Adventures in Paper Piecing Blog Tour

You know that movie Julie & Julia? It's kinda like that for me and this book. Sarah & Sarah. Actually, it's even Sarah Beth & Sarah Elizabeth (we bonded over name similarity when she came to teach the Orlando MQG last year). You see, I set out to make paper pieced pillows for each of my son's teachers for holiday gifts. He has like 18 (wonderful and amazing) teachers and so I picked up this book to get myself started at our guild retreat. That was in November, and I may have been a bit ambitious about that initial holiday deadline so they are now Valentine's Day gifts. Or St. Patrick's. Or, well, we'll see. I'm enjoying the process so much I'm going to give myself some flexibility here.

So, like the movie, I started working my way through the recipes in this book. The Jungle View was the first make, as I have a teacher who is a serious plant lover. Then I moved on to the Fireflies for my teacher who enjoys camping. Then, because of Sarah's instructions, I was able to move on to designing my own. Really! I made a djembe for the teacher who loves drumming and I'm working on a beachy scene for the teacher who loves surfing.

Drafting the surfboard pillow and thinking about fabric choices

But what I really want to show you is the Fireflies one. I love Sarah's version on white in the book, but I thought, why not try a night version? So I set my fireflies on black.

Then I really liked what that black and white batik was doing, so when I put them together, I made some choices about adding more of that in.

I think they look like background fireflies flying around.

So for the quilting - I mean, trying to improve on something the masterful Rachael Dorr did is like, impossible. So I thought about it for a minute but then I basically copied her choices for lighting up these bugs. But I did come across something at the fabric store that added a little something extra...

See where I'm going with this?

Also, pro tip - turns out a coffee mug and a Fiestaware dessert plate are the perfect templates for outlining firefly glows.

And here it is all quilted and made into a pillow... (BTW this is my favorite tutorial for making a quilted pillow cover with a zippered back and binding. Svetlana of s.o.t.a.k. makes it really easy and all nice and finished on the inside too.)

So remember the spools of thread I showed you? I quilted the the firefly glows with two colors, and....

Wait for it....


The inside glow has the special thread top and bottom, and the outside glow has it only in the bobbin. Just a little sunlight on the thread activates it. Little gimmicks like this thrill me to no end.

So now that you are ready to embark on you own Paper Piecing...check out my IG post on January 19 for a chance to win a signed copy of her book. And while you, the hero of your adventure, are exercising your quilty superpowers in this endeavor, my friend Rene' (of Rene' Creates) will also tag in on this giveaway by suiting up the lucky winner with a firefly glow circle template/warm beverage holder/positive affirmation-maker (a.k.a. coffee mug) of their own. Oh and a shield (a.k.a. enamel pin).

Sew on friends!

Don't forget to check out all these stops on the tour:

#adventuresbooktour Adventures in Paper Piecing & Design January 7 – 26, 2019 Monday January 7 – Plant Lady Heather Givans (@crimsontate | Featured Quilter: Marion McClellan (@myquiltdiet) Tuesday January 8 – Graffiti FPP Sarah Sharp (@nohatsquilts | Wednesday January 9 – Design Prompt No. 1 – Learning by the Letter Giuseppe Ribaudo (aka Giucy Giuce) (@giucy_giuce) Thursday January 10 – Snooze Amanda Castor (@materialgirlquilts | Featured Quilter: Karlee Porter (@karleeporterdesign) Friday January 11 – Design Prompt No. 2 – Traditional with a Twist Katy Cameron (@the_littlest_thistle | Saturday January 12 – Prickly Path Anneliese Johnson (@eyecandyquilts | Featured Quilter: Angela Walters (@angelafmq) Featured Fabric Designer: Alison Glass (@alisonglass) Monday January 14 – Design Prompt No. 3 – Objects Alison Robins (@littleislandquilting) Tuesday January 15 – Voodoo Feathers Jennifer Sampou (@jennifersampou | Wednesday January 16 – Design Prompt No. 4 – Creatures Anne Sullivan (@playcrafts | Thursday January 17 – Folksy Friends Sarah Sharp (@nohatsquilts | Featured Quilter: Kathleen Riggins (@kathleenquilts) Friday January 18 – Design Prompt No. 5 – Think Outside the (Square) Block Cath Hall (@wombatquilts | Saturday January 19 – Fireflies Sarah Lauzon (@cera.bee | Featured Quilter: Rachael Dorr (@rachaeldorr) Sunday January 20 – Sunday Book Review! Sarah Ashford (@sarahashfordstudio) Tuesday January 22 – Design Prompt No. 6 – Repeat Designs Allison Dutton (@allisonsews | Wednesday January 23 – Jungleview Merran Fryer (@123bluejumper) Thursday January 24 – Design Prompt No. 7 – Single Foundation Paper Piecing Jamie Swanson (@jamiemswansonquilts) Friday January 25 – Double Diamond Wedding Ring Elisabeth Hardy (@elisabew | Featured Quilter: Andrea Munro (@practicaldazzle) Saturday January 26 – Recap and Photography Sarah Sharp (@nohatsquilts | Eric Lubrick (@ericlubrick |

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