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Friday, November 12, 2010

Handmade Holidays

At our November meeting last night, we shared handmade gift ideas for the holidays. I thought I'd compile some of them here so you can all get a jump-start on your holiday sewing.

[photo by lavender's blue]
Fabric bird - free pattern here [here is another cute one]

Wine bag - tutorials here, here, and here (this one has a cute handle)

Origami bag - tutorial here.

Composition notebook cover - tutorial here

Fabric postcards - we all decided these would be great for Christmas cards! Instructions and examples here.

Pillowcases make a great gift! Juanita has a great tutorial on her blog.

Have any other handmade gift ideas? Share them in the comments.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Retreat Recap

The guild's first annual retreat took place last weekend and it was so much fun that we're considering making it a biannual event. We spent four days (three for some) at the Compass Centre. Owner Melissa has really thought of everything. Everyone had plenty of room to spread out, there were cutting and ironing stations, designs walls, and even a small shop with fabric and notions. We were also very well-fed - there were cookies as big as your head!

If you'd like to see more photos or share your own, check out the DMQG Flickr group.

Don't forget that our monthly meeting is this Thursday. Laura Kay of Happiness is Quilting very generously provided us with some door prizes at the retreat and we will be giving them away on Thursday. See you there!

Monday, September 20, 2010

First Annual Retreat

Our First Annual Retreat is fast approaching! Now is the time to register and mail those deposit checks.

COST: $80/per night (plus Big Tent and/or PayPal fees if you choose not to pay via cash or check); all meals are included

DATES:  Thursday, November 4 - Sunday November 7 (Thursday night is optional)

LOCATION: The Compass Centre in Mount Calm, TX. Be sure and check out their website for details about accommodations.

RSVP: Reserve your spot by RSVPing in the Big Tent group and filling out a registration form (registration form is available here). Please mail your deposit check to:
Dallas Modern Quilt Guild
P.O. Box 190122
Dallas, TX 75219
Oct 28 is the last day to RSVP or cancel. All money is due Nov 4 or 5 at the retreat.

We will have a raffle where 2 lucky quilters will each win 1 free night. If you pay in full on or before October 28, you will get 2 extra entries in the raffle.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

August Guild Meeting

Can you believe it has been a month since the last meeting??  I can't.  Although, I find myself wishing it was any month other than August!  I am not a fan of this Texas heat.  Never have been, never will be!  But.....we have something great to look forward to......The DMQG meeting is Thursday, August 12!  I hope to see all of  you there.  We are going to have updates on the November retreat, some challenges that will be issued, updates on the first annual Fall Shop Hop, door prizes and my personal favorite; Show and Tell.  Also, we will be collecting school supplies and backpacks for the Back To School Drive benefiting the Community Partners of Dallas.  We will be in our new meeting home, Bernina of Dallas.  If you didn't make it last month, you are in for a treat.  The meeting space is fantastic, lots of room, video set up for demonstrations, they even put on a pot of coffee for us!  And of course shopping!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

July Guild Meeting

Tomorrow night is the July meeting and we are meeting in a new location.  We will be at the Bernina Dallas store at 635 & Midway.  The meeting starts at 7:00 and we will have hexagon demonstrations!  If you haven't given these little beauties a try, I'll warn you....they are addicting!  You will see a couple of different methods for doing "hexies".

We are very excited to be meeting at Bernina and want to issue a big Thank You to them for opening their store for us.  I was in the store yesterday and they are very excited to have us.  Everyone, bring your show and tell and come ready to have some fun!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Friendship Groups

Hey ya'll!  The guild is growing like wildfire and we are spread out all over the metroplex.  We are trying to put together some Friendship Groups in order to make it a little easier to connect with people a little closer to home and also as a way to "connect" with each other.  The way it works is this:  send an email to and mention that you'd like to join a Friendship Group.  State what city you live in (or near), a way to contact you (email, phone, smoke signals, etc) and whether or not daytime or evening get togethers work best for you.  We will "assemble" everyone interested into local groups.  The group can then pick a time and place and begin to meet up for little "stitch-ins".  When I have belonged to these in the past, we usually met once or twice a month at someones house and talked, sewed, ate, whatever.  It is just a fun way to spread out the fun between guild meetings and to make new friends who like to spend time doing what we all love to do!  The board members will be happy to help get these groups going in whatever way we can.  So, just shoot an email to the above address and we'll get you hooked up with a new group of quilty buddies!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

June Meeting

I hope everyone is planning on coming to the June Meeting of the DMQG.  It's next Monday, June 14th at 7:00.  It will be held in our usual meeting place at City Craft.  We have a special treat in store for us.....Callie is going to share some of the great stuff she saw at Quilt Market in Minneapolis.  From what I hear, there are some amazing new fabric lines coming out in the next couple of months...Yeah!  I am quite excited to see and hear what she has to say.  See you there!   Bring a friend!!!!

I am just amazed at the great new friendships I have developed in the few short months we have been meeting.  I also hope you will all consider joining us at the next Saturday Sew on June 26th.  We have so much fun and it is where I have truly begun to develop the new friendships.  It makes me really happy to think that in November we have a full 4 day quilt retreat planned for the guild.  Talk about time to develop new friendships! (and maybe get a few UFO's done!)  Put it on your calendar and plan to join the fun. 

Monday, May 10, 2010

An Inside Peek

at a Dallas Modern Quilt Guild Meeting.

Our next guild meeting is tonight Monday, May 10 from 7pm to 9pm at City Craft in Dallas. We would love to have you join us!

Are you curious as to what we do at a meeting? Well, here's a peek!

Last month's meeting was the second meeting of the guild & we were excited to see both some familiar faces and new ones.

The officer's were introduced and are as follows:

Lisa Calle, President
Amanda Wray, Vice president
Michelle Kitto, Treasurer
Monica McNeill, Historian
Jenny Garland, Weekend Sew Coordinator
Gina Weems, Weekend Sew Coordinator
Ellen Lamb, Secretary

It was announced that the officers are planning a retreat for members in November. For more information please visit the topic, DMQG Annual Quilt Retreat - Save the Date, on the Ning Site. You are able to access the site by clicking on the main tab at the top of this blog.

We are also working on obtaining 501(c)status which means that we will be recognized as a tax exempt, non-profit organization. This will allow us to raise donations for charitable causes.

Even though we do not have our 501(c) status yet, we are still looking for ways to give back to the community. We will be collecting 8" blocks for various charity projects at both guild meetings & Saturday sews. If you have any fabric that you would like to donate for use in these charity blocks, please donate at either the guild meetings or Saturday sews. Please share all suggestions for charities with Jenny Garland.

As a guild we have held two fun weekend sews so far. We are using a great space that is an office building conference room in Irving. We have ironing, cutting & an education station set up. The next Saturday Sew is on May 29th, for more details please see the topic, May Saturday Sew, on the Ning Site.

We are also in process of building a guild library. This will be a compilation of books and magazines donated by members for others to check out and use at their leisure. If you have donations, please bring them to Saturday sew or the monthly meeting.

We discussed a contest for a design for our guild name tags. We would love for members to submit designs for the guild to vote on. We will have a door prize for the winning design.

If you haven't filled out a membership form please do so at tonight's meeting or the Saturday Sew. The dues are set at $20. We will also have the form posted on the Ning site shortly.

We are so excited that the Ning group has grown to 136 members! This shows what an interest there is in the DFW metroplex for Modern Quilting.

Going forward, the Ning group will be one of the benefits of membership of the guild. We plan to make this a vibrant resource for sharing of projects, tutorials & tips. We would also like to have the group be a learning resource drawing upon the wealth of knowledge & experience that resides within the group.

If you are unsure about Modern Quilting we will be using this blog as a place to share more about this new movement, the Ning group & the activities of the guild. If you have any suggestions as to what you would find valuable both on the Ning site & the blog please reach out to Monica McNeill.

We ended our meeting with two door prizes & show and tell. Thank you to Jenny Garland & Lara Kay of Happiness is . . . Quilting for their donations.

Here are some shots of our show & tell.

As always, a big thank you to Callie for letting us use the City Craft space for our meeting. You can see we cover alot of ground in our meetings & would love to have you join us tonight.


Thursday, April 29, 2010

Bee Season

It's bee season!

Quilting bees are a fun way to learn new techniques. Many of you have probably participated in online quilting bees, and now you will have a chance to do one with people you actually know! We are going to try a couple of different bee types this year. Sign ups will occur throughout May (at our Monthly Meeting and Saturday Sew). The first round of Bees will kick off in June. Depending on the interest level, we may start a second round in July (with sign ups at the June meetings, dates TBA)

If you would like to participate, please carefully review the rules and evaluate the time commitment required.

Monthly Block Swap
Participants: Anyone who attends monthly meetings or Saturday Sew.

Rules: Make 2 blocks in the style and/or color scheme chosen for the month and bring one to the meeting. Swap with other participants.

Commitment: All you have to do is make 2 blocks! This will be an ongoing swap and participants can join or opt out at any time.

x2 Bee
Participants: 6 quilters over 6 months

Rules: Each quilter provides fabric and instructions to make blocks of her choice. All quilters exchange fabric during month 1 and have 6 months to complete 2 blocks for each member (plus 2 blocks for you). One bee member will act as facilitator (Bee Keeper). At the end of the bee, each member will have 12 completed blocks, which she can sew together to make a completed quilt top.

Commitment: You will provide fabric for 10 blocks and you will need to make 10 total blocks (plus the two you'll make for yourself) for the other members over a 6-month period.

Round Robin
Participants: 6 maximum, lasts as many months as we have members, i.e. 6 members = 6 months

Rules: Each quilter makes her own center block during month 1. During months 2 to 6, the center blocks rotate among the bee members who will add borders to the center block. One bee member will act as facilitator (Bee Keeper). At the end of the Round Robin, each member will have a completed quilt top.

Commitment: Fabric to be provided or members can use fabric from their stash. You will need to complete your border on time each month so that you don't slow down the pace of the bee for the other members.

If you are a new quilter or new to bees, don't be afraid to join! It's going to be a lot of fun.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Personal Ironing Stand

Hey guys! With our second Saturday Sew coming up this weekend, I thought I would show you a quick tutorial on making a personal ironing stand! I've seen this around on the web several places, but I cannot remember exactly where (if you know, please let me know in the comments). I also saw it done during a demonstration at the Garland Quilt Guild. I think it's really quick and easy, and should help cut down on the lines at the ironing board on Saturday!

First, you need this little fella.

I got this TV tray for $9 at Target.

You will also need some extra batting, fabric, scissors and a staple gun. I used leftover batting and some cheap muslin laying around in my stash. You can use any type of fabric you want, just make sure you have a large enough piece to cover the top of the TV tray plus a few inches extra. If you are using a colored fabric, I would recommend washing it first, especially if it is dark. I'm not sure if this helps, but better safe than sorry!

I laid out my muslin (doubled because it is cheap and thin) and then laid my batting on top of it. I doubled it because I don't have high loft batting, so it was pretty thin as well. Then I placed my tray upside-down on top of the batting, making sure there were a few inches showing on each side.
Then trim your fabric/batting to the desired length!

I obviously had to trim mine so it stopped short of the pieces of wood sticking out of the bottom. I then started to staple!

Woo hoo! I love to staple things!

I used at least 3 staples on each side.

Once you have the first side stapled, I recommend stapling the opposite side next, instead of the next one. This helps keep things nice and straight. You will want to pull the second side as tight as possible while stapling.

Then do the third and fourth sides. The corners required additional staples, but I just folded them over and stapled them down. Those staple guns are pretty handy!

Flip it over, and there you have it! A 5 minute project for under $10 . . . who could resist!

I'll bring mine for Saturday Sew this weekend, in case you have any questions.

Also, this is my first tutorial, so any comments you have would be greatly appreciated!

See ya!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

A Call for Chairs

Good morning everyone!  I have a small request from City Craft.....if you have a spare folding chair lying around, can you throw it in your car and bring it to the meeting tonight.  She is busy moving things around in the shop to make room for us, but as we saw last meeting, we may need a few additional chairs.  Looking forward to seeing everyone!


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

April Meeting

I hope everyone is planning to come to the April meeting of the Guild tomorrow night!  We are going to be talking about future happenings with the Guild and introducing the officers.  We will also be collecting dues ($20), and there will be Show & Tell!  Bring your projects and share with us all!  We would LOVE to see them! The meeting starts at 7:00 at City Craft.  You can get directions here.  Hope to see everyone!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Quilt Class at City Craft

I am so excited to tell you all that I will be teaching a "Learn to Quilt" class at City Craft in Dallas.  You can check out her store and the class schedule here.  It is a two session class starting April 25 at 2:00.  We will be making a quilted pillow. 

So, if you know anyone that is dying to learn to quilt, or want a refresher, go check out Callie's website.  You can even sign up for the class right online!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Announcing...Saturday Sew

We will have a door prize & a fat quarter swap! The fee for this event is $5 to cover the venue costs. Bring your machine and project; we will provide ironing and cutting centers. Hope to see you there!

RSVP here. Questions? Email us at dallasmodernquiltguild[a]

Friday, March 12, 2010

QuiltFab for iPhone

If you are anything like me, you've found yourself in the middle of a fabric store having realized that you have no idea how much fabric you need to start or complete a quilt.

QuiltFab for iPhone is a free app that allows you to specify your quilt's width and height, fabric width and shrinkage % and many other settings to compute how much fabric you need for your quilt, including borders, sashing and binding.

If you are a quilter with an iPhone, this app is a must-have!

Get QuiltFab on iTunes!


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Getting to Know Our Members

Can you believe that in just two short months the Dallas Modern Quilt Guild has grown to 92 members? It's pretty amazing! In an effort to get to know more about each other, I've added a member blogroll to this blog. It displays the 25 most recent posts from our members. If you included a blog url on your Ning profile page, it's already on the list. If you didn't and you would like to share it with us, please email dallasmodernquiltguild[at]yahoo[dot]com.

Dallas Modern Quilt Guild is now on Twitter! Follow us to stay up to date on events and other fun stuff.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

How to Make a Quilter's Knot

Hi modern quilters! I'm Jenny and so excited about this new quilt guild in Dallas. I thought I would post a tutorial on something we all need to know how to do.

I prefer to do all sewing on the machine. It's fast and efficient. However, there are some instances when I simply have to sew by hand (bleh, I know).

Anyway, before you sew specific stitches, you need to know how to make a sturdy knot that will stay put. I know, you're thinking "a knot?" I totally know how to make a knot. If you do, awesome! If you don't, I'll show ya in this super quick video tutorial. Please excuse the slight blurriness and ridiculously short nails. Um, I still bite my nails. Been trying to stop for like 28 years. Nervous habit. Don't even realize I'm doing it.

Moving on… this knot is really easy once you practice it once or twice. It's great if you have to sew on a button, hand stitch binding, or slip-stitch something closed. It will keep your stitches really secure and you can bury it in the fabric so it won't be seen.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Our First Meeting

Thanks to all of you who came out in the rain to our first meeting! It was a great turnout and a lot of fun to meet all of you. A special thank you to Callie of CityCraft for hosting in her beautiful shop!

I received a lot of great feedback and offers for help last night and believe me, I will be taking you up on it! This is a great group of women and I am really excited about the possibilities. For those of you who could not make it last night, I've posted the questionnaire here. Be sure and nominate yourself and others for officer positions! If you see a need for a position that is not listed, feel free to suggest it in the comments.


Welcome to the blog of the Dallas Modern Quilt Guild. Would you like to be a guest blogger? Email for information.