I don't think I've ever left this blog unattended for over a month before! I just wanted to pop in today and give you the God's honest truth about what's been going on.

First off, the first trimester of my pregnancy officially kicked my butt and I'm happy to say I just entered the second trimester and things are looking up. I still have my moments where I need to relax and take breaks more than I'd like, but I'm learning early on that my body and my needs are no longer my own. Thank you all for the kind words, well wishes and emails checking in on baby and I, they are much appreciated and we are doing well. The only constant lately that has been hampering my progress is signs of early pinched nerves that make parts of my legs go numb if I stand or walk too long without a break, so I'm taking a lot of resting breaks these days.

If pregnancy wasn't a whirlwind enough, we unexpectedly lost my Father-In-Law a couple weeks ago. His health wasn't great but it wasn't that bad either so his passing was a shock. The day we got the call was a definite circle of life experience as Ben and I spent the afternoon starting our baby registry and looking forward to the future... As much as we miss him so, Ben and I are taking solace in the fact that our lil munchkin now has a guardian angel looking over him/her.
This is one of my favorite pictures I took of my Father-In-Law riding his horse, Maverick. The family keeps joking that Tom (my FIL) will more than likely be the little angel and devil on our child's shoulders as they grow up. The angel side for when he's actually being a guardian angel and the devil side for when he says into their little ear, "Hey, do this... It'll really freak out your mom!"

So, between resting, trying to stay calm and making funeral arrangements as well as carrying out Tom's final wishes, I've been a little busy on the family front these past weeks.

Then just when things started to slow down and I wanted to get back to work my machine started acting up and has been in the shop waiting on parts... Needless to say I haven't gotten much accomplished lately that I can show for, but I plan on quilting like a mad woman here (hopefully starting later today) as much as lil munchkin allows.

I do have a ton of quilts to share pictures of from the past few months and as my energy returns I will be posting all that I can! Thank you all for being patient with me and understanding my family needs and personal limitations. I need to get back into my quilting mojo and get hopping on this nursery for lil munchkin! So much to do and not enough energy for it all these days!!!


New title...

I just wanted to pop in and tell you all a little about what's been going on behind the scenes here. I feel like I've completely fallen off the blogging bandwagon and I'm truly sorry, but I have an excuse and it's pretty awesome if I do say so myself. 

I get to add a new title to my resume. So far I have quilter, pattern designer, author, long arm quilter and fabric hoarder if I'm being completely honest. Well, adding to this list will also be mom <3

This little one has been wreaking havoc on my system these last few weeks which has left me feeling less than stellar most days. I've been using what little energy I have left to eat and take care of my clients needs, maybe clean and shower somewhere in there... But most days my couch and I (with our friends ginger ale and crackers) have been spending a lot of quality time together. 

I'm hoping in a few more weeks I will be feeling a little more "back to normal" and quilting like a mad woman. Luckily I've scheduled myself a little more open for the time being, but here's my plea to you:

Please plan ahead for Christmas quilts and show quilts you're looking for in the near future because I'm not entirely sure how long I'll be able to reach the machine efficiently and I'm not going to schedule myself into oblivion during the holidays this year. Sorry, but I've got my health and this little growing baby to look out for! 

My hope is to be quilting until late January or so (best case scenario) and be back to quilting in the Spring. As much as I'd love to give a more concrete plan, being a first-time mom, I don't want to spread myself too thin. I can still take early reservations for quilting slots, but I won't be able to guarantee turn around for next year at this time. 

So please, if you're thinking about getting some quilting done later this year, I would appreciate an early word so I can make sure you're on the schedule. We can work out timing (don't feel you need the quilt done just yet) so you and I both know when roughly I will be working on your quilts. I'm already booking through most of September and as I said, I'm planning on keeping the schedule a bit lighter than usual so baby and I can rest. 

I'm so excited for this new adventure and I can't wait until March! Okay, maybe I can, but I can't. You know what I mean! 

So that's the big secret! I haven't been avoiding you on purpose, I promise! 


Scrap Quilt Challenge

Today I have some exciting information for you about a Scrap Quilt Challenge you can join and use up some of those scraps in your stash! This is an exciting group of creative ladies that you can find by visiting the main Challenge page here:  http://www.fabricsnquilts.com/scrapquiltchallenge/ or you can read more about the challenge on their blog here: http://fabricsnquilts.blogspot.com/2015/07/join-us-for-scrap-quilt-challenge-5.html.

Basically all you have to do is create a scrappy quilt within the last year and post the picture to a Flickr group by October 15th! You can see the Flickr group here:  www.flickr.com/groups/scrap-quilt-challenge-5/ and don't forget to use hashtag #SQC5 when posting to Instagram (if you'd like to show off your scrappy creation there too!)

Now, there are minimum requirements and some teeny tiny rules to follow, but I know you all can handle those. Please find them at the links above for the main Challenge information. Oh, and did I mention there were prizes to win?

So, without further ado, my job today is to give you all a scrappy fun block that you could make and turn into a quilt you could enter into this challenge. Now, I didn't get a chance to sew mine up, I sprained my ankle earlier this week and it's my "driving" foot so I'm trying to give it a rest, but I can share with you how to make this none the less.

Plus, I have a great idea to make a bunch of baby quilts using this block and it gives me time to figure out what colors and themes to plan for!
 I came up with this fun scrappy plus type block that finishes at 10" (honestly it's bigger than I usually like to work with, but to get the most scrappy pieces I could, this was the right size)
 So basically, the block is a fun plus in the middle that you'd want to make bold and exciting. Then use a more subtle but coordinating print to frame the plus in the block and surround it all with scrappy HSTs. I would keep the HSTs more subtle too, but there's room to play and be creative!

First you're going to make the 8 HST units. Use whatever technique you'd like (there are several) but if you need a tutorial on how I like to make them, you can view that here. Use the 4 background 3.5" squares and the 4 HST 3.5" squares you picked out. Each HST unit should measure 2.5" when complete.
 Now we're going to construct this block in sections. First take the HSTs and some 2.5" background squares to make the corner sections. Press the seam allowances as shown.
 To make the plus, create two ends and the center as shown above. Remember to use all the same coordinating fabrics in these pieces.

Also, follow the pressing instructions I provided and you should have an easy time constructing this block. All of the seams should "nest" well together.
 Construct the block using the sections laid out as shown. Play close attention to the direction of the corner sections as you lay out the block.

And there you have it, a block that should measure 10.5" once constructed (10" finished).

I came up with a few different layouts for this block and they each create a different secondary pattern. The first layout is just the blocks sewn to each other.
 Next I added in some sashing but to keep the scrappy look a little more toned down, I used the same 2.5" cornerstone each time. For this sashing you would need to cut 2.5" x 10.5" strips.
 And to change it up just a bit more (if you're a super scrappy enthusiast) you can make each of the cornerstones a different 2.5" square and it would give the quilt a whole different look.
With the sashing, rather than a secondary diamond, you create a shoo-fly instead. There's no right or wrong with this block, but almost too many options to pick from.

I just can't get enough of the plus blocks around at the moment and I thought this would be a really neat scrappy version to make.

Well, that's my little tutorial, I hope you like the block and I hope you get to participate in the Scrap Quilt Challenge. You're probably making scrappy quilts already and taking pictures, so why not upload a picture, share what you've done and possibly win some prizes while you're at it? And if you just need that swift kick in the rear to get inspired and bust into your stash, the inspiration you'll find on the Flickr page may just be the ticket to get you going!

Thanks for dropping by and have fun quilting scrappy!


A mulligan kind of a week

If you've been stopping by looking for the post on how I'm going to quilt my Charleston Disappearing Four Patch... Yeah, it doesn't exist yet. 

This week has been full of family emergencies and a sprained ankle on my behalf that has slowed me down quite a bit... Add to the mix the machine suddenly needing to be timed and it's just been too much. 

So as I type this I have my ankle propped up and it's getting iced... That's basically been my week with a little quilting in here or there until the swelling gets too bad and I have to rest. 

Sorry there haven't been many posts, but that is why! I hope to get back up and running (literally) soon! 



Have you all enjoyed the Charleston by REVIVE Blog Tour? You still have time to visit all of the blogs and enter to win some prizes (see my previous post). 

But I'm here today to announce the winner of 1 yard of the winner's choice of a Charleston fabric... The winner is:

Congrats!!! There is an email in your inbox, please let me know which fabric you ultimately decide on and it'll get sent your way soon! 

Thank you to everyone that participated in the blog tour and I can't wait to see your quilts from this tutorial! Have a great weekend! 


Charleston by REVIVE Blog Tour!

Hello and welcome! Are you enjoying the tour so far? I sure hope so. If you have yet to visit the earlier blog stops, you can get to them all quickly with the links at the end of this post. And trust me, you'll want to visit them all!

I will be sharing with you today how to make this Scrappy Disappearing Four Patch. My quilt is still a work in progress, but come on back next week to see my thoughts on attacking the quilting. Then in the following week I will show how to create a striped binding cut on the bias. It's one of my favorite bindings to make!
But first, let's get back to the fabric and the goodies!

If you're an art history buff like me, you'll love this line. If you like Art Deco, you'll love this line. If you like sparkles and metallics - you'll love this line! This collection combines the true essence of the Art Deco movement beginning in the 1920's and captured everything a quilter would love about this period into luscious fabrics. By using designs and colors that touch on this "Golden Age" of Hollywood filled with extravagance, these fabrics are the perfect balance of glitter and gold. The colors are so rich and vibrant and they work hand-in-hand with the metallic sheen that graces most of the line. Some fabrics are more subtle and some are a bit more bold, but together it's just magic!

So would you like to win some of this beautiful fabric? The good news is - YOU CAN!!!

Three lucky winners will win the Grand Prize - this 28 FQ Bundle featuring each fabric in the line. To win this bundle, head on over to the SewTimeless blog here and enter the Rafflecopter. Winners will be drawn 7/27.

Otherwise, stay tuned for my own little giveaway here! And let's make that quilt!

 Here's what you'll need to make this quilt:

8 - 5" squares of each fabric (all 28) in the line (1/4 yard of fabric is more than plenty of each fabric)
4 yards for backing
5/8 yard for binding (or 1 yard for bias cut binding I will show soon)

That's it! This method has minimal waste so you don't need a ton of fabric.

 To begin, cut the 5" squares from each fabric. Separate the fabrics into even piles of lights and darks (14 different fabrics in each pile) - use your best judgement on some of the more "medium" fabrics like gold and coral that could go in either pile.
 Pair up fabrics to create a block. You'll need two of the same dark fabric and two of the same light fabric. Contrast is key!

With certain prints that may be directional, pay close attention to the direction of the print as you sew, stitching both pairs together so they look exactly the same. Press the seams towards the darker fabrics.
 If you've paid attention to the direction of the prints, when the block is sewn together they should all run in the same direction as shown. Now, for prints like this floral on the navy that run in just one general direction, I placed them so the base of the print was centered in the block. You could also arrange the block pieces so that both squares are based in the same direction... The choice is up to you, there's no right or wrong here - just preference.

*Note - when sewing these blocks together, always sew the pieces in the same manner. What I mean is - if you sew each piece feeding the dark fabric through on top first, do that for all of the blocks. We are going to be spinning the seams for easier construction later on, and if you don't piece them all the same, you may have some seams going in the wrong direction.
 Stitch the block together and clip the seam in the middle of the block up to, but not through the stitching. This will allow you to spin the seams of the block. Press the seams following the direction of the previous seams.
 Now here's where it gets fun and interesting... Cut the block twice horizontally and twice vertically measuring 1 1/2" from the center seams. It's helpful in this step if you have a small cutting mat you can rotate or a mat designed to rotate like a lazy susan (yes they make them).
 Leave the corner squares and the center block alone. Don't move them an inch! Now, take the center section of each side and move it directly to the space on the opposite side. Don't rotate the pieces as you move them. Here's the best part, the seams are already pressed so each piece should "nest together" beautifully.

Here's where it can get a little tricky, but go slow, breathe and you'll be just fine.

Stitch the rows of the blocks together. Press the seams for the top and bottom rows of the blocks in the same direction as the center seam of that row. Clip the seams in the center row to press each half of the seam allowances in opposite directions of the seams in the adjoining rows.

Then, sew the rows together to create the block clipping the seam allowance at the marked X in the diagram above to complete the rotating seams. I know this may seem like a lot of extra work now, but later on it will be worth it, I promise! You'll have 56 blocks measuring 8 1/2" square at this point.
 So why on Earth did you clip all of those seams and press this way and that way? With rotated seams, you can line up your blocks dark-to-dark and light-to-light without worry of the seams being too bulky. No matter which way you lay out the blocks and rotate them all you like, the seams will match up on all four sides each and every single time. I promise it'll make stitching the top together so smooth! That's the key to this layout, match dark corners together and light corners together. That's it! Lay out the blocks in a 7x8 setting.

Another little tip for you, when I finished all of my blocks I threw them one-by-one into my dryer for a few minutes without heat. Then I pulled them out and started laying them down. I didn't change a thing! The dryer automatically tosses the blocks and mixes them up for a more random look without the work!

From this point I sewed the blocks together in rows pressing the seams in opposing directions from row to row and then sewed the rows together.

And there you have it, a 56" x 64" top ready to be quilted.
 I love how the look of the quilt changes depending on the distance you view it from. Up close you notice the glitz and glam and metallics. A bit further back you see the rich and vibrant fabric colors, but from far away this quilt almost looks "rustic" or "cozy" if I may...

 Now to think of a quilting plan... I have one of the gold prints ready to go for a backing, but I think the quilting needs to fit the Art Deco vibe. Come on back next week to see my thoughts and my quilting plan. Then don't forget I will be sharing how to cut, prep and make bias-cut binding the following week. It'll be wonderful!

But the only thing more wonderful is a chance to win some fabric! Leave a comment below to be entered to win a yard of Charleston fabric (you get to choose the fabric). Tell me in the comment which fabric you'd choose - you can view them here - and don't forget to leave me your e-mail address so I can tell you when you win!

Visit all of the stops on the Blog Tour for more chances to win fabric and to see some amazing projects using this new line of fabric:

Monday, July 20:
Shayla Wolf, Sassafras Lane Designs

Tuesday, July 21:
Leslie Meltzer, 50 Sq Ft Studios
Kim Buffington, Make Something/Dritz

Wednesday, July 22:
Rebecca Silbaugh, Ruby Blue Quilts (that's me)

Thursday, July 23:
Kim Brackett, Magnolia Bay Quilts
Lee Chappell Monroe, May Chappell

Friday, July 24

If you'd like to read more about this new line of fabric, head on over to the SewTimeless blog here. It's really an interesting story! Also, to see more inspiration with this line, and seriously, like you really need another excuse to peruse a bit more on Pinterest, head on over to the mood board for Charleston by REVIVE here!

Don't forget to comment below to enter to win some fabric! A winner will be chosen this Saturday! And make sure to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway on the SewTimeless blog to enter to win a Fat Quarter Bundle! That's a lot of chances to win! But, if you're not feeling lucky or you just can't wait to get this fabric in your hands, check for Charleston at your LQS. It should be at a store near you already! Thanks for stopping by and have a great day! -Rebecca



Sorry I haven't posted, it's been a crazy week around here and as much as I love chatting with you all, I just haven't had enough energy at the end of the day, but don't worry; I have plenty more to share in the near future!

So, did you listen to Pat Sloan's Radio show earlier this week? I had such a nice time chatting with her, but I always do!

If you listened to the beginning of the show, for some weird reason my phone kept echoing everything Pat was saying. Right in the middle of the show instead of chatting with Pat, I'm instead talking with the technical guy at the radio station trying to figure out what's going on and testing my phones. We ended up having to switch phones completely and I was running around like a chicken with it's head cut off trying to get it working so I can get back to chatting with Pat. I'm not going to lie, it was kinda stressful, but it's one of those situations where now looking back I can laugh and listening to the show afterward, Pat did a wonderful job "covering" me.

If you haven't listened to the show, you can listen to it on iTunes if you search for American Patchwork & Quilting Radio or you can visit Pat's website and scroll through the shows each week and listen to them right on your computer. She also has links on her website to download the shows onto your Android device and much much more for other players and devices too.

Head on over and get a chuckle if you haven't listened yet but now know the backstory.

Pat and I talked about:

My little cheat sheet for Precuts, you can find the original post here.

My newest book, Seems Like Scrappy.

And how I organize my stash, you can read more and see pictures here.

Have a great weekend, I'm off to get some quilting done and I will be back soon with more to share!

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