Another Scrap-Happy Quilting Adventure (+ A Super Quick One-Day Giveaway)

This quilting thing? It’s utter madness. I’m not alone, though; I know you share this insanity. You finish a quilt, give it away, and in that pause between taking a deep, refreshing breath and re-committing to getting the house in order, you blow off your good intentions and turn on the sewing machine.

Yup, I did that within hours of the end of my recent holiday. I’d been eyeing another scrap-happy project, a Blue Underground Studios pattern called “Sticks and Bricks” published in the April 2012 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting, and I succumbed. Mind you, I do have a deadline for a magazine project-like thing plus a super-secret pattern in development. What the heck, go big or do housework. I’m opting for a BIG pile of quilts!

Quilt-J:  Another Scrappy Quilt in the Making--A Blue Underground Studios Pattern

Ready for the first draft layout–I’m a little scared of the dark blocks.

I’ll post a picture when I ‘m done, but the Blue Underground Studios version is so pretty, I reserve the right to “forget” to post if I don’t like my result.

As I mentioned in my Tuesday post, I delivered a colorful scrappy quilt to my sister-in-law Laurence when we met up in Los Angeles recently for her daughter’s (my niece/god-daughter’s) bridal shower. Our hostess (and newest extended-family member as mother-of-the-groom) has the perfect setting for styled quilt photography so we staged an impromptu al fresco photo shoot.

Quilt-J:  Romance Shot of Laurence's Scrappy Quilt

I did NOT plan this photo shoot–it was kismet: the colors, the furniture, the sunny day.
Thanks to Marla!

Here’s a closer look at the quilt. One of my favorite long-armers, Elaine Beattie, machine quilted the top in a curvy water-drop motif.

Quilt-J:  Detail of Laurence's Scrappy QuiltScreen shot 2013-05-15 at 8.11.07 PMHere’s a look at the quilt back with it’s faced binding and accent triangles in the corners.

Just to update, the latest issue of The Quilt Life (June 2013) has an excellent explanation of faced bindings done by Ricky Tims with how-to photos and a primer for doing the triangles as well. I touched on faced bindings in a recent post and promised to tell you then when the magazine was available on newsstands.

Quilt-J:  Back Side of Laurence's Scrappy Quilt

Giveaway Details Here

Oh yes, about that super, super-quick giveaway . . . leave me a comment TODAY and I will  award a copy of Jelly Roll Quilts by Pam and Nicky Lintott at the end of the day and notify the winner Saturday morning. How’s that for insane fun?

Here’s your question:  What do you do: drop everything to quilt or clean your house first, then quilt?

p.s.  Hey Ginabeth, you’ve got a prize to claim from the Verna Mosquera giveaway!  Email us

p.p.s.  May 18, 2013:  Here’s the name of the Lintott book giveaway winner:  Donna from Texas.  Congrats!

Happy quilting!


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76 Responses to Another Scrap-Happy Quilting Adventure (+ A Super Quick One-Day Giveaway)

  1. Alison Nevin says:

    The quilts are beautiful!! Clean house?? Not when there’s some fun quilt project to work on.

  2. Suzanne Cross says:

    Love the quilt, sew today…clean tomorrow!

  3. Audrey says:

    Just a “lick and a promise” for cleaning –enough to satisfy!
    Then, off to the quilting.
    Your e-mails brighten my day! Thank you!

  4. pokeykwilter says:

    I would love to sign up for your fabrics but I really don’t know how to do much on the computer. But in reply to your question: Years ago my cousin with 9 children said 100 years ago no one will remember if your house was clean. I use that motto to quilt by. Thank you, Carol Brader


  5. LINDA says:


  6. Susan Melgaard says:

    Clean my house? I’m a dedacated quilter! I found a super lady to who likes to clean houses. Now she is happy and so am I.

  7. Joan says:

    My wish is the cleaning would do it self, so I sccumb to cleaning that’s why I have so many UFO’s. I need to change my ways and quilt first. I will continue to try to quilt first.

  8. Bonnie says:

    Can you tell me the name of the quilt you are showing here?

    • Jennifer says:

      It’s called “Sticks and Bricks” by Blue Underground Studios. Go back into the post so you can click the links to the APQ magazine that carried the pattern. It’s a downloadable pattern at APQ.

      • Bonnie says:

        Oh, sorry, I forgot you shied two quilts here. The one I was asking about was the scrappy quilt you gifted, the one in the al fresco photo. Did that design come from the Lintott book?

      • Jennifer says:

        Yes, that pattern is in the Lintott book–sorry, I misconstrued your question.

  9. Lynn D in NC says:

    I love to quilt, so that is my carrot. I clean house first…staying focused so I can have quilt time.

  10. Mary says:

    I have to admit I have cleaning ladies–but they don’t touch my sewing room except the floor and I can hardly wait until they finish so I can go back into “my space”. I LOVE your scrap quilt. Would you mind sharing the pattern and the fabrics. Thanks for all your advice.

  11. Karen Voyles says:

    Since I discovered sewing I tend to sew first then clean later. Lol

  12. Audrey says:

    Clean first? You’re kidding, right? Sewing almost always wins out. Thanks for the chance to win. Love your quilt!

  13. Clare says:

    Quilting before cleaning, cooking, etc.!!!

  14. I quilt first. I always clean my sewing room – the rest of the house well when I find the time.

  15. Joan says:

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  16. Mary Young says:

    To clean or sew is the ultimate conundrum for me!!! I am learning to let go and say the heck with cleaning and do something that I enjoy! The house can wait.

  17. Nora Brofford says:

    I have retired from cleaning to buy fabrics and quilt. When I get the urge I clean.Do have to do laundry.

  18. Karen Propes says:

    Quilting comes first in this house.When I’m quilting I am where I am at that moment the sewing machine – I don’t think about my (messy) house.

  19. I jump right into quilting, sometimes before I change from PJs! I am trying to turn a new leaf and do the dishes and sweep the floor BEFORE I start quilting; sometimes it works and sometimes the project is yelling louder and I go to the machine and just don’t look a the sink or the floor!!

  20. I clean first, otherwise Mom yells and I don’t enjoy the quilting – or worse yet, waits until I go to work and then goes in and cleans my sewing stuff, and I can’t find ANYTHING.

  21. I do a little cleaning every day and quilt every afternoon

  22. Donna Keating from N. Texas says:

    Housecleaning is very low on the to do totem pole at my house.

  23. Laurie Spear says:

    When the fur balls tumble I have to clean the house so quilting gets put on the back burner. One day I had quilt friends over to play. The sun was shining into the house, to my embarrassment the fur balls showed there ugly heads. We all laughed but now I’ve made the vacuum my best friend the sewing machine is a close second.
    My two shaggy black dogs sure do shed.

  24. Jofrid says:

    Definately not cleening my house. LOL hugs Jofrid

  25. I try to keep a clean, tidy house so that I do not feel guilty sewing at least one hour a day. However, I’ve recently moved so cleaning the house has taken priority. The sewing machine sits waiting…..

  26. pattiO says:

    In terms of cleaning, I write a check for the cleaning ladies. This leaves me time to quilt, guilt-free!

  27. Kathie says:

    I use to make sure everything was clean . . . now I’m lost in my quilting projects, the dust is gathering and there is fabric and projects in every room! I love it :-)!!

  28. Vicki H says:

    The dust is just going to come back…let it stay a while longer. I will sew!

  29. Lori says:

    A little of both. With young ones running around there is always something that needs a quick cleaning.

  30. Ellie says:

    I do a little of both…much more fun to quilt instead of clean house, though!

  31. lattegirl40 says:

    Drop everything to quilt!!!! Come on was there really any doubt!!! Lol!!! But when I have sat there so long and need a change of position I go complete something on my check list of chores!!

  32. gussek says:

    I clean first. that way I can devote the rest of the day to quilting.

  33. Deborah says:

    I am a little past 60 years old and I know by now that the house cleaning will always be there. When my machine calls, I go.

    • Jennifer says:

      Hello All,

      I’ve had the best time reading the comments–some great giggles in the bunch. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Yes, I know it’s a silly question. When quilting calls, we do indeed drop everything. But I’m so jealous of those of you who have husbands who clean so you can quilt!


  34. Pauline Pire says:

    Well I am so luck I have a Hubby that helps clean the house!

  35. Sherri says:

    clean house first then quilt quilt quilt

  36. Jane from MA says:

    I TRY to clean first – so I know I can quilt/sew with a clear conscience.

  37. Laura Tawney says:

    It’s probably half and half for me quilting vs cleaning. There are times I can live with some disorder and then there are times that cleaning has to take precedence so I can concentrate on the quilting and it feels good to have it clean and is not so distracting. Decluttering also helps:)
    I missed the last post and I’m fascinated by the facing idea. I will definitely need the magazine. Thanks for the tip! I’m in love with your quilt that is a gift for your sister-in-law. It’s so fresh and bright and I would absolutely love to win the Jelly Roll Quilts book!

  38. merriejo says:

    Monday morning is cleaning day — husband vacuums and picks up, I dust and clean the bathrooms. Easy peasy…with no pets, no kids the house stays pretty clean all week. I can quilt the entire week. Yeah!
    Love your scrapy quilts. Thanks for sharing.

  39. lynn says:

    Me again. I clicked before saying – always quilt unless visiters are arriving soon and the house is a complete mess wherein housework must come first.

  40. lynn says:

    Hey Jennifer, thanks for the great quilt (I’m drooling) and just for sharing. I love the back, Kaffe Fassett?

  41. Bonnie Y says:

    Love that quilt! The setting really was perfect for it. I also would much rather start a new project then clean!

  42. Donna W says:

    Clean the house, you have to be kidding!!!!! Once and a while though, I will have to clean in my sewing room first, so that I can find an area to work.

  43. Pat says:

    Ha! If I cleaned the house and did all the other jobs first, I’d never get to the quilting. Housework can wait! I’ve waited a lifetime for quilting days.

  44. Sharri Marich says:

    If the health department is threading to come ill clean otherwise its quilt , quilt, quilt!!

  45. Oh yes….drop everything and quilt, quilt, quilt!

  46. Luci says:

    The quilt you made is beautiful, so modern and colorful.

    As far as cleaning, that only comes first if I am expecting company. Otherwise, quilting.

  47. Hilda says:

    I sent the whole day yesterday in my sewing room, never got out of my sweats. My favorite day this week! Love the quilt for your sister!

  48. Ann Dunn says:

    no contest….quilting trumps cleaning the house any day.

  49. Diane says:

    I clean for a while, then quilt for a while.

  50. V. Bailey says:

    I’m with the person whose standards are considerably different than in earlier years — dust will ALWAYS be there but the ability to quilt? Maybe not!

  51. Rosemary says:

    I am a procrastinator. I would rather quilt than clean anyday-anything to avoid cleaning, but I confess I try to do some of both.

  52. sewfrench says:

    If the house needs cleaned bad enough for me to not be sewing, then surely someone needs to pick up the slack?!!

    Beautiful quilt palette and photoshoot!

  53. Candy says:

    The photo shoot couldn’t have been any better even if it was planned! Give’s Kaffe a run for his money – ha!

  54. Sew, Sew, Sew…Cleaning can wait!! I admire your great speed and love the quilt. As you age you really slow down.

  55. Jane H. says:

    That is a beautiful quilt. I would much rather sew than clean! Would love to make a jelly roll quilt from one of the patterns in the book.

  56. Vivian Oaks says:

    As a general rule, I’ll clean a little, quilt a little…. However, the past three weeks I really wanted to finish the quilt for my son/daughter-in-law that I started before their wedding. Their 5th (yes, 5th!) anniversary was this past Thursday, so I put everything else on hold, and sewed for hours every day. I STILL didn’t get it done until a week ago, but it’s DONE!!! 22 hours just to hand-sew the binding on this past week, ’cause it’s huge, but it’s DONE!!!! Now I suppose I’ll have to finally do the dishes in the sink when I get home from work today, since I’m leaving on a retreat this afternoon! :-) :-) DH probably wouldn’t appreciate not being able to get to the coffeepot while I’m away! :-)

  57. Sheila says:

    Definitely quilt , the dust bunnies can wait , thanks for the chance and I love the quilt !

  58. Sue Staum says:

    Your quilt is beautiful and your question so easy- drop everything and QUILT!!!

  59. Sandy A in St. Louis says:

    I have to clean thearea around where I am working (kitchen, laundry room, bathroom) before I can quilt. The rest of the house can stay a mess! As loong as I can see the clean rooms around me, I am okay. :P

  60. Jane says:

    I’m all for insane fun! Love the quilt…and it really did look great with all the coordinating furniture, pillows & rug. Thanks for the giveaway!

  61. Chris Portsr says:

    I loved the serendipity photo shoot, absolutely perfect! Congrats too to the long arm quilter, she really put the finishing touches to your lovely quilt.
    Chris Porter- currently somewhere in France!

  62. Sally MB says:

    Quilt! My husband is really good at cleaning.

  63. Peggy O'Connor says:

    Are you kidding??? This is a no brainer…I drop everything to quilt!!! Dust can wait for another day…

  64. Linda Peevy says:

    Beautiful quilt – I love the backing. My sewing machine “calls” my name – I never hear from the vacuum.

  65. sue says:

    Clean my house? Not so much and certainly not instead of sewing!

  66. I’m not sure i can participate in this giveaway, because i’m from abroad, but I’ll give it a try! :) Although I love my sewing machine, I prefer to clean first, so I can sew with tranquility and joy!

  67. Theresa Early says:

    Are you serious? I do clean but I would “drop everything” to quilt, not to clean!

  68. cindyandroy says:

    Usually…let the dust pile up. This time, though, I did a spot of cleaning to get ready for our 50 th Anniversary guests. Today, however , back to the sewing machine!

  69. Diana says:

    Jelly rolls are the best! I love those strips :)

  70. Mar says:

    I usually clean first so I can enjoy the sewing, but my standards for the house have changed over the years. The dust will always be there, so let it wait until it’s worth the trouble.

  71. Cleaning house?? What is that? Move stuff off my sewing table is about as far as it gets. :)
    I really love that quilt. The colors are so wonderful!

  72. Linda Vanderbaan says:

    Clean my house? ummm… no… the sewing machine rules!

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