Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Chain Stitching My Raggies

Tip #3 From Rag Quilting Tip Series

LOL When I first began Rag Quilting I was doing everything the hard way. Mom had gotten me a quilt block kit for Christmas shortly after I picked up sewing again. With the raggies, I was sewing then clipping each sandwich as it passed through the machine.

I started reading the instructions in the kit Mom got me, and was clued in on what chain-stitching is. My Rag Quilting is much faster now.

Here are the details of chain stitching for Rag Quilting:

1. Make your fabric "sandwiches" and stack them by your machine.

2. Grab one sandwich and feed it through the machine diagonally corner to opposite corner. (Don't clip the thread when it is all the way through.)

3. Grab another sandwich and feed it through. Keep doing this until the stack is gone.

4. Clip the threads now between each of the sandwiches you just sewed through.

5. Stack them up again

6. Chain stitch the other line of the "X" on your sandwiches.

7. Clip apart again.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Rag Quilt Dog Beds I Made

Good Morning! 3 days until Christmas and I have some sewing yet to do! But I wanted to share some rag quilted dog beds I finished recently for a custom order. These dog beds were easy to make, just required many hours to complete. Since I made these in spurts over my busy Fall Season I would guess that I spent 25-30 hours completing them. Not my ideal project time, but my regular work kept me from sewing the past fall. Let me explain: I had started them in June and finished them around Thanksgiving. Fall sports at work and my cutting services at home kept me hopping!

So break time! I am pushing forward with sewing and pattern projects I have had packed away in my sewing closet and mind for months.

Back to the dog beds:
These 2 were custom made for 2 very large dogs. Labs, I believe. They are 48" x 35" x 5" in size.
Plans are to write a pattern for these including a size chart for different size beds...keep yer eyes peeled!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Rag Quilt Purse Kits Last Minute?
I have listed many Rag Quilt Purse Kits in my eBay store at this time. I can ship same day or next day if you BIN and pay quickly. Here is an example of one of the kits....Hurry! Christmas is in 4 days!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Ashlawnfarms Rag Quilt Patterns

I was contacted this week by another seller on Etsy who wanted to feature my quilt patterns on her website -she has a directory there for quilt patterns which I thought was very helpful for locating some really great patterns on Etsy.

Here is the link to her directory site

In addition my patterns on the Etsy site will be $3.99 until Christmas! Get yours now!

Example of the cosmetic pouch.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Etsy Tuesday

Hey everyone! The middle of October is here and I cannot believe it!

Back in April I decided to start a cutting service for fabrics used mostly for rag quilting. Well it has turned into a full time job besides my actual full time job as an athletic trainer. My sewing time is maybe a couple hours a month now due to the time involved filling orders.

At this time I am offering solid color flannel fabric squares cut in many different sizes, pre-fringed squares, Warm and White and Warm and Natural batting squares, all of my rag quilt patterns, and some of my handmade items.

Here are a few of my items listed on Etsy! Come visit me anytime!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Newest Creation to date

My summer has been crazy! I did make a cute table runner a few weeks ago and am just now getting to blogging about it. I will be listing this on eBay and Etsy.

Red at the 4-H show

My nephew, Mason, showed his pig, Red, at the 4-H show Monday. I was tickled to get to go watch! Being at the fairgrounds brought back some fond memories of showing my cows way back!

Here are some shots of Mason prepping, getting some last minute show tips, and showing Red.

Red wanted to run in the ring, so Mason had to work to keep him in line!

Red after the show!! He was a tired old boy!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Summer June happenings

Wow....where has this month of June gone? It is half over already and I feel I have not gotten a real chance to enjoy it at all!

Well life is busy at Ashlawnfarms. I finished a set of closet curtains this past weekend for the stepdaughter, so I will have some time to do some sewing for myself in the next few weeks. I have so many UFO's it is not funny! But maybe that will give me something to blog about?

Ashlawnfarms is also having a June sale on if you are interested in rag quilting supplies or patterns check it out.

Father's Day is this Sunday too!! So don't forget about that!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Squirrel City

I have been wanting to blog about this for a few days now. I just seem to have minimal time to do it!!

We gathered hickory nuts at my dads last fall and still have them sitting in bowls by the fireplace.

Every day we have thrown some out to the squirrels. Well one in particular that is. She is becoming very comfortable at just waltzing up the sidewalk and letting us know she is here to visit. She even gets on the chair outside and looks in the window. She takes her nuts and we watch her head off across the street to bury them in the neighbors flowerbed.

She has even brought a couple of friends too.

Here she is earlier this spring with her head in a pumpkin.

Well today there are 5 squirrels hanging out in the two trees out front.

Hubby and I are getting a kick out of them.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Where have I been?

You ask?

I am around....busy little bee I am.

Check out my eBay store because I am offering some new supplies for Rag Quilting. Items include flannel fabric squares, 8 1/2" pre-fringed fabric squares, Warm and White/Natural Quilt Batting squares, all of my rag quilting patterns, as well as all of my handmade rag quilt items I have made.

Watch for penny auctions and .99 cent auctions.

If you need something specially cut let me know!!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Did somebody say SALE!????

Oh yeah! Oh yeah!
It is THAT time again!

The BIG QCG (Quilting Corner Group) Red Tag SALE.

Check out the big savings....these girls all worked VERY hard to get these listings up. Make their day by placing a bid or two or three.....

Latest creation

Hi everyone. Here are some pictures of my latest rag quilt creation. It is a candle mat in red and green homespuns....I will be listing it shortly.

I also re-opened my eBay store a few weeks ago. I will be selling pre-fringed raggy squares among other rag quilt related items now in addition to my creations. Be sure to stop by.

Ashlawnfarms Rag Quilt Creations

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Day to Build?

This morning I am blogging about a set of Carninals I have at my house. Each morning I get up and drink a cup of coffee and catch up on some reading online. It is usually still dark and quiet outside.

This morning, Mr. and Mrs. Cardinal are tweeting away like crazy outside my window. I am wondering if today is building day for a new set of fledglings? Building day for a nest, which would be the second one I know of outside my window.

Last spring they built a nest right outside the window in a bush and raised their 3 babies. It was great watching them create their family.

Are they going to build or are they just "chatting" about it. I have no we will see what happens.

Here is a pic of the male.....

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Need a funny HA HA?

While mom and I were out shopping yesterday we stopped at Warm Glo Candles off I70 in Centerville, IN which is a huge antique shop area.

Anyway I saw this little nick nack that said:

"The word DIET puts a bad taste in my mouth, I have to wash it out with CHOCOLATE!!"

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Back with me now.

It has been 1 month now or 4 weeks since I put my dog, Brit, to sleep. It has been really hard adjusting to not having her around. Not tripping over her, not feeding her, not taking her out at 6am, not having her sit next to me at the chair, or following me around everywhere I go in the house. Nope, my little shadow, my best and faithful friend sits in a box now on top of the hutch in the living room. Her ashes are with me now.

The message on her box reads:


" I explained to St. Peter
I'd rather stay here.
Outside the pearly gates,
I won't be a nuisance,
I won't make a sound.
I'll be very patient and wait.
I'll be near playing with a celestial toy.
Not matter how long you may be.
I'd miss you so much, if I went in alone.
It wouldn't be heaven for me."

---Author unknown---

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Big Sale BIG SALE!!!!!!!

SEARCH "Quilter's Corner" AUCTIONS

Well it is sale time again! Quilters Corner Group is having their RED TAG SALE....check here for all listings. We will be running the sale from today through the 22nd.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Fabric Closet

Well I have been planning now for a couple of weeks to paint the walk-in closet off of the upstairs bedroom. So today was the big day. It got painted. It was an ugly old yellow and now it is bright white.

This closet is going to be turned into my new fabric closet where all my fabric stash is going to be stored. The small door you see is the door to the dormer where my new sewing room is going to be located. It is an absolute mess. I ended up putting a lot of stuff in there from the closet so it is overloaded! I can hardly fit in there now.

My next step is to get fabric shelves for the closet. I may end up going to Lowes or Menards to get lumber to cut and paint. Shelving is so expensive. I looked at Ikea and some other online companies, but uh I want to do this cheap and quick. My $ will need to go for drywall, insulation, and etc. to finish the dormer. What fun!!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

March is here finally!

I am happy now that it is March. Though this past week has been hard losing Brit, I do have spring to look forward to and then SUMMER-my favorite season! Yippee!

My high energy from a few weeks ago got zapped last week, but I am starting to look at my list of "To Do's" again and getting my thoughts back in line. I actually have crossed some things off the list because they are done! woo hoo!

I may try and paint some this weekend-maybe. Well I am off for is a picture of me and Brit.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Today is not a happy day for me. I had to put my beloved pet, Brit the 14 1/2 year old dog, to sleep today. I never had any children of my own so I felt like my animals were my kids. I cannot really concentrate on much today (or this past weekend knowing what was coming.) This has been one of the hardest days of my life. I hate being weepy, but that has been my day.

The good thing was that it is a lovely sunny day today and at least God made that happen for me today. I needed the sun on a day like today.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I am ready for Spring (and I am sticking to it!!)

Does the month of February seem long to you too?? Being the shortest month of the year it sure does know how to it snowed here. I was walking into the school building around 8am and felt the intense burn from the wind hitting my ears (bad day to tie it back.) I wore the jacket without a hood too thinking it HAS to be getting warmer! Ha!!! What a fool I am! This blistering cold just blew my mind-it almost sent me into an asthma attack. I was glad for the warmth of the building, another 10 steps outside and I would have screamed! LOL! Well not really.

When I got up at 6am I sat down on the couch to watch the morning news on WTHR channel 13. Treeboy Tim Bush shows his segment on "Think Spring" (watch the video on the upper right side) and I was all excited to propagate and start my seeds from there my mind went crazy. First I need a space for all these plants-so I think: "easy!! upstairs East window"....problem is that is my actual sewing area. So now what?

Move the sewing area to where?? My unfinished dormer. You know the one that has a really long full size bed (specially made for someone that was 6'7"-got it when I bought the house.) The dormer is FILLED to the gills with excess collectibles, linens, fabric scraps, holiday decorations, and etc....I used to have a booth at an antique mall, so that is where all that stuff is. Oh my goodness what a mess. So my plan is to gather up that stuff and have a couple of flat rate box auctions each week until it is gone! But first I must organize some other areas to make room!

This includes clearing out and painting the walk-in closet right outside the dormer to turn into my fabric closet. I plan on having shelves and cabinets for storage in there.

I need more room, so then I go to the do some work there- paint a couple of areas and so forth. I will be getting rid of a lot of stuff!! I plan on having a rummage sale Memorial Day Weekend where I can sell that long bed off!! Stuff will be leaving the basement too....lots of stuff.

Anyway I figure by the time the end of April hits I will have my sewing room done. Hopefully!! It needs lots of work to finish it since it is unfinished. I will have most of May to get ready for that sale!!

Mmmmm so if you are wondering I am putting my sewing on hold starting tomorrow...unless I have some special orders!! The sewing equipment is going to be moved upstairs to collect some dust for a bit. I have a couple of items to stitch up tonight that is on my UFO table and that is it!! The only reason I would get it out is for special orders-cause those are special!!

Now back to thinking about propagating those plants......going to fit that in too....I WILL be gardening this summer-MUCH MORE than last summer.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Happy Birthday to me on Etsy

Yeah, it is my 1st Birthday on Etsy....

Pattern/Instructions are all $1.99!! What a sale! Not sure when this sale will disappear yet, so don't wait too long!!

Link to patterns

Monday, February 16, 2009

Goodbye to Soft Drinks

This is such an off the wall topic, but I am proud of it and wanted to share. I have always, since I was a kid, had a keen addiction to soft drinks, particulary Dr. Pepper. I have not ever been a fan of diet soft drinks either and always wanted the real thing. I would have at least 1 DP a day since I can remember when.

During our Texas trip right after Christmas, I had tons of DP because that is what DH and the in-laws drink too. It was very accessable in their house which was a bad thing for me!! LOL

Well when I got back to work at my high school, one of my student-athletes and I were discussing New Year's Resolutions. He had mentioned that last year his was going to give up drinking pop and he made the entire year. So on New Years Day he celebrated with a 2-liter. Well he still does not drink pop. He said he just feels better without it...and now that it is a habit why change back?

So it got me thinking that it would not be that hard to quit drinking pop. I was interested to find out how much better I would feel with eliminating it from my diet. So Sunday January 11, 2009 I officially quit drinking soft drinks. Today is day 37. I have increased my coffee intake my next hurdle is quitting the caffiene.

I think it was alot easier than I anticipated. I just needed to make the change and stick to it. So far so good and I don't plan to start up again!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Rag Quilting Tips Series #2 “Equipment/Tools”

Rag Quilting Tips Series

#2 “Equipment/Tools”

Writing about the tools used in rag quilting kind of makes me chuckle when I think of how I researched different ways to rag quilt awhile back. I mean come on: A Weedwacker? Really???

That is a man for you….my DH runs when I ask him to clip seams. Whatever!

So here are a list of tools I recommend for rag quilting and these will come in most handy for the new rag quilters yet to emerge from the cocoon.

To cut your fabric squares you should really invest in a cutting mat and a rotary cutter and a straight edge for time efficiency. My grandmother did it the old way with patterns cut from old cereal boxes which she then traced onto the fabric and then hand cut each piece. I did some of that too until I learned about the cutting mats and rotary cutters. With those tools you can cut several layers of fabric out at once. Wow! We love time savers!

A sewing machine- well that goes without saying really. I have 3 at the moment, each are a different age and each seem to have a special use as they are not all made equal. The only thing I really miss is having a machine that does a blanket stitch. Variety in stitches is a great thing when you go beyond the simple straight line stitching and start adding in appliqués, embroideries, and other types of embellishments. Find something that will fit your budget too. There are a lot of really nice high end machines out there that I would just LOVE to have, but it is not fitting for my budget so I make do with what I have.

Thread- I have used cotton and polyester threads. Here is the deal though: You should really start using 100% cotton from here on out if you will be making items for babies and small children. The CPSIA is the reason and I am not going into that topic for it would take me 3 weeks to write about that! LOL. You can search that one on your own if you are in left field. ---But about the threads. I used a invisible polyester thread and liked it at first, but found that it is not a good choice for rag quilting as the seams came unsewn after the washing and drying, so back to 100% cotton I went.

Also use NEW threads….sometimes older threads from estate sales are so old they become brittle when using. A newer thread will be a better choice.

Scissors or clipping tools- Here is my least favorite part about rag quilting: The clipping. It is messy. It is time consuming. It is stressful on my hands. And it is not really fun. Well that is my opinion! I have clipped over 200 projects! However, some rag quilters LOVE this part. They sit in front of the fireplace or TV and just clip away. I have used the Fiskars Micro-tip spring-loaded scissors for a long time now. There are some other brands out there too-just make sure they are spring-loaded. Another way to clip the seams is to clip before sewing the seams by using a special die-cut machine which can be a bit expensive for the novice.

I have this new toy to do all my clipping now. It was a Christmas present. I have an Accucut Mark IV cutting machine that holds a die with the raggy edges in it. Well it is a used one. Would love to have the Grandmark size, but got a good deal on the Mark IV and it gets the job done!

Here are some pictures of what is does to the fabric:

Can you see the clipped edges? You just position the fabric sandwich over the die and crank it under the pressurized roller and Voila! Another great time saver!!

The last few tools or equipment needed are a washing machine and a dryer to really bring out the ragginess of your project, and a sweater shaver for flannel fabrics. I think I mentioned the sweater shaver in my first submission so you can refer back to that on using it for the flannel fabrics.

Just a word of advice on washing and drying your project: During washing a lot of the lint from the seams will loosen and you will have to wipe out your washer tub after the cycle. This will also happen while drying so clean the filter off frequently. If you are doing many rag quilts- it is advised to go to the Laundromat for this process.

Well again if you have any comments, questions, or additional advise please add it here on the comment section.

My next submission will be:
"to prewash the fabric or not to"

Bible Verse of the Day