Swimming Upstream Quilt Pattern

Swimming Upstream Quilt Pattern - Free Pattern

If you would like a fun and whimsical wall hanging, then my Swimming Upstream quilt pattern might be just what you are looking for.

The finished quilt measures 28″ x 40″ so it is great for a smaller wall space.

Start digging through all of your fabrics. Because of the design, this pattern is an ideal scrap buster.

I used various corals for this version, but I can picture this in so many other color waves. Wouldn’t it look great hanging in a mountain cabin or beach house?

This piece was professionally quilted by Adria Good Longarm Quilting and it makes it shine. As a result of using turquoise thread, the quilted water ripples and bubbles add dimension and movement to the quilt.

Close up of the stitching
Continue reading

Scrappy Swimming Fish Quilt Block

Scrappy Swimming Fish Quilt Block - Free Pattern
Scrappy Swimming Fish Quilt Block

I have always been a huge fan of scrap quilts and the majority of my pieces are done this way. My scrappy swimming fish quilt block is no exception. It is a whimsical block that is fairly easy to make.

I came up with this block while I was designing the quilt “Swimming Upstream”. I had a large stash of coral fabrics and, for some reason, they reminded me of salmon. The fish has a long body and I added background sashing around it to make it look like the fish was swimming in water.

In the quilt I made using this block, each fish is made up of one coral fabric and the beige sashing is from various fabrics. For a different look, you can easily make the fish out of various fabrics and keep the sashing one fabric, or you can change it any other way you would like to.

Continue reading

Quilts for Ocracoke Project

Quilts for Ocracoke

A couple of months ago a post on Instagram caught my attention. The hashtag used was Quilts for Ocracoke. That really hit home for me because my family has been visiting this special place for many years.

Best know for its’ pristine beaches and pirate lore, Ocracoke is a tiny island on the southern end of the Outer Banks. It’s only accessible by ferry and, once you’ve arrived, you never want to leave.

Sadly, in early September 2019, it was devastated by Hurricane Dorian. Many of the businesses and homes were damaged or destroyed by the high waters that flooded the island.

Through it all, the locals, and those who love the island, have rallied, and are working hard to bring Ocracoke back.

The Ocracoke lighthouse at sunset

Quilts for Ocracoke

When I saw the hash tag, I had to see what it was all about. Lori Millsap from Island Time Quilting came up with the idea for Quilts for Ocracoke, an event to make comfort quilts for the island residents.

She accepts blocks, backing and finished quilts for the project. From the results she’s been posting, it looks like it has been a big success so far.

Here are a couple of the blocks that I made. It was an easy block to make, a great scrap buster, and it was for a good cause. That is my kind of block.

Quilts for Ocracoke


I have been following Ocracoke’s road to recovery via social media and news reports. Their sense of community is inspiring, and I have faith that this beautiful gem along the Outer Banks of North Carolina will come back stronger than ever.

Hopefully many of the residents will be comforted by a special quilt too.

October Entry for the Patterns by Jen 2019 Monthly Color Challenge

October Entry for the Patterns by Jen 2019 Monthly Color Challenge

The prompt for the October entry for the Patterns by Jen 2019 monthly color challenge was red, like a red rose. I’ll be honest here. I was not sure I was going to love this block, and it is not because of the pattern, but because of the color.

I love reds, but I do not have a lot of them, especially in batik. Since I’m only using batiks, and I have been trying hard not to buy any new fabric for this project, I was skeptical.

However, I don’t think I needed to be. I paired these two fabrics and they work. In fact, they work really well. I’m not sure if it is because of the movement in the lighter red, or because of the black in the darker fabric, but this has ended up being one of my favorite blocks of this challenge.

Continue reading

September Entry for the Patterns By Jen 2019 Monthly Color Challenge

September Entry for the Patterns by Jen 2019 Monthly Color Challenge

It’s all about the color lilac for the September entry for the Patterns by Jen 2019 monthly color challenge. That is such a pretty color and, since I have a fair amount of it in my stash, I didn’t need to go out and buy any new fabric.

Depending on who you talk to, that could be considered a good or a bad thing. It’s not a problem though, I’ll still find an excuse to go to the fabric store.

This month’s block was fairly simple to put together, but I definitely had to work on my points for the pinwheel center.

I find that it’s easier to get sharp points when I work with batik fabric, but that might be because I love working with it so much. Because it is a little bit stiffer, I think my points come out sharper.

Picking out the fabrics for this month was fun, especially the lighter lilac. The darker purple was a different story. With a fair amount of fabric to choose from, I couldn’t decide if it was too dark or not.

Ultimately, I’m really happy with the results. The block fits in well with the others.

I just can’t believe that there are only three months left for this challenge. It’s gone by so quickly.

I keep pulling out all of my blocks and trying to come up with a layout I like. One option in particular draws me in, but I have to wait until the last blocks are done before I make my final decision.

If you want to join in the fun, head over to the Pattern by Jen blog and check out all of the details.

So far it’s been a lovely challenge, with every color of the rainbow represented.

September Entry for the Patterns by Jen 2019 Monthly Color Challenge

Here’s what I’ve done so far. Three more blocks to go, and I’m ready for them!

Please note: This post may contain affiliate links which means that if you make a purchase after clicking on one of the links, I may get a small commission (at no additional cost to you). Please see my full disclosure policy for more information.