Sunday, 21 November 2021

I did a lot of custom quilt making in 2021 and one of the most challenging was to make a queen size quilt from a collection of Crown Royal bags. 

The assortment of bags had a variety of purple, black and specialty bags. I bought some solid cotton fabric in a rich purple and a gold color to make the star blocks. 


Bags were cut apart and then cut into squares that included the Crown Royal words plus some of the gold stitching that held the bags together. These were pressed carefully and with a cooler iron than I would use for an all cotton quilt as the thread on some (not all) would melt at the touch of a hot iron. (Experience points here!)

Because of the shear number of bags I was given to work with, I not only had enough for the centres of the star blocks, but also enough to make a border all around from the Crown Royal bags.

Some of the specialty bags were made from a suede like fabric and still others from a satin fabric that frayed easily. From an ease of construction point of view, a lot of the bags were very tricky to sew and to make into something that would not only look good, but wear well as a bed covering.

The plain cotton purple and gold fabrics were a great way to add stability to the blocks and sashing and to the overall quilt. 

In the end, even though purple and gold are not my favourite colours to sew with, the end product looked great and even better, the customer loved it.

And there were a few bags left over that I included in the backing! (Waste not, want not!)

What do you think? Could you collect enough Crown Royal bags for a quilt? (This one has approximately 100 in the top.)

--Ann

Wednesday, 17 November 2021

After almost a year of being an absent blogger, I thought maybe I should introduce myself and start again! LOL!

My name is Ann and I have been in love with quilting for most of my life, but an actual quilter since my kids were born over 30 years ago. My first quilt was a hand embroidered baby quilt that didn't make it past the 2nd baby and I haven't got a single photo of it to share. My second quilt was a bit more ambitious. It was a double wedding ring quilt that was one of the feature quilts in a McCalls quilting magazine. I painstakingly traced and cut out each piece by hand, hoping to sew it all together by machine, but quickly realized that wasn't going to work. 

So, I carefully pieced it all together with hand stitching in all the stolen moments between caring for small humans. I'm so proud that I actually finished it even if it took me all of TEN years!

I've taken a few classes, but prefer to learn on my own. The internet and its endless resources have been such a source of inspiration for me. From online swaps to YouTube tutorials, there is always someone who can show you new ideas for quilting.


I started my Etsy shop, Magpie Quilts, in 2010. The first year I had hardly any sales, but each year I've grown that side of the business and have found some great online friends and community there. As with any venue, it has it's positives and negatives, but it's been a great place for me and my quilts. 

With the combination of online and a few in-person markets every year, I've managed to make a little side-hustle that supports my hobby, keeps my passion for creating intact and allows me to keep making quilts without them overflowing my closets!


My kids are all grown and I have grandkids to make quilts for, so I still have lots to keep me busy. My quilts have gone from being entirely hand sewn to being all machine sewn, but I am still learning new techniques and upgrading my tools. 

I look forward to reviving this blog and providing more content and maybe some digital patterns. We'll have to see where things go from here. What do you like to see when you read a quilting blog?? Inquiring minds want to know!

--Ann