My lunch buddy, Arushi had a baby girl and I decided to make an ombre Pinwheel quilt for her little one.

The challenge was to finish it in a quick couple of days so we could go visit her and give the little one her gift.

Pink Pinwheel quilt

Pink Pinwheel quilt

Am glad this came together in record time 🙂 looking better than what I had anticipated .

pink pinwheel 7

The quick completion of the top motivated me to try some FMQ on the quilt…some pink satin FMQ on the borders and white satin across the quilt.

pink pinwheel 3

The quilt has now been gifted and hopefully the ‘lil one grown up to love it 🙂

Quilt Size: 40″X60″
Fabric: Some bella solids and local Indian Poplin
Thread: Calypso satin in Pink and white
Quilt Name: Pink Ombre Pinwheel Quilt


I am declaring my June goal publicly 🙂

Here is a quilt I started end of April. May was more or less a long vacation month, not just in terms of quilting but kid’s summer vacation…exotic location..2 weeks off kind of vacation!
Almost little or no sewing happened during the month.

This is where my chevron quilt was left a month back and this is where I pick up the threads from…literally! I am trying a different technique of making a chevron quilt as against my favourite process of trying using HSTs.

Trying to learn new skills 🙂

Chevron quilt

Linking it to :

The first time I saw this wall quilt, I thought it was impossible; never even wanted to attempt it. My painting skills are limited to just sketching…ha ha

However, Shruti convinced me that this was doable and was a worthy skill to have. I am glad I agreed. The workshop was over the long weekend, so Prajakta from Green leaf quilts and I decided to drive down and stay at our friends place, Kausalya. The workshop was at her studio, KaPa.What a gracious host!

Abstract portrait quilt

So one sunny Friday morning at 6am, we set out on a drive of 150 odd km to KaPa studio to join other quilters and learn how to make an Abstract Portrait quilt. To be frank, at this point, we were just going off on a short holiday, wasn’t sure what the final quilt would look like, if it ever got completed.

We reached there by about 9:30am and shortly after started the workshop. The studio is absolutely state of the art with Bernina sewing machines around and she had stocked the fridge with cold water and drinks, snacks etc. The studio has nice white walls, wide windows for natural light to seep in and absolutely every quilting notion one needs in a workshop.


We started with trying out the portrait technique on paper, mine looked disastrous …
Then in the afternoon, after a lovely sumptuous lunch, we started our work on our quilts. At the end of Day1, this is how it looked …


Day 2 started with face shading and coloured fabric, understanding the direction of light on our picture, eyes, placement of warm and cool colours…then wonderful lunch and back to the desk. In the fternoon, we basted and quilted the piece.A full two day workshop and a lot of hard work!
But every minute was worth it 🙂

Abstract portrait

While we were at it, she also taught us a new binding method. The teacher was awesome. That what I like about her–he will challenge your skill level and make you do wonderfully difficult quilts. As far as mine is concerned, I am still wondering if I was the one who made it.

entire group with completed quilts

Here is hers and me with mine next to it. Not bad for a first attempt. Although hers looks much better and cleaner.

me and mine

me and mine

Here is the mini quilt I will be taking you through today !

Hand Pieced Mini quilt

Hand Pieced Mini quilt

I love hand embroidery as much as I love English paper Piecing(EPP). A heartfelt thank you to @shoppershaz for giving me the opportunity to go back to hand quilting. EPP rather…
It is such a destressing and enjoyable feeling. Once I started making the squares and triangles, I just couldnt stop. The plan was to make one and I ended up with Three ferryswheel.



But all was not well to begin with. Of course I knew what I wanted to make and remembered it was a tute from ‘I am a ginger Monkey’ …but to my utter surprise, she has stopped her blog and previous posts are unavailable. Went to craftsy where it was registered but the link was dead.After a bit of research, I realized its called a ferryswheel with EPP triangles and squares.



That wasnt all. I had no clue how to EPP triangles and squares. Ended up sewing them like spider webs and all was messy. Also, started with solids as I originally planned to make it but they looked rather flat.My mini quilt swap partner loved bright colours. So I finally brought out my Alison Glass FQ bundle which I had received here from Shruti and since then I haven’t looked back.



The squares were squared and the triangles triangled…then joined and sewed and done! I tried some colourful echo hand quilting around in matching colours and loved it even more .
Sooooo want to make one for myself now!

Linking it to WIP Wednesday and Sew Fresh Quilts!

Quilt Size: 90″X110″
Fabric : Indian Rajasthani

Made this lovely large quilt over the weekend. The top is a simple design with a long centre strip of 42″ width, lined with 2 solid blue strips of 6″ wide and then flanked with again a small print of 42″ width cut lengthwise into two parts and joined on either side. Adjusted and trimmed to 90″. The length was 110″. The quilt top came together rather quickly, one morning the fabric was cut and the subsequent morning the top was stiched. The back however, wasn’t as easy to put together. The top band was in printed fabric(half and half) while the lower part was Blue solid. Indian solids are 36″ wide so by the time you remove the selvage and join it to make a quilt back, you get to 36″. So a bit of school arithmetic was put to use before I had a quilt back to match the top.

Peeping out of Ocean Blue

The real challenge however was to quilt a quilt this big in a small home sewing machine. I tried thread basting partially and pin basting for the rest. Later, completed the quilting with straight line quilting. And all through the two days that took me to complete the quilting and binding, I just kept thinking how large the quilt was.

When completed, I took a sigh of relief. And smiled to myself. This is the first time that I have finished such a large quilt. Small baby steps towards my goal of becoming an accomplished quilter 🙂 Just that, this step wasn’t a small one by any stretch of my imagination…ha ha ha

I would say, the binding of the quilt was my greatest achievement.I got some good reviews from my quilting friends on this aspect. My earlier quilts have sometimes turned wavy or have pleats on account of inappropriate binding.So little note here on what I did to overcome my lacunae.

Ocean Blue Spread


I took 2.5″ width of binding fabric in solid blue and cut it in strips that were as long as my fabric permitted. Then I took each strip, folded it in half lengthwise and ironed it to get a strip 1.25″ wide and as long as the fabric.Each additional length of 2.5″ strip was joined to the earlier one at right angles with right sides together so that the seam join doesn’t bulk up when the binding is spread out. I kept joining strips until I reached a length that cover the perimeter of the quilt, and then some more.

Perimeter= 2X(length+breadth)
Perimeter of Ocean Blue= 2X(110+90)=400″


So my binding strip was a little more than 400″, around 415″ would suffice for the mitered corners! Since I was machine binding the quilt, I joined my binding on the wrong side of the fabric aligning the open edges of the binding strip and the quilt. I sewed around with a .25″ seam allowance. Once the entire perimeter was done, I turned it over on the right side and held it down with pins to ensure it doesn’t stretch. Finally I sewed the top with a decorative strict in a contrast thread. If I had used a straight stitch, then I would have used a thread matching the binding fabric.

Hope the binding details are useful. Please drop me a line of you

A scarp quilt has been on my To-do list for long so when I received this book, Scrap Quilts-Fast and fun as a gift and turned to page 109, I was convinced on giving the ‘String Squares’ a go. As usual though, am not following the pattern in the book.

string squares

Let me write my own tutorial and add modifications to the design !!

Having recently returned from a paper piecing workshop, paper piecing seems the obvious choice 🙂

Quick Strip Quilt: Basic Block Template
All you need:

-A4 sheets
-School rulers(1″ and 1.5″)
-Pencil and eraser
-Fabric scraps and leftovers
-Cutting mat and rotary cutter

Do note that the paper template and hence the block is 8″ when raw and 7.5″ when complete and sewed into a project. You can alter the size of the square and the width of the bands as per your need.

Preparing the paper templates

1. Take an A4 sheet and mark a square 8″ X8″ in size. I used a pencil so the marking is light.

Paper template 1

2. Fold the square to mark the diagonal. Open and draw a line across the diagonal. this will be our guiding line. Place your 1.5″ width scale and align the center of the scale with the diagonal line as seen in the picture below, such that the center of the page has a 1″ width set of parallel line across the diagonal.

Paper template 2

3.Continue to draw parallel lines such that:
The center pair is 1″ apart
then .5″ apart
then 1″ apart and so on until you reach either end of the paper (moving outwards from the diagonal). Please refer to image below for better clarity.

Paper template 3

4. The center 1″ strip would be coloured and so will be each of the alternate strips(.5″). All white strips would be 1″ wide.

Paper template 4

Trim the square and remove extra paper from all sides. Here I have coloured them for easy reference. Also, when you photocopy the coloured areas would look darker and hence easy for guidance and you wouldn’t confuse between white and coloured strips.
Once you are sure that the template is ready, make as many photocopies of it as required. You will sew on these paper templates and tear off the paper at the end .

Cutting fabric and sewing the Block

1.Take all your long scraps. I didn’t have much so I cut strips from my yardage.

Fabric scraps

2. Please note that when you cut your fabric, all white strips are to be cut 1.5″ in width. This is where your 1.5″ width student scale comes to use. It is not used during paper template process.
The center fabric is 1″ when completed , hence has to be cut at 1.5″ width. I chose a maroon tone for this.

All the other coloured fabric would be 1″ when cut(and hence 0.5 inch when completed).

Cut strips

3. Now take a paper template and place the printed side facing down. You basically just see a plain white sheet. Place the maroon along the diagonal and white on top, with right sides of both facing each other.
So, paper template facing down, maroon strip along the diagonal facing up and white strip facing down aligned on the maroon. Hold it against the light to ensure your fabric covers the center band.
Refer image below.

Ensuring correct alignment

4.Pin the strips in place. Always pin on the seam away from you, not like seen below. Turn the paper and sew on one guided line.


5. Turn to the non printed side of the paper, remove the pins and nail press the seams open.You will have one printed and one white band side by side.This is the only strip you have to be really careful about.

Join the third strip

6. Next, place a coloured fabric over the white fabric so that the other seam is aligned for both fabrics. Pin towards the inner seam. Turn and sew on the next guided line. You need not check it against the light but you can never be more careful, just do it as convenient.Turn to teh fabric side, remove pins and needle process. Continue like this until you reach the end of the paper with alternating coloured and white strips.

And the next

7. Iron the untrimmed square inside out. If your coloured strips are not all cotton, then ensure you set your iron to the setting for the fabric that has the lowest tolerance, else you might have some fabric crinkle up and burn.

Uncut square

8. Trim the square to size using your cutting mat and rotary cutter using the paper template as guide.

Trimmed square

Prepare as many blocks you require and use them in various colourful projects ! I have a couple in mind…will soon post on them as well.

I must warn you before you start reading this post…

This will not just be a photo heavy post, it will also be looooong and will have my wild ramblings on having thoroughly enjoyed a weekend, quilting with friends and learning at least 3 techniques in the process.

It all started with an innocuous statement that a fellow quilter made on a social network site displaying a desire to learn esoteric quilting skills. Shruti, from 13 Woodhouse road, not just agreed to do a workshop for us but also invited us to stay over at her place and have a taste of her hospitality. I still can’t get over the fact that someone can be so generous with her designer fabric as she is with her skill and learning — a single point agenda of giving the ‘quilting cause’ a boost!

Shruti and her muse

Shruti and her muse

Thats Shruti for you. She lives in Sangli, a quaint town in Maharashtra, about 400 km from Mumbai, but the journey by road takes almost 6 -7hours.

We, 4 students from Mumbai boarded the bus on a rainy Thursday night for an overnight bus journey to Sangli. The first glimpses of Sangli reminded me of my own village …reminiscent of the paddy fields back home in my village which I stopped visiting after my school days for varied reasons : both voluntary and forced…a strange nostalgia engulfed me as we crossed the Varna river much in spate after the August rains. There were sugarcane fields on both sides of the road, some so close that it seemed we could just lean out of the window and touch them,all lush green and wonderful in the morning light. We were welcomed by her family with open arms and hot morning tea and biscotti. Such warm people …they just filled our hearts with warmth. All of us were keen to visit her outhouse turned into the studio, we fondly remember from her blog as 13 Woodhouse Road. Post breakfast we rushed there like eager little kids and were welcome to a lovely large workshop with high-end sewing machines and beautiful wall quilts that adorned the walls.

Apsara aali by Shruti

Apsara aali by Shruti

Houses by Shruti

Houses by Shruti

Steve Jobs portrait quilt

Steve Jobs portrait quilt

As the oohs and aahs settled down, we were read out the Miranda rules,ie, the learning schedule for the next 2 days. We started with the flying geese paper piecing method on the first day and dived into her designer scrap bin to get our colorful geese out, each picking neutrals to go with them.

Admiring her quilts

Admiring her quilts

We made some wonderful paper pieced flying geese blocks in black and grey and then,an improvised method by reversing the fabric usage, using scraps as the background. It was great fun.

flying geese

flying geese

She had all the notes and templates printed with the names written on them. Couldn’t have expected the workshop to be more organized than this. Lunch time was time to order in food, hot rolls with coke and then, back to work starting with trapunto.

chai time

chai time

I remember looking at it and thinking, OMG this is impossible to make. How on earth did she make it. More importantly, does she really believe that she can make a maladroid like me work on silk and make such intricate designs!! Hmmmm… brave girl!

Flying geese 1

Flying geese 1

But with her step by step instructions, it did get less intimidating and we were almost half way there by the time we closed the workshop for the day.

Then she treated us to boating in the Varna-Krishna river confluence at sunset.

Ferry me across the river

Ferry me across the river

Life couldn’t have been more tranquil. Post that we returned to the bustle of the local market to buy fabric from a local shop, her little fabric nook. That however wasn’t the end of the day, the excitement continued as we were welcome home to wonderful aromatic biryani and we laughed and joked like school girls way into the night. While the nip in the air was actually welcome, we also loved the abundance of handmade quilts that she provided for comfort and warmth.

Even her doormat was quilted !!

quilted doormat by Shruti

quilted doormat by Shruti

Second day started with us getting back to our unfinished trapunto quilts and learning how to make pouches. We completed our trapunto projects just in time to board a bus back home.



The day was characterised by timely clicks and rounds of fabric fun!

The gang

The gang

gifts exchange

gifts exchange

The most enjoyable of all fabric games was when she threw fabric blindfolded and anyone who caught it, got it !! As we boarded the night bus back home, the laughter and cheer eventually died down and all I remembered was

‘ The music in my heart I bore,
Long after it was heard no more’

Sonalee with Shruti

Sonalee with Shruti

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