free motion quilting

Circus baby quilt

With just a fat quarter of fabric and a baby girl arriving, I  pulled some fabrics from my stash to make a modern, fun baby quilt in a circus theme.

Modern circus quilt top by Doris Lovadina-Lee

Modern circus baby quilt by Doris Lovadina-Lee

I had purchased only a fat quarter of this circus themed fabric which is an Anna Griffin for Windham Fabrics design. This baby quilt was the perfect opportunity to use it.Elephant square in modern circus baby quilt by Doris Lovadina-Lee

Pink hippo in modern circus baby quilt by Doris Lovadina-Lee

I was able to fussy cut individual animals from the piece to create floating boxes around the central medallion.

Ringmaster and circus tent of modern baby quilt by Doris Lovadina-Lee

I wanted the individual squares to pop out, so I heavily free-motion quilted in the negative space.

Floral backing and label of modern circus baby quilt by Doris Lovadina-Lee

My husband selected the floral print for the backing.

free motion quilting in modern circus baby quilt by Doris Lovadina-Lee

I am looking forward to giving this completed modern circus baby quilt to the beautiful little girl it was made for.


Metamorphosis is the triptych that completes the series that I began 2015. Chrysalis Awakening was the first in this series and was created  for the “It’s Time for Colour Show.”  Quilters who had participated in the National Juried Show in 2015 were asked if they were interested in creating an art piece to be donated to raise funds for the Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada.

three leaf quilts of the stages of a butterfly metamorphosis by doris lovadina-lee, on display at the National Juried Show
Metamorphosis triptych

I knew I wanted to complete the series, it was finally completed and I entered the triptych into the National Juried show in 2016. It was accepted into the Art – Naturescapes, Pictorial Wall Quilts.

doris's caterpiller in the quilted leaves of the metamorphosis series of quilts by doris
Metamorphosis triptych – Caterpillar
Egg or larvae in the metamorphosis of a butterfly quilted by doris lovadina-lee
Metamorphosis triptych – egg
butterfly beneath the leaf of the metamorphosis triptych by doris
Metamorphosis triptych – Butterfly

This was a fun project to work on and it was interesting to see the visitors’ reactions when they noticed the hidden surprises!

Blue Bayou Quilt

This beautiful bundle of blues are the Northcott fabrics selected for the 2016 Quilts at the Creek challenge: Blue By You.

Northcott fabric bundle for the Blue By You quilt challenge. (photo courtesy of Quilts at the Creek Blog)
Northcott fabric bundle for the Blue By You quilt challenge. (photo courtesy of Quilts at the Creek Blog)

This was one of the easiest quilts for me to name. When they announced this challenge at a workshop last year they called it Blue by You, but, I heard Blue Bayou. The fabrics reminded me of the changing colours of the tropics. Aerial photographs of the ocean show the colour changing from a deep blue that is almost black to a light turquoise.

Blue Bayou Quilt front
Blue Bayou Quilt front

The word bayou conjured images of hot temperatures, beaches, water and buildings painted reds, pinks and corals. I searched through my stash and found a few more blues to co-ordinate with the Northcott bundle. I added 2 small prints in red, some of my hand dyed solids and the navy with circles of blue, green and red tying the fabrics together.

Blue Bayou Quilt draped
Blue Bayou Quilt draped

Many of the colourful painted houses found in tropical climates have jalousie or louvred glass windows. The design of this quilt reminds me of looking out of these jalousie windows and seeing a beautiful tropical vista.

Blue Bayou Quilt detail
Blue Bayou Quilt detail

Blue Bayou is machine quilted with a walking foot. The undulating design in the blue rectangles refers to waves and the straight lines of the navy and blue solids to the frame of the windows.

Blue Bayou quilting detail
Blue Bayou quilting detail

Stop by the Blue By You display at Quilts at the Creek July 23 and 24, 2016. See what others have created with their fabric bundles!


Ombre weave quilt

I love ombre fabrics! They offer a huge opportunity for pairing with other fabrics. This particular fabric has a lovely combination of colours. One selvedge edge is dyed with a deep burgundy colour that changes across the width to a soft pearly pink on the opposite selvedge.

Aurora Collection by Takako
Aurora Collection by Takako

I chose to pair the ombre fabric with a Kaffe Fasset print. The print was going to be “woven” into the ombre fabric.

Kaffe Fassett fabric
Kaffe Fassett fabric

The quilt has rows of ombre fabric stitched together. These rows alternate from light to dark. I love the bargello effect created where the colours from the central portion of the ombre align.

Ombre weave quilt
Ombre weave quilt

The Kaffe Fassett fabric creates a woven effect.

Ombre weave quilt detail
Ombre weave quilt detail

The left over squares were pieced into the back of the quilt.

Ombre weave quilt back
Ombre weave quilt back

I am really happy with the results and so is the recipient. How have you used ombre fabric?

Graffiti Quilting with Amy Garro

I spent an inspirational day with Amy Garro of 13 Spools. She taught her workshop on Graffiti quilting to a group of very enthusiastic quilters.  The workshop was well planned with lots of useful information. First we practiced the motifs by doodling on paper, then on the sewing machine.

Amy Garro
Amy Garro
Amy Garro red quilt
Amy Garro explaining her graffiti quilting

It was helpful to see Amy practice her technique and also to hear her thought processes when she decides on her designs.

Amy Garro Icy Waters quilt
Amy Garro Icy Waters quilt

Amy brought a selection of her quilts including the Icy Waters quilt pictured above. I was happy to hear that her aim in quilting is not perfection.

A few of us brought quilt tops that needed to be quilted but we were having trouble deciding on a quilt design. Amy asked what we liked most about our quilt – the precise piecing or the colour combination or the interaction of the blocks. With this in mind, select a quilting design that makes this a feature of the quilt.

I’ve begun the quilting on a piece that I’ve had on the design wall for some time. How do you decide on your quilting?

Quilts at the Creek 2015

I just received the labels I will be attaching to the quilts I am entering into the Quilts at the Creek outdoor show this summer. It’s a great venue to see a variety of quilts from traditional to modern and from all across southern Ontario.

Quilts@C 2015 labels
Quilts at the Creek labels

Hundreds of quilts will be on display in the beautiful pastoral setting of Black Creek Pioneer Village in Toronto. It’s a great sight to see the quilts hanging in the sunshine and blowing in the breeze. Each day of the show, volunteers set up all the quilts, mostly outside with a few in some of the buildings. These dedicated volunteers also take down all the quilts at the end of the day and have been known to very quickly take them down when rain threatens!

Quilts at the Creek at Black Creek Pioneer Village
Quilts at the Creek at Black Creek Pioneer Village

This year Quilts at the Creek will be held from Saturday July 18th to Sunday July 19th, 2015. Check the Black Creek Pioneer Village website for times, parking information and maps.

Quilts at the Creek Blog

Valerie Prideaux the lead organizer of this great event, along with the York Heritage Quilters Guild have a lot of information on the Quilts at the Creek blog. Find out how to enter your quilt, who will be presenting trunk shows, the vendors at the Merchant’s mall and so much more.

Amy Garrobook-2Bcover-240x300qc_icy_waters_-024

Amy Garro of 13 Spools is teaching 2 workshops: Graffitti Quilting on the Friday and Paper Piecing on the Saturday. I am looking forward to learning Amy’s style of free-motion quilting.

Hope to see you out at Black Creek Pioneer Village July 18th and 19th, enjoying the quilts in the beautiful outdoors.

Pouch swap


The Toronto Modern Quilt Guild  is participating in a three-way swap with the Victoria and Maritime Modern Quilt Guilds. We were asked to make a pouch in any size and any style.

I selected some fabrics and orphan blocks to create one of the pouches.

pouch fabric


A beaded pull provides a sparkly finish.

orange pouch
Orange pouch – front

The quilting was done with a walking foot, including the curved petals.

orange pouch back
Orange pouch – back

This smaller green pouch has been free motioned quilted with loops. A small pocket is stitched to the lining.

green pouch open
Green pouch – front
Green pouch - back
Green pouch – back

I used the tutorial: Crazy about zippered pouches written by Elaine Theriault. It was one of many great articles found in the premiere issue of QUILTsocial ezine.

I also made a couple of luggage tags.

luggage tags

I hope the recipient enjoys using these items!


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