December 2010 - Posts

Are you making a New Years resolution?

We have great intentions, but how many do we really keep? 

I think I'll go for the small things like trying to organize closets and my sewing room a bit more and finish a few UFOs finished- well maybe! 

It just wouldn't be the same for some of us to finish everything- now would it?

Take, for instance this quilt top.  Mmmm--I'm just not sure I'm done with it. It is 56 inches square. If I finish it now, it will be either big enough for a wall hanging or a small throw.  I also have all of these strips I've kept, in case I want to add to it that would be totally wasted- right? It really doesn't hurt it to hang in my sewing room until I decide what to do with it or how to improve it, and it's great decor!  Now what's in that other container. . . .

Do you have any New Years resolutions or great decor to share? We'd like to see them!

Happy New Year Quilting!

Diane, Assistant Editor




And the stockings were hung by the chimney with care....

........just in time for Christmas!

It was close, but they're done!  

And I must say well worth the time. We now have personalized stockings that should last a lifetime of Christmases . I've even saved the extra fabric and patterns in a labeled box  just in case we need more in the future. 8 stockings, all in different patterns!  

Names were printed with our home printer and sewed around the edges in big stitch to hold them in place. I also did a button hole stitch around the toes and heel.


Tony, our Art Director made these stockings for his family out of Patrick Lose fabrics. A totally different idea, but personalized to their own taste like our family's stockings. Like quilts, they can be your own creation with your own fabric choices.  


Kind of a miniature quilt !


Here's hoping your Christmas is filled with special moments and plenty of great memories!

Diane, Assistant Editor


Do you see what I see?

Do you tend to notice, as I do, all of the quilty designs in Christmas? 

This is one of my favorite decorations.  Two of my favorite things in one-Santa and quilts!  

One of the customers in the store the other day mentioned that fabric is like Christmas lights to her. They make her eyes sparkle! 

What makes your eyes sparkle this time of the year?  A family tradition? A favorite recipe? 

The kids are coming a day early after hearing the weather report last evening.  I guess I'd better put the finishing touches on my stockings!  I hear Tony, our Art Director is working on some too, so maybe I can persuade him to share his stockings off with mine, tomorrow I hope!

If you're like most of us here in the office, there's never enough time to get things done before the holidays arrive, so why not start a Christmas project for next year? There's some great designs from Easy Quilts and Love of Quilting, as well as Quilting Celebrations available on our website , and while you're there, check out the  fabric and notion department too! 

Happy Holiday Quilting!

Diane, Assistant Editor







Quilts in Afghanistan!



Our quilts made it safe and sound and here are a few of  Task Force Red Bulls with their quilts! 

We hope these keep you all warm and safe and thank you for serving to protect our freedom that we are so thankful for!

The Fons & Porter staff


Hand or machine quilting?

I grew up learning to sew and quilt from my mom and grandmother. My grandmother actually went to sewing school in northeast Iowa, before getting married to my grandfather. Her handwork was amazing, as was what I saw of my great grandmother's work.

Last Spring, we worked with Marianne on a quilted piece to help demonstrate her Fine Feathers templates at market.   Cherrywood graciously donated the fabric and coordinating thread and we came up with a great little piece to demo with.  And as you guessed it, I machine quilted it! 

As I quilted it, I could imagine my grandma standing over my shoulder, shaking her head that I should make such a nice project and not have taken the time to hand quilt it.  And me commenting back that I lacked the time with raising a family and full time work.  Besides, I want it done in my lifetime!

In a way, I think she would be very impressed with what the machines can do now. The intricate designs and decorative threads that hand quilting just could not have matched. Who knows! perhaps she would have wished she could have had a long arm!

By the way,the soldier quilts all arrived by last weekend and we were all excited here!   We're still waiting for the photos, but we do know all of the quilts got there quickly and safely.

Happy hand or machine quilting!

Diane, Assistant Editor

Making the best of a snowstorm...................

As you may know, the Midwest got hit with some snow and a lots of wind this weekend.  I kind of appreciated the unexpected time to work on my Christmas stockings and catch up with decorating the house for Christmas!  

Here are the remaining 5 of the 8 stocking fronts I now have pieced-Yea!!  Since I'm putting so much work into them, I decided that I may as well strive to make them all unique, using 1 1/4 inch wide strips for the base cut shape. It was a challenge, but I was so happy with them when I got this far.

Now for the finishing work! Does anyone have suggestions for applying the names?  I thought about fusible, but I'm not looking forward to cutting them out.  

It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas!

Happy Quilting!  Diane, Assistant Editor


A good feeling!

What a good feeling to hear that most of the quilts have already made it to Afghanistan!  

We were wondering how long it might take them to get there. They were not only surprised that they were actual sizeable quilts, but that we had personalized each one with a name tag,  thanking them for their service. We have been assured that pictures will soon be coming and we hope to share them with you soon. 

Speaking of good feelings, I don't know about you, but I like to keep a list of good ideas for gifts and stocking stuffers.  

One of our favorite new products here, is the Mariner's Star Pincushion.  It's a lovely heirloom quality box with a Mariners Star pincushion top. The round box provides plenty of space for storing pins or other tools or trinkets. It makes a great gift for any sewing or quilting enthusiast.  I like mine for thread, needles and thimbles for handwork.  

You can find it at our Shop Fons and Porter, as well as many other fun quilter's gifts!

Happy Quilting!

Diane, Assistant Editor





Christmas stockings


Since the first stocking worked, I went home last night, eager to get started again.

I went straight to my sewing room and got a few stocking fronts pieced as you can see above!  Thanks goodness for an understanding husband and leftovers!

The fabrics I am using, have been collected the last couple years.  Most of it is Layer Cakes and Jelly Rolls from  Moda and Maywood in shades of green, red and browns. Here are a few photos to give you an idea. 

I've been using strips cut 1 1/4 inch wide and trying to stay with squares and strips. It's a fun challenge!

If you have made quilted stockings before, please share your ideas!   

I'm thinking take out pizza this evening..........

Happy holiday quilting!

Diane, Assistant Editor




Do you have a christmas project you would like to share?


Christmas stockings have always been a tradition at our house.  My son and daughter would be up before dawn Christmas morning to see what was in their stockings!  

To this day,my son, who is 32 by the way, still has a reputation for being one of the first up and down to see what is waiting for him! 

I've been thinking about making new stockings for several years. The previous stockings were made of decorative upholstery fabric with fun trims, but are getting kind of dated. Both kids and their families will be home this year, so seeing my Christmas stocking fabric stash I've been collecting the last couple of years, I've decided this is the year to get them done.  I've got one completed, as you can see in the picture--yea!!

Let me see, in addition to me and my husband, there are the 2 kids, their spouses, and 2 grandsons.... that's 8 stockings!  Oh, but what fun it will be to see a 2 year old and his 18 month old cousin dig into their stockings!

Oh dear! I better get to work if Santa is going to visit, he needs a place to put the goodies!

I'll keep you posted on my progress!  How about sharing what you are working on? 

Happy Holiday Quilting!  Diane, Assistant Editor

Window shopping


 How cute is this?!  While her momma shops at the Love of Quilting shop here in Winterset, Iowa, Karina would rather 'window shop' ... literally!

29 on their way to Afghanistan

Pictured above is Dave Brown with 'Millie'

The last quilt has come off the longarm! The '29 Quilts to Go' project has been a great success thanks to everyone who helped, including those that stood on standby, just in case.  What started as a phone call between Kristi (the Publisher of Fons and Porter's Love of Quilting Magazine) and her deployed husband, Major Jason Edwards, turned into a month-long project here at our office with a goal of creating 29 quilts to ship to Jason's unit.

These soldiers were cold! Government issued sleeping bags are lacking in many ways, mostly in size and these six-foot-plus soldiers were stationed in the mountains of Afghanistan where daytime temperatures hoover in the 40s, dropping into the 20s at night. First of all, we had to make  these quilts quick (we wanted to get them there before Christmas), and they had to be warm. Plus, they had to be big enough to keep these soldiers plenty warm (72" x 90"), yet light-weight enough for the soldiers to pack.

We ended up making the quilts out of flannel, backed in fleece, no batting. But time was running out when Heidi Kaisand (APQS National Sales Manager) came to our rescue. Heidi put out a call of help and within moments, we had quilter's volunteering from all across the states. Too many in fact! What a wonderful dilemma! Very special thank-you's go out to the first of those many volenteers. Jane and Dave Brown, and Maria Davis.

These three quilters shared their hearts, their time and their Millenniums to help quilt 14 of the 29 quilt tops we had made here.  All 29 quilts are now out the door and on their way to Afghanistan, they should be with the troops next week - God Bless these and all the soldiers who are fighting for our freedom -  keep them safe ... and warm. 

-Cinde, editorial assistant