Tag Archives | sashiko

Big Stitch Coasters in Collection CF

With the newest fabrics in Collection CF arriving in stores, I thought I’d share with you these new Big Stitch Coasters that I made in Collection CF.

The coasters are made using this free tutorial that I put together a few years back. (I’ve now given it a fresh update!) I use these coasters all the time, and they’re a fun thing to give away to friends.

big stitch coasters tutorial-stitch layers . carolyn friedlander

Small projects are perfect for trying out new techniques. If you’re wanting to give big stitch quilting a try, this is a great way to start. The commitment is small, and the possibilities are endless. Of course you could machine quilt them if handwork isn’t your thing, but I love the added color and texture of the big stitches.

It’s also a small and speedy project that can update something you use around the house, which I am all for. Or maybe you could send some to a friend to let them know you’re thinking of them. Both are worthwhile motives in my mind right now.

I made a point to update my favorite hand-quilting supplies, if you’re new to the game and want to find out more.

There are a couple more versions, but I’ll share them in a future post. Have fun!

Project Info

Tutorial: (Free) Big Stitch Coaster Tutorial

Fabric: Collection CF

Shop Supplies: Thread, Scissors, Needles, Marking Tools

+ Learn more about Hand Quilting Tools.

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Clay Mini quilt.

Despite this Clay mini quilt being my most recent Clay finish, it was actually the quilt where it all began.

Clay mini quilt . carolyn friedlander

It all started with a mini charm pack from a Quilt Market years ago. The pack included 2 1/2″ squares from my Doe collection as well as some Kona solids, Essex linen and other good stuff. It was at that time that I came up with these shapes and scattered them on to a gingham background. I loved how the gentle shapes could suggest different motifs while being perfect for layering. Plus the pops of color and overall variety sucked me right in.

I left the background large in order to give me options later. I didn’t know if I’d want to add more pieces or what size it ultimately should be. All of it sat pinned in place for years until recently. There have been so many times that I wanted to get back to it, and I’m glad that I now had the chance.

Clay mini quilt . carolyn friedlander

After appliquéing the pieces down, I had to decide what size to make the project. I seriously considered leaving the background piece large, because I like how appliqué doesn’t necessarily have to be used all over. In the end, I made it a mini, which I’m just as excited about.

Clay mini quilt . carolyn friedlander

The quilting was super fun. I used a gold/yellow Sashiko thread in a hand-quilted, diagonal grid. I wanted something bright and cheerful to complement the colorful pieces already there.

Clay mini quilt . carolyn friedlander

All of these years later, I still love these colors and shapes.

Pattern: Clay quilt pattern, mini size.

Fabric: Robert Kaufman Carolina Gingham, Doe Favorites mini charm pack (from the archives)

Hand Quilting: Upcycled Sashiko thread (#26) with Olympus needles

Clay mini quilt . carolyn friedlander

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New Supplies in the Shop.

I have some new supplies in the shop, and I thought I’d pop in to share a bit more about them.

CF Handy Guide . carolyn friedlander

CF Handy Guide

First up is a brand-new little tool I’ve been working on. I’m calling it the CF Handy Guide, because it’s just that–handy. It’s my take on the classic seam gauge, but with the quilter specifically in mind.

CF Handy Guide . carolyn friedlander

There’s something nice about a measuring tool that can fit in the palm of your hand, and this one is kept compact for that reason. Use it when checking in on the 1/4″ basting step in my appliqué patterns or to measure anything starting at 1/8″ and up.

The angled side at the bottom features a 120 degree angle–or that of a hexagon. If you’re piecing hexagons (or my hexagon project Arlo) and want to mark your points, it’s there at 1/4″ and 3/8″. The Arlo templates have these references as well, but here’s just another way to use it. You could use those reference lines to mark out a seamline too.

There are holes for marking corners 1/8″ to 1″. The little tabs that go out from the sides are great for marking seam allowances, etc, and the running measurement at the top is good for longer dimensions too.

It’s made of a rigid, clear plastic with a hang hole that you can thread a ribbon through or hang on its own. I’ve been meaning to thread one through a necklace to wear when sewing away, plus I think it’d be cute. Anyway, it’s handy! Let me know what you think. You can find it in the shop here.

Other New Supplies in the Shop

These other supplies are my go-tos. I don’t know about you, but with the reshuffle in the world over the last 6 months some things have been a bit harder to come by. Plus, I know that it’s often the small stuff like random needles, thread and other notions that can be a) hard to source, and b) hard to source all in one place. Here I wanted to make available my favorite things so you can get what you may need without any trouble.

That said, I recently updated my Needle Turn Appliqué tools list, which you can check out here.

Pins, Needles and Clips

My favorite Clover appliqué pins are now in the shop. They are insanely handy.

Clover Appliqué Pins

The needles (also by Clover) that I love are now in the shop. These are my go-tos for appliqué, sewing binding and any other general hand sewing.

Clover Gold Eye Appliqué Needles

My favorite thimbles for hand appliqué and hand sewing (not hand quilting) are in the shop here. They are adhesive leather pads that can be reused again and again and again. I keep one stuck on a tin of thread gloss or my scissor case so it’s there when I need it. One pad lasts a surprisingly long time. If you are someone who feels like thimbles are clumsy or cumbersome, this one is easy to forget you are wearing. I have walked away from projects still wearing it many times.

Colonial Thimble Pad

I’ve added the small Clover clips that I use when cutting out any appliqués that require folding. The small size and strong grip allow for the perfect mix of doing the job while not getting in the way.

Clover Mini Wonder Clips

Marking Tools

In stock are my three favorites in this category as well; Frixion Red, Navy and the Gelly Roll in White. Big disclaimer on this and on all marking tools–always test your marking tools. That said, I use these to mark shapes that will be a) cut out and b) usually marked on the wrong side of the fabric. I am much less concerned about the removability and whether or not the marks will come back in these scenarios. The white pen is not removable, but given the situation I described above, that doesn’t matter to me. What is more important is how easily it marks on fabric and how clearly it shows up on the dark fabrics.

Also, the Frixion pens are the clicker style. That is totally my preference. If I’m going to pick something to offer to you, it’s going to be exactly the thing I want to use. Caps can be annoying, right?

Pilot Frixion Clicker Navy

Hand Quilting

The right tools make a big difference–especially when it comes to handwork. This is why I’m forever trying new things, plus I’m a total nerd on this kind of stuff. New needles that I have been LOVING lately are the Olympus Sashiko needles, which are available in a 2 pack or 4 pack. I started with the 2 pack, and I most often use the shorter needle, but the longer one is great too. (These are the needles I’ve been hand quilting my Hunt QAL project as well as Clay.)

Olympus Sashiko Needle 2 pack

I still love the Colonial Big Stitch Needle pack, and so it’s available here. It’s just a good mix of sizes with a big eye to accommodate the larger threads.

Colonial Big Stitch Quilting Needle Pack

Unfortunately I’m already out of the bright yellow thread that I used in Clay, but I plan to get more in later this month. I’ll keep you posted on that.

I hope these new shop additions make sewing a little easier and more comfortable for you. Feel free to reach out and let me know what you think!

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Clay Quilt Pattern

With everything going on in the world today, I have to admit that it is hard not to acknowledge that. My goal continues to be to make this space one that is full of creative comfort and inspiration, as well as inclusion. That said, I’m excited to finally share with you my new Clay quilt pattern. I’ve been finding a lot of comfort in projects like this lately, and I hope you do too!

clay quilt pattern . carolyn friedlander

Clay is one of those projects ready for your own creative touch, which can take (literal) shape in all kinds of ways. Here’s just one of them.

clay quilt pattern . carolyn friedlander

If taking shape means creating a celebration of color–yes! It’s perfect for little bits of many different things that you may have been collecting. Or, if you want to focus on fewer colors while exploring the shapes and how they interact, then yes to that too!

clay quilt pattern . carolyn friedlander

Shape

The motifs and design is one that I’ve had rattling around for years. (I have proof of that, stay tuned.) It’s a simple idea, and I feel like the simple ideas can always say so much. Having looked at these shapes for so long, I like how there are so many different things to see. Sometimes the shapes feel like plants, sometimes they might be rocks and other times I just like how they seem to communicate with each other. They are round-ish, kind of pointy, big to small and even better–in my opinion–when layered. This scattering of shapes is playful and engaging not only in looking at the finished project, but when you cut and lay them out as well.

clay quilt pattern . carolyn friedlander

Color

There is a lot of color in this project. I used ALL of the current and incoming Collection CF prints, working from the charm pack. To give the range a bit more cohesion, you may notice a bit of a color gradation from the center out. (The size of the shapes graduate this way too, big to small.) Maybe the color gradation looks intimidating, but it’s really not that crazy to plan out. I just lined up my charm squares into a colorful order that I liked before cutting and laying out my project.

collection CF charm squares

Fabric

In addition to Collection CF for the appliqué pieces (cut shapes), I used Essex Yarn Dyed Linen in Lingerie for the background. I LOVE this fabric so much. The linen creates a good, sturdy texture for the prints to stand out and shine. Plus, I love how the linen quilts up. It’s just cozy and wonderful.

clay quilt pattern . carolyn friedlander

I used a bright yellow thread for the hand quilting, which you might remember a peek of awhile back.

sashiko big stitch supplies

I’ve been able to add a few spools to the shop if you’d like to add some to a project of your own. In fact, I’ve been adding lots of my favorite things to the shop over the last little while, if you’d like to check it out. (I’ll share more about all of it soon.)

clay quilt pattern . carolyn friedlander

Clay Quilt Pattern

The pattern includes several different size options with a coloring chart for each, as well as tips on color and composition. It’s a great beginner-friendly appliqué project as the (10) template shapes are a good size and feature gentle curves and points. If you’re super new to the technique, you can always start with the mini size option if you don’t want to feel too overwhelmed. Or, if a larger size is really speaking to you, then go for it! As another good hack, you can use more or less appliqué pieces in your project.

clay quilt pattern . carolyn friedlander

I have another sample that I finally finished up and will share with you soon, as well as more about the newest supplies in the shop…and my favorite needle-turn appliqué supplies.

Pattern: Clay quilt pattern, throw size.

Fabric: Collection CF plus Essex Yarn Dyed Linen in Lingerie.

clay quilt pattern . carolyn friedlander

+ Guide to Needle Turn Appliqué supplies

+ Thread Tips and Tricks

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Hunt QAL #13 Check In

Hunt QAL #13 Check In.

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

Yes, the Hunt QAL is officially over, but I thought I’d continue to check in with you on my quilt until I have it finished, which I don’t think will be too much longer!

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

The hand quilting continues, and I just love doing it. It is so relaxing pushing the needle through the different fabrics and colors. I’m loving using the sashiko threads and just following the marked lines.

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

I’d say that I am 3/4 of the way along. I’ve basically moved from the bottom to the top, so there’s just a little bit left to go. The binding decision is sort of looming at this point.

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

The texture and softness from the hand quilting is really enticing, and I’m loving the darker thread color. I haven’t tried it yet, but I’m eager to see how it will look on the bed.

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

I’m also working my way through this skein of thread. It started out much more full. Part of me hopes I’ll run out so I can switch to another color randomly at the end, but I’m thinking this might be just the right amount to see things through to the end.

Pattern: Hunt Quilt (templates here, here and here)

Fabrics: Mostly mine from many collections including Jetty, Collection CF, Botanics, Instead, Gleaned, Friedlander

Quilting Thread: Sashiko thread from Upcycle Stitches

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

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Quilting with Sashiko Thread and trying out other new things.

At QuiltCon, I picked up a few new things to try. Whether it was the options as they were presented or my mood, there was clearly a theme to what I bought. I grabbed up many different Sashiko threads to use in my hand quilting.

sashiko thread

To back up a smidge, Riane Elise planted the quilting-with-Sashiko-thread seed after recently reading her book. Her quilting is stunning, and I love how much the contrasting stitches add to a project. To start, I grabbed up some of her recommendations; this sashiko thread, Tulip needles and Bohin marking tools. (I am a sucker for trying new marking tools. It is always a challenge to find a good one!)

After doing some quilting, I’m happy to share a report on the experience.

Threads: Yes! Sashiko threads are glorious to quilt with. They come in an endless array of enticing shades that are a flat color instead of something more glossy like perle cotton. My spool of lemon yellow was first to go, and I immediately ordered more. (That is color #12 if you’re wondering.)

Needles: I have to admit, the Tulip Sashiko needles were a bust for me. I like the length and how they glide through the layers so easily, but the heads break off consistently for me. I’ve done a fair share of big stitch quilting with other needles, and I’ve never had this problem. I’ve since ordered more brands to try, and I’m eager to see how they do!

Thimbles: The Clover Protect And Grip thimble has been my hand-quilting favorite for years. The new thing I tried this time are their Flexible Thimbles that help grip the needle as you move it between the layers. Whereas the Protect And Grip is worn on your middle finger that is pushing the needle along, these grippers can be worn on your index finger and thumb to pull the needle through the fabric. I’ve actually had these sitting around for years, but I hadn’t tried them yet. They are GREAT, and I don’t know why it took me so long to give them a go.

Figuring out the most comfortable size on the Flexible Thimbles wasn’t super obvious to me. Luckily I have all of their sizes (S, M, L), and I swapped in and out of different sizes as I went. After a few hours of stitching, I seem to have it sorted out.

Marking Tool: Bohin Extra-Fine Pencil in chalk and grey leads are surprisingly discrete. I’ll continue experimenting with these. (Always test before using on your own project. No marking tool is perfect.)

Not new, but in use and much enjoyed: Sew Fine Thread Gloss, Kai scissors, Essex Yarn Dyed Linen (pre-washed, very dreamy), Quilters Dream Blend batting and Collection CF backing.

Here are some places to find Sashiko threads, needles and supplies.

Riane Elise (her book describes how to work from a skein of thread too!)

Superbuzzy

Snuggly Monkey

Bunny’s Designs

Red Thread Studio

Brooklyn Haberdashery

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