How to Sew Eyes — A Stitch Guide

eye guide etsy

Here is something I should have put together years ago. Ah-well, better late than never!

This is a handy reference guide for sewing eyes. It has fourteen different ways to make them. It also shows you the three different embroidery stitches used and a tips section. This is available on Etsy —

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Digitized Frogs and Turtles

4 R UMAX     PL-II            V1.5 [2]My digitizer, Anna Aldmon of Anna’s Awesome Applique Designs, is busy digitizing the frogs and turtles from my Aquatic Creatures book. Here are the first few stitch outs. I think they are pretty darn cute!dig. turtlefrog photo-1Dig. turtle-1

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Embroidered Filler Stitches

Horse before & after
Horsing A. coverMy newest stitching joy is adding embroidered filler stitches. It’s so fun and easy. It makes the perfect TV project, it’s similar to hand quilting but you don’t have to work as hard and you get to change colors! I’m going to think up a way to incorporate this technique into my quilts, but for now I’m just enjoying the relaxation of the stitching process. This little horse is one I stitched up several years ago, but with one more evening of TV watching and a few dozen rows of running stitches, he’s all colored in.

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An Interview with me :-)


Darcy AshtonI was recently interviewed for a quilting blog. You can read all about it here:

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Hand Embroidered Fish

4 R UMAX     PL-II            V1.5 [2]Embroidered fish w:words #4Embroidered fish w:words #1Embroidered fish w:words #2Embroidered fish w:words #3These hand embroidered fish are for a workshop that I teach. I emphasize filler stitches. You can add color inside the lines with crayons if you want, but I choose in these examples to just use thread. They are very fun to stitch up — I plan to turn them into a quilt in the near future.


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Hand Embroidery

butt.d. coverembroidered Butterflyw:wordsI’ve been experimenting with hand embroidery lately. Especially filler stitches. This is just one example. Two of my books, Butterfly Dance and Aquatic Creatures work especially well for this because they are a smaller size. I’ll post more pictures soon and I do plan on incorporating these into a quilt eventually. Right now they are stitched on cotton tea towels.

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Floral Flamigo

Flam. CoverWhen I first designed the applique’s for this pattern, I needed to test them, so I selected an old floral scrap and stitched one up just to see what it looked like. This test block was destined from the beginning to be nothing more than an orphan block. But I recently decided that it contained all the lessons I wanted to teach in an upcoming class, so I dusted it off and made it into this little quilt.

floral flamingo Quiltfloral flamingo blockfloral Flam. Label

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Miss Mermaid

1-up Summer Cover #6As many of you know, I’ve been working on a long-term Block of the Month series. These quilts all finish the same size and there will be a different quilt for each season. So far I have Santa for Christmas and Scarecrow for Fall. Now I have Miss Mermaid for Summer. Each quilt is a six month set. They are available from Timberlake quilts, each one includes all the fabrics. The last month includes all the fabric and instructions for the borders as well as a fun label for the back. This time I designed the label to look like a sailboat sail and I’ve embellished her hair with beads and charms. She was very fun to make. My goal for the Summer quilt was to design something that didn’t make you feel hot every time you look at it, so I put her underwater.

Look for Spring and Winter quilts to complete the set.

Mermaid Quilt(small)hair closeuparm closeupLabel

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Checkerboard Fractures

F.Frenzy CoverBrenda has come up with some amazing new ways to fracture fabrics for art quilts. They are all spelled out in her new book “Fracture Frenzy” with clear step by step illustrations.

One of the new techniques is called “Checkerboard Fractures”. After your last step in the fracturing process, you are left with a background that looks like a checkerboard. Our example uses black and white for a high contrast checkerboard, but yours can be more subtle. It all depends upon your choice of fabrics. That’s the beauty of these techniques, everyone’s is different!

These books are available now, ask for them at your favorite quilt store.

RGBCheck. Frac

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Fracture Frenzy

F.Frenzy CoverI’m very happy to unveil a new book by Brenda Esslinger. This is Fracture Frenzy and it is a sequel to the best selling Fabulous Fractures book from 2009. Since writing that first book, new ideas and techniques came to light that make these strip-pieced quilts even more fun, exciting, and easy!

This is a technique book. It has numerous ideas and techniques that will inspire and excite you as you make your own original art quilts that look like you’ve spent your entire life working on them but in reality, they are all strip pieced and quite easy as you follow the beautifully illustrated diagrams.

Some of the new techniques include:
— The Basic Fracture
— Checkerboard Fractures
— Checkerboards with Multiple Fabrics
— Using Applique on your Fractures
— Substituting Fabrics
— Complex Fractures
— Fractured Diamonds
— Fractured Hexagons
— Fracturing with Curved Seams

Brenda also includes a page of helpful hints that will make all your piecing better as well as a section on selecting fabrics for your fractures. This is a great book which should be included in every quilter’s library! Ask for them at your favorite quilt store.

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