Archive for the ‘Kansas City Star BOM’ Category

I posted a correction yesterday to the Happily Ever After quilt pattern in my book.

Today I want to show you some other versions of the quilt.

Here’s the original block as it appeared in the newspaper back in 2015, called Domestic Bliss:

Here’s the bonus project quilt, named Happily Ever After in honor of Dale and Hazel’s marriage:

I made this version with scraps reminiscent of the early 1950s in a solid plain white background, leaving out the applique.

But I wanted to make another version even more scrappy.

So I used modern low-volume prints and scrappy prints to create a throw-sized version of the same quilt:

This version uses only 20 blocks, and ends up smaller than the bed-sized quilt in the book, which uses 30. Here’s a close-up of some of the blocks, so you can get a better look at how I mixed up the fabrics:

Here’s what I put on the back — I thought it fit with this quilt so well! And, I got it on clearance, which only makes it an even better choice.

My friend, Linda, has made two other versions of the Happily Ever After quilt! For this first one, she made 12 blocks all alike, and put on a wide border. In the corners of the wide border, she used blocks from Victoria Findlay Wolfe’s Snack Set Templates to make little blocks.

In her second version, she again used a set color palette and all 20 of her blocks are the same — I love, love, love this one! It has such a calm and soothing feel about it.

When I taught this class in conjunction with our local repertory theater’s production of “Quilters: The Musical”, my students all worked on blocks in the workshop that day, so here are a few pictures of the blocks they made.

This is where Linda started the blue version of her quilt (above):

Gyla, with a great bold color choice for background:

A different Linda:

Pam and her sister made theirs together, then finished them into a Quilt of Valor after the workshop!

I don’t know whose this is, since I cut them off in the photo, but I like it!

And here’s Edie (who just so happens to be one of the editors of my book!), with her block — I love the fussy cut seahorse in the center!

So I hope these give you some ideas and inspiration for other ways to use the Domestic Bliss block to make your own version of a Happily Ever After quilt.

You can purchase the individual Domestic Bliss block pattern (pictured above) by itself from my Etsy Shop here. It’s called “Hazel’s Diary, Block #8 PDF File”.

You can also get the book from my Etsy Shop if you want ALL the patterns. This is what the book looks like:

If you already have the book, be sure to make note of the correction for this particular quilt pattern in yesterday’s post here.

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When you get too many cooks in the kitchen, something is bound to go a little bit wrong.

Since my book has come out, there have been two errors discovered. These are not in the main Hazel’s Diary quilt, but in a couple of the bonus projects — my two favorite bonus projects, no less!

So if you have a copy of the book, and these corrections are not included in your copy, please make note of them now.

The first correction is simply a typo, as far as I can tell. It’s under the bonus project, Happily Ever After, which is on page 74.

On page 75, in the Supply List, it should say 5 yards of background fabric. (not 2, as it is printed)

The second correction is a bit more involved, and it’s under the bonus project, Fancy Farm Girl, which is on page 82. This is still my favorite quilt in the book!

The correction belongs in column 2 on page 84:

You can download this correction as a PDF file by clicking here: Fancy Farm Girl Correction. Then you can print it out and put it with your book, so you’ll have it.

When these were first discovered, I was hugely disappointed, but upon looking through all the other errata posted on C&T’s website, I realized that my book is not nearly the only one this has ever happened to. I just wanted so badly for it to be perfect!

I apologize if this has caused any of you a problem when making either of these quilts, too. I guess no matter how hard you try, you can’t catch every single thing, when there are too many pairs of eyes on it, and too many copies of it floating around amongst all the editors. Lesson learned the hard way!

If you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to ask. And as always, Happy Stitching!

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There have been several Hazel’s Diary quilts appearing all over the place, now that the Block-of-the-Month is finished running, and the book has been out for awhile!

I’ve spotted several at various quilt shows I’ve attended, and some makers have even sent me pictures.

I’m thrilled to get to share some of these quilts with you!

First up, I’ll show you a pair of them hanging together at my guild’s annual quilt show. The one on the left was made by my friend, Cindy, and the one on the right was made by my sister, Katy.

You can see more pictures of Katy’s version, which we’ve named “Hazel Meets Elvis” in this post HERE.

I spotted not one, but TWO different versions of a Hazel’s Diary quilt at the Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival back in June. I was floored by this black version done by Wilma Lamfers. Wilma had sent me pictures of it earlier when she got it finished, but getting to see it in person at the show was a real treat! (Wilma’s version was beautifully quilted by Ida Houston.)

This version by JoAnn Borchelt done in all 1930s reproduction fabrics has such a soft look to it. JoAnn’s quilt was expertly quilted by Jane Bromberg.

I found out through Instagram that Maria was making a beautiful version of the quilt, and when I went to a retreat in Minnesota last summer, I found out that Maria lives close to where we were, and she came over to visit and meet all of us retreaters, AND then . . . she invited us out to her house at the lake for dinner, and we got to tour her gorgeous home and see her quilting studio, and I got to see her quilt for myself, hanging in her stairwell! How often would something like that actually happen? It was so unreal — and so fun — and Maria is wonderful! So is her quilt — I love her turquoise border in place of the gray, and I’m really wondering why I didn’t think of that! Maria’s quilt was wonderfully quilted by Rebecca Silbaugh of Ruby Blue Quilts. And Maria knits, too — such gorgeous creations — if you’re on Instagram, go follow her @quiltmomoffive — you’ll love her as much as I do!

This version was made by Paula Smith, and quilted by Becky Collis (find her at Collis Country Quilting on FaceBook), and I spotted it hanging in the Marshall, Missouri, quilt guild’s annual show last year. So fun to see, and great work by both of these gals!

A couple of my friends have made their own versions, too. My friend, Linda, made her outer border checkerboard red and gray. I got to quilt this one for her!

And Jeannie made her version with an entirely different border, which I really love, too. All the extra red is wonderful, as are the scrappy squares set on point. Jeanie’s quilt was quilted by Jessica Defibaugh at Sew Sweet Quilt Shop.

Very inspiring, huh? I really love seeing the personal touches and the spin-off ideas that all these quilters put on their quilts.

If you’ve made one of your own, I’d love to see it — send me pictures or links!

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It’s Memorial Day weekend! The official beginning of summer, right?

It’s now safe for My Cowboy to wear his white cowboy hat for the season — whew!

To help kick off your own summer in retro style, C&T Publishing is offering up my “Summer of ’51 Tablecloth” pattern for free on their blog this week.

It’s the tablecloth pattern from my book, “A Simple Life: Quilts Inspired by the ’50s“.

You can get the tablecloth instructions HERE, if you don’t already own the book. Or, if you’d like to own the book and have all the patterns, you can purchase it HERE.

Also, don’t forget that the quilting design pattern for the tablecloth is also available for free on the free downloads page for The Life of Hazel Ilene.

For some added entertainment, check out my interview with C&T Publishing HERE.

I’m hard at work on the next Quilt-Along that will begin later this summer, so stay tuned!

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Best. Christmas. Ever.

On December 25, 1952, Hazel declared it her Best Christmas Ever.

She got everything she wanted but a watchband!

In 1965, Hazel gave birth to a little baby boy on Christmas Eve. I’m wondering if that Christmas perhaps replaced 1952’s Christmas as her Best Christmas Ever?

Hazel loved Christmas, and I’m pretty sure that the gatherings with family meant more to her than the presents, but she loved those, too!

I knew that I wanted to include a Christmas quilt in the book because of this, so I used the traditional Christmas Star quilt block for one of the blocks in the main Hazel’s Diary quilt, and drew some poinsettia appliqué to go on top of it.


The Christmas quilt I designed for the book is called “Best. Christmas. Ever.” and it uses the Christmas Star block in a medallion setting. I took the appliqué off the blocks, and moved it into the large triangles around the center block.


I also wanted to do an unexpected color combination as a nod to the early 1950s, when table linens had motifs in odd colors, such as red horses or gray flowers. When I saw the Chalkboard Christmas fabric by Melissa Ybarra of Iza Pearl Designs for Windham Fabrics, I knew it was what I wanted to use for this quilt.


This quilt is sized to make a great wall hanging or table topper for your Christmas decorating, or even a nice bed topper.


I’ve been wanting to try the block in some new modern fabrics as well, so I chose some pieces from Holly’s Tree Farm and The Cookie Exchange, both lines by Sweetwater for Moda. I made just two blocks, and added some triangles to join them together into this little 18″ x 36″ table mat.


I fussy cut the block centers to feature a couple of the cookie recipes from The Cookie Exchange fabric:



I did some very simple outline quilting on it, so that I wouldn’t have stops and starts or any knots to tie.

You could also make just one block with the appliqué, and add a border to it for a small square wallhanging or table mat. Lots of options!

The block pattern and the pattern for the Christmas quilt can be found in my book, “A Simple Life: Quilts Inspired by the ’50s“, or you can download just the block pattern by itself (Month 6 of the BOM) — both in my Etsy shop. Both versions have full-sized appliqué patterns for the poinsettia appliqué.

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Is there any better combination?

Cotton and Chocolate is a wonderful quilt shop located in Thousand Oaks, California. Voted one of the Top Ten Shops by Quilt Sampler Magazine in 2012, this shop does some amazing things. I visited their booth at QuiltCon in Pasadena last February, and their samples were jaw-dropping!

I’m mentioning them here today because . . .

For their Saturday Sampler Club in 2017, they are doing the Hazel’s Diary quilt!!

And today is the sign-up day!


So if you’re anywhere near Thousand Oaks, get yourself to the quilt shop and sign up! If Cotton and Chocolate happens to be your local quilt shop, then consider me jealous. They’re limiting enrollment to 100 spots, and you can read all the details in their latest newsletter from their website.

I’ll be following their progress all year; I’m so excited to see their quilts!

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My sister, Katy Kitchen, pieced and appliquéd a couple of projects for the book. One was the quilt called Dear Diary that is an alternate version of the main quilt. If you’re looking for a different setting for your blocks that isn’t as large or involved as the Hazel’s Diary quilt, Dear Diary may be just the option you’re looking for.



Since Katy had all the patterns in her possession early because of helping me, she was doing some secret sewing behind my back the whole time!

She arrived at my house one day and flopped out the most gorgeous version of the Hazel’s Diary quilt — it took my breath away! Have I mentioned that my sister is a color genius? Well, she is — and the color way of this quilt is one of my favorites. Ever.

I took one look at it and said, “OH! That’s so ‘Hazel Meets Elvis’!” and the name stuck.


We don’t know if Hazel liked Elvis, but my sister is an over-the-top super-dedicated Elvis fan. Since our mother loved music of all kinds, and also movies, we are guessing that she was probably a major Elvis fan in her own right.

My sister visits Graceland at least once a year, and we do it when we’re already nearly there to go to the AQS Show in Paducah every spring. We just swing on down to Memphis and include that in our trip. This year, we took the quilt along, and photographed it at the gates of Graceland!

Here are a few close-up shots of it.


Check out the polka dots!


I really really love this quilt in these colors.


I did the quilting for her, using pink and black threads. It was a fun one to do!

Does this give you any ideas for making the quilt in other color schemes? The possibilities really are endless!

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International Quilt Market is later this week in Salt Lake City. It’s the twice-yearly trade show for the quilting industry, where industry professionals and quilt shop owners can go to promote their new stuff or see all the new stuff they want for their shops or businesses.

We’ll get to see all the newest fabric lines coming out, watch demos of new tools and gadgets, look at lots of new patterns and books, and get inspired. They also have an entire schedule of professional development classes that attendees can take to help them run their businesses better. It’s quite a deal!

Since my book just came out:



I’ll be at Market this time to help promote it.

I’m participating in a Schoolhouse session on Thursday at 1:20 with a couple more Kansas City Star Quilts authors.

Schoolhouse is a series of professional development presentations given in 30-minute increments all day long. There are hundreds of sessions to choose from, given by designers, authors, and industry folks — chock full of ideas for what shop owners can do with all the new products and trends that are coming out. Then the shop owners bring all those great ideas and products home to their shops for us, as quilt shop customers, to enjoy!

I’m also doing a book signing in C&T Publishing’s booth (#2141) on Saturday at 11:00.

That leaves Friday open for me to run around and see everything! And it’ll feel like running — there’s a lot to see in a short time at Market. I hope my new boots are really comfy!



If you are someone who attends Quilt Market, be sure and look me up — I’d love to meet you!

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A Simple Life

They’re on the way!!! Woohoo!

“A Simple Life: Quilts Inspired by the ’50s” is available now!


To get your signed copy, you can purchase it here in my Etsy shop, or contact me if you prefer a different method, and we’ll work something out.

I also urge you to check with your local quilt shop, as I hope a lot of shops will be carrying it — buying from your LQS helps support them, and saves you shipping costs.

Here’s a couple more sneak peeks of some of the projects you’ll find in the book.

This quilt is called Happily Ever After:


And my favorite quilt in the entire book — I love this quilt so much — is called Fancy Farm Girl:


There are nine projects total included in the book. I hope you’ll love them all as much as I do!

If you order now, I’ll be shipping books on Monday, May 2nd, and Friday, May 6th. After that, I should have them in stock for immediate shipment at the time you place your order.

If you prefer to purchase from me in person, check HERE for a schedule of where I’ll be doing book signings, and visit me there!

If your group or organization would like a trunk show on “The Life of Hazel Ilene”, just give me a holler and we’ll work out the details.

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I have it on good authority . . . altho I AM from the Show-Me State . . . that “A Simple Life: Quilts Inspired by the ’50s” is shipping next week! Woohoo! Finally!


I thought I’d show you a few sneak peeks over the next few days, as much as I’m allowed to.

I’m gonna start with this lovely shot of all the quilts in one big stack!


I took these photos during the photo shoot we did for the book at The Vintage House.


We played around with props quite a bit, switching things in and out of the photos.


Here’s Aaron, trying to get the stack to sit just right:


I’ll let you guess which one ended up in the book!

I love this shot of all the quilts from the book together.


The book has 9 projects in it, the main one being the Block-of-the-Month quilt, Hazel’s Diary.

There are some alternate versions of the Hazel’s Diary quilt, and lots of spin-off projects, including 6 more quilts. I love quilts. Quilts are what I want to make, so my book is full of quilt projects!

Here’s a sneak peek of one of the alternate versions. This one was pieced and appliquéd by my sister, Katy. You’ll love it (I hope)!


I mentioned earlier that the next quilt-along is starting in May. I’ll have more information on it coming real soon. It’s a project that didn’t make it into the book, a wonderful scrappy quilt called Canning Season, so stay tuned for the announcement of that, as well as the official announcement that the book is out!

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