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Monday, January 28, 2019

Circa 1880 Nine Patch Blocks

Here's another batch of Circa 1880 Nine Patch blocks for inspiration.  More and more and more shops are signing up to offer this club!!  Yay!!  Have you joined the Circa Craze yet?!!

Whatcha waiting for???

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

A Nurse In The Family

This is not my usual subject for a blog post, but please indulge this Mom in my proud moment.  

My daughter, Nicki, just graduated college with a BSN.  It took 6 long years because of some health set-backs, but she persevered!!

All Nicki ever wanted to be is a nurse from when she was a little girl.  She loves babies and wants very much to be a labor and delivery nurse.  

I hope she gets her wish someday!  We now have a nurse and firefighter/paramedic in the family.

We could not be more proud or happier!!  Congratulations, Nicki!!  You did it!!!

Monday, January 21, 2019

Circa 1880 Nine Patch Blocks

More blocks to inspire you!  I adore the fussy cut center of the block in the lower right corner.  Love fussy cutting fabric motifs!  There are a whole lot of them within the blocks of my quilt, and as I sit with it on my lap, I enjoy searching for those little gems.  They're little surprises waiting to be discovered.

If you enjoy putting fussy cut fabric motifs in your blocks, check out my new Fussy Cut Template set.  You can read more about them on my blog and buy them on my website.

Hope you've considered joining the Circa 1880 Club to make blocks and the heirloom quilt for yourself.  I imagine some of you are thinking it's way too hard and that you don't want any part of making blocks with little pieces.  Truth is....you don't make the blocks with little pieces!!  Really!!  Join the club and become a part of the private Facebook group where I share all my secrets about how I made this quilt in less than a year, working on it about an hour a day!!  

Monday, January 14, 2019

Circa 1880 Blocks

Here's another set of Circa 1880 Nine Patch blocks.  Are you seeing fabrics you have in your stash!  It's great to pull fabrics and cut them up to make the blocks.  It's like seeing an old friend.  We all have our favorite prints and I enjoy pairing them with other fabrics.  

Have fun cutting and sewing.  We've only just begun!  You can read more about the Circa 1880 Nine Patch club here.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019


Impressed with my fabulous photo of squares??  Teehee!  I always need a photo for a blog post, and I want to share the winners for my last post, and honestly couldn't think of anything....until, I looked around to see all the projects I'm currently working on using squares.  While I can't show the projects yet (always frustrating for both of us!), I can tell you....if you don't do this already, start cutting and saving 1 inch and 1.5 inch squares.  From friend to friend....just sayin' (wink, wink.)  I think you'll be really happy if you do.  And...while you're stash diving, be sure to read my post on The Ohio Principle.
I really enjoyed reading your comments about your stash and organizing tips.  If you have time, look them over, there's a lot of great advice there!  

Here are the three comments chosen to receive a Heartspun Quilts pattern of your choice.  They are....


I didn't know it had a name, "OHIO" but I love it! I try, I mean I really, really try to be organized. But, I find I still make little piles after a project. I do get to them and cut them into strips to put in drawers of that strip size. I have found that works best for me...well so far. Never thought of the cutting ahead for the specific project idea, but I really like that concept. My 3 year old Granddaughter thinks the drawers of strips are for her to put up on the design wall. Hahahaaa...I don't mind handling those scraps a million times because watching her play is priceless joy to me! 


Hi Pam, Love this system!! I feel I'm pretty organized, I have to be because my sewing and storage space is quite small, so I really wouldn't be able to function if I weren't putting things back in their own spot right away. I do have to say I love scrappy quilts, but I really love block and fabric exchanges. I have found myself using the same fabrics in lots of quilts and that concerns me. That's also why I usually only buy fat quarters or snippets of fabrics. And there are always new fabric lines coming out that I really love, especially yours!!

Traditional Quilter....

I sort all my fabrics by colors and put them in totes I can see through and place them on shelves. I mostly make scrap quilts. Whenever I cut into new fabrics I like to cut some into strips in widths I use often and I have smaller totes that I organize these in by color and size. I keep a tote for narrow scraps for string piecing. I have totes for scrap pieces and also keep totes for bonus triangles and squares. I like to keep all my fabrics wrinkle free, so I am careful to place all my fabrics flat in my containers neatly. You had some great tips in your post Pam thanks!

Please email your mailing address to me at Pam@HeartspunQuilts.com along with the pattern of your choice.  

Thanks, everyone who left a comment.  Means a lot to me, ya know!!  

Back to work and hope you spend at least a little time sewing and feeding your soul!  

Monday, January 7, 2019

Circa 1880 Blocks

Welcome to a year long show of the Circa 1880 Nine Patch blocks.  Once a week I will post photos of all of the blocks I used in my Circa 1880 quilt.  I hope it will inspire you to use nearly every scrap of fabric you own and head on over to your LQS to buy more for the biggest, most gorgeous variety of fabrics to make your quilt the best ever!!  
Join The Circa 1880 Club at your LQS.  If your LQS isn't participating, there are several dozen shops all around the country (the world, really) who are participating.   It's an exciting adventure and I hope you are tempted to participate and make this heirloom quilt for yourself!

Thursday, January 3, 2019

The OHIO Principle

Many, many years ago, while watching a TV news magazine program about organization tips from organizing pros, one of them talked about The OHIO Principal and I've never forgotten it.  It has been very good advice that I've used in every area of my life but never more so as when making scrap quilts.  

What is The OHIO Principle?

It simply means.....Only Handle It Once

It is a way of thinking that makes the best use of your time where applicable.  Here's an example.  You go grocery shopping and buy four boxes of tissue.  We might normally bring them into the house, unpack them from the bag, and set it on the counter.  Then, later we pick them up from the counter and bring them to the linen closet for storage.  The OHIO Principle says to take them from the bag and put them directly in the linen closet.  Not the most astute example, but you get the idea.  

Basically, what it really means is that we waste a lot of time moving things around.   Instead, only handle it once and put it where it belongs right away.  

How does this apply to quilting or making scrap quilts?  Oh....it does in a big way!

We all love scraps quilts and we love using up our scraps.....BUT....scrap quilts are very labor intensive.  Choosing all the different fabrics and cutting from each one for just one quilt is extremely time consuming.  

But.....what if you apply The OHIO Principle and only handle it once??  What happens is nothing short of amazing!

As many of you are about to embark on The Circa 1880 Nine Patch club journey, you will probably be handling a whole lot of new fabric and lots from your stash.  Now is the time to become organized and make the most of handling each piece of your beautiful stash!

From the first cut of my fabrics for The Circa 1880 Nine Patch and every fabric I laid hands on after that, I cut pieces for several scrappy quilt projects.  Each and every time I handled a piece of fabric, I made the cuts necessary for the other quilts.  Hence, I only handled each fabric print once but made the most of it.
I always started with my WOF strip.  
Then I cut the strip in half on the fold.
I then made cuts for seven different scrap quilts.  Before I started cutting anything for the Circa Nine Patch, I made a list of what other quilts I wanted to make and the cuts I needed for them.  I cut squares for Half Square Triangles,  a piece for a Tumbler quilt I'm working on,  a scrap for blocks for a quilt I am hand piecing, two squares for a Four Patch blocks, a strip for Log Cabin blocks, 1.5 and 1 inch squares for Postage Stamp quilts and the strips for the Circa Nine Patch blocks.  

I know many of you have been cutting squares and a variety of different width strips for years before I wrote this post, and I have never done that because I didn't want to spend my time making cuts for quilts I wasn't presently planning to make.  Knowing exactly what quilts I wanted to make made all the difference.  That's just me.  

During the year I worked on the Circa Nine Patch blocks, I made nearly 400 Four Patch blocks sewing them together as leader/enders!  It felt effortless.  I am still making Circa Nine Patch blocks and am using leftover strips as my new leader/enders for a postage stamp quilt I've designed that will be released later this year.  I don't have to cut anything new!  It was all done months ago, and now I just sit and sew!  What a great feeling it is to have all those glorious scraps waiting for me!!  

And while you're at it, it pays to have my 
Fussy Cut Templates handy for the fabrics with great motifs!  

I hope I've given you something to think about as you begin a new year and continue making quilts.  The OHIO Principle has made a huge impact on how productive I am and I'm loving it!!

I invite you to leave a comment about your best tips for making the most of your fabrics for scrap quilts.  I'll chose a few winners who will receive the pattern of their choice!

Very soon, I will begin traveling for lectures and workshops.  

My first visit will be to the North Suburban Quilters Guild in Arlington Heights, IL.  I'll be there February 22nd and 23rd.  You don't have to be a member to attend workshops at the member discounted rate!!  Click here to find all the details of my visit.  I would love to see you there!