Jacob’s Super Block

I recently finished the top to Jake’s Marvel Quilt. All 48 blocks are done!

My son is thrilled to have this top down and to be that much closer to having his very own full sized quilt done.

As I shared this WIP, I had a lot of friends and fellow quilters ask me where I got the pattern for this block. Well, I didn’t use a pattern! Instead I pieced the block on my own to get a certain look.

I wanted the block to be framed with opposing colors alternating around the block. I made sure to fussy cut the centers so that each character would be framed nicely by the sashing.

As I continued to share my blocks, I kept getting questions about it’s construction so I decided to sit down, give it a name (Jacob’s Super Block) and lay out the steps to creating one.

To make a Super Block, you’ll need  three fabrics: your center fabric to display, one light fabric and one dark. Your light and dark fabrics can be solid or just fabrics with opposing patterns to contrast against each other.

For your center fabric, cut it to the size you want. For these Super Blocks, the center block is 6.5 inches.

Your sashing strips should be 1.5 inches wide and as along as you want. I folded my fabric and cut from end to end so I had nice long strips to work with.

To make your block, you start with your lighter fabric on the left side of your block and (1) attach to the left side then trim. Then (2) attach the same light fabric to the top of the block then trim. After each sashing, trim the excess off and square up your block.

The next step is to (3) attach the opposing dark fabric to the right side of the block, including the edges now made by the attached light fabric. Trim. Then (4) attach another strip of the dark fabric along the bottom and trim. At this point you’ll have a border framing your center block, one corner will be light and the opposite corner will be dark.

Now to continue, you swap colors. Light will go in the opposite corner and the dark fabric will go in the opposite corner. Attach (5) a light strip of fabric along the dark sashing on the right then trim. Then attach (6) another light strip along the bottom and trim.

To finish, attach (7) a dark strip along the top and trim. Finally, (8) attach the last dark strip along the left side and trim. Square up your block and press.

If you are like me and need a good visual to see how it’s done, check out my video tutorial from my Youtube channel showing how to make this block.

And if you give it a try, share your block on Instagram and tag with with the hashtag #huthsuperblock and #hobbiesuptohere.

We can’t wait to see your version of this fun block!

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Back In The Saddle Episode #80

And we’re back! We’ve missed podcasting and after two months of an unplanned hiatus, we’re sitting and chatting again about our lives and all our crafty projects.

We’ve got projects galore on Dori’s craft table and I’m still battling my way through a few UFOs and WIPs. Check out our Instagram feed for updated pictures of what we’re working on!

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Short On The Borders

At the beginning of this year, my mom and I agreed that 2017 should be the year of finishes. We had enough projects going to last us a lifetime and we needed to get some of that work done!

Well I’ve sorta lived up to my word. I did finish my husband’s quilt not too long ago and he now sleeps wrapped up in it on warmed nights.

My son’s quilt still languishes due to having run out of his border colors. I’ll need to finally bite the bullet and just purchase more so I can get that one done, too!

But last summer I started a quilt with this adorable flannel fabric I found at JoAnns. Originally, I got it for a friend’s baby boy but he has since grown beyond such a young pattern. Then I was blessed with two nephews, one whose room is adorably grey and light colored, similar to this fabric. Plus, he’s got an animal theme going so it’s perfect for him.

Well, this project has made it’s way out of my drawers and I’ve finished the top. It’s small and simple, just right for a little guy who needs some extra snuggles on chilly fall nights.

It’s adorable and fuzzy soft. I’m considering some minky for the backing to make it even softer.

But I have a small conundrum. There is a border the lines only two sides of this top. It is the slimmer pieces that surround the larger squares. I’m all out of fabric from this kit (except for some random end pieces) so I have a few paths I can take to even this out.

  1. I could just leave it be with that slim border only on two sides.
  2. Or I could remove both sides and leave the outer edge border free.
  3. Or, and this one is probably the most work, I could trim down the borders and then attach it to the barren sides. But my cutting and measuring would have to be pretty precise if I don’t want to screw it up.

So, quilters, what should I do?? Should I go with plan 1, 2, or 3? Or maybe there is another plan I haven’t considered. I do have to get fabric for Jake’s superhero quilt so I could just see if JoAnns has any more of this kit lying around. This would mean I have 4 options!

Decisions, decisions!!!

We’ve Got Updates and Progress! Episode #77

Welcome back hobbyists and crafters! Today we update you on some of our current projects and the process we are making on a lot of our quilts and stitching.


My dad has made MAJOR progress with his Frank wall hanging. This is the second one after he ran into some issues with the first.

Mom’s failure is fertilizer quilt top is done and she’s using the smaller one to practice her free motion quilting. This weekend she’s picking up some backing fabric to finish this quilt for my sister in law.

Dori pulled out her Cat in the Garden appliqué project and wanted to get it finished except some important numbers are missing for the borders!

But we have a few resources we can use to get the measurements for the borders.

Her new stitching project is really coming along and she’s enjoying the process!

I’ve got a bunch of blocks done for my Puzzle Box quilt and it’s piecing together nicely.

And I’ve attached the binding to the friendship quilt so I’m nearing the end of this two year project!!

It went on smoothly to the back and I plan to hand bind the rest! Almost done!

And I got the good word that I’m in class with Libs Elliott to make her Watcher Skull quilt at QuiltCon 2018!!!

Now we’re just waiting and hoping that another spot opens up for my mom!

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WIP: The Puzzlebox Quilt

The last couple of weeks I’ve been very motivated to work on my quilts. It could be the regular podcast schedule we’ve been sticking to or meeting up with my good friend to quilt together each week. Either way, I’ve been cranking out blocks left and right.

I picked up my work on the puzzle box quilt and really went to town chain piecing like a fiend.

I took a look at the blocks and realized that I could piece most of the center pairs and not piece the whole block. Having my little thread cutter from Sunflower-Quilts really helped move this part of my process along very quickly.

It took a bit more work to organize things because originally I was completing a block each time I sat down to work and using up each color from the kit. Once I made the block, I could move on to the next color in the set. But since I switched to this new process, I only piece together a few pairs in each color and save the rest to be used later to complete the block.

It’s a good thing I like to be organized!

I am struggling a bit with the reds. They are so close in tone that I can’t quite tell them apart. We’ll see what happens as I move along through each color.

And even though I did a lot of great work on my own, getting together with my friend to quilt really motivates me to stick with it. In the span of time we worked together, I pieced a good chunk of blocks.

And I’ve been playing around with the layout on my design board. There is something fun about fiddling with how many different ways I can move these blocks around.

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Let The Unquilting Begin!

About two years ago, my parents bought me a great batik kit of fabrics and a pattern called The Friendship Quilt. The stack was large and the colors were very rustic and beautiful.

By November of 2015, I had finished the top and promised it to my husband. He was thrilled to have a quilt of his own.

After getting everything put together, I started quilting a wood grain pattern. But this proved to be a problem for a few reasons.

First, I’m still new at quilting. And a wood grain pattern is not necessarily easy. I definitely bit off a little more than I could chew. Without enough practice before starting, I found myself frustrated each time I sat down to work on the quilt. Instead of enjoying quilting, I was dreading it. So this quilt has been sitting for sometime.

But I have to say, even for a beginner, I feel like my wood grain quilting isn’t half bad.



Secondly, I didn’t plan it out very well. I know, I know. If you’ve read our posts or listened to our podcast long enough, this doesn’t surprise anyone. I’m not a pattern follower and I’m not a big planner. When I started this quilt, I was quilting to the edge of the top. But my plan was to roll the backing to the front to create binding instead of attaching the binding separately. With the quilting running right to the edge, I’ve now complicated the binding more than was really necessary.

And lastly, this is a HUGE quilt. A full queen sized quilt. So the wood grain pattern is a bit much and on top of that, quilting it is taking such a long time due to its size. So not only am I annoyed with the process of laying down my stitches but I’m also tired of feeling like I’m not getting anywhere no matter how much I sew.

Over the weekend while we were living it up on Lake Mead, I had a moment of clarity about this quilt. While I could continue with the wood grain pattern and fight through the frustration, I could **GASP** start over.

Yes, it hit me that I could simply rip out the quilting and start over with a simpler pattern. The idea of undoing all that I have already done is heartbreaking but once I really let it settle in, I started to feel a sudden sense of relief. Now I’ll be able to plan out my quilting a little better so that when it comes time to bind, I’ll have more success and less frustration.

So hobbyists, today begins the undoing of the Friendship quilt. While it’s an sad end, it’s also a huge beginning. The beginning of something simpler yet more manageable. And I’m looking forward to it!

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WIP: Splendid Sampler Project #1

So I’ve got these blocks just lying around. They are pretty and I loved making them but I had no idea what to do with them.

Oh yeah…

That’s because they were apart of a larger project that I never completed! A little something called The Splendid Sampler.

It’s been awhile since I’ve played with these blocks but it’s time for me to do something with them. So I decided to pulled a few out and put them together into something I can use around the house. Plus it would give me the ability to practice my free motion quilting on smaller projects.

My first project (yet unnamed) is going to be a table topper/runner. I pulled three pieced blocks and sashed them with black and then bordered the whole thing in a complementary cream fabric from the same line.

The top turned out super cute. I stuck with only pieced blocks so that they seemed uniform and not too busy.

Then I decided to try my hand at a little pebbling. I did some practice runs before hand to get my tension and pacing down. Then I took to the borders with a black Aurifil thread so that if I did make a mess, it would be hard to see.

Probably the best idea as my pebbling definitely needs work. 

As I battled with my quilting and trying to make decent little circles, I realized that my batting was making a complete mess. Fuzz everywhere… And a few of my seams decided to pull and strain, which annoyed me but not enough to pull it out and start over.

Had I used any other lighter color for the backing, the fuzz probably would bug me so much. But up against that black, all I an see is the nasty white fur all over.

During some of my time off, I’m planning to get back to pebbling and practicing. I’m also recording my process for our YouTube channel so stay tuned for any updates!

Check out our side bar for other quilting blogs and link ups for WIP Wednesday.

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Problems With Patterns Episode #62

We all know that feeling. Reading a pattern and it’s going along fine until you hit a snag. Suddenly, it’s like the instructions are written in a different language, one you don’t understand.

Well, we asked our fellow quilter’s and listeners what their go-to solutions were when facing a problem with a pattern and today we share those thoughts and comments! So tune in and maybe you’ll learn something new along with us!

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And to celebrate our friends all going to Quilt Con this week, there is a Quilt Non 2017 Instagram hop happening. Last year we had the chance to go to our first Quilt Con and it was amazing!!! So even though we aren’t there in body, we are there in spirit.

Happy Birthday to G and Sherri, some of our wonderful quilty friends we met at Quilt Con last year.

If you want to see any of the original comments from our friends and followers about the topic today, feel free to check out our Instagram feed and our Facebook page with the links below.

And if you are interested in a very details tutorial on binding your finished quilt, check out the Fat Quarter Shop video below that Dori really got a lot out of!

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2017 WIP List 

A big part of a quilter’s life is half-done projects, partially started quilts, and almost completed gifts. What can I say, it’s a BIG part of our culture.

It could be that new fabrics and patterns are coming out all the time and something new will catch our eye and we feel it call to us. Or may we can get a little bored with our current WIPs and just feel the need to start fresh, something different.

This year, after watching The Minimalist with my husband, I got the itch to pull out all my WIP and UFO quilts and make it a point to wrap them up. To keep myself accountable to this goal of mine, I’m listing these quilts here and I plan to revisit the list each month.

#1: The Friendship Quilt (for my husband)

This quilt goes WAY back. Like summer of 2015 WAY BACK. The kit was a gift to me from my parents. When I pulled it out and started cutting it, my husband liked the look of the batik fabrics and the earth colors. So I deemed it to be his.

I finished the top and bought the batting and backing for 25% from my local quilt shop, The Orange Quilt Bee. Then I decided to go with a free motion wood grain pattern for the quilting. That seemed like an awesome idea in the beginning and so far it’s looking beautiful but I ran into a few issues. Firstly, it’s going to take me FOREVER to quilt the full sized quilt on my own. I’m wishing now I would have picked a simpler pattern or sent it out to be done.

Then I found a fold in the backing that was too big to leave alone. I mean I could have just kept going but I wouldn’t have been happy leaving such a glaring mistake. So this quilt lingered for a LONG time just sitting there while I avoided the task of taking out the stitches to fix it. Finally, over winter break, I finally got around to fixing the problem and I’m ready to start quilting again.

This quilt is the furthest along in the process of getting finished.

#2: My CIRCA Quilt

I don’t know many quilters that quilt for themselves. So many of our projects are for others and we are often left to say goodbye to many of our beautiful finishes. Not this one…

This one is for me!

I love this CIRCA kit and I fell even more in love with it when I framed it in cream and black borders. It’s also been a long time in progress, another 2015 start. The top has been long done but I really stalled on the backing. I needed to sew together two red pieces and then frame them in the same black as the top. But, for some reason I just couldn’t get myself motivated to do any of that.

Again, over the winter break, I got the itch to start wrapping these projects up so I pulled this top out and finished piecing together the back. All I need now is my batting and to baste it together. The quilting on this will be simple, just simple squares and straight lines. Maybe even a little stitch in the ditch.

With the Friendship quilt being so complex, I’m happy to keep this quilting simple. and straight forward.

#3 Marvel Quilt (for Jake)

Oh man, this is a definite UFO. This project is for Jake and was started a long, long time ago. It’s going on 3 years now and it’s started and stopped me so many times. First, everything needed to be cut. There were NO pre-cuts for me to work with so I was stuck cutting everything myself.

Then, I decided to do my own block. Yeah, this decision is really holding me back because of the process of piecing together isn’t smooth and it’s time consuming. Had I gone with a block that had a pattern already created I may have moved faster to complete them but as it stands, I’m still making the blocks and I may soon run out of my sashing material. Yikes…

I have two rows completed and on my design wall but I have six more to go. I’m aiming for eight rows of six blocks, giving me a full sized quilt for my growing boy.

#4: Puzzle Box Quilt

Over the span of 2015, we made a lot of new friendships both online and off line. We also connected with other quilts that we happily learned from and shared with. In that time, we got to know Christa Watson, both as a friend and a fellow quilter. She puts out some amazing tutorials and information for quilting at home and I decided to join her website. In doing so I received a free pattern.

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Seeing the pattern and knowing that I had a jelly roll made for this pattern, I starting cutting for it. It’s a project that stays at my mom’s house so it rarely see the light of day. But it definitely needs to be put on this list so that it gets some much needed attention. I’m still cutting away at it and this year I plan to get further along!

Four projects, all at different points of finish. I’m quilting, basting, piecing, and cutting my little heart out with the intention of finishing some or all of these projects this year.

What are YOUR 2017 WIPs or UFOs?

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WIP: Seminole Table Runner

I’ve got a wonderful man in my life. Not only is he my best friend but he is a great guy all around.

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Recently he traveled all the way to Green Bay to see his favorite football team play in the snow. He’s nuts, we know. Leaving the mild Southern California fall/winter weather for the freezing temps of Wisconsin to sit through a Packer game at Lambeau field just because he loves Green Bay that much.

But that’s not what makes him great. While there, he went to Manitowoc to see the sights and take a few pictures but he also went looking for a quilt shop for me. And while there, he picks dup a beautiful Terry Atkinson Christmas table runner kit.

It was a wonderful surprise to receive when he came home. And a beautiful one too! Once I was out of school and on break, I decided to dive in and give this kit a go. It seemed clear cut and simple enough that I could put it together by Christmas.

I started on Monday night and put a good 3 hours in. I made sure to press everything before cutting and to be as meticulous with the instructions as possible. I wanted to do a really good job (not that I don’t always want to do a good job but sometimes I just want to get done more than anything).

I slowly made progress and found the instructions in this kit really easy to understand! I’m usually so turned off from  patterns because they seem to be poorly written and hard for me to understand. I’m so visual I do best when I can see the information as well as read each step.

So far so good! I’ve made it to the point that I’m ready to add the inner borders and then I just have to cut the thicker borders to wrap up the top. img_0786

A friend is planning on coming over tomorrow to sew with me so I’d love to have the whole thing basted and ready to quilt by then. After the kiddos bedtime tonight I plan to sit down and get the top finished. I’ll have to dig up some batting and maybe even shop for a little bit of backing fabric if I don’t have it in my stash.

Crossing fingers I can stick to my sewing schedule so that I’m not rushing to finish it like I did last year with the Dresden wall hanging that I was literally binding on Christmas Eve!

For this post and other great WIP posts, check out the side bar for link ups around the web!

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