~ Hip deep in quilts, grandies, little dogs and fabric, with frequent sprees of baking and gardening.
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Today's bed quilt is "Happy Go Lucky" from my Simple Charm book. One aspect I love about this quilt is that the stitched patchwork forms neat secondary patterns, making it difficult to tell where the individual blocks actually begin and end. And here's my next tip: Be sure to pay attention to the warm and cool values of your prints as you position your blocks, not just the colors. For any given patchwork project, I take a quick moment to evaluate this aspect of my design. If I notice a cluster of blocks with several warm hues like red, orange, and gold, I'll break them up with blocks containing cooler colors like blue or green. Instant balance! #KimDiehlQuilts #BedroomQuiltBlitz #HappyGoLuckyQuilt #SimpleCharmBook #PatchworkTips #martingaletpp
Today's quilt in my week-long bedroom quilt blitz is "Serendipity Sampler" from my Simple Comforts book. Scrappy quilts are tons of fun, but choosing prints can sometimes be intimidating. Depending upon the condition my fabrics are in (confessing here that I'm not the world's most disciplined folder when I'm in the midst of a project) I'll use one of the following methods to audition my prints: 1), Toss the candidate fabrics randomly in a heap on the floor, or 2), If I have a tidy stash, I fan out my nicely folded pre-cuts and pieces like a deck of cards. Next, (for either method) I take a few steps back and view the mix. Any "loud and proud" print gets shuffled or shifted to see if it will blend better when positioned differently. My rule of thumb is any print that isn't playing nice with others gets three adjustment attempts ~ if it's still not behaving, it's outta there. #KimDiehlQuilts #BedroomQuiltBlitz #SerendipitySamplerQuilt #SimpleComfortsBook #AppliqueQuilts #QuiltingTips #martingaletpp
Big chunky pieces make this "Easy Peasy" bed quilt a snap to stitch, and it's a great project for beginners. When laying out my blocks to form the quilt top, I've learned that placing those with lighter colors in the corner positions may have the effect of weakening my design, because the shape of the corner can appear to fade away and look undefined. Instead, I consistently place strongly-hued blocks in the corner positions of my projects to anchor my patchwork and keep the shape of each one pronounced and beautifully defined. One more little lesson I've learned is to never position a substantially different block smack dab in the middle of the quilt, as it can immediately become a bullseye. Rather, I place these blocks near a side edge where they'll add interest without hogging the spotlight. #KimDiehlQuilts #BedroomQuiltBlitz #EasyPeasyQuilt #HomestyleQuiltsBook #PatchworkTips #martingaletpp #HenryGlassFabrics
Here's a little peek into my home with this king-size "Prairie Primrose" quilt. Yesterday I mentioned "bullseye" prints (my term for any print your eye is immediately drawn to) and one of the ways I blend them into my quilts. Another great tip is to always use each of these prints more than once ... once can look like a mistake, but multiples look intentional and give you the ability to space them around your quilt for balance. Why use bullseye prints instead of ditching them? Because when used well they add sparkle! #KimDiehlQuilts #BedroomQuiltBlitz #PrairiePrimroseQuilt #SimpleTraditionsBook #martingaletpp
There's nothing better during the chill of winter than diving into a warm comfy bed complete with fluffy pillows and a snuggy homemade quilt. Since the snow is flying, I thought it would be fun to devote the next week to a "Bedroom Quilt Blitz" with some of my favorites. Kicking things off today is "Mending Basket" from my Simple Appeal book, which includes scraps and prints out the WAZOO. In a true scrap quilt most any prints and colors can be blended, and there are many ways to help give them a cohesive look. One technique I use for success is to position any "bullseye" print next to a print with a similar feel or tone, which will act as bridge to gently blend it with other prints nearby. I'll share more tips and tricks throughout the coming week! #KimDiehlQuilts #BedroomQuiltBlitz #ScrapQuiltTipsAndTricks #MendingBasketQuilt #SimpleAppealBook #martingaletpp #HenryGlassFabrics
As much as I try to be super girl, I've learned there's not enough time in each day - once in a while I need a little assist! So I get by with a little help from my friends (that song is going to be in my head ALL day long now). Many thanks to my good pal, Jenn, for her most excellent piecing skills. #KimDiehlQuilts #SamplerQuiltPatchworkBlocks #FriendsWithBenefits #HenryGlassFabrics
Way Back Whensday ~ Remembering all the way back to my very first Simple Blessings book and photo shoot. I thought it would be fun to choose just a FEW favorite quilts, sprinkle them around, and photograph the front porch of my dreams. Next thing you know, quilts have been flung onto anything that doesn't move and you can no longer see the porch! I have to admit it's still the porch of my dreams, because no one ever accused me of using restraint. #KimDiehlQuilts #FrontPorchOverKill #SimpleBlessingsBook #WayBackWhensday #martingaletpp
I just received my very first ever Sew Sampler Box from the Fat Quarter Shop and all I can say is ... wow! It was like Christmas all over again getting to dive into this pretty little box STUFFED full of mystery goodies for quilters. And what an honor to be part of the December treat menu with prints from my Helping Hands collection AND a new patchwork design for using them. If you just received YOUR box, I wish you happy stitching! #KimDiehlQuilts #SewSamplerBox #FatQuarterShop #HelpingHandsPrints #HenryGlassFabrics #martingaletpp
Who needs the proverbial Christmas goose when you've got a berry-bedazzled Christmas rooster? (Fun side note: this was my very first EVER published quilt design, featured in American Patchwork & Quilting magazine nearly 20 years ago!) #KimDiehlQuilts #SimpleHolidayDecor #AmericanPatchworkAndQuiltingMagazine
Christmas stockings: not just for hanging by the chimney with care! For an easy centerpiece, grab a large vintage bowl or basket, add greenery and goodies, layer in your stockings, and ... done!! #KimDiehlQuilts #PutASockInIt #SimpleHolidayDecor #ScrapBasketStockings #SimpleChrisrmasTidingsBook #martingaletpp #HenryGlassFabrics
This is one of my all-time favorite Christmas scenes. I remember going to the grocery store to buy these pineapples, and me being me, I had EVERY single pineapple in the place down on the floor so I could properly evaluate them before choosing. After watching a minute, this guy walked over to me and said, "I'm guessing you're picking center pieces. Because you look mostly normal." True story. #KimDiehlQuilts #NoImNotNutsImJustParticular #SimpleHolidayDecor #ScrapBasketStockings #SimpleChristmasTidingsBook #martingaletpp #HenryGlassFabrics
Many thanks for your kind words over the past week; I read every comment. During this time, Puddin Cup helped me tackle some baking therapy and we made these little Melty Snowman Cookies ... quite possibly the cutest cookies in the whole universe. Warning, graphic content: To be a fully compassionate cookie eater, I like to bite their heads first so as not to prolong their suffering. Here's my recipe, in case you'd like to bake up your own blizzard.
MELTY SNOWMAN COOKIES
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup, rounded, granulated sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon EACH vanilla and almond extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
White cookie icing (I used store-bought icing in a squeezable container)
Mini marshmallows (heads)
Orange M&M candies (noses)
Broken pretzel twists (twig arms)
Assorted candy sprinkles (eyes & buttons)
Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. In a large bowl, blend egg, sugar, butter, and vanilla and almond extracts. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk to wet mixture in three additions. Divide dough in half, flatten into disks, and wrap with plastic wrap. Refrigerate approximately 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 400°. Roll dough between sheets of parchment paper (or on a floured surface) to 1/4” thick. Cut out circles using a 2” round cookie cutter; pull and push edges slightly to make puddle shapes. Bake on parchment paper-lined baking sheets 6-7 minutes, until just set; cool.
While cookies are cooling, CAREFULLY use a sharp knife to cut a piece from two opposite sides of an M&M for carrot noses; repeat for the number of noses needed. Next, pinch the needed number of mini marshmallows between your thumb and finger to flatten. To make each face, add a drop of icing to the cut side of an M&M piece and place it on a flattened marshmallow. Apply a small bit of icing above the nose and drop on two small candy pieces for the eyes.
To build a snowman, ice a cooled cookie. While icing is wet, add a marshmallow face, two pretzel arms, and candy pieces for buttons. Repeat! Makes 3-4 dozen. #KimDiehlQuilts #BakingTherapy
Big goings on today with the eighth and FINAL day of the Henry Glass Fabrics Progressive Dinner Party! It's my turn to be your hostess with the mostess, and do I have some treats for you ~ FREE downloadable project directions for the sweet little Farmstead Game Board quilt shown here, my beyond-scrumptious Caramel Apple Cheesecake recipe, AND my own special giveaway (in addition to prizes by HG), with TWO signed "Simple" books for TWO different winners. To enter, please visit the Henry Glass website TODAY and check out their blog so we can end this party with a BAM! #KimDiehlQuilts #VirtualProgressiveDinnerParty #FarmsteadHarvestPrints #FreeQuiltPattern #HenryGlassFabrics
Puddin Cup and I are like a cookie-baking MACHINE right now (check out that look of concentration as she unwraps our Hershey Kisses), because 'tis the season to eat Christmas cookies and break out the stretchy pants! This week's cookies were so totally weak-in-the-knees good, I've gotta share the love. Happy baking!
SURPRISE INSIDE SNOWBALL COOKIES
2 sticks (1 cup) salted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups flour
Approximately 30 Hershey Kisses, unwrapped
1 cup powdered sugar for rolling cookies
In a large bowl, use a mixer to blend butter and granulated sugar until fluffy, about 1 minute. Add salt, vanilla extract, and almond extract; mix until combined. Add flour and mix until blended (dough will be a bit crumbly). Preheat oven to 350°. For each cookie, scoop a rounded tablespoon of dough into the palm of your hand; flatten with your other hand to make a disk (the heat of your hands will melt the butter and help the dough come together). Add a Hershey Kiss, mold the dough around the chocolate, and gently roll to smooth. Place cookies on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet; refrigerate 15 minutes. Bake 10 minutes, until just set. Let cookies cool slightly. While still warm, roll cookies in powdered sugar. Once cooled, roll again to double dust the cookies. Makes approximately 2 1/2 dozen.
#KimDiehlQuilts #CantStopBaking #SnowballCookies
When you see this Berry Blossoms quilt from the current issue of American Patchwork & Quilting magazine, you might not be thinking "Kim Diehl design." But, surprise...it is! This was a "just for fun" quilt I made a few years back, and it was the first time I had enough prints from my collections with Henry Glass Fabrics that I could shop from my very own stash of bolts. I remember I was so happy, I about passed out. And now I'm happy to be able to share it with you through APQ! #KimDiehlQuilts #BerryBlossomsQuilt #AmericanPatchworkAndQuiltingMagazine #HenryGlassFabrics