Ask Jo: This and That

Every so often questions and comments come from readers that I think others would like to hear my response to.  That’s when I feature them on the blog.  This is one of those days…

The first question came from several different blog readers each asking the same question.  If I was working to donate all the quilts to school kids, why did I not think it appropriate to give lap quilts?


Well…I had Kalissa dig through pictures for me and she found this gem from when my kids were all in school.  Take a look.  There are five kids ranging in age of typical school-aged kids.

At the time of this photo, three of the kids were about as tall as me.  Me personally, if I wanted a quilt to sleep with and keep me warm, I’d want something at least 60 x 80.

Lap-sized quilts are not a specific size.  Check out the chart I found online for defining the size of a “lap quilt”.

Lap Quilt Size Width Length
Small 36 inches 45 inches
Small 36 inches 48 inches
Medium 36 inches 60 inches
Large 45 inches 60 inches
Large / Long 54 inches 72 inches

Because of that, I like to be really careful when I tell someone lap-sized quilts will work.  Everyone has a different size in their head as their personal definition of a lap-sized quilt.

If a child was truly in need and needed warmth, I believe every one of my kids in the picture I showed would have needed a bare minimum of a large/long lap-sized quilt.

Remember we live in Iowa.  It gets very cold.  When my kids were growing up, we didn’t have heat in the upstairs of the farmhouse beside the little that came up through the one vent in the hallway.  It was COLD upstairs.  My kids often slept in sweat pants with sweatshirts and still had three quilts on them.  They need a big quilt to truly be warm so they could tuck a blanket around them.

We will send a couple of quilts that are somewhere in leaning towards the large/long category as a few of the quilts will go to young elementary kids…but other than that, I really think to best honor the kids these are being gifted to, the quilts need to fall in the largest lap-sized category and head towards twin sized.

After seeing my latest progress in my sewing room redo, Whitney asked if I would put a link to the Facebook page of the gals who hosted the sale where I got the goodies for my sewing room from.

Their business name is The Twisted Sisters.  You can find them HERE on Facebook.  The address of their sale is in Sumner Iowa.  A couple of comments were made about my “can shelf”.    If someone wants, I can take some close up pictures and provide measurements.  Making the shelf would be pretty easy for someone who is handy with power tools.

The next question came from the comment section and was in reference to this quilt, Pumpkin Patch by Bonnie Hunter.
You can find my original post about the quilt HERE.

A Reader wrote:
I have started making this quilt and I have some questions for you since yours is done. When you make the flying geese border, what are the measurements of the main orange rectangles? The squares on each side? The finished piece should measure?? For the small squares, how much do they measure before sewing?
Lastly, what size are the pieces to make the stem?

I found the pattern to be very challenging without specifics in inches for the pieces. I am making the blocks with orange strips 6 1/2 by 4 1/2 and I will use the squares on all corners to create the body pumpkin.

Thank you in advance for your help!

As much as I would like to be a help to this reader, I won’t and can’t.  There are two reasons why.  First off, I made this quilt a couple of years ago, and frankly, I don’t have the time to find the quilt and the pattern and answer the questions.  I love people and I love to help, but that is too much of a request.  I would basically be writing out the whole pattern.

BUT mainly, telling that information is a complete copyright infringement.  If I am answering that many questions, the person likely has not either purchased the magazine it was originally printed in or Bonnie Hunter’s book String Frenzy that it was later printed in.  They are likely putting some quilting knowledge together and making a guess at the pattern.

For me to tell her all these measurements and instructions are not only illegal but it also just plain wrong.  The author of the pattern has worked long and hard to design this pattern and put it out for print and purchase.  This is her livelihood.  This is how she makes a living.  By sharing this, I hurt her and her business.  In reality, it is shoplifting.  I won’t do that.

Many quilt pattern writers offer free patterns and patterns for sale, just like Kelli and I do here.  We have a long list of free patterns on the sidebar of this post and we offer paid patterns in our shop.  (Find our shop HERE)  We love quilters and are giving people so want to offer some free patterns but we also need to make some money….for me more than ever since I am not doing childcare, so we do offer some for purchase.  It’s a nice balance.  It’s more than fair.  Bonnie Hunter does the same.  She offers free patterns and patterns for purchase.  Please honor designers by not giving away their paid-for patterns.  If you want to give a free pattern away, that is okay.  BUT, instead of printing it and handing if over, please direct the person to the blog or website where it is posted.   Give the designer credit.

My next email came from Carol, a long time blog reader.  Carol writes:
Kayla helped me with my blog and I am so enjoying it.  It’s nice to be able to just click and there it is and know how to use it.  Still working on pics but I’ll get there.  I wrote this blog after your visit to the Country Sampler shop.  I sent her a copy as well and she was thrilled.  I don’t have many readers so thought maybe a plug from you would be nice.  I was an interior designer for 35 years and wrote many design articles so I like to incorporate design with quilting.”

HERE is a link to what Carol wrote.  It was an interesting article and so sweet of her to write.

All of that got me thinking that maybe we should do a shout out for any blogs out there.  I’ve added a link button that I hope will work.  I haven’t done that for a long time!!  Please let us know about your own personal blog or a blog/site that you enjoy.  I think we’re all stuck at home and might enjoy finding a new site to check out.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

If you can’t get your link to work, please just leave a link in the comment section.

Feel free to also share anything else you feel is appropriate, a favorite Youtube channel, flosstuber, Instagramer, quilt forum, or the like.  I think we all would love to see something different than our “same old”.

I think that wraps things up for this edition of “Ask Jo”.  If you asked and I missed your question please ask again…

14 thoughts on “Ask Jo: This and That”

  1. Judith Fairchild

    I had wondered about what size quilts you were making for the school children. Growing up in Northern Iowa is not fun in the winter unless you can stay warm.
    Mom always made her quilts with wool blankets or will batting for warmth. I went to California at 18 because I was tired of shoveling snow and being cold.. Came back to the southern portion of the middle of the country to enjoy the changing seasons with a warmer shorter winter. Still love Iowa for all it did for me. Thanks for sharing the blog from the decorator/ designer

  2. I totally agree with you about making quilts big enough so they can be used on the bed to sleep under. Either a twin or full size quilt. After all, how many lap size quilts can you keep on the sofa especially since the majority of us have central heat and may not have a need for them. By adding one more row and one side row to a lap quilt can give you the twin size quilt.

  3. Thank-you for talking about copying patterns and about people who think they can figure it out. Some people just don’t get it. Happy Creating.

  4. Jo, you mention Bonnie Hunter but you don’t post a link to her blog, and it isn’t one of the blogs on your blogroll. It might be helpful to add her info to this post, since you show the beautiful Pumpkin Runner she designed, and to your blogroll if you want.
    I, too, thought that this person wanting information on the Pumpkin Runner wasn’t working from Bonnie’s real pattern, and she was asking way too many questions. For example, the stem length can be whatever length the maker wants – if she chooses to not follow a pattern.

  5. I have asked you this question some time ago, but I don’t think it has ever been answered. I was wondering if it helps you financially if we click on ads on your blog. I know Mary from Country Threads gets some help financially if we click on the ads on her blog. I have been clicking on your ads when I see them, but am just curious if it helps you at all. Thanks.

    1. Jeanine. It is helpful if you click ads occasionally…maybe one add every other day. If you click to often, the counting system recognizes that you’re just an “ad clicker” and we aren’t credited. I recommend only clicking if it’s something you are a bit interested in.

  6. I loved your Punkin’ Patch quilt so much I went straight to the Quiltmaker site and they have both the magazine & the pattern for purchase. Guess who bought the pattern? It’s too late for this year (kinda) but I now have the perfect pattern for next fall!

  7. I would love any info you can provide for the can shelf. Especially an approximate angle those shelves that hold the cans are at. Thanks Jo!

  8. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the quilt sizing for your latest donation effort. For some reason, when I think elementary school, I think LITTLE kids. Now, I understand why you wanted to “go BIG or go home!” :o))

  9. Along the same line as Jeanine’s question. does it help if we leave comments.? I’ve tried to google this in the past and never come across any information.

  10. Hello – I enjoy your blog & videos very much – thank you for sharing your talent with us. I have a question – do you starch your fabrics before cutting/sewing?

    Thank you.

  11. I LOVE how you used brown for your background. If and when I get around to making this quilt I also want to use brown for the background. I have the book and the magazine so I’m all set with the pattern,

  12. I am making “living room” quilts for the family this year. They may not be twin size when completed, but will be sufficiently long enough to cover the individual they’re made for from neck to toes and with extra to spare. We do not have central heating, so they will definitely come in handy.

  13. Pingback: Ask Jo: Links and Blog Courtesies | Jo's Country Junction

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top