Monday, December 28, 2020

2021 Beach BOM has a name:  Beach Dreams

Balmy breezes …. Sunshine …. The soothing swish of waves brushing the shore …. The music of sea birds in the air accompanied by the slap of flip-flops against one’s heels … The chime of sail and flag riggings gently hitting their masts …. The tangy scent of salt and seaweed in the air …

Connect The Blocks and Morning Glory Designs are excited to partner again in 2021 to bring you this sea-worthy Block of the Month!  After a tumultuous 2020, aren’t we all ready for some calm? Our beachy BOM represents the easy-going life at the beach.

This will be a 12-part series that will include piecing, applique, and some paper-piecing.  It’s appropriate for confident beginners and seasoned quilters alike and when it’s complete you’ll have a beautiful large lap throw or wall hanging (approximately 68” square) to give someone special or keep for yourself.

Click on the 2021 BOM tab at the top of the page for more details.

Sign ups are open now, and the first block (Dolphins) will go out January 15, 2021.  You may choose to get monthly digital downloads, or have a paper copy mailed to your home (or beach) address.

You may subscribe by the month or, pre-pay for the whole project, and get 2 months free!

Click Here To Signup

Block 1: Dolphins

And of course, gorgeous batik fabric kits will be available from

                                              Click Here to Order Kits

Your kit subscription to this Block of the Month (BOM) includes all the fabrics you need to make the top, the printed patterns and templates for each block, and the postage to send it to you monthly.  The first kits will be sent out in January, usually about a week after you sign up.  If you choose to start later in the year, that’s no problem!  We’ll work with you to complete this on your time schedule.

I hope you will join us this year for another great block of the month adventure.  I will be offering monthly videos to help you each step of the way.   Thanks for hanging out with us and playing along on this beautiful Beach Dreams quilt.

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Name that Quilt Contest for the NEW 2021 Block of the Month

It is almost ready, and I can't wait to share with you the new Block of the Month for 2021.  But before I can release the patterns it needs a name!  It is fun, beachy, and full of all the things I love best about being on the Beach.  Now is your chance to Name that Quilt.

2021 Beach Themed Block of the Month

Leave a comment with your idea for a name.  The winner of Name that Quilt Contest will win a fabulous bundle of Beach fabric.  Details about sign ups and the release of the first installment will be coming in the next few days.

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Halloween Quilt Hop All this Week

Welcome the the Halloween Hop this work.  We have lots of great free Halloween projects for you.  Be sure to hop over to all the blogs participating and pick up your free project.

Here at Morning Glory Designs, I have made a fun pumpkin runner for you to paper piece.

This runner features three paper pieced pumpkin blocks with appliqued leaves.  The border is also paper pieced to make it fast and accurate

Get the pattern HERE.

Be sure to visit all of the other blogs, all week for more great projects.

Leave a comment to be entered in the give away for a Jelly Roll of Christmas fabric!!!!
Thanks, and enjoy the Halloween Quilt Block Hop

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Christmas in July Blog Parade - Holiday Placemat Tutorial

Welcome to the Christmas in July 15 Pattern Parade.  

Here is super simple placemat and napkin pattern to make up using Fat Quarters for a quick gift or for your own Holiday table.   

Please leave a comment to be entered in a drawing to win a Fat Quarter pack of Christmas fabrics!

The placemat includes a pocket on one corner for a coordinating napkin.

By using a holiday Fat Quarter Bundle each placemat and napkin will be unique, but they will all coordinate, and look great on your table.

You will cut up each fat quarter into the various components, then mix and match the parts.  It is quilted with cross-hatching, then the pocket is added, and the whole thing is bound.  

Fabric and Supplies:

· For a set of 4 placemats and 4 napkins, you will need 20 FQ’s (if you want different fabrics for each place setting).  From those 20 FQ’s you will have sufficient remaining fabric to make additional placemats and napkins by recombining fabrics.

· 18” x 24” piece of thin batting for each placemat

· Basting Spray or safety pins

· Matching thread 

Cutting List: ( for ONE placemat)

· From your FQ bundle Select which fabrics you will use for the center squares, the accent side panels, the pockets, pocket trim, and binding.  Select a full FQ for the back of each placemat.  Label each FQ. 

· From main print FQ cut a 14” square (center of placemat)

· From accent FQ cut two 3 1/2” x 14” rectangles (side panels)

· From contrasting FQ cut a 10” square, sub

-cut once on the diagonal (pocket)

· From  contrasting FQ cut one 15" x 1-1/4” strip , Press in half lengthwise, wrong sides together (trim strip on the edge of the pocket)

· From contrasting FQ cut  80” of 2-1/4” strips for binding.  Join strips.  Press in half lengthwise, wrong sides together.

· From two different accent fabrics, cut a 14” square  (for lined napkins)


1. Stitch a 3-1/2” x 14” accent strip to either side of the center 14” square.  Press toward the accent fabric.

2. Layer the placemat with batting and a FQ for backing.  Spray baste or pin layers together. 

3. Mark cross hatching on quilt top with washable  marker.  Quilt with matching thread.  Use a walking foot on your machine to keep the layers from shifting.

4. Trim placemat to remove excess batting and backing and to even up the edges.

5. Pin pressed 15" x 1-1/4” trim strip to the long side of one of the pocket triangles, right side together and raw edges matching.  Place second pocket triangle on top of first triangle, right sides together and pin along the long edge.  The trim strip will be between the two triangles.  Stitch along the long edge through all layers being careful not to stretch the bias edge of the triangles.

6. Press the two pocket triangles away from the trim strip.  Press the whole unit with starch or sizing to give it some extra body.  Trim the two short sides of the triangle with a large square ruler to even up the edges and make sure they are square.

7. Align the pocket triangle unit with lower left corner of the placemat.  Pin in place and baste 1/8” from the raw edge.

8. Open out one end of the prepared binding strip and fold the end over to form a 45 degree angle to the long edge.  Refold the binding strip in half and press.   Stitch the binding to the BACK of the placemat leaving the first 4” unstitched using a 1/4” seam.  Use matching thread for both the top and the back.  Use a walking foot to stitch down the binding and miter the corners.

9. When you get near the starting point, pin the loose 4” of binding in place and tuck the end of the binding between the two layers of those first 4”.  Trim off any excess binding. The two ends of the binding should only overlap about 2”.  Pin all layers in place aligning raw edges of the binding to the raw edge of quilt.  Finish stitching down the binding through all layers. 

10. Press the binding away from the back.  Turn placemat over and press the binding over the raw edge of the quilt FRONT.  Steam the fold as you press.  Miter the corners and press well. 

11.  Using a blind hem stitch and matching thread, stitch down the binding on the FRONT of the quilt. 

12.  Remove any quilting marks and press the placemat.

Now make the napkin.

· Use the two 14” squares you cut from two coordinating FQs.

· With right sides together stitch the  squares together on all four sides using a quarter inch seam allowance.  Leave a 5” opening to turn in the middle of one side.  You can use a serger for this if you have one.  Just be sure to leave the opening in the 4th side.

· Turn the napkin right sides out and carefully press the edges flat, trying not to get “foldy” puckers along the edges.  If you have a Seam Roll insert it inside the napkin, position it beneath the seam and press the seam flat.  You can make a seam roll by taking four FQ’s and folding them in quarters.  Stack them one atop the other and tightly roll them up.  Wrap a strip of cut off selvage around each end of the roll and pin the strips in place with a long pin.

· Remove the seam roll and finish pressing the edges.  Make sure you push out the four corners.  Fold under the 1/4” seam allowance in the opening and press, aligning the edges of the two sides of the napkin.

· With matching thread top stitch around the napkin on all four sides 1/8” from the edge.  Stitch a second row of stitches, just next to first row of stitching if desired.  Press the  napkin, fold, and insert into the napkin pocket on the placemat.

  Click Here to download the PDF pattern.

Thanks for taking a look at this project.

Be sure to visit all the other amazing Quilters to get their Christmas in July projects.

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Christmas in July Blog Parade

Coming July 15, 2020

Free Christmas Projects from Amazing DesignersJust when you need a little Fun

Starting July 15, 2020
Save the date!

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Roses are the Flower of Love - New Free Block

The iris were a big hit in my garden but are starting to fade as the last blooms on the stalk come to life.  I will miss their bright yellow and purple show out my window.

Now as June approaches the roses are starting to bloom in my backyard.  It is time to dust off some rose quilt blocks to give away, and put on sale to greet the changes taking place in my yard.

Here is the new free Deco Garden Bonus Block:  Purple Roses

This was one of first five Deco Garden blocks I offered back in 2015.  After the Deco Garden block of the month quilt was complete, I did not release the first 10 bonus blocks, but planned to release them later.  I had planned to release them in a second Deco Garden Quilt.  But with the pandemic and the need to lift some spirits I decided to release some of them early.  Originally this block was released with a black background.

I love the fact that you could see the inside of the rose, and that as a purple rose, it was totally unique.  Or perhaps I just liked the purples against the black.  So I played around with the block a little bit and came up with some project ideas to inspire you.  How about a 3 block table runner?

I love the striped borders with these floral blocks.  I think it offers a nice contrast and is easy to do.  And rotating the blocks always adds interest to a table runner, making it look good from more than one direction.  Try this project with three 12" blocks and a 2" striped border.

What do you think of this block configured as a wreath?

Cut out four 12" blocks and arrange them on a 24" background square.  Then add a couple of matching borders and you have a great summertime wall quilt, or the center block for a larger applique quilt.

If you just can't live with purple and you want something a bit bigger, here is an on-point variation in pink.  I almost like the pink better than the purple.  Almost.

By putting the block on point, I create corner triangles where partial blocks fill in those corners.  Add a lacy border and this would make a great baby quilt, large wall hanging, or small throw at 41" square.

What about making nine blocks and arranging them with a cute triangle border?

Or in pink?

Or go psycho and pull funky stuff from your stash?

Ok, that is pretty ugly.  I just threw that one in to make sure you were still paying attention.

What about reducing the size of the wreath and using 3 in a table runner?

More work than you want to do to cut all those roses?  Dust of your Brother Scan N Cut and let it to the cutting for you!!!

Ok, one more, just cuz I wanted to see what I could do with this block in a larger quilt.  This one is almost Queen size.

This pink version is set on point with half and quarter blocks in the sides and corners.  The center block is left blank and quilted with the block motif in green thread.  It is 76" square with a 3" border but you could increase the borders and bring it up to a queen size without much trouble.

Here are a few more blocks and quilts on sale for half price, to offer you a few more rose and pansy inspirations.

Pansy blocks:

Deco Garden Bonus Block 1 Fancy Pansy

Deco Garden Bonus Block 43 Pansy
And a few more roses:

Roses Around Bed Runner

Deco Garden Bonus Block 48 Rosey Posey 

Deco Garden Bonus Block 10 Red Rose Trio

Deco Garden Bonus Block 44 Red Rose

Deco Garden Bonus Block 54 Blue Rose

Now THAT is a big bouquet!

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Iris are Blooming. . . . #3 Free Block: Japanese Iris

Spring is my favorite season.  Perennials in my garden bloom and I don't have to do anything to make that happen.  They are the perfect flowers for those of us who lack a green thumb.  Right now my yellow and purple iris are blooming like little girls dancing in my garden, their heads held high, swaying in the breeze.  I don't cut them and bring them in, I just enjoy them among the sunny greens of the grass and hostas.  Joy.  That is what the sight of flowers bring me.  Pure joy.

I hope you enjoy these flowers.  This month I am offering a free iris deco garden block for you.  I hope it brings you joy. 

Here are a few suggestions for using this block in a small project.

Several other May blocks are also on sale for half price 
during this month.


May Apple

Petite Japanese Iris

May Flag Iris

Iris Summer Picnic Quilt