April Showers Embroidery Pattern

I finished stitching this embroidery hoop just in time for an overcast and rainy April week. I hung it on a very sunny Sunday and snapped a picture before the clouds rolled back in.


I used a couple rows of loose french knots to outline the cloud and satin stitch for the raindrops. I settled on using 7 different blue/green/violet DMC flosses for the raindrops, after much waffling between rainbow and blues.

I just put the PDF pattern up on Craftsy, and I’ve made swatches available on Spoonflower  (for those of you who hate transferring paper embroidery patterns). For my hoop I used a Spoonflower swatch on Kona cotton.

Resizing the Clockwise Pinwheel Block

Last week I scaled up my Clockwise Pinwheel block from 4.5″ to 12.5″ (unfinished). This block is going to Karen, this month’s Sew2Bee2 queen bee for the Minneapolis Modern Quilt Guild.

A photo posted by @carriebee04 on

This week I’m working on creating templates for the 12.5″ block. They should be done and up on Craftsy by Friday.

Tutorial: Clockwise Pinwheel Coasters

I have a tutorial for my Clockwise Pinwheel Coasters! You’ll need:

  • A copy of the templates
  • 11 different scraps of fabric: 8 for the pinwheel, 1 for background, 1 for backing, and 1 for binding
  • scrap of batting

Gather your supplies. I chose a rainbow of fabrics for the pinwheel. Download and print the templates. I like to iron a few layers of freezer paper to the back of my templates before cutting them out – they’re more durable and (I think) the extra thickness makes cutting easier.


Cut the following pieces:

  • 5″ square of batting
  • 5″ square of backing fabric
  • 2″ x 24″ strip of binding fabric
  • 8 triangles for the pinwheel
  • 4 background A pieces
  • 4 background B pieces


Lay out your coaster. Alternate background A and B pieces around the outside of the pinwheel.


Line up the background pieces right-sides-together with the triangles. On the right is Background A lined up with a triangle, on the left is Background B lined up with a triangle and ready to sew. Notice the colorful “ears” peaking out behind the background.


Stitch the pieces together using a scant 1/4″ seam allowance. Start stitching at the straight edge and stitch towards the “ears.” Press the seams open. Lay out your coaster again.


Stitch together pairs of triangles. Press the seams open.


Stitch the squares together. Press the seams open. Make the quilt sandwich (top-batting-backing) and quilt your coaster. Trim. Bind. Repeat 3x more for a set of coasters. Cheers!

A photo posted by @carriebee04 on

Clockwise Pinwheel Coasters

This spring the MMQG hosted a “get inspired” challenge. The guidelines were to find inspiration and use it to make a quilty project. Inspirations and projects were shared at the April meeting, which I had to miss 🙁

I spent the first months of this year finding inspiration in everything… board games, sunsets, bookcovers. I noticed Evil Twin beers – their labels are fantastic and so many of them would translate easily into modern quilts. Their logo even looks like a quilt block.

I searched and searched for this quilt block. Whirlygig? That’s a completely different block. Sawtooth? That’s another quilt block, which I think looks less like a sawblade than this one. Sawblade? Pinwheel? 8-pointed star? swirly 8-pointed star? 8-pointed star pieced with templates? It seems like this is one kind of pinwheel block, with the pins wheeling in the opposite direction than normal. Who is the authority on quilt blocks and their names? My searches grew increasingly vague yet wordy.
I stepped away from Google and whipped up templates for what I am calling the Clockwise Pinwheel block. Printed at 100% it will make 4.5″ (unfinished) blocks, a perfect size for coasters.


A photo posted by @carriebee04 on

I made 4 variations: rainbow, half rainbow, two-tone and monochrome. I’ll be making more cool-colored coasters soon so the blue one will not look so lonely. I’ll post a tutorial next week as well. Cheers!

Giveaway Day!


It’s Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day! I’m giving away one of my quilt patterns to a lucky reader. The winner can choose from the Macro Plaid Quilt Pattern:


Or the Two Carat Quilt Pattern:


Or the Pantry Staples Pattern:


Leave a comment by Sunday May 10th to be entered to win. I’ll notify the winner via email by Wednesday May 13th. If you need a prompt, let me know what size quilt you usually make. For a bonus entry, follow me on Instagram and leave a comment with your Instagram username.

Can’t wait for your pattern? You can purchase your pattern now and still enter the drawing. If you win I’ll refund your purchase price (or you can choose a second pattern).
Good luck, and happy Giveaway Day!
Update: congrats to Cheri, commenter #30! I’ve sent you an email 🙂

Two Carat Quilt Pattern

I’m thrilled to release a new quilt pattern today – the Two Carat quilt. It’s a clean geometric design that works equally well with solids and prints. The pattern includes directions for two sizes – baby (36″ x 48″) and throw (60″ x 72″) – along with templates and detailed cutting diagrams. Fabric is used efficiently and there are minimal leftovers. You will not have a pile of half-diamonds left over from this project!


This is the baby size quilt in girly-girl pinks and blues. The quilt top requires (2) 1/2 yard cuts and (5) 1/4 yard cuts – so a total of only 2 1/4 yards.


I finished the quilt with simple straight-line quilting 1/4″ from the seams so it is extra crinkly and cuddly. I think this quilt would also look sharp with a baby’s name or birth year free-motion quilted in one of the large diamonds.


Here’s a second baby quilt with Elk Grove fabrics by Jay-Cyn. This fabric is gorgeous and so, so soft – perfect for a baby quilt! I used 8 different prints for this variation: 2 half-yard cuts of solids and 6 fat quarters in different prints.

The throw quilt uses the same size templates, just more pieces. The layout for the throw quilt includes 2 sets of large diamonds.

You’ll invest more time in the cutting than you will in the piecing. Cutting diamonds and triangles using templates takes a little more time (I think) than cutting rectangles with a ruler, but piecing the quilt top goes quickly. The pattern includes tips for accuracy in cutting and piecing. This pattern is suitable for intermediate or adventurous advanced beginners.

You can find the Two Carat quilt pattern on Etsy and Craftsy.

Pantry Staples pattern

I’ve been working on a new pattern, and it’s finally ready to share! It’s a set of paper piecing templates for 14 different bottles and jars, and 15 different labels. It’s a choose-your-own-adventure kind of a pattern – you can mix and match the labels and containers, or make containers without labels. My favorite block I’ve made so far is the little red jar of cherry pie filling.


A close runner-up for favorite is the little blue jelly jar.


The little round spice jar is the smallest block, measuring just 2″ x 2″. I’ve been slowly gathering more text prints, to make cute labels like the one on the right.


The milk bottle is the largest block, measuring 4″ x 7 7/8″. The tulip jar on the right is modeled after the Weck canning jars that are so popular now.


I used the blocks to create a table runner, 12″ x 40″. I used straight-line quilting, spacing the lines using the edge of my walking foot.


This was such a fun pattern to make – drawing all the different jars and labels was quite addictive. I want to turn everything into a paper piecing pattern now!

You can find the Pantry Staples pattern for sale at Craftsy and Etsy.



Baby Plaid Quilt Pattern

I’ve been kicking around the idea of a plaid quilt for a while. This summer I did a lot of sketches, some math, bought some fabric and stitched a baby quilt. And then I wrote up the pattern.


I wanted a simple, bold, macro-view of a plaid pattern. I wanted the crossing of stripes to mimic a woven plaid, where two stripes combine to create a new color. I also wanted it to be efficient – quick and easy to piece, with minimal leftover fabric. Although the top of the quilt uses 10 different fabrics, there is not a lot leftover. For 5 of the fabrics only a fat eighth or 1/8 yard is required.


The finished dimensions are 36″ x 50″, which is big enough to cover a standard toddler bed. I made this quilt for a baby boy, but I know it would look equally cute in girly colors. I already have plans for a few more.


I quilted the background pretty densely and quilted into the plaid stripes by about 1/8″. I think straight lines at a 45 degree angle across the whole quilt or meandering in the background would also look great.


I’ve written up the pattern and it’s available in my etsy shop. The pattern includes tips for selecting fabric, detailed instructions and diagrams for cutting and piecing the top.

Fruit bowl

I want to put together a little set of knitted play food. I was inspired by all the fancy schmancy play kitchens I’ve seen lately and some adorable knitting patterns I found on ravelry. I’ve started with the fruit bowl:


Figure 1. Still life with fruit

I used this pattern from Peachcake Knits for the lemon and lime. (ravelry link) The (so simple it may not be worth writing up) orange pattern is my own, below. Yarn is Cascade 220 for all fruits.


Orange (ravelry link)

With US5 DPNs, cast on 6 stitches and join in round.

Row 1: Kfb all sts

Rows 2, 4, 6, 8, 10: knit

Row 3: K1, Kfb. Repeat 6 times

Row 5: K2, Kfb. Repeat 6 times

Row 7: K3, Kfb. Repeat 6 times

Row 9: K4, Kfb. Repeat 6 times

Row 11: K5, Kfb. Repeat 6 times

Row 12-15: knit

Row 16: K5, K2tog. Repeat 6 times

Rows 17, 19, 21, 23: knit

Row 18: K4, K2tog. Repeat 6 times

Row 20: K3, K2tog. Repeat 6 times

Row 22: K2, K2tog. Repeat 6 times. At this point, you should start stuffing your orange with fiberfill.

Row 24: K1, K2tog. Repeat 6 times

Row 25: K2tog. Repeat 6 times. Finish stuffing your orange with fiberfill.

Cut yarn, thread tail through remaining 6 stitches. Embroider a green asterisk

(*) on the top. Weave in all ends. Play with your food 😛

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