Best of 2016–Five Best Quilty Things I Learned


Cheryl@Meadow Mist Designs is hosting a second annual linky party for our best five posts in 2016, and we get to choose the criteria that defines our best five. I’m admittedly sick of writing and talking about my favorite finishes in 2016. I could choose posts with the most comments or page views, but I’m not one who focuses much on blog stats. Last year I blogged about Favorite Pics of Animals on My Quilts, but this year I decided to focus on the five best quilty things I learned in 2016.

One:  In my 2016 Paintbrush Studio New Block Blog Hop-Midnight Starfish tutorial, I shared how to make eight half-square triangles (HSTs) at a time that I learned from Jeni Baker at QuiltCon in Pasadena. This year I have probably made at least 500 HSTs using this method. If only the 8-at-a-time would trim themselves, it would be perfect!


Eight-at-a-time HST Method

Two: Glamp Stitchalot in Ann Arbor was an amazing experience, but I have to say a couple of the most useful things I learned were simple things. The first was to use freezer paper to fussy cut (cutting the size I want on freezer paper minus seam allowances). This tip was from Elizabeth Hartman. And the other Aha moment for me was seeing with my own eyes how the right background for a block can make all the difference. I was taking Penny Layman’s paper piecing class, and I was trying to make a solid fabric work as the background of her mountain block, and it just looked blah. I decided to check out the Pink Castle pop-up shop and was much more pleased with the background fabric I found:


Paper-Pieced Mountain Block from Glamp Stitchalot

Three: Labeling–Low Tech: I can’t even say where I first saw this easy labeling technique, but it was somewhere on Pinterest or Bloglovin’. Like so many other quilters, labeling quilts is not one of my favorite tasks, but with my brother’s Meditation Quilt, I started using the simple method of folding a square diagonally to form a triangle, writing a few words about my quilt on the triangle with permanent fabric marker, machine stitching the raw sides of the triangle when sewing down my binding, and then hand-stitching the folded side down after I’ve finished the binding.


Label for Meditation Quilt by Mary Ringer@Quilting is in My Blood

Four: Labeling–High Tech: For my Terra Australis Quilt I used a label from StoryPatches and sewed a turquoise dot border around the label. This label has a little bar code on it that is linked to an app called which can be easily downloaded to phones and tablets. I made an audio recording–something that I’m not too comfortable doing–but it was so cool to be able to include lots of info about my quilt including the fabrics I used, who designed the fabric, and the different blocks I chose.


Label for Terra Australis Quilt by Mary Ringer@Quilting is in My Blood

Five: Earlier this month I found out how easy it is to sew pillow covers using an envelope backing, though I found out when sewing my Christmas pillow that the direction of the fabric is important for the envelope backing!

Linking up to Meadow Mist Designs: Best of 2016 Linky Party.

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8 Responses to Best of 2016–Five Best Quilty Things I Learned

  1. Jacqueline Rubio says:

    Great learnings! Another wonderful year of following my crafty, quirky sister!!


  2. Jacqueline Rubio says:

    That’s quilty!! But aren’t we all quirky?


  3. What a great “Best of”, it looks like you learned a lot of great techniques! Thanks for linking up to the Best of 2016 linky party!


  4. It has been a delight to watch you grow and learn this year, Mary. I hope you find lots of joy and fun in quilting in 2017. 🙂


  5. adaisygarden says:

    Happy New Year and many more projects! 🙂


  6. Tami Von Zalez says:

    Rather than attach a label to a quilt, I just free motion quilt “Made by Tami” and the year completed.


  7. Great projects and tutorials! Happy quilting in 2017!


  8. Helen says:

    It’s great your best of coincides with techniques you have learned . That’s what it’s all about isn’t it , life long learning


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