December 15th meeting reminder

Our next meeting is 7:00pm, Monday, December 15th

A few reminders:

1) We’re looking forward to celebrating the holidays with you at our December meeting! We’ll have cupcakes! And punch! We’re also putting out a call to members to bring in refreshments to make the party even more festive. Extra door prizes are always fun as well!

2) Thanks to those of you who have renewed your memberships! Our membership year started on November 1st, so if you haven’t renewed, what’s holding you back? (really, we want to know!)

3) We’ll be launching a mini fabric challenge for members only at our December meeting, don’t miss out!

4) Join in the fun with our ornament swap! There’s still time to make an ornament to exchange at our meeting. Bring an ornament, get an ornament!

Upcoming VMQG Events

1) Friday night Sew-in, 6:00-11:00pm, Friday, January 30th, Holy Trinity Church Hall, $10

2) All-day “We’re not going to QuiltCon” Sew-in on Sunday, February 22nd at the Croatian Cultural Centre  9:00am-9:00pm for $20 (priority registration for VMQG members).

3) Weekend Sew-in Saturday, March 14th and Sunday, March 15th, 9:00am-midnight at the Croatian Cultural Centre both days: $35, per day: $20

4) Wedge Workshop with Paul Krampitz, Sunday, 10:00am-5:00pm, March 29th, Croatian Cultural Centre $55 ($60 non-members), includes wedge ruler.

December Meeting Details

What: Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild MeetingWhen: 7:00-9:00pm, Monday, December 15th, 2014

Where: Hewett Hall, Unitarian Church of Vancouver, 949 W 49th Ave, Vancouver (at the NE corner of W 49th Ave and Oak St).

Parking: Free parking is available in the parking lot. Street parking is also available.

Transit: The 49 and 17 buses run along 49th Ave and Oak St respectively. The Canada Line has a station at Cambie and 49th.

Guests: If you’re a guest, we’d appreciate it if you would email to RSVP so we can know to expect you. Your first meeting is free and subsequent meetings are $5 until you become a member.

What to bring:

- 2014/15 membership card, completed membership form and $50 dues for 2014/15 (cheque made out to VMQG or cash, membership valid until Oct. 31, 2015) or guest fee ($5)

- calendar to record upcoming events

- cash, chequebook, or credit card to pay for VMQG events

- modern quilt to share at Show and Tell

- ornament for ornament swap

- your name tag

- a mug (none will be supplied)

- treats are welcomed

- door prizes: Please bring donations to the meeting and sign up at the door prize table.


- 6:30pm doors open: socialize, sign up for show and tell, renew memberships, pick up your Teeny Weeny Swap item

- Welcome

- Ice Breaker

- Show and Tell (Teeny Weeny Swap items & group photo)

- Break (eat treats & socialize!; exchange ornaments, sign up for workshop/sew-ins)

- December Challenge

- Guild Business

- Door Prizes

See you there!

Simple Gift Idea Tutorials

At our November meeting, several members showed us some quick and easy gift ideas for the holiday season. Regardless of what you celebrate in December, most holidays involve gift giving!

Kristyn showed us the stocking ornaments that she’d made. They’re a great scrapbuster, and look like they’d be a great assembly-line-style gift to make for a number of people.

Stacey D showed us about the owl ornaments that she makes every year. They’re mostly made of felt, but the glitter glue is a VERY important ingredient!

Holly showed us a simple child’s apron that she had previously made for her daughters and as gifts. It’s a Montessori apron, so it’s designed to be easy for children to put on and take off by themselves. The tutorial Holly followed was from Sew Liberated, and she posted about making  them on her own blog as well. Her tip was to make sure you buy the NON ADHESIVE velcro!

child's apron

Felicity taught us how to make fabric star ornaments, which are much easier to fold up nicely at home than they are while holding them up in front of 60 people! She’s blogged the tutorial on her own blog here.

folded star ornament

Amy showed us how to make fabric bowls of various sizes, perfect for little gifts, keys by the front door, thread ends by the sewing machine, or jewelery on your dresser. The tutorial Amy uses is from A Spoonful of Sugar Designs, and there is a second post with 3 different sizes available.

xmas bowls

Amy had a couple of tips to share as well:

- if you’re making a set of stacking bowls, you might want your gathering to be consistent between the bowls. in that case, use a 11″ binding strip on a 6″ diameter circle, instead of the 12″ in the post.

- if you’d like a fourth size bowl, use a 12″ diameter circle and a 21.5″ binding strip.

- when gathering, loosen your upper tension to zero and the threads will pull much easier.

- using different colours in the spool and in the bobbin will make it easy to remember which threads to pull, and helps use up bobbins with just a teeny bit of thread left on them.

pink bowl

And Jessica showed us how to make infinity scarves. She recommends this tutorial, but it doesn’t have photos. For photos of each step, check out this tutorial as well. For a long scarf that’s looped around twice, she suggests starting with fabric from 60″-72″ in length.  For a shorter cowl scarf, try 32″-36″.  Suggested fabrics: jersey knit, cotton gauze, voile, velvet, silk–basically, anything that drapes nicely.

jessica scarf1jessica scarf2

Here are a couple of suggested variants:

1)  For a shorter scarf, after sewing the tube and turning it right side out, tie a knot in the scarf before closing the loop.  The knot can be tightened or loosened to form different looks as shown here.

jessica scarf3

2)  Moebius scarf: use two pieces of fabric in contrasting colors.  When sewing the tube, start and stop 3″ from the ends on both sides.  Turn the tube right-side out, and add a half twist before closing the loop (you will match fabric A to fabric B on both seams).  


We hope we inspired you to whip up some handmade gifts this year!

(all photos courtesy of the members who shared with us)

December Challenge-Ornament Swap

The December challenge is the annual Holiday Ornament Swap!

Make a handmade ornament using whatever technique you’d like. Knit a yarn ornament? Sew a fabric ornament? Craft a folded origami star?  If you bring an ornament in, you’ll take one home!

The Ornament Swap is a fun tradition, and we hope that everyone participates.

2013 ornament swap group

(last year’s ornament swappers! thanks to Stacey Murton for taking the photo!)


Amy did up a Pinterest board of ornament tutorials last year, as well as a board of  projects that might be inspiring but don’t have step by step instructions, for those of you feeling ambitious!

Stacey Day has found a few more great links with lots of tutorials and ideas -

22 Fabric Christmas ornaments from Chicken Scratch NY 

101 Handmade Ornament Tutorials from Everything Etsy

25 Christmas Ornaments To Make from The Ornament Girl

Go ahead and check them out, i am sure you’ll find something!

Sew Much Fun!

For those of you that missed it, we had a Sew-In and the Holy Trinity Church on Friday Night. We had a lot of snacks, lots of fabric, and a TON of fun!

Here is a neat little photo montage! Remember, our next Sew-In is all day event at the Croatian Cultural Center on November 23.

IMG_20141114_194415 IMG_20141114_194456 IMG_20141114_194507 IMG_20141114_194512 IMG_20141114_194528 IMG_20141114_194618 IMG_20141114_201627 IMG_20141114_210333 IMG_20141114_210355 IMG_20141114_220700 IMG_20141114_220713

November 17th meeting reminder

Note from Holly: I sent this out to our mailing list (sign up here) via email on Thursday but forgot to blog about it. Sorry if you’re only getting your meeting reminder now! Hope to see you tomorrow!

Our next meeting is 7:00pm, Monday, November 17th

A few reminders:

1) Membership renewals: Thanks to the 45 members who renewed their memberships or became members at our October meeting! Memberships expired on October 31st, so it’s membership renewal time! If you haven’t yet renewed your membership, it would help us out if you could bring in your completed membership form and $50 payment so we can sign you up for another year of inspiration with the VMQG! Guest fees for non-members are $5/meeting.

2) To our 35 members participating in the Teeny Weeny Swap with our Australian friends in Sydney and Brisbane, here’s your reminder to bring in your items on Monday (unwrapped) and attach a card with your contact info (at least name and email). Please help us keep postage fees low by only handing in your item and omitting any extra goodies.

3) If you participated in the Round Robin, please bring back your quilt top so we can take a group shot. Thanks!

Upcoming VMQG Events
1) All-day Sew-in on Sunday, November 23rd at the Croatian Cultural Centre  9:00am-9:00pm for $20 (priority registration for VMQG members). (approx. 5 spaces remaining)
2) Temperature Check Improv Piecing Workshop with Krista Hennebury, 10am-5pm, Sunday, November 30th, Croatian Cultural Centre $50 ($63 non-members) (1 space remaining)

November Meeting Details

What: Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild MeetingWhen: 7:00-9:00pm, Monday, November 17th, 2014
Where: Hewett Hall, Unitarian Church of Vancouver, 949 W 49th Ave, Vancouver (at the NE corner of W 49th Ave and Oak St).
Parking: Free parking is available in the parking lot. Street parking is also available.
Transit: The 49 and 17 buses run along 49th Ave and Oak St respectively. The Canada Line has a station at Cambie and 49th.
Guests: If you’re a guest, we’d appreciate it if you would email to RSVP so we can know to expect you. Your first meeting is free and subsequent meetings are $5 until you become a member.

What to bring:
- 2014/15 membership card, completed membership form and $50 dues for 2014/15 (cheque made out to VMQG or cash, membership valid until Oct. 31, 2015) or guest fee ($5)
- calendar to record upcoming events
- cash, chequebook, or credit card to pay for VMQG events
- modern quilt to share at Show and Tell
Crop Circle blocks for block lotto
Round Robin quilt top so we can get a group photo
- your name tag
- a mug (none will be supplied)
- treats are welcomed, please email Niki at if you plan to bring something.
- door prizes: Please bring donations to the meeting and sign up at the door prize table.

Agenda:- 6:30pm doors open: socialize, sign up for show and tell, renew memberships
- Welcome
- Gift ideas for the holidays
- Show and Tell (Teeny Weeny Swap items & group photo, Round Robin group photo)
- Break (eat treats & socialize!; hand in swap items, sign up for workshop/sew-in)
- November Challenge
- Guild Business
- Door Prizes & Block Lotto

See you there!

Temperature Check workshop with Krista Hennebury

If you’ve attended a VMQG meeting, you’ve probably met Krista Hennebury of Poppyprint Creates. Krista’s been a member since the beginning of Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild, or at least pretty darn close to it, and we’re so happy to call her one of our own. Last year she taught the wonderfully successful 241 Tote Workshop, and we’re having her back again this year to teach us about the technique she used for her Cotton Couture challenge quilt.

TCfull (1)

(photo courtesy Krista Hennebury)

this is how Krista describes the class – TEMPERATURE CHECK

Do you quilt under the influence of traditional methods and rules?  Do you thrive on pointy points and perfectly square corners but secretly wish you could embrace the creative freedom of this wonky, improvisational business? If your answer is yes, then this class is for you! Starting with 5” charm squares, I’ll teach you my fun and fast Sew3Cut2 piecing method that utilizes your traditional piecing and rotary cutting skills to create wonky strip units.  There’s no pre-cutting of strips, no stack ‘n whack, just a lot of fun! 

Students will use a selection of warm- and cool-coloured solid fabrics to create improv-pieced strip units for use in a wallhanging, or if you prefer, a large pillow cover.  Every quilt will be unique and there will be a lot of freedom for students to lay out their units as they wish. We will experiment with the relationship between warm and cool colours in various layouts, however the instruction will mimic the courthouse steps layout as seen in the sample photo.   In addition to the piecing technique, students will learn how to accurately add borders to a quilt and how to piece strip sets end to end on wonky angles.  If time permits, we can workshop options for quilting the final projects together as well.


(photo courtesy Stacey Murton)

Date: Sunday November 30th, 2014

Time: 10am – 5pm

Place: Croatian Cultural Centre

Cost: $50 for VMQG members, $63 for non-members

(NOTE: while our non-member price is generally higher than the member price (benefit of supporting our guild!), in this case it’s noticeably higher. that’s because Krista’s pattern was distributed to MQG members in September, so the fee for non-members also includes a $8 pattern fee. if you’re a MQG member, but not a member of VMQG, please email Amy to chat about it)

Sign-up: This workshop is almost full, but we are creating a wait list. Please email Amy at to add your name to the list. Sign ups are open to everyone at this time, member or non-member.


November Block Challenge – Crop Circle Blocks

As revealed at the October meeting we are using the tutorial of our own Krista Hennebury, a.k.a. Poppyprint, to make some crop circle blocks. They involve some fusible interfacing and sewing curves, but don’t be intimidated as this is pretty darn easy. The link to her tutorial is here.

Crop Circle Block

For our challenge, please make your circles in patterned fabric 4.75″, which is the size of a CD, and attach it to an 8.5″ square of a solid colour that makes your circle pop.

(Tip: cut your square slightly larger than 8.5″ then trim after you’ve appliquéd the circle).

My sample is of pink owls on a blue background, and full disclosure: I made it after coming home from a four day trip and had about an hour to prep for the guild meeting so wasn’t looking forward to doing something too fussy. And it’s not! However, with me being slightly OCD, I might go back and top-stitch around the edge of the circle for some extra security. 

Each block = one chance to win the spotty lottery, so let’s make lots of dots!
Post written by: Niki.

Book Review – Fabulously Fast Quilts

I was provided a copy of the eBook version of Amy Smart (Diary of a Quilter)’s book Fabulously Fast Quilts for review purposes.

Fabulously Fast Quilts

Lucky me! This book has the same look and feel to Amy’s popular blog, with bright and happy projects that are designed to come together quickly.

The book is divided into sections, each of which use a technique that can speed up the quiltmaking process: Strip Piecing, Quick Corners, Slick Slicing, and Stack, Slice and Shuffle. The patterns also make use of precuts in many instances – another way to cut time from the process.

Moroccan Tile

Amy introduces these techniques with some basic how-tos, and then we get to the projects!

I wouldn’t say there is a huge variety in the projects, but they’re all quite appealing, and this book would be a great one for a newer quilter.

Square Deal

I chose to test out the Buzz Saw block described in the Modern Buzz Saw pattern. Whenever you’re trying out a new pattern, it’s a good idea to do a test block first so you can work out any design kinks or discover things you may have overlooked when you first read the pattern.

For example, I didn’t really read the directions very closely and didn’t realize that I needed an additional strip of background fabric to make the Buzz Saw block. I just grabbed two sets of Layer Cake squares and got to work.

I also discovered that this block works best with a higher contrast between the main fabric and the background AND the fabrics you choose shouldn’t have a strong repeat in them (like the scissors print in my test block).

Wonderland Buzz Saw

I’ll definitely be making more projects from this book, and I would recommend this book as a good addition to anyone’s quilting library – it’s got some simply-designed quilts that have lovely impact and are quick to put together, making them appealing to beginner and advanced quilters alike. Win/win!

All quilt photos from Martingale.

Nominations Update



More members have submitted their names for Executive positions for 2014-2015:

  • Co-President – Holly
  • Co-President – Felicity
  • Secretary – Rebecca
  • Treasurer – Stacey M.
  • Membership – Michelle
  • Social Media – Stacey D.
  • Workshops – Amy
  • Speakers – Kristen

As you can see, we now have a person for each position.  At the October 20th meeting, we will also call for nominations from the floor, and we will hold elections for the 2014-2015 Executive positions.  So if you want to submit your name for one of the Executive positions, you will have an opportunity during the elections.


And these are the guild members who have volunteered for one or more of the committees.

  • Sew-ins -
  • Swaps and challenges – Amy, Niki, Kristyn
  • Refreshments – Niki
  • Special Events (e.g. Maker Faire, Knit City, PNW meet-up) – Arita
  • Quilt Show – Arita, Terry, Janet, Krista
  • Retreat -
  • Photography – Terry

Please consider joining one of our committees.  We need more member participation so that we can continue to offer all the wonderful activities and events that make our guild so fun and fabulous.   You can volunteer for a committee at any time by sending an email to the Executive at


Book Review: The Modern Applique Workbook

Alright my VMQG peeps! Another great book to check out for you!

I ran out and bought myself a copy of The Modern Applique Workbook by Jenifer Dick as soon as I heard it was available. I tend to stalk the publishing websites for things I might be interested in, and this one was at the top of my list. I am the type of person who prefers hard copy books to digital (hurrah for full color pictures!) and I have to say that this is one of my favorites.

The Modern Applique Workbook
The Modern Applique Workbook

As most you know, I have been having a love affair with applique. My first quilts were applique, and it is a skill I am always pulling out in the course of my quilt making. I always seem to find myself using raw edge techniques, which are fine, but I have always wanted to brush up on my turned applique. There are some projects that a good crisp turned block would be much better than raw edge. Even the stitch and flip interfacing technique just doesn’t have the same look. Jenifer explains step by step her techniques for perfecting the turned edge applique and securing the pieces with the invisible zig zag method.  A big reason I was drawn to the book was Jenifers introduction. Her journey into modern applique is very relatable, we have all had one of those ah-ha moments when a technique just works and becomes more than you ever thought it would.


So what is modern applique? Jenifer lays it all out for you in an easy to understand, straightforward manner. From tools to fabric selections (she includes batiks! AWESOME!), Jenifer is able to create a modern aesthetic while maintaining a balance with the traditional roots of the technique. Her instructions are easy to follow and the diagrams and pictures are clean and concise. She even includes a well rounded section about fabric prep-whether you pre wash or not, it has useful tips and tricks for fabric prep. The first 60 pages are so are all instructional and specific to the technique, which is fantastic because as far as I can tell it covers everything you could possibly need to know about Modern Applique.


The technique itself isn’t anything new, applique has been around for a very long time, but the process is broken down in an easy to follow, detailed step-by-step way that makes this book beginner friendly. I have other books outlining a similar process, but it seemed so daunting I never even tried. Jenifer’s writing style practically drags you by the arm and shoves you into a chair with the supplies, and holds your hand through each step, after which you look and say “Oh my gosh WHY did I not try this before?!” she comes across as upbeat and friendly, very easy to read! from sharp points to concave curves and ovals, you get everything you need to make the quilts in the book, including a well rounded and easy to understand section on reverse applique. Her bias tape and straight grain tape techniques are to die for as well. This is one I am adopting into my repertoire of techniques immediately!

OKay, onto the projects!

The Modern Applique Workbook includes a variety of projects in different sizes for you to try out your newly learned skills. Each project has a forward that includes tips on fabric choices and a list of the techniques used, as well as the page references for each, making going back to look stuff up super easy. The photography is wonderful, you get a full shot and a detail shot of each quilt, as well as specific quilting and binding tips and instructions for each quilt. That has to be one of my favorite details in the book, that each quilt is explained individually from start to finish, instead of the cookie cutter “Basic quilt making and finishing” chapters in most books. Don’t get me wrong, they are useful and probably industry standard, but the individualized attention to each quilt really makes THe Modern Applique Workbook stand out.

The written instructions are detailed, yet flexible, which I like but others may find daunting, because there are no traditional layout diagrams. Any piecing is illustrated, but the applique itself is visually placed. That is the nature of applique, you are usually going off a photo, but because the pieces nest together so well you don’t have to worry about lining up overlaps exactly or ruining your project. It definitely add a planned improv feel to your projects, but almost guarantees that no two projects will look the same.

My favorite quilt is the cover quilt, Star Bright. Such a fun retro shape with a ton of flexibility in fabric choice and layout! I can think of a few fabric pulls for this quilt, the hardest part will be narrowing it down.

The Modern Applique Workbook
The Modern Applique Workbook

I am also really drawn to Mod. Again, a fun retro vibe without feeling like your wading through the shag carpet in your grandparents living room. The quilting in each is spectacular, both done by Angela Walters.


Fall is adorable and its a good thing everyone I know is having babies. FYI, you all get this quilt!


For beginners, Birds is a easy one to start with. Cute and fun, would also make a great gift!



Overall I would recommend The Modern Applique Workbook to anyone. Beginners will love the step by step, detailed instructions, and experienced quilters will love making the more complex shapes and adopting Jenifers techniques for applique.


Until next time,

Happy Stitching!