Anka's Treasures

Mr. Frosty Wall Hanging

How cute is Mr. Frosty! This pattern and fabric are designed by Heather Peterson of Anka’s Treasures whom I had the pleasure to meet in August 2021 at her presentation for my quilt guild. After seeing her trunk show of quilts, I purchased this kit (and some other patterns) at the meeting.

I love this classic snowman with some quilt blocks thrown in to look like snowflakes.

The original pattern was designed as a table runner, with the two snowmen placed opposite each other, head to head. As I pieced them together I decided they really need to be featured on a wall where I can easily see them, so I modified them and added a top border to each so they could be separate wall hangings.

Finished Size: 20.5" x 29"
Pattern: Mr. Frosty from Trendy Tables 3 book by Anka's Treasures
Fabric: Snowed In by Heather Peterson of Anka's Treasures for Riley Blake
Fat Quarter Shop, Sew Sampler Box

Fast and Flurrious Table Runner and Wall Hanging

The colors and patterns of this Cider fabric are something I wouldn’t have immediately chosen, but I grew to love them as I worked on this project. The fabric and table runner pattern came in a Sew Sampler box.

This was an easy, relaxing project and it was perfect to bring along to a quilt retreat I attended in September 2021. It’s comprised of two different types of blocks, so it was nice to assembly-line sew these and then lay them out to create the rows.

The table runner pattern was written to be even longer, but I modified it and used the remaining fabric to make a wall hanging.

I cycled through a few quilting designs for each shape and added some simple straight lines to the border.

Finished Size: 18.5" x 58.5" for table runner, 26.5" x 27" for wall hanging
Pattern: Fast and Flurrious exclusive to the Fat Quarter Shop Sew Sampler Box for January 2021
Fabric: Cider by BasicGrey for Moda Fabrics
Robin Pickens

Little Bird Song Table Runner

When making a gift for someone I’ve learned it’s just as much about the process of making it as it is about the finished product. First, you spend time picking out the perfect project idea and pattern for the recipient: what are their likes, what is their style, would they use this gift? After that there is much thought and consideration about the fabric selection. Their tastes might not match your own, so you need to consider their favorite colors and what style of fabrics they would like. Then while making it, you try to make everything “perfect”, sometimes ripping out and redoing many seams so the recipient will be pleased with it. It’s more pressure than what you are making something for yourself!

But another thing that goes on during this process is spending time thinking about the person. You picture them using this gift and imagine them surprised and happy to receive it. To handmake something takes a lot of time and you hope the person appreciates the work you put into it, but I’ve come to realize even if they don’t understand all that you’ve done it’s ok. You get to experience the joy of making it and thinking about them and appreciating them which is a gift to yourself.

This is exactly how my Little Bird Song table runner came to be. I decided I wanted to make a Christmas gift for my brother and his girlfriend and thought a table runner would be something useful for their pristinely decorated house. Their (her) style is modern and color palate is exclusively black, white and gray. They enjoy watching birds at their bird feeder, so I thought featuring a bird would be a special touch. I searched for modern bird quilt patterns and came across Little Bird Song by Robin Pickens. Perfect!

The pattern is actually for a wall hanging, so I had to figure out a way to adapt it to a table runner. I started by making two birds and then tried to figure out how to lay them out in a way that made sense for a runner. Through some trial and error (involving sewing and unsewing them multiple times when my ideas didn’t work out), I finally got them situated facing each other on their branches.

After completing my layout design and sewing it together I realized the empty space between the birds would be a perfect place for a candle or centerpiece! It looks intentional but it definitely wasn’t! 🙂

I used various black, white and gray fabrics from my stash, hoping to add interest through a mix of fabric designs instead of using color.

I kept the quilting simplistic using straight diagnol lines because I really wanted the birds to be the focus.

Though this modern design and color scheme aren’t my style, I am very happy with how it turned out! It was a good challenge for me and allowed me to excersize my design skills instead of simply using the exact pattern and fabric choices from a kit. It was an enjoyable gift to make!

Finished Size: 12" x 37"
Pattern: Little Bird Song by Robin Pickens
Fat Quarter Shop, Sew Sampler Box

Starflower Table Runner and Wall Hanging

This fresh, bright floral fabric along with this playful pattern were in my April 2021 Sew Sampler Box from Fat Quarter Shop. I had more than enough fabric for the table runner in the pattern so I made a coordinating wall hanging out of the rest!

I had fun quilting the main octagon shapes using a curved ruler which made perfectly fitting orange peel designs. I also played around with creating a secondary diamond shape design in the negative space surrounding the shapes.

I did similar quilting for the wall hanging for extra practice!

Finished Size: 16.5" x 56.5" for table runner, 30" x 27" for wall hanging
Pattern: Starflower Pattern exclusive to the Fat Quarter Shop Sew Sampler Box for April 2021
Fabric: Sunday Stroll by Bonnie & Camille for Moda

Doug Leko, Tabletastic! 2

Southfields Table Runner

When I saw the Southfields table runner pattern in the Tabletastic! 2 book, I immediately thought it would be a great design to use with some patriotic fabric for a Fourth of July display. I gathered up some various red, white & blue prints I had been saving for just this type of project. It was a week before the Fourth at this point, but I was hopeful I could get it done in time! Of course other things got in the way and here we are in August. Let’s not call this late for Fourth of July 2021, but instead, really early for 2022! 🙂

I arranged my fabrics similarly to what was shown in the pattern — forming a gradient-like effect with dark blues in the corner squares going to lighter colors in the middle on each side. Planning and arranging the fabric probably took the longest, after that piecing it together went smoothly. I think it turned out well and gives out the festive vibe I was hoping for!

Finished Size: 15" x 45"
Pattern: Southfields table runner from the Tabletastic! 2 book by Doug Leko/Antler Quilt Designs

Doug Leko, Tabletastic! 2

Manchester Table Runner

The brightly colored strips with loud prints paired with a black solid is not my usual color combination, but I picked out this Manchester Table Runner kit from Millie P’s Quilt Shop and really love how it turned out! Sometimes you need to try something completely different from your norm. This is the third of three Tabletastic! 2 table runners I made during the shop’s virtual retreat in June.

This runner was assembled in such an interesting way using many strip sets and attaching them in an alternating pattern. Since the fabric is definitely the main feature, I kept my quilting very simple and only stitched in the seam lines to accentuate the shapes of the triangles and strips. Any other detailed quilting would have surely gotten lost!

Although this is a smaller runner at only 12 inches wide, I found it fits perfectly on my china buffet in my dining room!

Finished Size: 12" x 34"
Pattern: Manchester table runner from the Tabletastic! 2 book by Doug Leko/Antler Quilt Designs
Fabric: Kaffe Fassett Collective by Kaffe Fassett for Free Spirit Fabrics

Doug Leko, Tabletastic! 2

Eden Park Table Runner

The second table runner I completed from the virtual retreat I attended is Eden Park from Tabletastic! 2. I hadn’t made a design such as this before, so it was fun to try something new!

The thin strips called for in the pattern made this runner a little more difficult to make and keep things from going askew, but it was a good skill builder! I’ve learned that accuracy is so important with something like this.

Since the interesting shape these blocks create is the highlight of the runner, I kept the quilting very simple and did straight-line quilting around the shapes.

Finished Size: 18" x 45"
Pattern: Eden Park table runner from the Tabletastic! 2 book by Doug Leko/Antler Quilt Designs
Fabric: Notting Hill by Amy Smart for Riley Blake

Doug Leko, Tabletastic! 2

Cotswolds Table Runner

Table runners are perhaps one of my favorite types of quilting projects to make. You get the experience of making the quilt blocks, but you don’t have to make too many of them. Plus, the time it takes to quilt and bind the finished product is so fast compared to a large quilt!

Earlier in June, I attended a weekend-long virtual quilt retreat run through Millie P’s Quilt Shop. The theme of the retreat was “Tabletastic 2” and we were to make three specific table runners from Doug Leko’s new Tabletastic! 2 book. This book is excellent, as is its predecessor, Tabletastic!, with high-quality step-by-step instructions for a variety of runners and table toppers. Through demos and instruction from the staff at Millie P’s all weekend, I was able to complete all three runners during the retreat. What a fun event! As a bonus, there was even a guest appearance by Doug on our Zoom call. It was so great to be able to meet him!

So far in my quilting journey, star blocks are my favorite. The unique interlocking stars in the Cotswolds runner really appealed to me and it was fun to make. As precise as I was trying to be, I still managed to lose a few star points… Not sure what went wrong there, but I think it happened while trimming my flying geese blocks. So, per recommendation of the Millie P’s staff, I have now purchased an Ultimate Flying Geese Ruler which I hope will help me next time!

For a smaller project like this I could have quilt it on my regular sewing machine, but I decided to throw all three runners on the longarm to get more practice. For the quilting on this one, I experimented a bit to try to emphasize the interlocked shape the stars create by making a design that flows from one star into the next. I also played around with the negative space around them.

Stay tuned for the other two runners coming soon! 🙂

Finished Size: 16" x 48"
Pattern: Cotswolds table runner from the Tabletastic! 2 book by Doug Leko/Antler Quilt Designs
Fabric: Sophie by Brenda Riddle for Moda

Cluck Cluck Sew

Easter Tulips Table Runner

The last of my spring tulip projects is complete! When I saw this Easter Tulips table runner pattern and fabric kit at a quilt shop, I couldn’t resist. I like the modern style and colors. While I was making this runner, I also made extra tulips and turned them into pillow covers and a wall hanging. It was a great way to work on multiple projects at once!

This runner turned out a bit wider than I was expecting. I almost feel like it’s too big for my table and it would be better as a wall hanging. I might add a hanging sleeve to the back and hang it up next year, but it certainly gives a nice pop of color on my table for now!

I quilted this on my longarm using a curved ruler to mimic petal and leaf shapes. I’m still getting the hang of the machine and fighting a bit with getting the thread tension settings just right but it’s going better each project I quilt!

Finished Size: 17.5" x 46"
Pattern: Easter Tulips from Modern Holiday Table Runners by Cluck Cluck Sew

Fat Quarter Shop, Sew Sampler Box

Cupid Box 2021 – Pillows, Table Runner and Wall Hanging

Just a day before Valentines’ Day and I’ve finished a lovely set of decor! These projects were inspired from the 2021 Cupid Box from Fat Quarter Shop.

The annual Cupid Box from Fat Quarter Shop is a mystery box filled with fabric, a pattern, and exclusive accessories/notions for the holiday. This was my first time getting this box and I was pleasantly surprised! It included a bunch of heart goodies like: clips, a handy tape measure, key ring charm, and ruler grips. The featured fabric was a stack of fat quarters from the “From the Heart” line by Sandy Gervais and an exclusive panel with large images of typewriters, love letters, and phones. There was an exclusive pattern to make a quilt from this fabric, but I went my own way and created some Valentine decor for my house.

I started off making two pillows featuring the large typewriters from the panel. I pieced together squares from the fat quarters to make an outside border. This turned out to be much more difficult than expected because of all the math involved! The typewriter image wasn’t exactly square, so even when I figured out the measurement the border needed to be for two of the sides, I couldn’t copy it for the other two sides and had to adjust the size of my white spacer squares to cover the difference accordingly. It all turned out decently, but by this point I was already regretting branching out and wishing I had a pattern to follow!

Table Runner
Next up was a table runner. I was determined to use up as many images from the panel as possible! I really liked the heart blocks that were included in the quilt pattern, so I made those as designed, but added white borders around them to make them the same size as the love letter and phone images from the panel. I thought surely this would help me put the pieces together easier! Unfortunately, I found that while those blocks lined up nicely with each other, they didn’t line up perfectly with the typewriter (which still wasn’t square!). After trying out a few layouts I decided to add a red border around some of the edges to make the two sides the same height as the typewriter. The design definitely changed from my original vision, but I’m happy with how it turned out.

Wall Hanging
At this point I was ready to be done with these projects, but I still had more panel pieces to use up! 🙂 I had also premade a bunch of hearts when I made the table runner (smart move), so I had some blocks ready to work with. I decided to keep it as simple as I could and cut up strips of the remaining fat quarters to use as sashing around the blocks. I didn’t have enough pieces of each fabric to make solid strips, but I actually like the scrappiness of it!

All in all, I’m very happy with this set of projects! However, I learned that I don’t dream of becoming a pattern designer and instead can’t wait to follow someone else’s math next time!

Finished Size: 20" x 20" for Pillow Covers, 42" x 14.5" for Table Runner, 22.5" x 22.5" for Wall Hanging 
Fabric: From the Heart by Sandy Gervais for Riley Blake Designs