSCOUNTRY which will save your customers 15% off 1 mat and 20% off 2 or more.”

HERE IS THE LINK….for the 13.5″ x 13.5″

HERE IS THE LINK…for the 17″ x 24″

If you want to read my full review of the mats, you can find it HERE.

This quilt has really come together because of my wool ironing mats.  I had the large one at the island to press my half square triangles and the small one was beside my sewing machine upstairs while I made the string blocks…speaking of string blocks, I have the string block centers done.  They needed to be trimmed but that’s something did over the course of a couple nap times.  Trimming the blocks is something I can quietly do while the kiddos are sleeping during naptime.


The kiddos were THRILLED to see the blocks.  They had paper on the backs and they love ripping papers.


It was so fun for me…Carver was old enough to help now.  He keeps telling me that he’s “quilting” with me.  Be still my heart.

At this pace, the quilt will be done in no time!!  I couldn’t be happier.  I didn’t want these quilts to be taxing to make and so far, they aren’t a bit.  In fact, I’ve had LOTS of fun with them!!

So much fun that I think I’m adding a fifth one to complete before Christmas.  I typically give them to kiddos who went to kindergarten in the fall.  This year I had three go.  A new gal came that was in 1st so that means I need three.  I have on lone girl in 4 year old preschool so I think being I almost have the other quilts finished, I’ll jump in and make one more.  In fact…I already started it.


The quilt will be like this…all hourglass blocks.  This is Bonnie’s drawing (I borrowed it from Bonnie’s site so you can see it).  Please go to her blog to read the full tutorial HERE.  She designed it to be a leader and ender but I didn’t do it back then and now I need a quick quilt so this is going to be it.  Thanks for the great idea Bonnie.

I’m moving the colors around.  I think from center out I’m doing teal, orange, pink, lime and then purple.  I didn’t have a lot of teal but had more orange.  That is what prompted the switching.  I’m actually well into this quilt already.  The center and first ring of white is done…lots more blocks are sewn but not put together yet.  I’m excited about this one.

Can you believe that except for whites and the pink and purple solids, all of these quilts have been done with scrap??  I’m thrilled…and trust me, I still have PLENTY of scrap left!!

In fact…in the middle of all of this I got an idea for a quilt I think I’ll me making after these.  It will likely get submitted so we’ll see how much I talk about it.  If they don’t take it, I’ll make a free pattern here on the blog.

LOTS of irons in the fire…that’s okay.  It keeps my mind off of all the “other” stuff.  I’m so glad I’m back in the sewing room.

24 thoughts on “What I’m Working On…

  1. Lynn

    You’re quite phenomenal. It’s fab to see and so encouraging.
    Regards from England on a cold and frosty morning!

  2. Donna

    Wow! You really are going full out! With child care, family, and other stuff happening in your life, you really know how to make the time to quilt! Thanks for sharing all of your quilty ideas and completed quilts. I know the kids will love them and whoever else receives them will be doubly blessed!
    Love and prayers

  3. Robby

    It’s so good to hear happiness in your post about sewing again. I think it’s perfectly normal for life to have overwhelmed your sewing enjoyment these last several months, but it is good to hear your enthusiasm is coming back.

  4. Dian

    When you shared your block counting sheet, I smiled and and thought “She back!” Hooray for you and I’m delighted for you and your readers as well as we see the return of your creative work. The pic of the childcare children is heartwarming as they work on their fine motor skills and so much more. With winter on it’s way, we’ll all hunker down indoors and work on our quilts and with all the helpers you have, the finishes will come quickly.

  5. Colleen Pflieger

    Where is a link about the Tanzania quilts that they are making? I would love to contribute to that.

  6. Jeanine W

    Colleen,
    I found the blog story about Tanzania quilts. I typed in Tanzania quilts in “search” at top of blog. But here is the address:
    Quilts for Tanzania
    Peace Lutheran Church
    3530 Dayton-Xenia Rd.
    Beavercreek, Oh 45432
    I hope this helps. I know Jo is busy and may not be able to follow up on your request. I think I will also try making some quilts for them. Such a great charity.

  7. Judy Prescott

    I just love seeing your quilts! You have been making a lot of progress lately. Please thank Winnie for the discount on the wool mats! I ordered both of them and have loved using them! I had been resisting ordering a mat because of the cost and I wasn’t sure if it was worth it. You loved yours and the price was so good that I went ahead & got them both! Thank you!!! Continued prayers for you and your family!!!!

  8. Colleen Pflieger

    Thank you Jeanine for the info. I finally found the search bar and was able to read about the project! Just what I needed to use up some fabric and keep me busy this winter!

  9. Carol

    So glad to see you have your sewing mojo back!! The picture of the kiddos ripping papers is just the cutest. Hope you don’t get arrested for child labour, lol!! They are learning so much and working on fine motor skills while not even realizing that they are. You are the best. Continued thoughts and well wishes sent your way.

  10. Sheila

    I just loved reading your blog this morning. It was full of happiness and great ideas. You are such a positive influence!!! Thank you!

  11. sam

    I am glad you are back in the sewing room too.
    Not that your other posts aren’t interesting (your fighting/accepting cancer was thought provoking. Thank you). But I think the sewing room is one of your happy places, and I’m glad you are there.

  12. Candi

    So happy you are back in the sewing room. My heart exploded when I saw the picture of the kiddo’s “quilting”. Never to young to start quilting. Keep up the sewing inspiration.
    Love, hugs and prayers coming your way.

  13. Linda

    Loved reading your post. So must positivity. Great to see you back in the sewing room, creating new quilts, turning leftover blocks into a new baby quilt (super idea for the last block). Nice to see the children doing their bit too. Quilting is a therapy, continue to embrace it, Jo.

  14. Susan the Farm Quilter

    I ordered the 17″ x 24″ mat from Winnie when you first posted about your mat. It wasn’t available then but when it was, she let me know and honored the discount!! I love mine and think that I need one large enough for my 20″ x 6′ big board ironing board I made!! Love to see you so busy doing what you love!

  15. Judith Fairchild

    Oh happy days! The picture of the littles tearing papers off the quilt pieces, then Carver saying he was helping you quilt made my heart jump for joy. Love the quilting ideas and the joy you are having back in your sewing room.

  16. Debbie B

    You are one busy quilting machine! So tickled for all your progress. Those kiddos are so lucky to be receiving beautiful quilts from you. Awesome! Hugs!!!

  17. Nancy A

    I am glad you are back in the sewing room, also. I absolutely love the picture of the kiddos tearing the paper off the back of your blocks.

  18. Linda

    Hi Jo, Just want to know where you get your pattern books made into a binder book. Thanks much!
    Linda K. In the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

  19. Jo Post author

    Take you book into an office place like Staples. My local business is cheaper than they are often do it while I do my other errands. Most places that you can get things copied or printed at, will also put the binding on a book. Staples has charged about $7…local $5- it’s totally worth it for your favorite books.

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