by Emma Thomas-McGinnis, artist & quilter

Crafty Morning

March 31st, 2013 | Posted by Emma in All | Crafts | Tutorials - (2 Comments)

Brennan frequently wants to go into the studio and make a project…regardless of the time of day. Before I even had my coffee finished this morning he wanted to start! I guess it’s my fault for making our bedtime reading a Family Fun magazine full of craft projects!

Oh but spring projects are soooo fun!!
Do you want to see what we made? (more…)

Valentine’s Day Quilties

January 22nd, 2012 | Posted by Emma in All | Quilting - (1 Comments)

I love hearts, I love pink, I love flowers and roses and all things Valentine’s Day!!!! I just love it! Here’s a few of the fun things I’ve made for this fabulous holiday!

This first heart wreath quiltie sold the day after I posted it. Sad to see it go so fast. I love that border fabric!

This next one is available to purchase at my etsy shop and so are these fun sets of heart sachets (click the photos to go to the listings).

UPDATE: If you would like to make some of these cute little sachets, look above to the links bar and see Projects…I made up a pdf pattern for you! It’s not a step-by-step tutorial, because it’s really simple, and I like patterns that can print in only one page. If you make some, let me know, I’d love to hear about it!

I noticed that my roses quiltie had been in a few treasuries and favorites, so I decided to make another one. Love this border fabric too, it’s a little funky, a little vintagey and really pink!

Then you might not have noticed some of my zip pouches from earlier in January, they would be great for Valentine’s Day!

Can’t wait for Heart Day!

Show Your Colors Quilt

December 31st, 2010 | Posted by Emma in All | Quilting - (3 Comments)

I finished a pretty quilt to show you. I started it in October and showed you a few blocks here and here, but here’s the completed quilt. (click to see it large!) It’s an original design in layout, however the blocks were from various sources. Each block was a major undertaking, and I had a lot of fun challenging myself with each one.

Sources: “Happy Flowers” by Hideo Kubota Quilter’s Newsletter F/M ’09, “Sunburst Trio” by Edyta Sitar American Patchwork & Quilting Aug ’08, “Shooting Star” also by Edyta Sitar purchased pattern, “Sunflowers” by Carol Doak The Quilter Magazine Sept ’03, “New York Beauty” by Mabeth Oxenreider Fons & Porter J/A ’04, Traditional Dresden Plates and New York Beauty blocks self-drafted.

Inspiration: Garden Quilts

August 26th, 2010 | Posted by Emma in All | Inspiration | Quilting - (0 Comments)

The Reiman Gardens Garden Quilt Show….We called it the best quilt show we’ve ever been to…not because it had superior quilts or more quilts than any other, but because it combined quilts, gardens, and butterflies all in one lovely afternoon my mom and I spent together August 15.

I didn’t take notes, so I won’t be able to attribute these quilts to their rightful creators or designers, so I just want to show you a little quilters’ eye candy.  This show was amazing!

This photo show the breadth of the show…it was housed in the wide atrium hallway of the entrance building. It was a sunny and beautiful place to view the quilts.

I do remember that this beauty above was by Joann Belling. I love the way the large butterfly jumps out of the edge of the quilt. Click to see the colorful details.

The back room had a collection of wonderful sun leaf prints. Above is a gorgeous quilt made with many multi-colored prints, the blue fern below one was our favorite.

We also really liked the glass bottle sculptures. My mom confessed that she had already been saving blue bottles to make a sculpture for her garden. I think she got some great inspiration from this display!

Out in the gardens we glimpsed some butterflies roaming free, and some of the cute little gnomes that were scattered throughout.

Some were hidden amongst the flowers, but this one was hard to miss!

And last, but definitely not least, we went through the butterfly atrium. It was just amazing how many beautiful butterflies surrounded us there. They were flying all around, landing on flowers, shoes or heads and posing for some great photos!

Project Quilting 1:3

June 18th, 2010 | Posted by Emma in All | Quilting - (1 Comments)

Ok, ok, it seems like the only thing I’m finding to write about is the Project Quilting Challenges, but at least I have that!

Here’s what happened last weekend…

The Challenge: 1. The front, back, borders, binding and embellishments should all be made from materials that have had a previous life as something else.
2. You may use new thread and batting.
3. Your project should include at least 3 different materials used as embellishments.

My source of “previous life” materials was a bag of old clothing slated to go to Goodwill. One of which was a green flowered suit jacket that I could hardly part with! It was so cute, but never fit me right. (Teresa, it was Ruthie’s, recognize it?!) Anyway, I decided that making a quilt out of it, instead of giving it away would let me keep it around! (I know, selfish, huh?!) Here’s the stash:

I decided to work small because the pink and yellow fabrics looked like good dolly quilt material, so I cut 2.5″ squares and arranged them in a trip around the world. Then I fussy cut some of those fabulous pink flowers from the jacket and roughly machine appliquéd them on. I counted the appliqué as the first embellishment.

Next, I found an assortment of pearly white buttons…they are pretty easy to find on clothing! And the third embellishment was the silk leaves. They made the center appliques look like a nice wreath. That’s it!

The fabrics gave me some special challenges that made me appreciate quilter’s cotton. They were all stretchy twill, which was thick AND stretchy. It didn’t press well because it would just bounce back, but I was able to press the seams open and even pin the seam allowances flat a few times. I used a quick straight stitch to add on the appliqués, because the fabric didn’t fray much and I wanted it to look pretty casual and handmade, even a little rough due to its recycled nature. I had to use pants legs to get a long binding piece, so it became pink. And I did it single layered, because it would have been too bulky folded in the traditional way. But I like the raw edges on that too, keeping with the appliqués.

Please click on this last photo to really see it. It was a horrible rainy day when I finished it so the photo is dark, but I am really pleased with the finished quilt.

Sorry, voting is closed. I waited too long to post this story to get any votes from my friends…but that’s ok, I’m just happy to quilting, I don’t need to win anything!
You can still go to Kim’sCraftyApple to see the other entries, though. There are some beautiful ones, as usual!

Happy Quilting!!

Inspiration: Mom’s Garden

August 11th, 2008 | Posted by Emma in All | Inspiration - (0 Comments)

We visited our families last weekend in one sweeping trip through Minnesota. I didn’t get to spend much time there, but I always love to see my mom’s garden. Here are some highlights:

Credit: This is the garden of Ginny Thomas, Sauk Centre, MN

Bachelor’s Buttons Art Quilt

August 10th, 2008 | Posted by Emma in All | Quilting - (0 Comments)

My garden grew the best batch of bachelor’s buttons this year! They grew from seeds, that I neglected to thin as seedlings. But the sight was gorgeous. I had to thin them as tall plants that were taking over. Here’s a little art quilt I made while the trimmings were in a vase on my table inspriring me.