Monday, 19 December 2016

5 sleeps until Christmas!

This year our top picks for Christmas is brought to you by Louise @mullanelou.  Thanks Louise for sharing your Christmas list with us !
Here are the top five sewing related items on my Christmas list….
5. Accuquilt Go fabric cutter
Available in the full version, baby and electronic would you believe from Amazon or directly from
4. Funky sewing themed 2Gb USB keys
They come in a range of colours on
3. Specialised Rulers
I know you can get by perfectly well without them but if it can speed up the cutting process a little bit I think they might be worth a try. One such ruler is the half square triangle bloc-loc ruler
2. The Quilters Planner 2017 – Calendar and Diary
This looks like a great way to plan and track your quilty exploits for the coming year. It’s filled with Project planners, WIP lists, design tools, quilters references, free motion tips, Cloud 9 fabrics colour card, quilt inspiration and patterns from some great bloggers
Sample of Project planning by
1. 360 Crafters bag and Crafters Tote
This looks like an nice alternative if that “Sew together bag” is still on your to do list! Both can be found on

Monday, 12 December 2016

Happy Monday Modern Irish Quilters!  Sign ups are now open for Modern Irish Bee 2017.

If you haven't taken part in a Bee before here's some info on what it's all about!

How our Bee works
Online Quilting Bees are usually made up of 12 members, 1 member for each month of the year.  Each member takes their turn at being Queen Bee. The Queen Bee chooses a block she would like the hive mates to make for her.  It can be an existing block or a design of your own.  The Queen Bee writes instructions on how she/he wants the block to look, fabric choices, colours etc.  This typically involves testing the block, noting areas where any changes are to be made or difficulties encountered, to help the Hive have an easier time making the blocks. 

Instructions are given to the Hive on the 1st of the month and the hive mates make the block from fabrics in their stashes and post the blocks to the Queen by the end of the month.  Specific colours or fabrics are not allowed unless the Queen wants to post them to the hive members in advance.  The idea is if the Queen wants a blue and white block then the hive mates pick appropriate blues and whites from their on hand fabrics.

Hive mates post images to the Facebook group, or on our Flickr group and Instagram to share progress. 

Choosing a Block
The Queen may design her own block as long as it is tested and instructions are provided to make it.  The Queen may choose a block from a free online tutorial and reference the original tutorial in the instructions and note any changes to be made.  Blocks from published books or paid patterns should not be used, as every hive mate would need to buy a copy to make the block.  Photocopying or emailing a paid pattern is not permitted and infringes on the rights of the author/publisher.  Special tools or fabric required to make the block may not be requested unless the Queen provides them to the hive mates in advance of her turn as Queen Bee.  It is expected that hive mates have access to basic quilting supplies, sewing machine, rotary cutter etc. and are comfortable piecing a 1/4" seam.

Bee Rules
We are making 1 block per month this time around and the maximum block size is 18".  A 12" block can be requested or can be resized up to 15", 16" or 18" as you wish!

The Bee is open to quilters of all sewing levels.  Beginners have to learn new techniques to complete the blocks throughout the year.  It is a great opportunity to try new things and blocks you might not normally think of.  The sign up is form here, and we have asked for sewing skill level in the event we can put more than 1 Bee group together.  We will try and match skill levels where possible. 

Background fabrics may be low volume or any colour family you wish.  A specific fabric or colour from a specific manufacturer should not be specified unless the fabric is being provided.  Please give the hive mates guidance on how to choose the colour for the block for example bright white like Kona white or off white like Kona Snow.  All fabric used in the blocks should be quilt shop quality 100% cotton.
A photograph or fabric pull can be very helpful for hive mates in choosing appropriate fabrics from their stash.  Please take a photo to guide us in the right direction!

If you are unsure of a fabric please post a picture to our Facebook group or Instagram (#modernirishbee) and the Queen Bee can tell you if it will work or not.  It's better to ask than disappoint the Queen who may have to relegate your block to the back of the quilt as it will not work with the other blocks!

Please post your blocks on time before the end of each month and if for any reason there is a delay please let the Queen Bee know when they can be expected.  It's not fair to expect people to make blocks for you when you haven't made for them. 

Please do your very best workmanship and only send out what you in turn would be happy to receive. When sending your blocks in the post please put them in a ziploc or water resistant bag to prevent them from getting damaged in the post.

Join in!
To take part in Modern Irish Bee 2016, you need to be a member of Modern Quilters Ireland (its free - join here!

Please sign up  to take part in the Bee using this form and if we do not have enough people for more than 1 Bee the first 12 sign ups will be accepted.  Places fill up fast so don't wait if you want to participate. 

For those not able to make the commitment to a full Bee please make the blocks along with us and share to the Facebook, Instagram or Flickr groups.  All members are welcome to join in the fun!


Friday, 4 November 2016

Sign ups are now open for our annual Christmas swap!

It's that time of year again!  Welcome to sign ups for our annual Christmas swap.

We're keeping it small again this year to avoid any extra stress at this busy time of the year.  We've chosen to swap a covered notebook! 

Cindy has kindly allowed us to use her tutorial  and you can find it here on our tutorials page or directly on Cindy's blog @ Fluffy Sheep Quilting here!

It could be a blank sketchbook for your swap partner to save all those quilt ideas, a lined notebook to list all the lovley projects we want to make or a 2017 diary to plan and keep track of big events!  Whatever size notebook you have, Cindy's tutorial is flexible and adaptable. 

To sign up please fill in this form!  I love the Christmas swap and we always make such lovely things.  The postal date is 19th December so it will have time to arrive for those in between days, after Christmas and before New years.

This swap is limited to MQI members resident in Ireland so as to avoid any issues with post at this busy postal time of year.  Sign up close Friday 11th and partners will be assigned over the weekend.  I hope you will join us for our 4th Christmas swap!

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Giveaway - pack of 100 EPP paper templates family pack by Tales of Cloth

Hand sewing is back in a big way. You may have noticed the popularity of EPP (English Paper Piecing) patterns over the past few years.  Willyne Hammerstein's Book Millefiori Quilts sold out everywhere due to the popularity of the La Passacaglia Quilt on the cover.    A quick look on Pinterest will show you just how good this quilt can look in modern styled fabrics .
Paper pieces has a starter and a full set if you don't feel like making your own templates and they also have kits to go along with Katja Mareks New Hexagon.  The paper templates for the New Hexagon are much bigger than the tiny La Passacaglia templates and make it easier to sew with a running stitch rather than the EPP method of folding fabric over a paper template.  The gripping movement required to hold the pieces and whip stitch sew them together can be tough on the hands!  Tracing around the template and sewing with a running stitch is apparently what Willyne uses to make her tiny pieces!

On Katya's blog there were quilt a longs in 2015and 2016 using blocks from her book and she is doing another using her perpetual calendar of 365 Hexagon blocks.  I think this would make a brilliant 365 project and could be fun to attempt to make one a day!

Jodi at Tales of Cloth has also created a set of shapes that all work together and hosted a challenge on instagram #shapefamilychallenge and it is really cool to see what people have come up with.

And we have 1 packet of family shapes to giveaway here on the blog!

To win this pack of 100 shapes just leave us a comment telling us if you have ever tried EPP before and what would you make with this set?

Entries close at 5pm next Thursday, 13th October, when Random number generator will pick the winner !

Friday, 9 September 2016

Summer Swap Update

Our summer swap is in the post! By now all those signed up for the swap should have posted their #onehourbasket (free pattern by @kelbysews)! 

This is just a sample of the photographs posted to Instagram #mqisummerswap. Click on the link to see more and join in the conversations we've been having!  Aren't they fabulous?
Thanks a million to all who took part in our summer swap and a big thank you to Aideen and Cindy for looking after us all so well!

Monday, 8 August 2016

Modern Irish Bee

After the busy few weeks with our Rainbow Rose quilt a long and 1 hour basket swap, it's time to get back to our Modern Irish Bee.  This year we are doing a round robin style bee, each person adding a bit to the quilt they receive in the post and passing it on.  There are quilts in various stages but I think we are on officially on Round 4!

For those playing along please link up your progress on Round Robin or Medallion Quilts to be in the draw to win a 20€ voucher from Fluffy Sheep Quilting by clicking on the blue button below.

The link up will remain open until next Monday August 15th when random number generator will pick a winner!

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

We have winners!

Congratulations Lisa, Lena and Kathy who linked up to our final Rainbow Rose linky party!
Lisa's beautiful quilt top wins the fabric bundle from!
Lena's value study version wins the bundle of magazines from Fluffy Sheep Quilting!
And last but not least, Kathy's colourful pinwheel version wins the prize specially collated in Japan by Tomomi of Slaney Handcraft!

Congratulations to our winners and thanks again for all who took part in our Rainbow Rose QAL!   big thanks again to our sponsors!

Click on images below to visit our sponsors shops:
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Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Rainbow Rose QAL - Final Link up and Giveaways!

Welcome to our final link up of our Rainbow Rose Quilt-A-Long!  We have been exploring the colour wheel by making this block the Rainbow Rose based on the traditional Dutch Rose block!

For all our posts on the color wheel and with complete instructions to make this block in 2 sizes for a baby quilt or a bed quilt see our QAL tab at the top of this blog or follow the links below:

June 8th: Cutting & Piecing the middles, Warm & Cool Colours
June 15th: Piecing the corners, Tints, Shades & Tones
June 22nd: Piecing the centre star, Complimentary Colour Schemes
June 29th: Assembly & optional Applique borders, Analgous, Monochromatic & Achromatic Colour Schemes

Now its time for the Prizes!

We have three prizes for our final link up party:

a fat quarter bundle to the value of €20 from

3 month's of Love Patchwork & Quilting Magazine from Fluffy Sheep Quilting

And a prize all the way from Japan from Slaney Handcraft.  Tomomi has collected some patchwork related items while on her recent trip for us to giveaway in our final linkup!

To win our prizes, link up a photo, instagram or flickr image, or a blog post of your finished quilt top or finished quilt of the Rainbow Rose by clicking the blue linky button below.

The linky party is open until the 30th July so there is still time to finish up some quilting and piecing!  Random number generator will choose a winner to be announced on August 1st!

Thank you to all our very generous sponsors.  Please share the love and visit our sponsors by clicking on each of the photos below! 

Click on images below to visit our sponsors shops:
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