Ask Jo: This and That

It’s been a bit since I’ve done an “Ask Jo” post on the blog.  To be honest…not many comments or questions have come in the last bit that warranted an “Ask Jo” post.  We have a few things now though.

After I said that I bought a Featherweight on an auction with the intent of fixing it up and finding it a new home, I got several comments of people who were looking for one or wanted one.

I kind of bought this with Kelli in mind.  She doesn’t have one and I didn’t know if she wanted one….if she didn’t I figured I could resell it.  Well I talked to Kelli and she is happy with the amount of machines she has.  That means I will be selling it.  The machine doesn’t have all the attachments but does have the book.  I’ve checked it out enough to get a new needle put in it and know that it sews a fine seam with nice neat stitches.  I didn’t go through and clean and oil it yet.  The decals look good but she needs a little polishing.

I’ll likely put her up on the blog and auction her off like I did with the recent quilty things.  I have come across a few more quilt tops and they’ll be up for auction too.  In fact, I think I am going to start having an auction as a regular feature here on the blog.  Now that I’m “junking” regularly with Hubby, I am coming across a lot more things that I know would be happiest in the hands of a quilter….and I can’t keep them all.  I’m actually loving it as I get the joy of buying it and get the joy of passing it on to a quilter who will love and appreciate them.  It makes me so sad to see quilt tops at thrift stores.

Another question I had was about my Churn Dash Blocks.  From Lakemom, “Would love to know your pattern for churn dash, I have lots of mens shirts that I could turn into a really great quilt too.

I showed this….

A pattern was asked for to make the churn dash blocks.  The tutorial for them is here.  We also added it to the free pattern listing on the right hand column of the blog.

Betty in Canada asked, “Could you please do a blog on how you de-bone shirts. I am new at this and it seems to take forever to get a shirt de-boned. I think you have probably got a system down a science. Thanks.”

Well I have a fun story to go with that….Here it is.When Bonnie Hunter came to Moline she was going to do a demonstration on it to the group.  Kelli filmed it for her.  You can find it here.  I do mine a little bit different than Bonnie does as mine happens at a cutting table.

Here is the link where I tell how I cut apart shirts.
  I absolutely love working with shirts.  It’s a very-very favorite of mine.  I’ve made several quilts with recycled shirts.  The inspiration for me was Bonnie Hunter.  I have both her books that feature quilts made with recycled shirts…Scraps and Shirttails I and Scraps and Shirttails II.  I love them both but if you are only buying one, I’d buy the second one.

Shirts in my area are cheap and plentiful.  I can find shirts on a regular basis for 50 cents or less each.  Cutting the shirts apart isn’t on my top ten list of favorite things to do but the fabric I end up with can’t be beat.  These quilts are the softest and most loved by my family.

Check out the ones I’ve made…   Cactus Patch
Hand Me Downs

Criss Cross Applesauce

Stars Over Shallotte

Scrappy Mountain Majesties is shown below.

and Bargello in Plaid.

Here is Rectangle Wrangle.  I love it.


As far as what pieces to keep…I am probably not the person to ask about that.  This quilt I made using free form technique.  You can read more about that here….


..and this baby quilt too.

This is Carver’s baby quilt.

In these last two quilts, I saved the smallest of pieces.  Lots of these were made from collar pieces and cuff pieces.  It worked great for this…but was in necessary..not really.


I have a HUGE pile of shirts that needs to be processed right now.  HUGE.  It’s a lot of work but in the end, these quilts are the ones I love the most.

I think that wraps up “Ask Jo” for this time around.  If I missed any questions, please email me at

5 thoughts on “Ask Jo: This and That”

  1. Beautiful quilts! Carver’s baby quilt is so cute and I always love seeing your Rectangle Wrangle and Criss Cross Applesauce. I wish we had $.50 shirts here in Virginia. They are between $5 and $12 at our thrift store. Ouch.

  2. I think I was introduced to your blog through Bonnie Hunter’s monthly ‘garage sales’ where you were selling parts of shirts. I was never fortunate enough to buy any. Have you considered including any more parts or whole shirts in your upcoming auctions? It’s just a suggestion. Thanks for sharing.

  3. As usual I love your blog and am sorry about the tree hope it can be helped but I was wondering about those areas in your yard that were sinking has anything been able to try and figure them out yet.

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