Signature quilts – or friendship quilts – first became popular in the 1840s. Sometimes they were used as sentimental wedding gifts. Sometimes they honored a beloved teacher or minister. And sometimes, they were carried across the plains by pioneer women as a reminder of dear friends left behind.
These quilts were so cherished, many have survived the generations and can be found in hope chests and museums even today.
This week, Jenny is making her own family signature quilt. It’s adorned with hand-written names of all the Doan kids and grandkids, and I have a feeling this pretty quilt will become more and more special as the years go by!
Nothing says holidays like handmade. Instead of spending all of your time this year trying to figure out what to buy for that special someone in your life, harness all of that creative energy into a unique crafty gift! Handcrafted gifts come from the heart, each stitch placed carefully with love.
Remember that when it comes to handmade gifts, Jenny always says “finished is better than perfect.” Wrap up any fears you have about creating a homemade gift and show off your craftsmanship with an easy gift idea that will be adored this holiday season! Get your holiday inspiration started by checking out some of these easy gift ideas below, or head over to our Handmade Holidays homepage for all of our great holiday fabric lines, ideas and project
It’s never too early to share your love of quilting with the children in your life. Playing a game of checkers on top of a festive Fabric Checkerboard is not only fun, it’s a fantastic holiday memory just waiting to be created. Add in a few Christmas decorations as checker pieces and you’ll be celebrating the holidays in no time!
Hang up this cute stocking with care! Whether or not you have a chimney, a Quilted Christmas Stocking is the perfect gift this year. Fill this fabulous piece of home decor with a few notions, some thread, and a charm pack and you’ll be the sewing Santa this holiday season! If you’re gift giving for someone who doesn’t sew, this versatile project will deliver any gift in style!
Home is where we are most comfortable, where we can relax and unwind from the day and find our own peace on earth. Give the gift of comfort while home for the holidays with the Blipper! A Blipper is a quilt with a pocket for your feet—part-blanket, part-slipper, entirely adorable and cozy! For a little added Christmas cheer, select a fuzzy cuddle fabric or some Christmas themed yardage and make this gift extra special!
Keep your Christmas cocoa cozy with a nice new mug rug! This simple to make, great stash-busting project is the perfect stocking stuffer for office parties, Secret Santa, or White Elephant gift exchanges! Even if you don’t have extra scrap fabric on hand, pick up your favorite pack of 5” squares and get stitching!
From ties to old t-shirts, found fabric is a fabulous addition to a homemade gift! This quilt will help keep the memories of the past alive and can be an incredibly sentimental present that is perfect for giving the gift of love for the holidays. There’s no limit to your creativity with this project as every family is different, but this gift will certainly be a treasured memory for years to come.
Sometimes the wrapping is half the fun, but many of us could do without! Fill this Reusable Gift Bag with any holiday creation this year and you’ve got a wonderful 2-in-1 gift! This reusable gift bag is a quick and easy way to add your creative flair to a store bought gift while giving the gift of a fabulous bag that can be used for years to come.
Give the gift of quilting with this handy homemade vinyl zipper pouch! Fill this wonderful project with a pattern and a fat quarter for an incredible present for the quilter in your life. This bag comes together in a flash with a Zippity-Do Done! zipper that’s so easy to place we promise you can do it!
Quilters are some of the most resourceful, green people we know! We are always saving up scraps and asking other quilters for ways we can reduce, reuse, and recycle quilting and sewing materials. We never want to throw anything away if we don’t have to!
In recognition of Earth Day and being green, here are a few ways that we choose to reduce, reuse, and recycle to demonstrate our support for the environment!
Found fabric is fabric that you can find . . . anywhere! Make a trip into your closet, into a loved ones closet, to the closest thrift store, or have a stash swap with friends and start cutting up and stitching the fabric back together to create something new and beautiful!
Jean quilts, like the one pictured below, are great found fabric quilts! Take some old jeans, cut them up, and you’ll have a quilt that will last! Bust these out during a camping trip, outdoor sporting event, picnic, or outside play time and they’re perfect for staying warm and dry. The sturdy material won’t pick up dirt and debris as easily as other fabrics can – it’s the perfect outdoor blanket!
Jeans are not the only clothing item that can be used as quilting material! Shirts of all kind (T-shirts, plaid shirts, flannel shirts, and more!) are great fabric sources. Who knows, you could find the perfect missing piece for your next project in your very own closet!
T-shirt quilts and memory quilts are perfect ways to hold loved ones and warm memories close for years to come.
Don’t let those scraps go to waste! There are plenty of ways to make use of small pieces of fabric.
Do you have tiny scraps from a project that you just can’t bear to throw away? Do you have a stray block sitting around that you don’t know what to do with? Make a pincushion! Those tiny pieces are perfect for stitching together to create a cute new home for your pins – make a new one for your sewing space or make a few and gift them to your quilting friends!
Do you or a loved one have a pet? Make a fabric scrap animal bed! Do you want to use those scraps to make something bigger than a pincushion? Try crumb quilting! There are countless ways to make use of those tiny pieces that we may not think twice about as we sew along on other projects. What is your favorite way to use up scraps?
Many items around you can be re-purposed into something new. The possibilities are endless!
Do you have a cute little cup or pot that needs a new home? Turn it into a cactus pincushion!
Are you in need of an ironing station closer to your sewing machine? Use a TV tray! Simply grab a heatproof surface such as the Missouri Star Wooly Betty Board to lay on top of the tray and you have the perfect portable ironing station so you can iron as you work! There are so many ways things around us can be re-purposed and transformed into something new. What items have you transformed?
For even more inspiration on how to go Green this Earth Day, check out our Celebrate Issue of BLOCK Magazine! This issue is filled with projects you can stitch up using your small pieces and scraps. Download the digital version and get started on a t-shirt quilt, wall hanging, denim bag buckets, adorable little aprons, and more – today!
Tell us how you go green while quilting in the comments below!
Sometimes after the hustle and bustle of holiday clean up and moving directly into Valentine’s Day, we forget to take the time to appreciate ourselves. Quilters are a giving community, we often will move mountains in order to complete a gift for a friend or a donation for a stranger before we take the time to make something for ourselves. No more however! Take a peek at these five great ideas and create something for yourself! Each project is designed to be filled with love to make a special and super comfy addition to your home!
While this project is perfect for a new addition to lay upon, who doesn’t want to be surrounded by the cuddliest of cuddle? This incredible simple design will test some of your knitting skills (Don’t Worry! Anyone can do it!) to produce one of the softest projects you’ve ever create!
Better than a photo album, the memory quilt will take your treasured fabrics and create a stunning quilt or wall hanging to celebrate your life. Use old ties, t-shirts or any fabric that is near and dear to you to immortalize your memories in an amazing project.
February is a fabulous month for heart themed quilts! The Tender Heart Quilt will make a great addition to your collection, whether you want to wrap yourself in love or create a stunning wall hanging for the holiday!
If your feet get cold while you’re snuggled up in a quilt, then the Blipper is for you! Part blanket, part slipper, the Blipper has a unique pocket at the end of the quilt designed to keep your feet toasty and warm during the cold month of February!
Show off your love for quilting while you’re out on the town with a handmade Reversible Bag! Quilting is usually an at home activity unless you’re attending a quilting bee or a retreat, so why not bring a little of that love with you wherever you go!
Still wanting to treat yourself but have too many current unfinished projects? No worries! Join one of our fantastic Missouri Star Academy instructors for an online education course to better develop your quilting skills! Pictured above, one of our phenomenal instructors, Courtenay Hughes, offers a course on Beginning Hand Appliqué and trust us, you won’t want to miss having her as your instructor!
Chances are, someone you love has been affected by Alzheimer’s disease. With 6 million patients and 16 million caregivers worldwide, it’s a heartache that is much too common.
November is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month. Jenny created the beautiful Forget Me Not quilt in memory of her dear mother-in-law who was lost to Alzheimer’s 19 years ago. This appliqué project is made easy with our brand new Missouri Star Petal template. Click HERE to watch the tutorial.