Sew Together Tuesday: How to use Cuddle® Minky to Self-Bind a Cotton Quilt

This week I’m talking all about using Cuddle® on your cotton quilt, in particular about how to wrap the backing around and make an easy binding with Cuddle®. I’ll be live at 10am PDT/1pm EDT on Tuesday, June 14.

To help you out, I’ve made this PDF for reference to know how to make a mitered corner with Cuddle® and how to figure out the sizes to cut both the batting and backing.

Download the PDF: How to Make a Self-Bound Quilt

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Self Binding the Glam Clam Quilt

Several years ago, I got a stack of fat quarters from the then-newly-released Grafic collection by Latifah Saafir. Immediately I decided I was going to finally put that Clammy ruler to use and make myself a clamshell quilt. First I made a few patchwork squares, then cut those and the rest of the 10” square pack into clamshells.Then I stacked them neatly and put them on a shelf…where they would live for the next five years.

Apparently I wasn’t the only one who planned to do a Glam Clam quilt and never actually finished it because in 2021, Latifah started a Glam Clam Finish Along. Brilliant! Lots of folks signed up to cheer each other on and it was just the push I needed to start putting it together.

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Making a Coat Out of a Quilt

Back in November, before the recent hubbub about quilt clothes needing to die, I cut up my quilt to make a coat. And I kinda really love it. I’d had the quilt for a while, tucked in the closet with no real purpose (it’s not like I had a guest bedroom or cute display cabinet), so when we were starting to pack up the house to move out, I decided I would finally get to making a jacket out of it. That way I could take it with me as something I’d actually use on-the-road versus something I’d just store for later storage.

To me, that’s the crux of any of the argument about saving quilts from being re-purposed as clothing. If you’re going to use it and love it, heck even if you just like it, re-purposing sounds like a great idea. There are so very many quilts out there; we don’t need to save them all. Anyway…

The quilt was a throw size and almost worked perfectly. If I were to do it again, I would probably trace the pieces on first to make sure I had enough room (I had to piece a sleeve), but for taking about two minutes to make the decision and start cutting it turned out okay.

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Accuquilt Gallery Spotlight

Last fall the folks at AccuQuilt invited little ol’ me to be a part of their gallery and, of course, I said “Yes, please!” I knew I would send some of my favorites, but also used the invitation as a starting point for the American Travels series I’m working on. You can read the interview on their blog or watch just the gallery tour and conversation below:

Make sure to check out the close-up of Wyatt Wolf–he’s a Luxe Cuddle/faux fur cotton version of Violet Craft‘s Wolf Abstractions pattern and several years later, I still love him.

Thanks, Accuquilt for the spotlight and for the fabulous cutting system. I use their dies often in my personal quilt making as well as for Shannon Fabrics projects and have come to appreciate their ease of use and longevity. I’m sure I’ll be using them plenty more in all my quilt making.

I’m glad I finally got to share it with you.

Happy sewing!

Longarm Quilting with Cuddle minky & Hawke [Sew Together Tuesday]

Last March, my bosses at Shannon Fabrics asked me to cut my travels short and come home. I was pretty sure my workload would decrease and I’d be able to finally spend some time learning to longarm quilt, so I bought a small Grace Company Q-Zone Hoop Frame and Q’Nique 15R from CaliQuiltCo. I’ve worked with Tayva many times and she was just starting to sell the machines, so it was an easy choice on where to buy one.

Fast forward a few months and the reality began to set it that not only was I not going back on the road, I wasn’t going to have any less work to do! Sew Together Tuesday had gotten some momentum and suddenly I was busier than ever. So the whole set up sat immobile for months. Then I had a bunch of quilts to finish and not enough time to do the design, piecing and quilting. So I asked Hawke to help out.

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Missing Horseshoe Bend {American Travels Quilt Series}

If you are looking at this picture and thinking “That’s not Horseshoe Bend,” you’d be right. It’s nearby, but this certainly isn’t it.

On our road trip last August, Hawke and I were heading north around the eastern side of the Grand Canyon. It was our third day on the road and we were heading toward Zion National Park; we didn’t have reservations anywhere and wanted to get to our next sleeping spot as early in the day as we could. We were making good speed, but as with all road trips, a bathroom break was needed, so we stopped at what looked like a rest stop. Turned out it was for a hiking trail and the fellow at the gate explained that it was just a 20 minute hike if wanted to do that after using the bathrooms, but we demurred and he let us through to use the facilities then hit the road again.

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Dignity Quilt {American Travels Quilt Series}

In Chamberlain, South Dakota there is a sculpture of an indigenous woman that stands 50 ft. tall along Interstate 90. For years now I’ve wanted to “someday” see it in-person. She carries one of my favorite quilt designs, a Lone Star quilt, billowing behind her and she towers over the hills and the Missouri River. The pictures I had seen were amazing, but as with most places, the pictures can’t do it justice.

Hawke and I were almost to the end of our week when I realized that our path toward Omaha would take us directly by her. We had to stop.

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American Travels quilt series

I used to spend almost half my time on the road, traveling the United States while teaching at quilt shops and conventions. Over the past year, that work travel stopped and it was a shock to the system. To all my systems.

We started weekly sewing classes on Facebook Live, so I kept on teaching (albeit it in a completely different way) and I was happy to finally be eating homemade food rather than restaurant food.

But one of the biggest revelations after months of lockdown was just how much I had loved the side benefits of seeing this country, learning its history, trying local foods and stopping at roadside attractions. I’d learned a lot in the three years I’d been a traveling sewing/quilting teacher.

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Something old made new again

One of the things I love best about quiltmaking is the love and care that goes into the process. Sometimes though, despite the love, the design just doesn’t suit the receiver. This was the situation with my friend Jeremy’s quilt.

His great-grandmother had made it and given it to him, but it wasn’t a particularly handsome quilt in his eyes, so it had stayed folded up in the closet for years.

One night he asked if I’d be willing to remodel the quilt, taking out the periwinkle sashing that wasn’t in his color palette and taking down the amount of negative space. I said yes and started cutting up his quilt.

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