Friday, June 11, 2021

Pat Sloan's Holiday Celebrations Book Tour & GIVEAWAY!

Today I'm so excited to share Pat Sloan's upcoming book with Martingale, Holiday Celebrations -- an amazing quilt book full of holiday inspiration for all the fun and warm moments throughout the year including 17 designs for lap quilts, table decorations, Halloween bags, Christmas stockings and many other holiday projects to bring new comfort and joy into your home with each new season!

Pat Sloan's Be My Always quilt block

Decorating for the holidays is something I have always loved to do to make each holiday extra special, so when Pat asked me to join in her book tour, I was thrilled to! Holiday Celebrations is full of projects for all the seasons, from amazing quilts to special smaller projects, there are so many projects in this book that you will want to make!

Pat Sloan's Holiday Celebrations

For my stop on the book tour I whipped up one version of the two heart block patterns that are included in Pat's Be My Always throw quilt pattern in Holiday Celebrations! When I saw this heart block I knew it would be perfect for pairing with the pink and coral prints from my newest fabric collection for Art Gallery Fabrics, Open Heart!

Open Heart for Pat Sloan's Holiday Celebrations

Pat Sloan's Be My Always quilt block

These 18.5" x 16.5" size heart blocks would also make an adorable quilted pillow that you could enjoy all year round!

Pat Sloan's Be My Always quilt block

I've also always loved Pat's scrappy-happy tulips from her previous book, Celebrate the Seasons, and I knew her pretty tulip quilt blocks would be another perfect block for my Open Heart fabrics, so using the same prints I used for the heart block, I stitched up this sweet patchwork tulip!

Tulip Block from Pat Sloan's book Celebrate the Seasons

Look how adorable the two blocks look together! It has me wanting to create a sampler style quilt using a variety of blocks from my collection of Pat's amazing books!

Pat Sloan's quilt blocks

You can find Pat Sloan's books, including her newest Holiday Celebrations in quilt stores, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and more! To follow Pat you can find her on her website, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram!

Pat Sloan's Be My Always quilt block

There are lots of wonderful Giveaways as part of this book tour!! You can visit Martingale to enter to win the grand prize: a HUGE, fabulous assortment of quilting things! 

PLUS I'm so thrilled to offer a special Giveaway to my wonderful readers for a paperback copy to US residents and PDF copy to International friends of Holiday Celebrations!

GIVEAWAY CLOSED • a HUGE thanks to all who entered and a BIG Congratulations to the random winner, Scottylover!

xo Maureen

Monday, March 15, 2021

Homebody Favorites!

Hello and Happy Monday! Since I so enjoyed writing my last post about the nine patch sister quilts that Sharon Holland and I made, along with sharing the free Charming Nine pdf pattern so you can make your own, I decided I'd pop back in today with a long overdue Homebody favorites post!

Homebody Banner

Homebody Bundle

Homebody Bundle

Homebody is my latest and thirteenth collection to date with fabric manufacturing company, Art Gallery Fabrics. This sixteen piece collection at its core, celebrates the unspoken magic of being home! The concept and artwork for Homebody was created and submitted to AGF long before we were all "stuck" in our homes these past 365 days, so the somewhat ironic timing will always be something I particularly treasure and laugh about when it comes to this collection. For me, home means creating a cozy space with a calm, peaceful environment that nourishes and comforts. These designs full of cheerful florals, cozy feathers, boho blenders and soft textures colored in a pretty palette reveals exactly the style of our own home and the layers of prints, patterns and things we've collected over the years that have made our house a home. Homebody has been amazing to sew with these past several weeks, from small accessory projects to large quilts. You can find loads of inspiration in the the LookBook, a 68-page book filled with beautiful pictures and amazing projects, and today I thought I'd share some of my favorites!

I'm going to start with what I made as soon as my Homebody rolls arrived, this set of quilted cosmetic bags for my daughter and I to showcase some of the main florals in this new collection! Everything I've learned about making bags I've learned from Svetlana of sotakhandmade, so if you're looking to make something similar I suggest her Essential Pouch pattern. To make these extra lux I used two layers of Hobbs Tuscany silk batting, just scraps I had leftover from some previously made quilted pillows, and the two layers quilted with a combination of the straight stitch + the wavy stitch created such amazing quilty texture on these!


One of my favorite things when it comes to bag-making is shopping for unique tassel pulls and fun keychains to add. I found these amazing macrame keychains on amazon recently and they look so perfect with the boho style of Homebody!


Next up are some Homebody pillows! I made quite a lot and I have some that I haven't even photographed to share yet. I included the one in Fridays post that started my new nine patch obsession, but here's a second 18" pillow that's very similar, using the same nine patch pattern just without the binding. Again I used two layers of Hobbs Tuscany Silk batting with dense straight line quilting in a light tan Aurifil thread for yummy, cozy quilty texture. 

Homebody Nine Patch Pillow

These pair of whole cloth quilted pillows I made for my LookBook to showcase the Homebody main florals -- Togetherness at Home (left) and Togetherness at Heart (right). A great tutorial for making your own whole cloth pillow covers can be found, again, at sotakhandmade. To quilt this pair I used a wavy stitch that comes built-in on my Janome that's become my first choice for quilting when I want something other than the straight stitch. I love it!


Patchwork pillows are always fun to make! This next one is made using 2.5" Homebody squares that I cut from scraps leftover from other projects. This is the first pillow I made to fill with a Hobbs Pillow Pal poly/down pillow insert. Hobbs Bonded Fibers has generously sponsored me with quilt batting over the past few years and recently sent me several of their pillow insert sizes to try out and folks, I promise you -- these are the absolute best I've tried! They have nearly twice the loft of the pillow inserts I previously purchased from Amazon and Joann over the years, which means they make for a very full pillow which in my opinion always looks and feels the best!

Homebody Patchwork Pillow

For the fun of it, since I'm still making things at home rather than my studio, I took my box of Homebody finished pillows that are eventually headed to the shop side of my studio and added them to our bed to snap some photos to share asking the question, how many pillows are too many? I'd love to know your thoughts on that!

Homebody Pillows

I've made four quilts/tops now that include Homebody, two are the Charming Nines that I shared on Friday so I'll start with my forever favorite go-to quilt to make, a Quick Quilt As You Go Herringbone QAYG quilt! I'm going to be completely honest and share that the near perfect way my fabrics lined up was a complete accident with this one. One of my favorite things about this pattern is that because of the way it's made, the fabric panels don't typically match up and istead the fabrics are staggered, creating a super scrappy zig zag effect that is all about having fun and not having to worry about perfectly matched points. Imagine my surprise when this was finished, trimmed and laid out that my panels nearly all lined up, minus the one part, well, I decided that was totally okay with me. What makes this quilt extra special is that for the LookBook my daughter Haila modeled the finished quilt!




Ever since Art Gallery Fabrics launched The Denim Studio line of smooth solid and printed denims I've wanted to make a classic star block quilt. I took this pic of my stashed denims in 2017 and as it would turn out, I was just waiting for Homebody to finally make my denim quilt! 

AGF Denim for Stockings

Using just two Homebody prints -- my Togetherness at Home floral as the star centers and Domestic Charm Birch as the background fabric, I pulled out my denims and started with just one block!  

Photo Feb 04, 12 19 56 PM

The Nectarine Sunrise Smooth Solid Denim is the only non blue denim I added because it's peachy pink color pairs perfectly with my floral. I used the Nectarine Sunrise denim to create an X within the repetitive star block pattern and I think it turned out so good. Using such a limited palette is not my typical choice when it comes to making quilts, but this truly turned out exactly how I had hoped it would all those years ago. when my denim star quilt was just a dream. 

Photo Feb 24, 12 46 12 PM

Photo Jan 01, 12 01 50 AM

The economy block centers of each star block yielded corner scraps that I immediately sewed into HSTs, so right after I had finished the quilt I had enough to make this matching pillow! 

Photo Feb 20, 11 14 08 AM

I think this pillow is a great place to stop today with my Homebody favorites! Of course I have tons more, but I think I'll save those for another day, soon. I hope these projects inspire you and that you love Homebody as much as I do!

xo Maureen

Friday, March 12, 2021

Charming Nine: A Collaboration with Sharon Holland

It's been awhile but I'm back today to share a fun collaboration with my AGF fabric design sister Sharon Holland that includes a free new quilt pattern! 

Photo Jan 01, 12 01 00 AM

If you follow my Instagram you may have seen my project reels and posts including my current fabric crush, errr obsession -- my most recent collection with AGF, Homebody + Sharon's Kismet + two Bonnie Christine prints from her Lambkin collection that pair perfectly! Just look how amazing this big bundle is that Brooke at Lady Belle Fabric put together!

Homebody +Kismet + 2 Lambkin Prints

Using these prints I've already made many things, including a batch of herringbone patchwork bags, several quilted journals and now two large throw size nine patch quilt tops!

Hourglass Quilted Journal

Herringbone Patchwork Bag

Scrappy Journals

When it came time to choose a quilt pattern for these beautiful fabrics, I chose the simple, classic nine patch pattern because I wanted something super scrappy, fun and cozy that would just let all of these gorgeous fabrics shine! I had made a few 18" quilted Homebody pillows for my Homebody LookBook using the pattern of alternating 6.5" nine patches with 6.5" print squares and I LOVE how those turned out so I knew a quilt in this style would be absolutely perfect!



When Sharon saw this first peek of my quilt top she immediately decided to make her own version and from there the idea for Sharon to design the free PDF quilt pattern to offer was decided. Because SHaron had written the free pattern for her Charming One quilt featuring Kismet last fall, she thought this would be a perfect pattern to continue the beginner-friendly series she started of easy quilts and named this quilt pattern Charming Nine. Now you can Find both patterns on her Free Projects page. Isn't she the best! 

Photo Mar 04, 1 33 58 PM

Before I share more pics of my quilt I want to share a glimpse of Sharon's amazing version, made with a beautiful, lower volume palette full of soft colors that include a variety of scraps from her upcoming Lilliput collection (due out soon) along with prints from her Kismet, Spirited, my Homebody and a mix of AGF denim, solids & blenders. Just look at this soft, dreamy quilt!

Sharon Holland Charming Nine Swirl

Sharon Holland Charming Nine Styled 1

Sharon is so good she even completed quilting and binding hers beautifully for today's quilt reveal and PDF pattern release! 

I'll be sending both of my tops to Brooke at Lady Belle Quilting for her edge to edge long arm quilting service, so to make my reveal feel special I took my quilt tops to one of my favorite nearby spots to photograph! It was a cool 60 degrees, an although there's still snow and ice on the ground in spots, it felt like Spring was finally visiting Potter County!

Photo Jan 01, 12 00 03 AM

Photo Jan 01, 12 01 23 AM

Photo Jan 01, 12 00 45 AM

Photo Jan 01, 12 01 00 AM (1)

I hope you LOVE this classic quilt as much as I do, whether it's my super scrappy saturated version or Sharon's softer, sweeter version! If you do, be sure to head on over to Sharon's blog to snag a copy of the free Charming Nine PDF quilt pattern and to see many more gorgeous photos of Sharon's quilt in her blog post!

If you make a Charming Nine Quilt of our own, be sure to tag both @SharonHollandDesigns and @MaureenCracknell on Instagram when you share and add the hashtags #charmingninequilt and #agfninepatchquilt! We can't wait to see them!!

xo Maureen

Friday, October 16, 2020

Sweet Home Quilt Along: Week 6 - GIVEAWAY

Lady Belle Long Arm Quilting GIVEAWAY

Happy Friday! Each Friday throughout the Sweet Home Quilt Along there will be a new Giveaway with one of our amazing participating sponsors and today I'm so excited to share our WEEK SIX  Giveaway with a prize from Lady Belle Fabric & Quilting!

Sweet Home QAL Sponsors

Lady Belle Fabric is run by husband and wife team, Rob and Brooke. In their shop you'll find kits, both bundles and single cuts of hand-picked fabrics that are fresh, modern, and fun! Designer fabrics include many of our favorites -- Art Gallery Fabrics, Cotton + Steel, Figo, Robert Kaufman, Moda, and more! Lady Belle Fabrics goal is to offer the most gorgeous fabric as quickly as they can. Visit them today for an online, one-stop shop for all your fabric and edge to edge quilting needs!

Lady Belle Fabric Logo

SHOP   *  Instagram  *  Facebook   *  Quilting Service  *  We hope you love visiting Lady Belle!

Lady Belle Quilting

Our grand finale prize is an amazing package from Lady Belle Fabric in which the randomly drawn winner will receive free long arm quilting, batting, and return shipping for their Sweet Home quilt --incredible, right!!??

Right now, all Sweet Home quilts sent to Lady Belle Fabric by December 31, 2020 will get 15% off their long arm order!

Lady Belle Long Arm Quilting

I’ve gotten several quilts edge to edge stitched by Brooke and she’s really the best! She works with you to pick out the right quilting pattern for your quilt, advices on thread color, and does the most professional job! Above is the beautiful, original Sweet Home quilt finished with the Daisy Chain pattern. Isn't it inspiring?!

Thank you Lady Belle Fabric & Quilting for this amazing prize!

To Enter: Be sure to use a public Instagram account to post your Sweet Home Quilt Along progress photos throughout the QAL using the hashtag #SweetHomeQAL. Each time you do, you'll automatically be entered into the Giveaway hashtag pool! It's as easy as that, so be sure to share away your progress pics each week as we work our way to finishing our quilts!


We'll announce each Giveaway winner on Monday's late afternoon EST throughout the QAL on each of your host's Instagram accounts at @MaureenCracknell, @SharonHollandDesigns, and @PenelopeHandmade, so be sure to find us to follow!

xo Maureen

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Sweet Home Quilt Along: Week 6 - The Finale!

Sweet Home QAL banner

Welcome to week SIX, the final reveal week of the Sweet Home Quilt Along, a QAL I'm co-hosting with Sharon Holland, the designer behind the adorable Sweet Home quilt pattern, and Jennifer Jones of Penelope Handmade!

Sweet Home Weeks Graphic 6

Sweet Home Quilt Tops -- four tops!

For week SIX, this final week of our QAL, it's time to reveal our finished Sweet Home quilts! Whether you have a complete top to share, or several like I do, that you plan to send to a long arm quilter. Or if you completely finished your Sweet Home, quilted + bound, now is the time to photograph those beauties and celebrate! Below you can see the schedule we're following throughout the QAL, but of course we always encourage and want everyone to sew at their own pace!

Sweet Home QAL Schedule

The Sweet Home quilt pattern is designed by Sharon and is available in her SHOP, for those of you just finding out about our QAL. Throughout the quilt along I've made a total of four quilts, two to keep and two to give -- two made with my new Cozy & Joyful collection and two using the original Sweet Home quilt kit, both from Lady Belle Fabric!

Sweet Home Quilt Tops

As I mentioned last week, I'll be sending all four of my quilts to Brooke at Lady Belle Fabric who offers an edge to edge long arm quilting service, Lady Belle Quilting, in addition to her amazing fabric shop! I've decided on the allover quilting patterns for each and I can't wait to see them completely finished!

Sweet Home Quilt Tops -- Cozy & Joyful

From Brooke's catalog of quilting patterns, I decided on Frost, the large scale allover snowflake pattern from the narrowed down options I shared last week. Thank you to those of you who chimed in to offer your thoughts, it was a huge help! Since Potter County's snowy winters are one of my favorite things about living where I do, especially during the holidays, I decided it was the most meaningful option for my family's 2020 Christmas quilt that also has a background made with my creamy white with red stars print, Snowing Bright!

Sweet Home Quilt Top -- Cozy & Joyful

Photo Jan 01, 12 00 46 AM

My my second Sweet Home quilt top, made using the original kit that was available at Lady Belle Fabric, I decided on the Baptist Heart Clams quilting pattern. It's just so sweet and I ultimately chose this option because I think the fans + heart combo will be a meaningful way to show all the love that went into making these quilts! 

Sweet Home Quilt Top

Photo Oct 06, 11 37 47 AM

I'm so excited to see everyone's finished Sweet Home quilts and I hope you've loved sewing with Sharon + Jennifer + ME! Today both lady's are sharing their quilt reveals own blogs, so be sure to pop on over to both Sharon's and Jennifer's blogs to see their final week six posts!

Sweet Home Quilt Tops

As always, I hope my reveal quilt photos inspire your week six photos! I can't wait to see them! Be sure to post your photos on Instagram with our QAL hashtag #SweetHomeQAL, as well as tagging me @MaureenCracknell, @SharonHollandDesigns and @PenelopeHandmade

Just a reminder -- that from the hashtag pool we'll be able to see everyone's posts, as long as you have a public account, and from there we can interact and encourage one another! We'll also be using the hashtag pool to choose weekly Giveaway winners!

Sweet Home QAL Sponsors

I'll see you back here Friday for one last finale Giveaway with our sponsor, Lady Belle Fabric & Quilting!

xo Maureen