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Sewing Patterns, Free Sewing Tutorials, and Recycled Military Uniform Designs

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Retirement Quilts- Maj Scott, USAF

Retirement Quilts- Maj Scott, USAF

on Aug 16, 2017 in Blog, Featured | 2 comments

Recently, Maj Scott contacted me regarding her upcoming retirement from the USAF. She had a grand idea to combine all types of her military uniforms, from 20+ years of service, with her daughter’s blankets to create two quilts. The quilts will then be presented to her daughter’s at her retirement ceremony. Pretty neat, right? She brought by a collection of fuzzy, soft, snuggly blankets that the girls’ had used as babies. A few of the blankets were embroidered with each daughter’s name. Awe. She also dropped off a wonderful collection of military uniforms, which she no longer needed. I carefully cut the blankets and uniforms into 10″ squares. Though I had a grand plan for a more complicated pattern, once I dove into the design and stitching portion of making these quilts, it was clear that the snuggly, fuzzy, blankets were too stretchy and shifty to cut precise smaller shapes. That’ll be ok. Each new quilt is 7 squares by 9 squares. Yes, roughly 70″ x 90″ for each little daughter. See those little bibs? She had a couple saved,and I was able to machine stitch them to darker jungle camo prints for high contrast. (my logo watermark isn’t on the quilt, just the picture) In all the cases where a pocket was saved, I made sure that the pocket could be used. Not only is this quilt a serious memory, tear-jerking overload, but she can also hide messages in the pockets to each girl. Awe. After removing the name, rank and branch of service tapes, I restitched them to the center of uniform blocks.  See the eyelet fabric at the top-center of the photo below? That fabric was part of another actual small quilt gifted to the girls by their grandmother. I was able carefully unstitch that piece to incorporate two pieces of the eyelet fabric in each quilt. Once the quilts were loaded onto the longarm, the quilted up very quickly. Of course, this will be the project where I look back wishing I had one of those “glide” or “bowl” presser feet for my machine. I hit a few heavy seams and nicked the tip of my left index finger. (Phew, no blood on the quilt!!!!)...

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Upcoming Classes at Sew Special SA Quilt Shop

Upcoming Classes at Sew Special SA Quilt Shop

on Aug 9, 2017 in Blog, classes, Featured | 0 comments

I’m happy to report three upcoming classes at Sew Special Quilt Shop in San Antonio. Three classes are coming to the third Friday of August, September, and October. Reserve your spot today! August: Disappearing 9-Patch with Layer Cakes This super-beginner 1/2 day workshop will teach you how to take a layer cake and 2-1/3 yards of fabric and make it into a double/queen size quilt. Date:  Aug 18th from 10:00-1:00 Cost: $50 Visit our website for additional information.  Please call 210-698-6076 to register with payment. . September: Random Circles Workshop This baby quilt workshop is designed to teach sewing with curves.  You will create circles in class to applique on to background fabric. DATE: Sept. 15 from 10:00-1:00 COST: $50 Visit our website for additional information.  Please call 210-698-6076 to register with payment. . October: Giant Flying Geese A super sized change-up to the No-Waste Flying Geese method.  This workshop transforms a LAYER CAKE and 3-1/3 yard of fabric into a double/queen size quilt. Date: Oct. 20 10:00-1:00 Cost: $50 Visit our website for additional information. Please call 210-698-6076 to register with payment. . Will I see you in class this fall? Tell a...

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Colorado Avalanche Quilt

Colorado Avalanche Quilt

on Jul 31, 2017 in Blog, Featured, Longarm Quilting Gallery | 1 comment

Every quilt I finish for a customer poses its own unique challenges. This traditional Lone Star Quilt (90″ x 90″) was no different, until we added in the Colorado Avalanche logo* – then the magic happened. My quilt customer brought me this printed image, which I’m certain is owned by the NHL. She wanted me to interpret it onto a quilt, as her son is a HUGE Avalanche fan. I like to draw, so I figured, “Sure, lets quilt the logo!” (or a version of the logo) The first step was developing some kind of template to trace in chalk to allow a total of four logos to appear identical. The design/style notes in green sharpie may not make much sense in the photo, but paired with a traditional quilting fill, the logo will blend right in! I added windy-swirls and snowballs into the large blank spaces of the quilt. The plan is to add them around the logo, as well. Step one was to loosely quilt out the “A” design in navy blue contrasting thread. Then, I needed to add more wind and snowballs around the design to make the “A” stand out. Of course, the bobbin thread coordinates with the top thread for this super-custom design. As luck would have it, I was able to make seven bobbins in maroon before this happened: On the upside, the blue “A” would have blue bobbin thread, so in theory, I had enough. (cough cough cough) My sweet customer provided wide muslin for the back. At first I was so nervous because this meant you could see every single stitch! As time went on and the areas were filled, the muslin turned out really cool. The logo quilt truly was a fantastic challenge! I love how the quilt turned out and thankfully, so did my customer. Thank you for the opportunity to finish your quilts. If you have a quilt that needs finishing, read more at ReannaLilyQuilts.com. *The “A” logo is most certainly owned by the NHL. I don’t claim to own it in any fashion. I simply had a customer who wanted an interpretation of the design on her quilt. Tell a...

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Customer Quilt Collection

Customer Quilt Collection

on Jul 18, 2017 in Blog, commission, Featured, Longarm Quilting Gallery | 1 comment

Phew, customer quilts are fantastic! I love that each quilt is so different and poses different quilting challenges & ideas. Thankfully, the work flow has been steady here at ReannaLily Quilts. I thought I’d show you a collection of customer quilts where I’ve finished them with longarm quilting designs. Who doesn’t love a little graffiti quilting in the negative space? The customer asked for this specifically. The quilt was impeccably pieced, too. The next quilt is created from a Moda Layer Cake. The quilt is finished with a free-motion flowery design. A gold thread on the back really complimented the design but wasn’t too stark (high-contrast) to look crazy on the deep purple backing fabric. The next quilt is a quick, large rectangle design. I decided to quilt hooked swirls from edge to edge (e2e) on this one. Check out that wild purple Glide thread! The following quilt is a printed panel that has been cut, framed, and pieced. I finished this design with flowers stitched in green (Seafoam) Glide. Oh, what next? Yes! This next quilt is technically not a quilt; no batting. It is an insanely heavy collection of Guatemalan Mixed Huipile woven shirts. I’m not sure I’m using the word 100% accurately. Just know this collection of woven shirts is easily one of the most colorful things I’ve ever seen! Parts were thick, parts were layered. The customer and I agreed that we didn’t need batting or traditional quilting. Instead, I secured the woven top to the 108″ wide backing with tack stitches, roughly every 6″-8″. The navy tack stitches really fade into the design. (third picture) Last one to share for right now: The giant star. This star is beautiful and I believe it is one of the customer’s first-ever quilts. Yes, first ever and the center point looks fantastic! (Looks like I don’t have a picture of the center, but trust me, FANTASTIC.) Thank you so much for trusting me with  your beautiful quilts! If you need to have your quilt finished, contact me at ReannaLilyQuilts.com or reannalilydesigns@gmail.com. Tell a...

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Blue Flying Geese: Queen-Size Quilt

Blue Flying Geese: Queen-Size Quilt

on Jul 9, 2017 in Blog, Featured, Longarm Quilting Gallery, quilt, tutorial | 1 comment

It seems I’m currently obsessed with Giant Flying Geese. The newest queen-size quilt in the Giant Flying Geese collection is created from every blue shade in my own fabric stash. Speaking of fabric stash: Smaller scraps (bigger than 2″ and too small to properly fold to store) sorted by color in ziploc bags. The ziplocs are then stored in a plastic tub. Larger scraps  (big enough to fold, but not a fat quarter OR a big piece that has a weird shape cut out of a portion of it) folded, sorted by color in a plastic tub. Fat Quarters (only the square ones, not actual 1/4 yard cuts) sorted by color in two fabric bins in the cubbies. Ok, so now that we’ve gone through the scraps it was time to cut! 56 squares measuring 8-7/8″ x 8-7/8″  NOTE: I created an 8-7/8″ x 8-7/8″ square template from paper to lay over each scrap to determine if it was big enough. Huge time saver! 14 squares measuring 17-1/4″  x 17-1/4″ Since this was scrappy, I knew I wanted scrappy binding. Each time I had a bit extra fabric, I’d cut off a 2-1/4″ x width to use later at the end of the project. I also stored all those in a ziploc bag because I didn’t want to lose them before the quilt was finished. Using the No-Waste Flying Geese Method on this large scale, detailed on the original pattern post, I whipped up 56 flying geese blocks in a weekend. Ok. that is going well. There’s a simple method to planning a quilt this larger without a design wall. Start with 56 geese. Set one random geese block aside. It will not be used at all. Choose five other geese blocks to set aside. These will be added to the quilt, one per column. Sew the remaining 50 geese units together into 25 pairs. Create five total columns featuring five pairs each. Rotate the blocks as you add them to the column. Add in that one remaining block anywhere within the column. Add a border if you like. Ta’dah – super scrappy with no design wall or stress. THAT is how I can finish quilt tops in a...

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Vintage Hand-Embroidered Quilt

Vintage Hand-Embroidered Quilt

on Jul 8, 2017 in Blog, Featured, Longarm Quilting Gallery, quilt, quilting | 4 comments

One of my most recent longarm quilting customers brought a hand-embroidered large quilt. You have to see the gorgeous work! My customer’s mother had stitched 30 identical blocks exquisitely. Each block was a pre-printed panel. I don’t have much experience with embroidery panels, but maybe you’ll recognize it. It was a challenge for me, as I’ve never quilted this style. After asking my longarm quilter friends/mentors, we opted to treat the design as if it were an applique project. I was NERVOUS! The first pass turned out ok, which eased my mind. I decided to add free-motion feathers around the hand-embroidered elements. Feather’s within the main heart were created on a second pass. The feathers weave around the design, and every-so-often, I’ve added a swirl to keep things fluid and interesting. The design isn’t symmetrical and neither is the quilting. The piece has plenty of movement. Although my customer’s mother isn’t here to see the finished quilt, I do hope the family will cherish it. It was absolutely amazing and very outside my “box.” Tell a...

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Green Patchwork Baby Quilt

Green Patchwork Baby Quilt

on Jun 27, 2017 in Blog, Featured, Longarm Quilting Gallery, quilting | 3 comments

The Green Patchwork Baby is finished! This has been a UFO (Un Finished Object) quilt top in my house for at least four years. It had no borders and originally, had the word “picnic” appliqued on it. Well, forget it. The seam ripper went to work, and the words were removed. That then made the quilt of 25 eight inch squares seemed a bit boring. Roll in the borders! The teal blue color is featured in one of the small prints. The was the color-pop the quilt needed. Finished, it is 52″ x 52″; perfect for a little kiddo. See the cool blue chairs in the lower right? It was the inspiration for the border color. Since this patchwork design was so incredibly simple, I decided to try to push myself with the machine quilting. I choose an “eye” shape to sit diagonally on each block. Why an eye? Because that was the size ruler I had! I used a curve ruler from The Quilted Pineapple. I bet you thought it was going to be some mathematical, cryptic answer. Nope. From a distance, you can see the design was starting to make cool giant circles. I love it when that happens! You can really see it on the back. Another thing I wanted to try on this quilt was perfect circle pebbles. There’s a size on my Handi Quilter Ruler which fit perfectly in the inner border space. Neat, right? Hooked Feathers will fill the outer border. Of course, I tried to snap a few pictures of the quilt on a windy day, but we had fun. I forgot which way I was facing when I snapped of this one (below). My quilt looks haunted…… by this crazy guy: Thanks for the help, Robbie the Quilt Holder!     Tell a...

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Scrappy Circles Quilt – Finished

Scrappy Circles Quilt – Finished

on Jun 14, 2017 in Blog, Featured, Longarm Quilting Gallery, quilt, quilting | 2 comments

This Scrappy Circles Quilt has been a long time in the making! Based on my blog, I made this quilt top back in December of 2014. I finally felt confident enough to quilt this big ‘ole thing. Each scrappy circle block is cut using templates. The blocks measure 18″ square. HUGE. In fact, some of the background pieces were so large that I have bonus seams in them so they’d fit the template without me purchasing any fabrics. I love a good scrap quilt made entirely from fabric stash. I departed from my comfort zone a tad and quilted the whole thing in Orange Creamsicle Maxilock Variegated thread. I enjoy variegated thread, but I don’t generally like it when it goes from white to a much darker shade. This one turned out ok. Of course, all the quilting hiccups happened when I was in the darkest thread. It was a bit windy when we were able to snap photos of the quilt. #keepingitreal And of course, the sweet dog wanted to help, too. I did manage to get a few shots of the actual quilting. Each scrappy ring had a design: Center – Long Wishbones Middle Rings – Tight Wishbones Outer Ring – Straight-ish Lines Light Background – Diagonal Spineless Feathers The feather quilting design is more like the Everything Bagel of quilted feathers. I have hooked feathers, curls, real feathers, cheat-y type feathers, and anything else I could think of at that time. The back is a beautiful 108″ wide piece from Joann’s. I pre-washed it to make sure it wouldn’t bleed; washing with a color-catcher. Surprise, the color-catcher was perfectly white at the end of the load. Fantastic! I’ll be buying this one again. All in all, I’m loving the Scrappy Circles Quilt. It measures 72″ x 90″. That’s a wrap. Thank you, my super-tall, quilt-holding assistant! Tell a...

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Quilt Pattern Round-Up by ReannaLily Designs

Quilt Pattern Round-Up by ReannaLily Designs

on Jun 3, 2017 in Blog, Featured, tutorial | 0 comments

Don’t wait ’til Christmas to dive into those holiday quilt gifts! Here’s a collection of easy quilt projects to sew while you are relaxing this summer. No need to rush through them in November and hope your longarm quilter has time to finish by Dec 24th. Start stitching on these babies now. Each of the patterns featured here are free tutorials offered by ReannaLily Designs. No-Waste Flying Geese featuring Layer Cakes This quilt makes up quite quickly using 10″ precut squares (Layer Cakes) or you can use yardage. Both types of fabric requirements are included in the free quilt tutorial. Huge Plus and Cross Quilt The X and Plus block is a popular, easy block to make. For my spin on this classic design, I enlarged the block and share how to “assembly-line” piece each block. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can create a large quilt top. Patriotic Wonky Star Quilt Tutorial Skip the ruler and the measuring! This wonky star quilt is shown in Red, White and Blue, but would look fantastic in any color combination. Make it with assorted fat quarters for a scrap-quilt look. This is also an excellent design to use up your fabric stash as the blocks required are only 5″ square. Giant Fat Quarter Flying Geese Use 28 Fat Quarters to stitch large traditional Flying Geese blocks. Only 55 blocks are needed to make this Queen Size design. Plus Baby Quilt The Plus Baby quilt includes a printable worksheet for you to use to plan your design. No more running back and forth to the design wall/kitchen table to see what colors come next, simply follow the cutting chart, pin fabrics to the worksheet, and sew. This is a great fat quarter project! Disappearing 9-Patch Quilt featuring Layer Cakes Disappearing 9-Patch blocks are fun! What would make them better? Make them BIGGER! Yep, this quilt is made using 10″ precut squares and background yardage. Be sure to scroll down to the bottom of this particular tutorial to see the quilt in a couple different color combinations. Batik Braid Quilt Tutorial This quilt tutorial is easily the most popular one on ReannaLily Designs website. Use 2-1/2″ precut strips (Jelly Roll) to create...

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Giant Fat Quarter Flying Geese – Queen Size

Giant Fat Quarter Flying Geese – Queen Size

on May 29, 2017 in Blog, Longarm Quilting Gallery, quilt, quilting, tutorial | 0 comments

The Fat Quarter Flying Geese free quilt pattern/tutorial makes a queen size quilt using fat quarters. These traditional Flying Geese block units are HUGE! Get your fat quarter pieces out and pull 28 coordinating pieces. No more hoarding fat quarters with this easy, big ole’ design. Fabrics Used in this Quilt 24-piece fat quarter bundle (Garnet, by Nancy Zieman) Plus 4 additional coordinating fat quarters 1 yard of brown for the 4″ border Additional fabric for the binding Using the free pattern, I stitched 55 HUGE geese each measuring 16-1/2″ x 8-1/2″. Note: If you happen to have a layer cake (10″ precut square pieces) rather than a fat quarter bundle, use this Giant Flying Geese with Layer Cakes pattern instead. Sew the Quilt The quilt is arranged in five columns, each with 11 rectangular blocks. The easiest way to create the top:   Start with 56 geese. Set one random geese block aside. It will not be used at all. Choose five other geese blocks to set aside. These will be added to the quilt, one per column. Sew the remaining 50 geese units together into 25 pairs. Create five total columns featuring five pairs each. Rotate the blocks as you add them to the column. Add in that one remaining block anywhere within the column. Add a border if you like. Yes, it is pretty random. I like that look.  But, by sewing the geese in pairs first, you do have the option of making a traditional style quilt where the geese (large triangle) points all “fly” in one direction. The quilt is framed in a 4″ brown border. I think it helps with the randomness. The design is quilted focusing the geese (larger) and sky (smaller) triangles separately. Without the borders, the quilt measures approximately 80″ x 88″. Turns out, that is really big for snapping a photo in the back yard. Here it is on the fence…. oops- with wind. I’m sure there’s an actual “flying geese” joke here somewhere…. Ah, wait. Here we go. I love how this turned out and wouldn’t ya know, I have more fat quarters to create another quilt. Tell a...

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Patriotic Disappearing 9-Patch with 10″ Precut Squares

Patriotic Disappearing 9-Patch with 10″ Precut Squares

on May 13, 2017 in Blog, business, fabric stash, Featured, Longarm Quilting Gallery, tutorial | 0 comments

It feels like a Disappearing 9-Patch -a-palooza over  here lately. Using the free pattern to feature 10″ square precuts (layer cakes), I whipped up this queen size quilt (75″ x 90″) in a weekend. It really is that easy. The pattern calls for: 1 Layer Cake (40 pieces of precut 10″ squares) 2-1/3 yard white/background fabric Ok. I have those supplies. Er, but wait. No. I didn’t have them. Instead I used a 10″ square ruler to basically cut my own 40 squares from assorted blue and red fabrics. Here’s how that math breaks out: 1/3 yard of FIVE different reds 1/3 yard of FIVE different blues Cut the pieces down to 10″ x width of fabric. (If you are buying fabric for this project, I’d go with 1/3 yard, just to be sure you have a bit of wiggle room if the cuts aren’t square. And, if they are square- voila! You’ll have 3″ leftover to make matching binding for your quilt.) From each 10″ wide piece, cut four 10″ x 10″ squares, which will yield 20 reds and 20 blues. Easy, right? We needed a total of 40 so that is right on pace. Cut the background fabric as described in the original pattern and follow the original directions from here on out. I’m so glad to have cut into some of my fabric stash to create this quilt. I will definitely be doing this again. In fact, any scraps that happen to meet the 10″ x 10″ requirement might go into their own special “Future Disappearing 9-patch Ziploc.” That is the official organizational method I use: Ziploc. Fancy, right? Using my HandiQuilter Avante 18, I stitched meandered stars all over the design. When its washed, it will have some great shrinkle! Do you know shrinkle? When the quilt shrinks a tiny bit in the was and comes out all crinkley = shrinkle. I hope you give the Disappearing 9-Patch with Layer Cakes pattern a try. It is every bit as easy as the popular Disappearing 9-patch patterns all over Pinterest. The only difference is you sew a bit less and are done a bit faster. It is excellent for a quick gift! If you are looking for...

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Disappearing 9-Patch with Lily and Loom Craftsy

Disappearing 9-Patch with Lily and Loom Craftsy

on Apr 13, 2017 in Blog, fabric stash, Longarm Quilting Gallery, quilt, quilting | 1 comment

This fun Disappearing 9-Patch quilt is made using 10″ precut squares (aka LAYER CAKES)! The quilt features Lily & Loom, new fabric by Boundless, which is releasing on Craftsy.  The layer cake features 42 precut 10″ squares. The whole pack is youthful and bright. Get your fabric bundle here. Using the Disappearing 9-Patch with Layer Cakes tutorial, I was able to make the quilt top in an afternoon. The pieces/units are HUGE. And of course, I chain pieced everything, even the binding pieces. I tend to make the binding first so I don’t accidentally use the fabric in the quilt. This quick cutting tool, The Cutting Gizmo, is amazing. I have mentioned it before. I received the cutter for Christmas and am not sure how I quilted for 20+ years without it. Cut, cut, cut and the chain pieced units were read to stitch. See how easily the quilt goes together on the sewing tutorial. I opted to stitch a quick all-over swirl design on my HandiQuilter Avante 18″. Lastly, I just needed to apply binding. I did that by machine, too, making this quilt incredibly fast to stitch. Volia! Finitio! If you’d like to make this quilt for yourself, grab a quilt kit here. This post contains affiliate links. Tell a...

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