Saturday, July 15, 2017

Finish A Long Meet the Host: Izzy from Dizzy Quilts

I'm delighted to let Izzy tell you a bit about herself:

Hi - I'm Izzy from Dizzy Quilts and it's my turn to tell you a little about myself!

I'm a mother, step-mother and foster mother to six children, grand-mother to one gorgeous little girl and wife to my soul mate. During the day, I manage a team of e-Learning designers/developers at a global financial company.

All of this keeps me pretty busy, but I've always made time to be crafty - when I was a little girl, my mom taught me how to knit and I made all my teddy bears knitted sweaters!

During my teenage years, I was a little too busy with school (and with boys!) to craft, but a few years later, when I had my first child, I started sewing.  I made some baby clothes and I made curtains mostly. I even took a sewing class to learn how to make garments for myself, but I never got the hang of that - nothing ever really fit right.

About 9 years ago, I walked into JoAnn's to get fabric for new curtains and spotted the cutest little quilt kits. I bought one, put it together and haven't looked back since! I was completely and totally hooked.

The first few quilts I made were very traditional - lots of small pieces, small florals, etc. I really had no clue what I was doing, but learned so much with the making of these quilts.

A lap size log cabin quilt made for my step-mom

I started making these quilts for pretty much everyone in my family.  And pretty soon, every bed in the house had a quilt on it.

Quilt I made for my sister-in-law - this is Bronx testing it.

I even made quilts as curtains!!
Around 2010, I discovered quilt blogs and the online quilting community.  That literally changed my quilting life!!  I started my own blog, met some amazing people and a couple of years later, found the Montreal Modern Quilt Guild.

Through the members of this guild, I learned about modern quilting and I fell in love with quilting all over again.

I started making modern quilts and building a stash of really colourful fabrics and solid neutrals.

When I first started quilting, my least favourite part of the whole thing was the actual quilting. My sewing machine was pretty small and wrestling with a big quilt in that tiny little space was painful and I very often ended up with puckers on the back of my quilts.  And then I changed two things: my sewing machine and my basting method.

I purchased my Juki TL-2010Q. It is literally a dream to quilt with. Lots of room to the right of the needle and super consistent, fast stitching.

I also learned how to board baste my quilts - which has saved my knees, my back and to a certain extent, my sanity!  :-)

And now quilting is actually my favourite part. I look forward to finishing a top just so I can get to the quilting. My dream is to some day own a long-arm machine, but I would need to get a much bigger house before that could happen!

Last year, I became the Vice-President of the Montreal MQG and that has been a lot of fun. The group is growing and we have such amazing people and quilters.  Each meeting is a great source of inspiration and I'm learning so much.

When I was approached to become a FAL host last year, I was so flattered and so happy. I love hosting these link-ups - so much inspiration and so much talent every quarter.

Thanks for reading and if you have questions, please leave a comment!  :-)


Sunday, July 2, 2017

2017 Finish A Long Q3 Goals: Time to link up

It's time to link up your list of unfinished projects that you propose to finish in Q3 of the FAL. I am looking forward to seeing what you are planning to be working on over the next quarter.

The FAL is hosted by a community of bloggers across the world. Our hosts are:
  • Sarah - Sew me - Northern Ireland
Social Media Director
For those of you who are new to the FAL, it is a place to find motivation and encouragement to complete those unfinished projects that are hanging about becoming UFOs. Every quarter you post a list of projects you hope to finish in the next three months, and then at the end of the quarter, you post a link from your blog, Flickr or Instagram of each successful finish from your original list.

Each finish is an entry for wonderful prizes from our sponsors. There is no penalty for not finishing a listed project, so feel free to make your list long or short, as you wish. The 2017 Schedule and Rules for the FAL are on my permanent FAL page, let me know if you have any questions.

Here are the fantastic and generous sponsors for Q3 of the FAL - you can see each of their prizes listed under their logo (think about visiting them and saying thank you):  

As you may recall from last year, there was a return of tutorial week at the end of each quarter, between the opening of the link for finishes and the day that link closes. Are you enjoying this? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below! This will take place each quarter. Each host works hard to put these together so I hope you are visiting their blogs to encourage them. If you have a tutorial that you would like to share, please let me or another host know.

It's time to round up those projects you want to finish over the next three months, take a photo of each one and make your list. Please ensure that you have at least started your projects - pulled fabric with a pattern is now considered a UFO, and remember it is only finished projects that will get you an entry toward the above listed prizes. So while we love to see your bee blocks, the "finish" is when they are a completed, usable project.

It is very helpful if you tag your list as #2017FALQ3yourname when posting on social media: Flickr, Facebook & Instagram. Using the same hashtag over the quarter when sharing progress or finishes before the link, helps the hosts find your original list quickly - especially when this is done over a 3 month period. IMPORTANT: Don't forget to link your finishes up when the quarter closes.

The 2017 Q23link for your list of proposed finishes is now open below on my blog and on each of the hosting blogs. You need only link your list once, on one blog - and that link will show up on all of the blogs. If you are using Facebook, Flickr or Instagram, link a mosaic and put your list in the description. Katy of The Littlest Thistle has a great tutorial on how to link-up if you need it.

We also ask that you become part of the FAL community. Please check out the links of others - visit and comment on their lists. We all need encouragement to get those finishes done, so please share some of your own too. When creating your list there is one thing to remember....No deductions for not completing something so ..... Aim High! Nothing to lose!!! Well Now..... Get those lists together and get linked up. 

The Q3 proposed finish linky party will stay open until 11 pm EST, July 8, 2017- as we are global, you might want to check your time zone to determine your last possible time to link. Remember: you only need to link up on ONE hosting blog and it will automatically show up on all hosting blogs.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Churn Link Block: A 2017 Q2 Finish A Long Tutorial

Welcome! For my Finish A Long 2017 tutorial, I'm sharing the process for making my Churn Link block.

It's really versatile and looks great in all kinds of settings, which we'll explore at the end of the tutorial. But for now, let's make a block!


For one 12.5" unfinished block, you will need three fabrics: Background, Colour A and Colour B.

From the background fabric (yellow in my image above), cut:

(4) rectangles, 1½" x 4½"
(2) squares, 3" x 3"
(2) rectangles, 2½" x 6½"
(2) rectangles, 2½" x 4½"
(2) squares, 4½" x 4½"
(2) squares, 3½" x 3½"

From EACH of Colour A (red in image) and Colour B (blue in image), cut:

(3) rectangles, 1½" x 4½"
(1) rectangle, 1½" x 3½"
(1) square, 3" x 3"
(3) squares, 2½" x 2½"


1 Take a 3½" x 3½" background square and sew a 1½" x 3½" A rectangle to one side. Press toward the A rectangle. Repeat with the other 3½" x 3½" square and a 1½" x 3½" B rectangle. Press toward the B rectangle.

2. Position the units from step 1 so the A and B rectangles are along the top edge. Stitch a 1½" x 4½" rectangle of the other colour to the left side of both units.
3. Take all 2½" x 2½" A and B squares (6 in total) and draw a diagonal line from one corner to the other on the wrong side of each square.

4. Take a 4½" x 4½" background square and place a 2½" x 2½" colour A square from step 3 face down on one corner as shown. Stitch along the line you drew, then cut off the corner leaving a ¼" seam allowance. Flip the triangle back and press. Repeat with the other 4½" x 4½" background square and a 2½" x 2½"colour B square.

5. Pair a 1½" x 4½" background rectangle and a 1½" x 4½" colour rectangle and stitch together along the 4½" side. Press toward the colour. Make 2 of these sets for colour A and colour B for a total of 4.

6. Take a 2½" x 6½" background rectangle and a 2½" x 4½" background rectangle and place a 2½" x 2½" colour A square from step 3 face down on one end of each background piece, making sure the drawn diagonal lines are oriented as shown. Stitch along the drawn diagonal line on both squares, then cut off the corner leaving a ¼" seam allowance. Flip the triangles back and press. Repeat using the 2½" x 2½" colour B squares with a 2½" x 6½" background rectangle and a 2½" x 4½" background rectangle, again making sure the diagonals are positioned as shown.

7. Take both 3" x 3" background squares and draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on each one. Place a 3" x 3" background square right sides together with a 3" x 3" colour A square. Stitch on the drawn line, cut off one corner leaving a ¼" seam allowance, flip the top corner back and press the HST. Trim to 2½" x 2½". Repeat with the other 3" x 3" background square and  3" x 3"colour B square.

You have now made all of the components of the block!

Block Assembly

1. Assemble the block centre first by using the two units you created in Step 2 and the two you created in Step 4 like so:

2. Create two side strips using one units of each colour from Step 5 and the 4½" long Step 6 units as follows:

3. Attach to each side of the block centre:

4. Create the top and bottom border strips using the two remaining strip units from step 5, the 6½" long units from Step 6 and the HSTs:

5. Attach to the top and bottom and your block is done! Ta daaaaah!

And here is the block laid out in a quilt with some sashing:

You can put it on point:

Or change up the block background:
to create a really interesting quilt:

So many possibilities! Enjoy!

If you're interested in joining the Finish A Long for Q3, the information is in the 2017 Finish A Long tab up top.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Finish A Long: Time to Link up Q2 Finishes!

It might be hard to believe but we have made it to the end of the second quarter of the 2017 FAL and it's time to link up your Q2 finishes!

The 2017 FAL has a community of bloggers across the world jointly hosting the FAL. Our hosts are:
  • Sarah - Sew me - Northern Ireland
Social Media Director
  Before you link up, let's give a huge thank you to our fantastic sponsors:  
For the 2017 FAL, we continue tutorial week. Here is the schedule so you can visit them all:
The 2017 Q2 link for your finishes is now open below on my blog and on each of the hosting blogs - you only need to link on one blog for your finish to appear on each blog. Link-up "rules":
  • Add one link for each finish. If you want to link a round up post of all your finishes, use that link to enter one of your finishes and then link the rest of your finishes separately. Please, only one link per finish, as your link is an entry into the randomly drawn prize draws.
  • Please ensure that the photo or blog post you link up contains a link or reference back to your original list so that we can verify your entry (make sure it is from the appropriate quarter).
  • Please become part of the FAL community. Please check out the links of others and comment. We all need encouragement so let's applaud each other. The 2017 FAL Facebook page is here and follow us on Instagram @finishlong and tag your photos #2017FALQ2yourname (substitute your name), this makes it easier for us to match your finishes with your lists.
  • Our hosts will also link their finishes to share in the community, but they are not eligible for any of the prizes.
The Q2 Finishes link will stay open from now thru July 1, 2017 - link up your finishes early and if you have a last minute one, add that one later so you don't miss out. The prizes will be awarded as soon as we can verify all the entries and do the drawings. We will post the winners on each hosts' blog.

And don't forget to start making your Q3 lists as the Q3 list link opens on July 2nd.