Diamond Superstar


Last week, I finished the 18″ version of my newest paper-pieced block.  I also chose a name:

Diamond Superstar!

I’ve been busy perfecting the templates for both the 14″ and 18″ block and I’m hoping to release both in PDF pattern form very soon.


My daughter immediately claimed the block as her own (as she does with all of my sewing) and asked for a pillow.  I have to say, I’m pretty jealous, but it looks better in her room!

Spring Bouquet PDF Pattern

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I am happy to announce that I FINALLY have finished the Spring Bouquet Sampler Quilt Pattern!

This one was a doozy to write and I am really excited to share it.  The pattern gives step-by step instructions and templates for making ten different blocks of increasing difficulty.  I have broken the cutting measurements down by block, so you can choose to cut all the fabrics before sewing (I think my hand would fall off), or select and cut fabrics as you sew each sets of blocks.  In the end, you will have an 84″ x 84″ Queen sized quilt top.

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Sample Pattern Page

It’s the perfect project for skill building.  You will make half-square triangles, quarter-square triangles, flying geese, sew curves and do simple paper-piecing (I have provided links to my curve and paper-piecing tutorials, if you need extra help, but I am always here for advice and to hold your hand!)

The featured fabric is Bella Caronia’s Spring Bloom and it was my inspiration for designing this sampler in the round.  I wanted to create a quilt that looked like a bouquet of flowers, or an arial view of a beautifully landscaped flower garden.

I also mocked up a few other color ideas, to get your creative juices flowing:

job_828 Spring Bloom

Scrappy Rainbow.  You could make this one with bits from your stash.


The colors in this mock-up along with the quilt blocks remind me of Mary Blair’s art. I’m thinking of making this as a 1/3 scale wall-hanging.

job_885 Spring Bloom

Choosing one color, or one fabric for the “flowers”, gives it a bold and entirely different look.  The yarn-dyed linen in denim makes it more of a cozy, casual quilt.

I am selling the pattern for $5 over the weekend.  You can purchase it from my Craftsy store, or from Big Cartel.

If  you make this quilt, be sure to share a photo with me and give feedback.  I strive to make patterns that are clear and easy to follow, so I love to hear if there are any issues.

Have a great weekend!

Kaleidoscope Block

This past week, I’ve been having fun working on a new paper-pieced star pattern. As of right now I’m calling it Kaleidoscope, but I am trying to think of a more unique name (any ideas??)


This is a 14″ x 14″ block I made from Kona Cottons. How could I NOT make a rainbow version??!


This one is also 14″, but made from fussy cut stripes.  I believe those are Michael Miller Clown Stripes. I’d love to make an entire quilt of these blocks with a different colored stripe and matching polka dots for each block.


This is the start of an 18″ version of the same block. Do you think I included enough cats?


And because I am impatient, here is an illustration of what the finished block will look like.  I love that the 18″block allows for fussy-cutting a variety of adorable prints.

I plan to include templates for a 14″, 18″ and 22″ block. The various sizes should work well for quilt blocks, mini quilts and center medallions.



Right Round Medallion Quilt Finish

Is it really the end of summer already?  School starts next week for us!  My family spent five weeks driving across the country (twice), and visiting my family back East.  We saw the Grand Canyon, the Meteor Crater, Amish Country, Las Vegas, hiked waterfalls, scaled the Rockies (in a car), swam almost everyday, fished, caught lightning bugs, and stalked the neighborhood ice cream truck. I’d say it was a pretty good summer!

Passing through Hays, Kansas

Now we are slowly getting back into the normal routine and I’m finally finding time to sew again.

Just before we left town, I finished my Right Round Medallion and I am so in love with it.  I still need to get up the courage to wash it and put it out on the couch.


The center medallion is my Right Round Pattern and  I just made up the borders as I went along.  I am happy to give general dimensions for the blocks here on my blog, if anyone is interested, but I am not planning to release a pattern.

Originally, I thought I would write up a pattern, but I really just improvised and made the quilt for fun. As much as I love it, I am not happy enough with the scale of some of the borders to make it into an official pattern.


After angsting for about a month, I ended up doing my same old meander on the quilt.  I feel a little bad for not branching out, but I just love the overall texture a meander adds without distracting from the design of the quilt. Plus, it’s quick!  I love designing and piecing quilts, but the quilting for me is a necessary evil.  If I could just keep my quilts flat and smooth and well, quilt-less, I would.  Then it would’t be a quilt though, would it!


Have a great week! I’m going to attempt to catch up on my blogging now that I have more time, so check back!


The Modern Medallion Workbook Blog Hop + a Giveaway

The Modern Medallion Workbook by Janice Ryan and Beth Vassalo

Today is the last day for the Modern Medallion Workbook Blog Hop and I hope you have enjoyed hearing from the contributors and seeing each of the quilts!  
Screen Shot 2015-05-25 at 8.34.54 AM The quilt I designed for the book is called “Migration Medallion”.  I wanted to create a medallion that was light, airy and had movement to it, so there is quite a lot of negative space and flying geese!

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The quilting was done by Angela Walters.  Isn’t it gorgeous?!  She really went all out with it and added so much more movement to the quilt.


The Modern Medallion Workbook by Janice Ryan and Beth Vassalo

One of my favorite sections of the the book are the coloring pages.  You can photocopy them and color them with pencils or markers, or you can scan them to your computer and use a paint program to play with the look of the quilts.

The Modern Medallion Workbook by Janice Ryan and Beth Vassalo

I had fun playing around with “Migration Medallion” and seeing what it would look like with a tighter color palette and darker background.  I think I know what my next project is!


Would you like to win a copy of The Modern Medallion Workbook? Comment below and I will pick one winner to be mailed a copy by C&T.  International winners will receive an e-copy of the book. I’m going to be traveling all summer, so I’d love it if you could suggest a hand-sewing/ embroidery project (pattern or book) I could take with me, if you know of one!

Contest will be open until Friday, May 29th at 9pm and the winner will be chosen randomly.

While you are waiting patiently to see if you have won, check out the previous stops in the hop and you can enter their giveaways also!

The Modern Medallion Workbook Blog Hop Schedule:

May 11th: Janice and Beth at C&T/Stash
May 12th: Melissa Richie- weshallsew.blogspot.com
May 13th: Amy Sinibaldi- nanaCompany.typepad.com
May 14th: Christina Lane- sometimescrafter.com/blog
May 18th: Erica Jackman- kitchentablequilting.com
May 19th: Becca Bryan- www.bryanhousequilts.com
May 20th: Karen Anderson-Abraham- bloomingpoppies.net/
May 21st: Latifah Saafir- www.latifahsaafirstudios.com
May 22nd: Kerry Green- verykerryberry.blogspot.co.uk
May 25th: Beth- www.plumandjune.blogspot.com and
Janice- www.betteroffthread.com

The Modern Medallion Blog Hop

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Today marks the beginning of The Modern Medallion Blog Hop!  Beth and I are starting off the hop with an introduction on C&T Publishing’s Blog.  Please pop on over to check it out and enter to win a free copy of the book!

Each of our contributors will be posting on their blogs over next two weeks, so you can get lots of sneak peeks and inside information on the book.  Follow the schedule each day to meet the designers and enter their giveaways:

The Modern Medallion Workbook Blog Hop Schedule:

May 11th:  Janice and Beth at C&T/Stash

May 12th: Melissa Richie- weshallsew.blogspot.com

May 13th: Amy Sinibaldi- nanaCompany.typepad.com

May 14th: Christina Lane- sometimescrafter.com/blog

May 18th: Erica Jackman- kitchentablequilting.com

May 19th: Becca Bryan- www.bryanhousequilts.com

May 20th: Karen Anderson-Abraham- bloomingpoppies.net/

May 21st: Latifah Saafir- www.latifahsaafirstudios.com

May 22nd: Kerry Green- verykerryberry.blogspot.co.uk

May 25th: Beth- www.plumandjune.blogspot.com   and
 Janice- www.betteroffthread.com

Have a wonderful week!  Happy sewing!

Spring Bloom Winner!

Windham Circle #

Thank you for all of your lovely comments on my Spring Bloom Blog Hop post.

The winner of the Fat Quarter Bundle of Spring Bloom is:

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#38: Lisa Burger!

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Congratulations Lisa!  I’ll be emailing you shortly.


Spring Bloom Makers Blog Hop and Giveaway

Spring Bloom Blog Hop, Spring Bloom By Bella Caronia for Windham Fabrics

It’s my day in the Spring Bloom Makers Blog hop and I’m so excited to reveal the quilt I have been working on!  Bella Caronia’s Spring Bloom is Amanda Caronia’s first fabric line with Windham Fabrics and it is lovely.

I met Amanda at an LAMQG meeting and we instantly bonded over being California transplants and former 705 Costumers (that’s the local union for TV and movie costumers).  I was really excited when she asked if I would design a quilt for her new fabric line.

I love Spring Bloom’s variety of colors and floral designs, and I wanted to design a quilt that represented a bouquet of flowers, or an aerial view of a French Formal Garden.

Spring Bouquet Quilt by Better Off Thread featuring Spring Bloom Fabric by Bella Caronia.

“Spring Bouquet” measures 84″ x 84″ and is a sampler in the round.  I had a lot of fun choosing blocks and laying them out to best show off these gorgeous fabrics.

It’s hard to see scale in a cropped photo, so here is a behind the scenes shot for size reference.

Spring Bouquet Quilt by Better Off Thread featuring Spring Bloom Fabric by Bella Caronia.

It fits very nicely on my queen-sized bed (yes, I STILL need to paint the other nightstand…quilts come first!).

Spring Bouquet Quilt by Better Off Thread featuring Spring Bloom Fabric by Bella Caronia.

I will be releasing the pattern for Spring Bouquet next month, so please check back for details!  I’m thinking it may be fun to have a quilt-along: 12 different blocks over 12 weeks (4-8 blocks per week).

Spring Bouquet Quilt by Better Off Thread featuring Spring Bloom Fabric by Bella Caronia.


Now it’s your turn to win your own Spring Bloom! Windham is generously giving away a Fat Quarter Bundle of all fifteen prints to one lucky reader.

To enter, all you need to do is leave a comment below.  For fun, why don’t  you tell me what your favorite flower is.  I love Peonies and I’m eagerly awaiting the two weeks that Trader Joes carries them in their store!

The giveaway will be open until midnight EST on Sunday, May 3rd.  I will choose one winner by random number generator. International entries are welcome!

Spring Bloom Blog Hop, Spring Bloom By Bella Caronia for Windham Fabrics


Be sure to stop by the other blogs in the hop and see what they have created with Spring Bloom.  Amanda is having an Instagram giveaway, so check out her blog post on how to enter.  You can also check out #springbloommakers on Instagram for more projects.


April 20 Windham Fabrics Snip-itsBella Caronia Blog

April 21 Leah and Bea Koch – Wintergreen and the Bee

April 22 Nell Timmer – Nell’s Notions

April 23 Jessica Darling

April 24 Kristy Daum – St. Louis Folk Victorian

April 25 Sherri Sylvester – Thread Riding Hood

April 26 Cindy Wiens – Live a Colorful Life

April 27 Krista Hennebury – Poppyprint

April 28 Felicity Ronaghan – Felicity Quilts

April 29 Casey York – The Studiolo

April 30 ME!

May 1 Deborah Moebes – Whipstitch

May 2 Bella Caronia Blog That’s a Wrap

Thanks for stopping by!

Starry Night Quilt

I was recently asked to design a quilt for Jennifer Sampou’s upcoming Shimmer II fabric line.  I loved her original Shimmer fabrics, and the new colors are even more beautiful.

The metallic print fabrics have a wonderful balance between traditional and modern tastes, so I wanted to design a more traditional block-based quilt with a modern flair.

Starry Night Quilt pattern by Janice Ryan, featuring Shimmer II by Jennifer Sampou

Starry Night measures 51″ x 62-1/2″ and is partially paper pieced.  The piecing is simple, so the blocks go together pretty quickly.  I love the optical illusion created when several blocks are sewn together.

Starry Night Quilt pattern by Janice Ryan, featuring Shimmer II by Jennifer Sampou

The pattern will be available in June as a FREE download from Robert Kaufman, but you’ll have to wait until September for Shimmer II!

Starry Night Quilt pattern by Janice Ryan, featuring Shimmer II by Jennifer Sampou

Happy Wednesday!