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Moose on the Porch Quilts Blog

  • It's Spring in the Rocky Mountains! A Sale and a Giveaway

    A couple days ago, the temperature hit 70 degrees. With daylight savings time (which I don't particularly care for, but that is a different story), it got dark later, and my kids played outside until it was time for bed. I love it when they play outside all day! It's only better when the trees in our backyard is full of fruit that they can snack on!

    I always know it's spring in Utah when I use the heater in the car in the morning, and the air conditioner in the afternoon.

    With spring in the air, I fall in love with my book Springtime in the Rockies all over again! I wrote this book two and a half years ago with the help of 8 friends of mine who design quilts and live in the shadows of the Rocky Mountains and love them as much as I do. It is published by Kansas City Star. There two things I love about this book:

    1) It's a gorgeous book. Kansas City Star makes beautiful books. I can this book my coffee table quilt book. Besides the fabulous quilts, I asked for a lot of pictures of my mountains to be included. In the pages of this book, you can take a virtual road trip here. I hope it will encourage you to come visit!

    2) The second thing I love about this book is all the different techniques. Each of the nine designers in the book make quilts differently. I enjoy getting to experience the personality of each of the designers.

    Here is one of my quilts in the book, True North. It is made from a charm pack, which is what I am known for. It is also appliqué  which is unusual for me. It was fun to try something different, but I did get dizzy blanket stitching the 33 little circles onto the quilt!



    For more pictures of the quilts included in the book, you can see some on my website:

    You can also see a few sample pages at the Pickle Dish Store: 

    In celebration of spring, I have decided to give away THREE books!



    1) The first book will be given away here on the blog. To enter, comment on this post. I would love to hear what your favorite part of spring is!

    2) The second book will be given away on my Facebook page, To enter, like my Facebook page and comment on the Facebook post.

    3) The third book will be given away on my Instagram page, To enter, follow me on Instagram and comment on the Instagram post.

    Winners will be drawn next Monday, March 23rd.

    In addition to the giveaway, Springtime in the Rockies has been listed for sale on my website. The retail price of this book is $26.95. Until the end of March, the book will be on sale for $10! By one for yourself or a friend.

    Celebrate spring!

  • Bryce Canyon Retreat

    I had the opportunity to spend the later part of last week near Bryce Canyon at a quilt retreat. Sew fun!!!


    I taught two quilt classes. The first class was Swinging Diamonds. It uses the Fons & Porter 60 degree diamond ruler. I wish I had taken pictures. One lady was having a really hard time visualizing how the diamonds went together. By the end of the class, even she had it figured out. She had two diagonal rows done and said she didn't hate diamonds anymore! Yay! MPQ126SwingingDiamonds

    I also showed that class my Rawhide Quilt. It is temporarily a free pattern on the Timeless Treasures Website.Picture 1725

    The next class I taught was Allie's Garden. This pattern came with a summer version, Allie's Garden

    a halloween version,

    Charlotte's Babies

    and a Christmas version that I don't have a picture of yet. These are published though Checker's Cut Loose Press. Ask for them at your favorite quilt shop.

    After my classes were done, I was able to take the short trip into Bryce Canyon National Park and catch the sunrise. Talk about gorgeous!
    Sm 20150207_2Sm 20150207_5Then it was back to sewing, sewing, sewing! I wasn't able to get done what I was "suppose" to do because I saw Sherri McConnell's four patch blocks for the American Patchwork and Quilting quiltalong. Then, I HAD to make my four patch blocks. The next day and a half, I sewed four patch blocks from a jelly roll. Then I took a layer cake and made them into blocks. Unfortunately I ran out of time. I didn't get it laid out or sewed together. Now I am home doing what I am "suppose" to be doing. Perhaps one day I will finish what I am suppose to do and sew what I want to sew.

    Does that ever happen???

  • Round Robin Quilt Finish

    Last year I participated in my first Round Robin. It started with a small group of friends that quickly grew to 12 people. I would recommend doing a round robin with fewer participants. It would have been better doing two groups of 6 rather than one group of 12. Having said that, I LOVE my quilt! We figured out ways to make it work with more people. We adapted it by 1) having two or three people team up to do some of the borders, 2) as in my quilt, doing assymetrical borders - just doing two sides of the border at a time, or 3) having some smaller borders.

    We each started with a center. I decided that I would have no control over how my quilt turned out. I decided to go with something that I thought was fun but a simple idea. As a math teacher, I went with a fun number fabric in the center and scrappy color around it.

    numbers center


    I requested that my quilt be black and white and color, but not rainbow. It then became a running joke that my quilt was being made with rainbow borders. I took this in stride ( I think) trusting my friends to make a quilt I would like.

    It took us a little over a year to complete the quilts. They have been finished for a few months now. In the back of my head, I have been thinking about how to quilt my quilt. Nothing seemed right, but I wasn't thinking too hard. I love how I could think about this without really thinking about it. One day I was working on another project and saw a group of numbers together. It instantly struck me as how I needed to quilt this round robin quilt.

    That was the bee in my bonnet. I digitized the numbers and quilted it the next day.

    numbers close

    I felt like I had to hand bind it because several of us are entering our round robin quilts in the Home Machine Quilting Show (HMQS) in May. Unfortunately, hand binding takes me forever! After two evenings working on it, I had it done.

    numbers back

    It was fun to quilt and bind it and look at my quilt again. Each border has fabulous details in it. The best thing about this quilt is that it is better than anything I would have made if I had set out to make a medallion quilt from my center. Each person who worked on the quilt thinks differently than I do. All of them stayed true to the quilt and interpreted the theme in their own way. numbers full

    The other best part about the quilt is that it is full of personality. There is so much of it that I appreciate that will mean nothing to others. For example, two of the skinny borders are embroidered with bicycles because my friend knows like I like riding bikes. Another friend added a fabric with small orange bikes in it, bikes for me, orange for her. SO FUN!

    My quilt "By the Numbers" is done. If you want to participate in a round robin, I think the most important thing is to do it with a group of friends whose quilting you trust. Medallions are tricky to keep flat. Beginners will need help learning how to put on borders correctly.

    If you aren't ready for a round robin, then a block exchange or even a fabric exchange is another way to go. They are all fun ways to create quilts that celebrate friendship. Give it a try!

  • Blocks from the Past Quilt Along Week 4

    My blocks this week are found on pages 10, 11, and 61.

    The first block is called Windblown Square on page 10. I made this block following the instructions. I liked the instructions for this block, but I would recommend sewing it together using a scant 1/4" seam allowance.


    The second block is the Cakestand Block on page 11. This block I made using different half square triangle methods. For the center, large square, I cut 1-4" background square and 1-4" blue square.

    I used the method where you draw a diagonal line and sew 1/4" on both sides of the line. Here is one place it is shown:

    After you cut on the line, square up the HST to 3 1/2". It makes two HSTs instead of one, but to me, it's worth it.

    For the small HSTs, cut two 2 1/2" squares of the background and two 2 1/2" squares of the color. Square up the HSTs to 2".


    Having to square up the HSTs, makes a better HST. On such a little block, the points of my Cakestand look pretty good.

    My third block is the Pineapple on page 61. This block was rough. I have no hints. If I wasn't assigned it, I would have skipped it!


    I appliqued the pineapple stem first. My stem looks pretty funky, but I am okay with that, Then I appliqued the pineapple. The pineapple was easy, deceptively so. Because the pineapple was so easy, I attempted the scallop. That was a mistake. It almost killed me.

    Halfway through the scallops, I thought I was going to die. It felt like the last half mile of a half marathon. In a half marathon, the last part, I have to talk myself through each block. Each block feels like a mile. The same was true of the scallops. Each little tiny scallop felt like an eternity. I kept telling myself, "I can sew one scallop. Just one." Somehow, I finished.

    It was just one block. I survived. If you like the pineapple, you will survive too. If you don't love the pineapple, then I suggest you skip it. Sorry Marion and Natalie!

    Be sure to post your blocks on the flickr group (!

  • Rescuing an Antique Quilt

    A year or two ago, I came into posession of an antique quilt in terrible condition. No one wanted it. It was headed for the garbage.


    I believe it was made by my great-great grandmother. The pink fabric is disintegrating, but the rest of it is fairly good. Antique 3

    My six year old daughter fell in love with it immediately despite the condition. I gave it to her. She has been using it to sleep with for months even like it is. I told her I would fix it. Now I have started.

    First I ordered a bolt of Moda Bella solid Betty's Pink. Then, a couple days ago, I took the blocks off of the quilt. It didn't take much more than hour. The backing was the pink fabric that was falling apart, so it didn't take much.

    I thought I could put it back together quickly, but I will have to repair the pink in the center of each of the blocks. Now this will be the project that takes a while.

    Wish me luck!

  • BFTPqal - Fabric Selection

    In the Blocks from the Past Quilt Along post this week, Natalie talks about fabric selection and fabric requirements.

    I decided that I wanted to use a layer cake. To make sure it was enough and to provide contrast, I paired it with white as a background fabric. The layer cake I picked is Solstice by Kate Spain for Moda.



    Here is one of the first blocks.IMG_20150108_161659Remember, these finish at 6" square. Those little squares are little. The big squares are 1 1/2" finished. To make only one block wasn't so bad though. That is the interesting thing about these blocks. I wouldn't want to make a whole quilt out of most of the blocks because they are a little fiddly, but one at a time, they aren't bad.

    This block is one I may make a second time with a little bit different colors if I need another block to make the quilt a good size.

    I don't have any expectations for this quilt. I will make as many or as few blocks as I want, see where I am at, design a quilt with what is there, and then make a few more blocks as needed.

    Because I love the fabric, and I love how the blocks are turning out so far, I know I will love the quilt! Sometimes it nice to finish a quilt quickly, but sometimes it is nice to have a project that takes a while.


  • Blocks from the Past Quilt Along

    I am starting off the new year with a quilt along with some friends from the book Teach Yourself Blocks from the Past by Marie Henry and Leisure Arts. We'd love to have you join us!

    The book is out of print, but used copies are available all over online. The quilt looks really old fashioned, but we think it will look good by updating the fabric.


    I am making my quilt out of a Kate Spain layer cake of Solstice. solstice


    The schedule is below. I will be hosting two weeks of the quilt along. I will not be making all of the blocks. My quilt will be as big as it ends up being from as many blocks as I end up making.

    The blocks in this book are 6" finished. This makes some of them a little adventurous. I have started making my blocks-that I will show you on my day. They have been fun!

    First Post:

    IG hashtag #BFTPqal #NMQGsamplerCHALLENGE

    Flickr Group Blocks from the Past QAL


    Week 1 January 5 Intro to QAL and Schedule (Marion)

    Week 2 January 12 Fabric requirements and selection (Natalie)

    Week 3 January 19 page 8,9,60 (Natalie)

    Week 4 January 26 p.10, 11, 61 (Konda)

    Week 5 February 2 p. 13,14,62 (Marion)

    Week 6 February 9 p. 15,16,63 (Machelle)

    Week 7 February 16 p. 17,18,65 (April)

    Week 8 February 23 p. 19,20,66 (Terry)

    Week 9 March 2 p. 21,22,67 (Ginny)

    Week 10 March 9 p. 23,24,68 (Maggie)

    Week 11 March 16 p. 25,26,69 (Emily)

    Week 12 March 23 p. 27,28,70 (Barbie)

    Week 13 March 30 p. 29,30,72 (Tiffany)

    Week 14 April 6 p. 33,34,74 (Maggie)

    Week 15 April 13 p. 35,36,75 (Natalie)

    Week 16 April 20 p. 37,39,76 (Katie)

    Week 17 April 27 p. 40,41,77 (Marion)

    Week 18 May 4 p. 42,43,78 (Barbie)

    Week 19 May 11 p. 44,45,79 (Konda)

    Week 20 May 18 p. 46,47,80 (Machelle)

    Week 21 May 25 p. 48,49,81 (Stacy)

    Week 22 June 1 p. 50,51,82 (Barbie)

    Week 23 June 8 p. 53, 83, 91(Natalie)

    Week 24 June 15 p. 55,84,92  (Tiffany)

    Week 25 June 22 p. 56, 86, 93(Marion)

    Week 26 June 29 p. 87,88,94 (Katie)

    Week 27 July 6 Sashing and setting (Natalie)

    Week 28 July 13  Wrap up (Marion)

  • Children's Books for the Creative Soul

    It's no secret that I love children's books. One of my favorite things to do is sit down and read with my little kids. I decided that it's alright if it isn't quilt related. I am going to start sharing children's book I like every now and then. I am not the only one who likes books.

    This Christmas, I purchased books for all my kids. When these two books arrived, I realized that they were more for me than for my kids.

    The first book is What Do You Do With An Idea. A little boy gets an idea which is shown in the illustrations by an egg with a crown on it. Not all of my ideas turn out so wonderful as this little boy's idea. This books reflects the creative process. I enjoyed the story, but I also loved the art work. I am a sucker for good art work in children's books.


    The second book, The Most Magnificent Thing, is also about the creative process. This book is about a little girl who is trying to make something magnificent. She makes many things that weren't quite right before she figured out how to make what she intended.

    magnificent thing


    I liked how it took her a few tries to get it right and the realization the little girl has before she makes her final product. My favorite part was the reaction of other people to the things along the way.

    I also loved the illustrations in the second book. They have a lot of personality and are a little quirky in the best way.

    Both of these books are relatively new (published this year). I would recommend both of them if your child, or you, have a creative soul.

  • So you want to own a business??? Video Tip

    I am often asked questions from people wanting to start their own business. The first thing I try to do is get them to examine what they really want. Do they just want to earn money designing quilts? If that is all, there are ways to do that without starting your own business. There is a lot to owning a business that people don't think about at first.

    I was asked to make this video with a couple tips. This link should go to a youtube video.

    It is my first video. It isn't fabulous, but it might be helpful. I decided that I should start somewhere. Any tips would be welcome. This is something that does not come natural, and I would like to get better at it.

  • Awarding a Quilt of Valor


    Last Saturday I had the great pleasure of awarding a Quilt of Valor to my husband's uncle who is a Vietnam Vet. He got emotional when I explained to him about the Quilts of Valor organization and what the quilt was for.

    Uncle Scott

    Being around quilts all the time and putting all the hours into making a quilt, sometimes I wonder if people appreciate the quilts we make. It is nice to know when people do appreciate them and understand the love that we make them with.Uncle Scott2


    I have been wanting to make this quilt for years. It has been in the back of my mind like all good intentions. Then I found a fun Christmas golf fabric that I knew he would like. Sometimes things just fall into place, and you just have to go with it. That day I had to pick my son up from school. I was accidentally there 15 minutes early. That was just enough time to plan the quilt!

    When I got home and looked at the fabric that I had to go with the golf fabric, I found a charm pack that was just the right colors! With the charm packs, I could just start sewing! I put half of the blocks together that night and the rest the next day. These are the days I love owning a long arm. I put it right on and quilted it with an easy loop quilting that I thought went with the golf theme - a bunch of holes. My favorite part was the fabulous moda flannel on the back! I washed it so the quilt was super soft and cuddly!

    There was also just enough of the golf fabric to put a band on a presentation case. I used every inch of the 1 yard I bought. Because it was a QOV, I actually put a label on the quilt! I need to be better about labels.

    If you would like to know more about the Quilts of Valor Foundation, you can visit their website:

    I would highly recommend making and/or presenting a QOV. It is a unique experience that you will want to repeat!

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