by Emma Thomas-McGinnis, artist & quilter

Summer Flag Tutorial

May 28th, 2012 | Posted by Emma in Inspiration | Tutorials | Uncategorized - (1 Comments)

We’ve had a wonderful weekend! It’s been hot and sunny and feeling just like summer! The boys played in the pool, sprinkler and slip n’ slide and Dave and I trimmed the hedges, mowed the lawn and planted the last square of the square foot garden with some big healthy vegetable plants.

Brennan was so inspired by the fun he had Saturday and Sunday that today he wanted to make a quilt to celebrate it! (I so love that kid!!) Together we came up with a project so great, I thought I’d share it…. (more…)

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!!

Project Quilting Challenge

April 18th, 2010 | Posted by Emma in All | Quilting - (0 Comments)

Kim Lapacek from Kim’s Crafty Apple issued a challenge on her blog called Project Quilting. In the spirit of “Project Runway” she gave a tight deadline (a week), limited budget ($10) and an inspiration (the shoofly block) and this is the project I came up with…

(Click photo to see it bigger)

I used some funky, highly-contrasty, geometric prints I had in my stash. The design is a large shoofly block in the center, turned on point and then surrounded with smaller shoofly blocks and one in the center. The challenge also specified that it had to include a stripe. I was originally just going to bind it with the stripe, but I am glad I decided to really highlight that stripe in the large shoofly block.

I’m excited to say that I learned a new technique for the quilting of this project!! Charlotte Warr Anderson’s Book “One Line at a Time” described how to quilt those repetitive geometric quilting lines, following a template and stitching around it one line at a time. It was really fun to do and I like the way the quilting echos the geometric qualities of the fabric prints.

Here’s a look at the back so you can really see the quilting lines.

I’m so proud to have gotten this done in a week, that is highly unlike me! I usually let things sit a while in between stages and flit between projects before getting anything done. This one was a straight through, plow! (reminiscent of the retreat…perhaps I should run with this new trend!)

If you’d like to see what other quilters did with Kim’s Challenge, here is the link to the Flickr Pool.

New Fabric & Quiltie in Progress

February 12th, 2009 | Posted by Emma in All - (1 Comments)

I got some pretty new fabric and promptly started another quiltie!


I hope the embroidery stands up to the border fabric, though. I’ll have to make sure to quilt it right so that it stands out!