Plano Quilt Show 2018

Over the weekend, I found myself once at the Plano Quilt Show.  This is one of the shows I tend to visit each season due to the quality of quilts and vendors.  I love shopping at quilt shows!

Click here to view my post from Plano 2017

I may be wrong but there seemed to be more vendors than last year, this made me very happy.

Mini Auction

Mini Quilt Auction Entries

As you walk down one of the hallways, you can check out the Mini Quilt Auction.  I really need to try a mini quilt.


I love to shop – this made me happy!


As usual, I take pictures of the quilts that strike me.  Sometimes they relate to a different topic, technique or other unifying element.  Here are a couple of my favorite Christmas Quilts.

There were many familiar vendors to shop with including, Stitched with Love, The Gray Rooster’s Wood shop – Frederick Ray Herman, Plano Sewing Center, Thomas Sewing Center and more!

Gorgeous Quilts

As always, this quilt show provided no shortage of beautiful quilts.  I tend to like select groups of quilts due to their originality or some other unifying element.  Here are the ones that stood out for me.

Christmas Quilts

There were others, but these two stood out for me.

Colorful Critters

These fun critters all seemed to fit together, the Llamas really made me smile!

String Quilts

String quilts are simple creatures that can provide a great deal of joy.

Other Quilts that Inspired Me

Many of these have paper pieced and/or applique elements. Their sharp points and crisp lines are a joy to enjoy.


This quilt was absolutely gorgeous and while it is difficult to tell, this is actually a two-tone quilt.  The unfortunate part is that the shadows that played on it really didn’t do it much justice.  I wish I could have enjoyed it for it’s full beauty instead of only looking at the top half.

Did you attend the Plano Quilt Show 2018?  What quilts were your favorite?

Quilting the Alta Fenume

In my last post, I shared the creation of my newest applique quilt – Alta Fenume. I also said that the actual quilting of this extra large dragon, would be covered in a separate post.  Here it is.

Custom or E2E

This was one of those questions that was so easy to answer: Custom of course!  The entire quilt easily showed me areas that were perfect for computerized and hand-guided custom work.  I will break down how I approached this next.


Not all parts of this quilt were applique. The borders had personality of their own. This was one of the easiest parts, with all the structure of the floating squares and elegance of the cream sections, there were many directions to take.  I decided to do hand-guided arches in the boxes and computerized flipped feathers in the single fabric borders.

I used Gold thread for the arches, and did not use a ruler for this, I wanted them to look like gold string dangling around the edges.

The feathers were done in a matching thread color.  I really love how this added texture to the outside of the quilt.

The Dragon

The dragon itself was very fun to quilt, each section really did speak for itself.

The first section I tackled was the applique body.  I really wanted scales to add texture to the entire body.  Initially, I drew them out with chalk and then hand-quilted them with a matching green thread.

I was overjoyed with the result!

The smaller elements of the dragon were outlined, doodled, and/or accented in a way that allowed the sections to be properly nailed down and accented.  Then came the wings.

I decided that the wings should have veins, and was happy I did.  This allowed for texture just not too much.  Notice the poofiness?  I really liked that.

Lastly, and lastly because I was lamenting how to quilt it, came the background which the dragon flew in.  I took the blue clouds and did a repeat.  This was my least favorite part, but it works.

I was still having trouble figuring out how to quilt the skies when it dawned on me:  What do you see in the sky?  CLOUDS!

These big, fluffy clouds really did the job.  Not too much quilting-just enough to add a textural element.

Overall, I love this quilt and had a great time showing it off during our guild’s Show and Tell.  No, this wasn’t December – it was our Christmas In July event!

How do you quilt your applique quilts?




Alta Fenume

What does Alta Fenume mean?  BIG DRAGON of course!

The Alta Fenume (elvish of course) quilt was an applique challenge that I imposed upon myself.  The dragon itself is over 3 feet tall (36 inches).

The fabrics I used came from my stash except for the inner wings and body.  I didn’t quite have enough on hand of the colors I liked.  I really love using my stash when I can!

Here are links to other Applique themed posts:

How I applique

Applique banner

How to Applique an Enormous Dragon – Alta Fenume.

The process for creating the dragon was pretty straight-forward.  I created the enlarged image by piecing together regular pages, but you can also take your image to a Kinko’s or other similar business and they can print it in one sheet for you.

Please excuse my attire – it was Christmas in July at our guild 🙂

After printing out the image, it was time to break it apart into the individual elements that would make up the dragon.

To make this work, I used butcher paper and traced all the different elements.  I also numbered and lettered the pieces so it would be easier to know what went where.  This is probably the largest challenge.  I made sure to mark both the original drawing and the smaller pieces.

Yes, this can be very much like a puzzle.


Constructing the quilt was fun and challenging. Alta Fenume was a big boy, so I concentrated on separate elements then put them together.

Here is a sampling of how the layers were approached.  Each element had fusible attached and was cut out and ready to go.

Tips for success

  • Take lots of pictures
    • By taking images each time you layer your pieces, you can re-assemble them on the quilt itself in the same order.
  • Print out your image in reverse if you are using iron-on fusible backing
    • You can see that the original image and final quilt are in two different orientations.  Make sure your images face the direction you want!

One of the best tools I have when quilting is my camera.  I am not only taking pictures for posterity and blogging, I also take pictures to document the stages of my project so when I am ready, I can reproduce the results.

The border was created by using the remaining fabrics.  There wasn’t a specific idea at the beginning, but ultimately I felt that a floating boarder would compliment my floating dragon.

Not quite the end

I was originally going to document this quilt in one post, but I have decided to follow-up with the quilting in an upcoming post.

How do you applique?

Creative Quilters 2018

The Ellis County Quilt Show was held this past weekend.  As in past years, there were so many beautiful quilts to see.  The theme this year was “Garden Party”.

To support the theme of the Quilt Show, Ellis County Master Gardener’s were set up.  Their beautiful booth really helped set the mood.

A Warm Welcome

The Ellis County Quilt Show is one of my husband’s favorites because they continue with the tradition of:

“Men Get In Free!”

As always, the ladies checking us in were so pleasant and welcoming.  In addition, our $8 got us more than admission to the show, we also got a gift bag!

Among the goodies in the bag were: snippet scissors, colorful zippers, Texas wildflower seeds, a quilting charm and much more!  The slip of paper clipped to the bag offered a chance to win a gift certificate also.  All we had to do was get 10 stamps from vendors and turn it in. (I am still waiting to see if I won 🙂 )

The Quilts

There were many amazing quilts to view, I won’t take up space explaining what images can do much better.


There were many great vendors selling everything from fabric to long-arm machines.  A couple of our favorites are pictured below:

Last but not least – for my Nerd Friends

Who would have thought that at a Garden Party quilt show, you would find Star Trek and Star Wars quilts?  I thought they were super fun.

Check out a couple prior shows here:  Ellis County Quilt Show – 2015 and Ellis County Quilt Show 2016

Future Projects – Fly a Kite

The next and last for a bit of my future projects may well become a quilt for our grandson.  Fly a Kite is a fun quilt that mostly falls into the “need” category as does any quilt I do specifically for someone.


I will never pass up a chance to show off our Grandson, Hunter, or to make something special for him. It’s what Granny’s do!

The Design

Most future projects that I put together are fun quilts that I am excited to start.  Fly a Kite is no exception:

This quilt is simple yet interesting.  I am excited to start Fly a Kite.  This is also a perfect concept for a little boy.  I waffled back and forth about the fabric choices and to be honest, I may change my mind again.  For now, I am happy with this concept – I also love the little black and white kite off to the side.  There always has to be a bit of non-conformity when it comes to kids.


The fabrics chosen for this project are meant to provide some visual fun for Hunter.  Boats, Pirates and different textures should make this a fun quilt for him to use when he gets a “big boy” bed.

The Paperwork

As always, the folder is stuffed full of images, fabric swatches, yardage requirements and the patterns for the paper pieced blocks.  These blocks are simple enough that the fabrics will retain their images for Hunter to enjoy.  Also, because paper piecing provides for sharp edges and points, the kites will be crisp and realistic looking.

Check out other future projects: Puppy Love and Flying High Patriotic.

What was the last quilt you did for family?

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