improv quilting

La Conner Blog Tour :: A Granny Square Quilt


Granny Square quilt
{photo by Minki Kim}

Welcome to my stop on the La Conner Blog Tour! I am so excited to share this fabric line with you! This line is just the sweetest mix of strawberries, florals, and ginghams–and several of the prints have little flecks of gold for an amazing accent. The color palette is so perfect as well, a sweet mix of red, greens, pinks, grays, and blues. Everything mixes and matches so wonderfully. I think the reds and greens are so perfect for Christmas sewing, without being over-the-top “holiday”, if you know what I mean.

La Conner Fabric by Quilting in the Rain

I’m trying to remember when I first came across  author and  designer Jera Brandvig (aka Quilting in the Rain). I think it must have been when she released her first book, Quilt As-You-Go Made Modern–which is a fabulous book that I use over and over again. Since then she released her first fabric line, High Tea  (which I blogged about here), and another book: Quilt As-You-Go Made Vintage, which I need to get my hands on!

Being the force of nature that Jera is, La Conner is her second fabric line with Lecien. This line is inspired on a quaint little town in northern Washington that Jera visited growing up. And coincidentally, we happened to be vacationing there this summer, so of course, I had to stop by to see the inspiration for myself. And what a charming little town it is!

La Conner is a big, 36 print line, so I had lots of fabric to play with. I’d been looking at Granny Square blocks, thinking that I wanted to try them out, and La Conner seemed to be a perfect fit for this block.  There are a million Granny Square tutorials on the internet, but I used this one, which is a quick strip quilting method that makes two blocks at a time. They come together really quickly, and it was so much fun playing with each different color combo. I made this quilt leisurely over the summer, relishing in the process.

Granny Square quilt
{photo by Minki Kim}
Granny Square quilt
{photo by Minki Kim}

I love a fabric line that includes a bit of grey, and I couldn’t resist using this sweet strawberry print for the back, with some classic red binding.

This quilt is also a first for me because I quilted it on a longarm! I am a total longarm newbie, with only one lesson under my belt, but I thought that a nice large, loopy design seemed to be what this quilt called for–and so I just leaped and quilted up this whole quilt in an hour! Longarms are amazing like that. The large-scale design leaves the quilt so soft and drapey–a perfect snuggle up on the couch and read kind of quilt.

Loopy quilting granny square quilt

Granny Square quilt
{photo by Minki Kim}

I also had the honor of making a quilt from one of Jera’s patterns, Tiny Tulips (so appropriate, since La Conner is known for tulips) for her booth at Quilt Market. Such a sweet fun pattern–and so perfect for the La Conner line! This quilt included her sweet coordinating lace on the inner border–such a fun touch!

Tiny Tulips quilt

Tiny Tulips quilt

La Conner Fabric by Quilting in the Rain

I had so much fun working with this line–and I’m sure that you will too! Have you been following along the other stops on this blog tour? It is full of the sweetest projects that really bring La Conner to life!


La Conner Blog Tour
Monday 9/18:  Ange @alittlepatchwork
Thursday 9/21: Tiffany @tiffanyluann
Monday 9/25:  Dori @redfeedsack
Thursday 9/28:  Kristin @kristin_esser (you are here)
Monday 10/02:  Michelle @coleandtaffy
Thursday 10/05:  Katrina @katrinahodgson1969
Monday 10/09:  Clara @claralovestosew
Thursday 10/12:   Samantha @aqua_paisley
Monday 10/16:  Natasha @ellieshm
Thursday 10/19:  Sarah @sarahedgarprettyfabrics
Monday 10/23:  Andrea @willowcottagequiltco
Thursday 10/26:  Faith @faithessenburg
Monday 10/30:  Mariana @sewmariana
improv quilting

high tea blog tour :: let’s have a tea party!

high tea blog tour image

Welcome to my High Tea party! I was thrilled to be asked to play with this beautiful line by Jera Brandvig of Quilting in the Rain. I am a total Anglophile (lover of All Things British), so a line called High Tea, well, it’s just my thing. And I knew Jera from her wonderful book Quilt-as-You-Go Made Modern, so I knew I was in for a treat.

First of all, let’s talk about the color palette of this line! I love the  soft pinks, blues, greens, and yellows and the muted reds. And I especially love it when a fabric line includes some grays! It has adorable strawberry prints and doily motifs, but it’s the tiny florals that have my heart.

There is nothing better than a good tea party and this was a perfect excuse to create this new table setting–a new table topper, tea cozy, and tea mat. I brewed up some loose leaf English Breakfast tea, set out some macarons and invited a friend over for tea and a chat.

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I can’t get enough of half square triangles these days, so that was the place to start for this mini quilt. I used a charm pack of High Tea, and another charm pack of a slight off-white and these blocks came together almost by themselves. I’ve been wanting to play around with both this block arrangement and this wavy quilting forever–so this project was a pleasure from start to finish.

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My favorite blue teapot needed a new cozy, and I thought that the teapot print was a perfect choice. That red floral just peeking out along the bottom is my absolute favorite print (if I had to choose one, which I’m glad I don’t). If you don’t use a tea cozy on your teapot, I encourage you to make one–it’s a quick and easy project. And it really does keep the tea in the pot warm, leaving you to enjoy your macrons and sparkling conversation a little bit longer.

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And no tea party setting would be complete with out individual tea mats. This tea cup pattern is from my new book with Minki Kim, Sew Illustrated. Again, how darling are those strawberries?!

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high tea_Kristin-7 (1024x683)
{photos by Minki Kim}

I enjoyed every moment of working with these gorgeous fabrics. And I know I’m not the only one! I look forward to seeing the creative projects each one of these designers comes up with as I’ve been following along this High Tea Party. I hope you’re following along too!