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Home Decor Quilting

Thank goodness! There’s always more than one right way to create!

Don’t you just love how diverse our world is? We see diversity everywhere we look – even in our embroidery studios.

There is always more than one way to accomplish something in the embroidery studio. Really, the more you learn, the more options you realize you have. For instance, I love to use my embroidery machine to quilt. And I came up with a way to do it that really turns traditional techniques upside down. But the HoopSisters take a totally different approach to quilting with an embroidery machine. Who’s right? There is no right, there are just choices! There’s my Stipple method and their Embroidablock technique. And we’re not the only ones using our embroidery machines to quilt. But let’s take a look at HoopSisters technique.

You’ll start with Battilizer – a mix of stabilizer and batting. Perfect for high-stitch count designs that need a little softness built-in. Stitching on this combination gives the finished block a lush and lofty texture while the stabilizer part adds a strong foundation for the numerous stitched details in every HoopSisters quilt block.

HoopSisters blocks feature embroidery-rich designs where the thread is the star.

Fabrics are added in the hoop with a flip-and-fold method. Unlike my Stipple method where the appliqué fabrics take center stage and raw edge appliqué runs rampant.

HoopSisters flip-and-fold method

Stipple method featuring raw edge appliqué

HoopSisters techniques include a reversible piecing technique that is practically invisible while my reversible piecing technique adds to the overall quilt layout.

HoopSisters Reversible Piecing Technique:

Eileen’s Reversible Piecing Technique:

Lynda Remmers and Annie Moody (yes, they really are sisters) are giving one lucky winner a roll of Battilizer, the Twists and Turns Quilt CD and the EmbroidaBlock Trimmer by George.


If you win this fabulous bundle of prizes you too can make your own pillows!
(Or even a quilt or wall hanging!)

Here’s your assignment this week:

Tell us if you have a treasured quilt you made for a family member or perhaps you have a quilt your own mother made you that you have kept over the years. Tell us about the colors, the style and what makes the quilt so special. Share your quilting story with us and you could be this week’s HoopSisters winner!

The winner of last week’s assignment answered the question:

Who wants a free subscription to Designs in Machine Embroidery magazine?  Just leave a comment telling us what you’re making for holiday gifts this year.  Do you have a regular go-to gift or does everyone receive something different?

Congratulations to Sara for submitting her comment!  Her comment was randomly chosen as this week’s winner.  Her comment is below:

“I love the idea of inserting a zipper with my emb machine. Somebody is very smart to figure this one out. I love your magazine have been trying t0 get the current copy at the local book store but they have not had it the last two times I have been there, hopefully this week. I was told that it might be in the second week of Sept or later. What a disappointment I cannot wait to get it. I cannot afford to buy a subscription at this time maybe I will get one for Christmas. I plan on making my granddaughters hooded bath towels for Christmas.” – Sara

Congrats Sara!


Don’t miss Eileen’s weekly blog!  Subscribe now.  It’s free!




  • Terrie Underwood

    Wonderful idea! Love Hoop Sisters, and would love to do Eileen’s projects! Hope I win!

  • Rhonda Sanford

    I made my very first quilt for my grandson when he was 3..He is now 7 and still sleeps with it all the time and loves it so much. I did squares with puppy dog embroidery and the back is puppy fabric…It is special to me because how much he loves it and how much I love him…

  • Michele Pistey

    My friend gave me about 100 5″ squares that her mother had been cutting out of old clothing for many years (my friend doesn’t sew). I couldn’t stop thinking that she should have the fabric because of the sentimental value. So I made her a scrappy quilt by framing each square with a coordinating fabric, sewing them all together, and adding a very nice border. I gave it to her after I finished quilting it, and she was speechless. It was a wonderful moment that cemented our friendship.

  • Monica Estes

    My grandparents were not material wealthy, but before my grandmother died she gave me 2 things that were priceless to her and to me – her tiny engagement/wedding band and paper pieced quilt shapes. Most of the shapes were cut from clothing my grandparents no longer wore since fabric was too pricey. My grandmother told me she had meant to make a quilt top out of the pieces but had gotten beyond her time to “hand quilt” anymore. She knew of all her grandchildren, I would be the one that would cherish her gift. You can’t imagine how touched I was at her trust in me to take care of something so precious to her. I still have her ring for safe keeping – much too sentimental to wear it and risk loosing. I also have her paper pieced quilt squares – trying to find just the right pattern to make into a treasured heirloom quilt. Gifts from the heart are always the best! 🙂

  • Virginia Frazier

    I too am a fan of Hoopsisters and until I tried Eileens stipple techniques I was surprised as to the simple techniques that are involved. I love them both and cannot decide which I love the most. Yeah! for Annie, Lynda and Eileen.

  • Darlene Jacolik

    In 2002, my mother made a quilt for me to use with my new bedroom furniture. It is a log cabin made in pastel prints. My mother passed away in 2005, and this quilt always reminds me of her and our many shopping trips and sewing projects.

  • Diana

    I have a few of these design programs and they are really easy especially for a newbie like me. I really want to try this Battilizer too since I do a like of really dense embroidery designs. I have just started being a big fan of Hoopsisters and have already been a BIG fan of Eileen for a couple of years.

  • Leslie Lewis

    My son became a Civil War Reenactor in the 8th grade. My husband and I accompanied him to the events. I have learned to sew CW clothes. I have drafted a pair of pants from his measurements. Pretty cool. I learned to knit, to do something during these weekends. When he graduated from High School, one of my church friends made him a log cabin repro quilt. He cherishes that quilt. When he came home before leaving for Iraq (he is in the Army) he brought the quilt to me and asked how to best store it so it would not get damaged. Makes a mother cry.
    I was going through my stash after finally getting my own sewing room and found a box from my grandmother with enough 5inch squares cut for a bed quilt. I am now enrolled in a quilting class and looking forward to completing this quilt for my son, prior to him coming home, next June.

    The Hoopsisters have a great quilt project that will make a flag with the pledge of allegiance embroidered right into it. This is on my Christmas list to make for the USO location at our airport.


  • Sherry Green

    My Grandmother started a quilt using hexagonal pieces decades ago. The background fabric is aqua with print fabrics for the centers. She did all the stitching by hand and never finished it. When she passed away in the 60’s, my Mother inherited it. She had intended to finish it. But, years have passed and Grandma’s quilt top still isn’t finished. While visiting my Mom a couple of months ago, I mentioned the quilt to her. She’s going to give the quilt to me and I’ll do my best to finish it so that it can be passed along to one of my nieces.

  • Sharon Blaylock

    I have a quilt that my mother made out of the material that she made our dresses of. It was originally a 2 block quilt made with the Crown of Thorns pattern. It had only 18 blocks that were in good condition, so I was able to make it into a 16 block quilt. I made a replica of it using my scraps. I made the block measuring the pieces of the original quilt not having a pattern. It was only after I had made the quilt that I found the Crown of Thorns pattern. I keep the original on a quilt stand in my bedroom to remind me of my mother’s love.

  • Linda Coleman

    I have a quilt that I made for my daughter when she was 7, she is now 16. It was the first quilt I ever made while attending my first quilt classes. My teacher encouraged us to try all different techniques and to make a sampler quilt. I decided to use Lynn Edwards sampler book. My daughters favourite colour was purple so I searched online for all different purple fabrics as we didn’t have any quilt shops in Ireland at the time. Some blocks I loved and some I hated depending on the technique and templates used. I discovered that I am not a circle person, I just couldn’t do them. My husband had treated me to a sewing/embroidery machine and I embroidered the letters of my daughters name on the blocks that made up the middle row of her quilt. She still uses it every night going to bed and even though she is 16 now, when she wants a cuddle she will bring the quilt from her room to where I am sitting and just curl up beside me and put the quilt over us both. I look at the quilt now and know that if I made it now I could do a much better job but it serves it purpose, it keeps her warm, she loves it and it holds memories for us both.

  • Gail Beam

    I do not know how to quilt using pieces of fabric, so I bought fabric baby quilt panels. By putting quilt batting behind the panel, I was able to sew around the various designs creating a fun puffy quilt.

  • Jacque Lindsey

    I have a quilt from my dad’s mom and my mom’s mom that both of them where the wedding ring pattern and they were hand pieced and hand quilted. I would not take a million dollars for either of them. My husband’s mother has give us several quilts that she has made and they are all machined quilted but the one I love the best is the one that is the all 50 state birds that she hand embroidered and then pieced and quilted. Just last month my daughter gave birth to her second little girl and while I was there she asked me if I would show her how to do a basic block baby blanket, so while I held and rocked by new granddaughter, I told her what little I knew about putting blocks together and we got a baby blanket pieced. My daughter is now hooked and is looking at all different designs to try. We had such a good time learning together while creating something that we will both cherish and talk about for years. It was a great bonding experience for us both and one that we will never forget even if it was a very basic quilt that we pieced. I think we both have found a new love.

  • Sue Anderson

    My favorite quilt is one I made for my mother. She was diagnosed with esophageal cancer about 2 1/2 years ago. She would feel cool in her room accretion treatments, so I made her a flannel quilt and chenilled the block edges. It was done in blues, rusted and browns. It was light enough to use year around in S. TX and to take to chemo appointments if needed. Shepassed away in Nov. 2010 so now I have it in my sewing room. She used to love to come into the room while I was sewing and watch TV while I worked.

  • Georgia

    My mother in law gave me 12 hand embroidered butterfly squares that a dear friend of hers gave her. I looked at these bright yellow squares with the butterflies for years before I decided to be really creative with them. I machine quilted by the block an additional 13 blocks in hot pink and made a quilt by the block king quilt for my mother-in-law. I put a label on it with her friend getting credit for the hand embroidery. She was so thrilled with it and great memories of her friend now gone. Love quilting by the block!

  • Carolyn Rollberg

    I think my favorite quilt so far is the one I made for my son-in-law. I included pictures of him when he was really young up to and including his high school graduation, his college graduation, and his graduation from police academy. I used “police” fabric as well as other solids and prints. I was going to give it to him on Father’s Day (that didn’t happen), then his birthday, which is Sept 4 (that didn’t happen), but finally gave it to him as a Christmas present. I added an embroidered label to him from me. He was very excited when he opened it and was very impressed I would spend that much time making him his special gift.

  • Sandy Winiecki

    I designed,pieced and machine quilted a memory quilt for a local hospice group this year. A very good friend of mine lost her husband in 2010 and hospice asker her if she would like to donate a block of material to go in this quilt. Since she was not sure what they wanted she asked me to call them to find out what they were looking for. During this conversation I offered my services to be a sewing buddy if their quilter needed one. They took my number and told me they would pass on my number and offer of help. Three months later and 5 weeks before the quilt was to be displayed at the memorial service, hospice called me and asked if I could help. The person who was going to do the quilt was no longer available. With 37 different pieces of fabric that each held a very special memory or meaning to the family member who submitted it, I pieced a very scrappy block quilt. At the memorial service the family members were deeply touched with the quilt and each had a story or reason to share as to why they picked their piece of fabric. The fabric of there lives now sewn into a quilt of memories to help them with there grieving process. Sewing and quilting help me through the grieving process with the loss of my husband in 2008 and a baby grandaughter in 2009.

    • Eileen Roche

      Sewing can be very healing.

    • JodieT

      This is such a touching story and a wonderful idea. Thank you for sharing!

  • Barbara

    My favorite quilt is one that I made for my son. My husband and I were on a mini-vacation in Galveston, and of course I visited a quilt shop and found some wonderful pirate fabric. Since my son at 18 was much too old for pirates (as if that were possible!), I embroidered pirate jokes and a few designs that coordinated with the theme. He just moved into his first apartment, and the pirate quilt graces his bedroom. I think it’s time for me to move on to Hoop Sisters, don’t you?

  • lynn

    In regards to a treasured quilt made for a family member : For my son’s wedding I made a memory quilt for him and his bride. Each square block recalled a memory- where and when they met, when they got engaged; it also included blocks with pictures transferred to fabric of trips they had been on together, their first appartment, the home they had just purchsed. It included embroidered blocks with their many interests (biking, skiing, snowboarding, fishing , their zodiac sings and univerity drgrees) as well as an embroided label block from Mom telling them just how excited Dad and I were for them to have found each other, and wishing them a long and happy marriage. When I gave it to them I said the nicest thank you would be for it to be used so often that I had to make them another as an anniversary gift in the future! Handmade gifts from the heart are the best kind!!!

    • Eileen Roche

      What a lucky couple!

    • JodieT

      This is such a touching and warm idea as well. I love the ideas of making quilts that people with cherish forever. I really want to start my own quilting now.

  • Linda

    I a about half way through a Hoop Siters quilt, and I am really enjoying the process. I like using the battilizer, and I use it for any other in-the-hoop projects that call for batting. This is my first attempt at a quilt, and I intended to use it as a wall hanging. But, the posts here are motivating me to let it be enjoyed on a more personal level.
    My mother was a great seamstress, but devoted her sewing time to clothing. However, she also did crochet, and I have a beautiful lacey throw with embroidered violets that I cherish.

  • Sherrie Davidson

    After the death of my Grandmother, my Grandfather took up quilting. He hand-pieced and hand-quilted all of the first quilts and, once he figured out Grandma’s old Singer sewing machine, he machine-quilted the blocks. And, boy, did Grandpa create blocks! He started using old ties and Grandma’s dressing gowns against black backgrounds, imitating the Amish style. He then started shopping in quilt shops all across North America when he visited Elder Hostel events. Although he had great difficulty coordinating a sports coat and pants, his eye for color, design, and fabric was tremendous. I am lucky enough to have two of his quilts at our home. One he made for me and won a blue ribbon for it in a local competition. It is a “Mexican Star” made in sage greens and cream. The second he made for my daughter upon her birth. It is a “Trips Around the World” made with hundreds of one-inch squares in shades of yellow and pink. Although I used both these quilts while Grandpa was alive, I now have them on display only. I miss my Grandpa and often think of the message he gave all of us to keep ourselves open to new opportunities to grow and learn new things!

    • Eileen Roche

      What a wonderful story, Sherrie!

      • JodieT

        This is a really beautiful story. I love it when people reach out and try things that are different then what they usually would do.

  • Celeste B

    I made a quilt for my daughter’s best friend. After trying for many years she finally had a little girl. They were decorating the nursery in primary colors and a barnyard theme. I found the perfect fabric with farm animals in primary colors. In the blocks on the front I embroidered the baby’s name and stats as well as the parents’ names and then some foot prints and handprints. I then digitized the words that were in the fabric (baa, moo etc) and used that to quilt the border. She liked the quilt so much she decided to hang it up in the room. I was a little disappointed because I wanted her to use it, oh well.

    • Eileen Roche

      Celeste, she paid you a high compliment. I’m sure she felt it was too precious to use!

  • Jani Antrim

    I made my mother a quilt 10 years ago. It is a traditional pieced quilt with an appliqued ivy border around the edge. My mother lives in Florida, but was home in Indiana when Hurricane Charlie went through in 2004. When they got back to Florida, they discovered their house had been destroyed but not the quilt. My mother was so thrilled that her quilt was OK.

  • Jan B

    My granny, my mother’s mother, made quilts for 20 of her 21 grandchildren, all by hand. Mine is scrappy diagonal blocks set to form large diamonds in shades of mauves and dark pinks. I wanted her to make it with black and turquoise also (this was 1982) but she thought that would be ugly! It is a prized possession, especially since I love just about anything to do with textiles. I also have a quilt top my great grandmother made for my mother, and which granny quilted for her before she died. I myself have saved all my 13 year old son’s oxford cloth shirts and am beginning a quilt for him-as I’ve been cutting strips I remember when he small enough to wear each of them. Quilts have such power to capture memories for me, in addition to being beautiful.

  • Betty Smith

    Eileen,I really haven’t quilted much but find as I grow older, quilting is very addictive! Made the first”Mystery Quilt” from
    DME mag. in Christmas colors then a Palm Quilt pattern I liked from Traditional Quiltworks 1993 for our guest room. Just discovered Hoopsister’s quilt in local shop and plan to make it soon. Lovely combining embroidery with quilting!

    • Eileen Roche

      Betty – jump into that Hoopsister’s quilt at your local shop. I only hear great things about their quilts!

  • Carol Seavitt

    The first quilt was for ‘just for fun’ with cartoon characters all over it. This is now the favorite quilt for my daughter and now my 21 year old son wants one too. How rewarding.

  • Glenda Fowler

    I have a very old quilt that my grandmother made. She didn’t waste anything. The quilts were made from scraps left from dresses of my mother, her sister and my grandmother. What is so unique about my quilt is the backing. She used tobacco sacks, they were opened and pressed, then stitched together. All stitching was done by hand. The quilt is very old and worn because of use. I love my grandmother’s quilt and the love that went into making it.

  • Barbara Cummings

    My favorite quilt is one I received from my Great Aunt Laura. She made this quilt when she was 16 years old and entered it in a quilt contest. I don’t know if she won, but I can still read the label sewn on the back. She passed away in 1974..I still miss her but I have her quilt to cherish.

  • Elaine Tabor

    I love the idea of using my embroidery machine to make quilts. I made my youngest daughter an embroidered quilt using designs from the beach. I used lighthouses, sunsets, beach chairs, sand castles,etc.. She loved it!

  • Ruth Peterson

    My only child has yet to make me a grandmother so I have made baby quilts for all my great nieces & nephews. The first quilt I made is on my mother’s bed, incorporating monograms and photographs of my parents during their 62 year marriage. We lost my dad earlier this year, and it pleases me that he was able to sleep under that quilt for many years.

    • Eileen Roche

      It is a comforting feeling to know your dad enjoyed a gift of your hands. Hard to say goodbye to your dad…

  • Catherine Bergeron Dumas

    In 1968 my grandmother was diagnosed with lung cancer. She had 1 1/3 lungs removed. The doctor told her that she needed to do something to occupy her time while recovering. She hand stitched a queen size quilt. It has a grey background and pink magnolias with brown stems appliqued. She hand quilted it with one inch squares. In addition, she also quilted the same magnolia pattern in the open spaces of the quilt. When I got married in 1991, I was given this quilt. My grandmother lived until 1992. She was definitely a cancer survivor, as she lived for more than 24 years after she was first diagnosed. I use this quilt often for picnics and outtings, it makes me feel as though she is still with us.

  • Donna Noll

    My sister gifted me with a quilt that had been handed down to my mother many years ago. My mother had told me before she died that she watched her grandmother make the quilt out of hers and her sisters’ old dresses. When my aunt saw it she identified each girls’ dress materials and said they were from feed sacks. My mother also said she went to the barn and watched her grandmother pick cotton from the bales and card it to get out the seeds and lay it smooth. She would smack my mother’s hand when she would try to mash it down. It is the thickest quilt I have ever seen. The colors are ugly but it is very dear to me.

  • Kathy

    My favorite quilt is one that my mother and I made when I was a teen-ager. It was a strip quilt made from the left over fabric from dresses my mother would sew for me and my sister. We tied it on a frame my father designed using yarn. I still have this quilt and whenever I look at it, it reminds me of the my thing s my mother taught me about sewing and how she showed her love with the quilt.

  • Melinda Pepper

    I love hoopsisters designs and have joined their yahoo group. I don’t have a sponsor store in my town.(I’am trying to talk my current store into picking them up). I’m still trying to decide which one I like the best so I can order the design and get started.

    So far all my quilts have been gifts. But, I do have an old log cabin one that I made when my kids were small. It was made my kids old clothes and some new stuff too and used an old super-soft woolly blanket for the batting and I lined it with a sheet. I had no clue if the cloth I used was cotton or polyester or what it was and half the blocks were made on my fingers and half on and old machine. It’s great but now I’m kinda afraid to use it as it is starting to come apart in places. The red blanket shows through where the stitching is coming out. I’ll have to pull it out and do some repair work on it. Maybe I’ll do some embroidery to hide where it’s coming undone.

  • Jane

    I just finished a quilt for my first grandchild, different characters from Peter Rabbit embroidered on individual blocks. The blocks were separated by dark green and light green dotted stripes and then 9 patches where the stripes would come together. I did manage to put a blue piping and a bias binding on the edge, but need to work on my quilting skills before adding freemotion quilting to a quilt. I took the safe way out and just did stitch-in-the-ditch. I am a friend of Hoopsisters on Facebook and enjoy looking at the wonderful quilts that people are making from their designs. Someday I will make one of their designs.

  • Linda Foulks

    I love the magazine and your blog, Eileen. I also like the hoop sisters ideas.
    I made the first quilt when my granddaughter was born in Feb. 1990. She carried this quilt with her and her cabbage patch doll, “Vickie” with her everywhere she went. The cabbage patch doll has since been put away in a cedar chest but the quilt or blankie as she calls it is still around at the age of 21. This quilt goes with her still today. She sleeps with it and even takes it with her on vacation. We went camping over the past weekend and of course the quilt had to go. Everything went into the fifth wheel camper except the quilt. It had to go into the truck with us in case something happened to the camper.

  • Cindy McCord

    Hi Eileen. The most treasured quilt I’ve made was for my mother. I came across some beautiful fall fabric (it was screaming my name in the quilt store!!)and I used the leaf block pattern in fall colors. It was absolutely beautiful. I named this quilt “The $6,000 Quilt” because the previous December my mother so generously bought me a brand new Bernina 200. I knew I had to produce something great with my new machine!!!

    • Eileen Roche

      Thanks for your kind words, Linda. Sounds like your granddaughter really cherishes the quilt you made her…she’s love it for so many years!

    • Eileen Roche

      She bought you a Bernina 200? I would call that quilt Priceless! Imagine the years of fun and creativity you’ll have with that machine, Cindy.

  • Bonnie Gray

    I have a quilt that one of my ancestors made in the late 1800s or early 1900s. It is an appliqué of a giant thistle, my ancestors were of Scottish descent, the thistle being a symbol for Scots. The colors of the quilt are white, lavender and green and I have it on the wall of my bedroom and have decorated my room in those colors. The quilt is special because it reminds me of my ancestry and of a trip that my mother, my sons and I took to Scotland.

  • Kari

    I have only made a couple of quilts, but the one I made for my daughter is my favorite. It’s in blues and greens (makes me think of the ocean) and is a stack and whack (?) design. What I love most (and so does my daughter) is that I used a Minkee type fabric for the back, so it is so luscious to cuddle up with. She loves it so much she took it to college with her.

  • Pam Wilkins

    I commented once that I liked yellow and blue together then at Christmas my mom sent me a quilt she made for me–bright yellow, blue and white patchwork. I keep it out on my guest bed to see every day

  • Shirley R

    I have two-hand stitched quilts my dear Grandmother and her lady friend made during the early 1940’s. She made one for me, and one for herself. As a small girl, I remember playing underneath the quilting frame suspended from the living room ceiling while they stiched and chatted. Such wonderful memories are stitched in those quilts! As a young married woman, her quilt graced our home. Now both quilts are carefully preseved to be passed down to my children and grandchldren. I do not know the name of the pattern, but the blocks have a fan in the corner of each block, stitched in the many beautiful vintage fabrics of the period. My “Grannie” was truly an angel sent from God.

  • Sandy waters

    I have a quilt made by my great great grandmother (double weeding ring) from the early 1930s, a crib quilt made by my great grandmother in 1953 (Irish chain), a crochet afgan made by my grandmother, and a quilt made by my mother (double Irish chain). I feel lucky that I have something from 4 generations.

  • Jo

    I still having been able to get into the swing of everthing yet, I’m strying and your designs and projects get the wanting to do things. You have meant so much to me and I’m ashamed that I just can’t get with it..but keep the things coming in my email and on facebook…YOu are an inspiration to me and a lot more Thanks for everyting..Jo

    • Eileen Roche

      Thank you for the kind words, Jo. You’ve made my day!

  • Kitty

    Many years ago while I was living and traveling in a travel trailer I wanted to make a quilt for my granddaughter. I was visiting with my mother-in-law and she offered fabric from her stash. As we were going through the fabric she would identify the item and recipient of each thing she had sewn through the years for kids and grandkids. On the way home I realized that I couldn’t use that fabric for Erika. There were too many memories in that bag. Because he had watched each of those projects come to life and shared all those memories, I made a lap quilt for my father-in-law. He loved it!

  • karin

    My special quilt hasn’t actually been made yet. My dear friend has honored me with a request to do blocks of embroidery for her son & new daughter in law, based on their life passions…and these blocks are going to be put together this winter, when she comes to visit me for a month, from halfway across the country. So, the newlyweds will have the quilt and we will have the memories of putting it together – we’re both so excited!

  • Martine

    Shortly after the war my father brought home from work a box filled with all sorts of goodies donated by Americans. One of the items was a quilt, made from simple squares and oblongs, knotted with cotton in every block. I loved it! It was nice, soft, had lovely pale colours. My mother on the other hand, perfectionist as she was, did not like it at all as the seams did not always match. But I was enthralled, had never seen anything like that. My mother used it for my brothers and eventually gave it away. I wish I still had it! It took some 20 years before I made my first quilt and that’s far from perfect, but I still have it!

  • Nedra

    I have a crazy quilt top that my husbands grandmother made many, many years ago. She hand stitched a decorative stitch on all the seams. Unfortunately she didn’t live long enough to finish it but I still love it and hope to be able to pass it down some day.

  • Irene Clark

    I was making a quilt for my fiance, and he was so excited! It was a flannel print one in large squares. Noone had ever made him anything like that before. Sadly, he never go to see it finished. He passed away as I was finishing it. He has been gone 9 years now and I still can’t bring myself to finish it.

  • Annette Peterson

    I have a beautiful quilt that I just keep to display. It was made by my great grandmother. When my father died I made a cover for the casket. It had a picture of him that I embroidered on my machine and all of the names of the children and the grandchildren and the date and location that him and my mom were married. I felt him with me the whole time I was making it. Thank goodness for my embroidery machine. I can just imagine the wonderful things that I could make with this gift.

  • Anna

    The process of quilting in the embroidery hoop by the hoopsisters seems unbelievable! it is simply amazing. I have a quilt that was quilted by my Great Grandmother in the 1940s. It was made from scraps of silks and brocades which were done in a crazy patch stitches. Her daughter, my grandmother put a label on it. It is so very beautiful. when my grandmother passed, she created a totally white quilt that was done in candlewidking. it draped her coffin and was an inspiration to me to begin quilting. I hope i can win the hoopsisters quilting and embroidery package. thank you

  • Linda Lester

    My mother is 85 and she started Sunbonnet Sue hand appliqued blocks on muslin when she was about 14. She completed the blocks but never put the blocks into a quilt. A few years ago she gave the blocks to me and I was thrilled and didn’t even know my mother had these in her cedar chest. I have 3 sisters and I am trying to figure out a way that I can put these treasured blocks into a small quilt for each of us. It’s a project that I’m looking forward to completing!

  • Penny Martin-Holly

    I took a quilting class a couple of years ago where we made a Martha Pullen baby quilt. We followed the quilt instructions, and learned new embroidery and quilting techniques at the same time. Mine was all done in white on white tones, with emboridery on both the front and back of the quilt. The center front square had a large floral embroidery, with endless embroidery scrollwork on both sides of the square. The corners were adorned with delicate heart embroideries, and the edges finished with a delicate heart lace. At the time I made it, there was no one in mind to give it to. A year later, my niece gave birth to a little girl. It was the perfect gift given for a Christening blanket to my very special niece.
    I have done some of the Hoopsisters stippling in and raw edge applique in the hoop, and really enjoyed it. I would love to try the flip and fold method in the hoop with the roll of Battilizer, the Twists and Turns Quilt CD and the EmbroidaBlock Trimmer. It looks like a much faster method of quilting and would be a lot of fun to do.

  • Jean Russum

    2 years ago I made myself a redwork Christmas quilt. One of my neices fell in love with it, so I made another one and gave it to her for her graduation. I was tickled with the look on her face when she opened it up, and she was speechless!

  • Nancy

    I stated my first quilt in 1985. It was a sampler quilt and I used material I had on hand. When the quilt was finished, I was so pleased that I was sorry I had not purchased new fabric. The size was a California King and I quilted it by hand. Every day when I got home from work I would quilt a little. It took me so long my granddaughter, who was 3 at the time, said to me,”Memaw are you ever going to finish that thing?” Well, I did finish that thing and it took me about 3 years to do it. I still have the quilt and am just as proud of it today and I was when I made it.

  • Jean

    My mom made an Holly Hobby quilt for me in the early 1970’s. She machine pieced, hand embroidered and hand quilted it. I remember helping trim threads in the sewing room and doing a little of the quilting with her. I felt like the luckiest girl.

  • Beth Rowan

    We have a quilt that my husband’s grandmother did many, many years ago. It has calico and vintage small flowered print fabrics, as well as some solid fabrics in a variety of colors. It always amazes me to look at it and know that someone did most (if not all) of the work by hand . . . and I can’t get that much done with a machine! The quilt has held up well over time, and hopefully will be around for a long time in the future.

  • Susan Burns

    My younger sister Martha passed away last year after a long battle with breast cancer. I made a star patterned quilt in her memory that I entered in our local quilt show. When I made it I envisioned her looking down at us all from the heavens happy and at peace. It hangs in my living room now, but I don’t have to look at it to remember her. She is my hero!

  • Sherrie Lilly

    Just before my mother passed away she gave me a quilt that my grandmother had made. The quilt is 3″ squares of which some are pieced diagonal stripes. The materials are yellows, reds, blues, greens etc. The back is a light green flannel. My mother told me that my grandmother had to collected scraps from sewing projects and from friends to quilt as they did not have money to buy supplies in the depression. She pieced and quilted the quilt by hand and I don’t know how she did this as she had severe arthritis. At some point someone replaced the binding by machine. I treasure this quilt as my grandmother taught me to sew on a Singer Tredle machine when I was 7. I have just completed the Hoopsister’s summer mystery quilt and love their process. I also have your Stipple Butterfly pattern but have not made it yet as I am limited to an 8 x 8 hoop and am wondering how to finish the long blocks.

  • Mary Coonts

    I made my very first quilt in the early 80s. I saw a segment on Sewing with Nancy that made log cabin blocks from strips. It was, I realized later, adapted from the Quilt in a Day techniques. All of the blocks got finished at the same time. I’d never seen a rotary cutter and mat before that program. In fact I had to go to a few stores to find them. I bought the cutter and a mat that was only about 6×18 inches but I was able to cut the 2 1/2 inch strips. I still have that mat, ruler, and cutter today. I chose Christmas fabrics. I figured if it turned out bad we’d only have to look at it for a month out of the year! It turned out ok and we still use it every Christmas. I remember that the hardest part was deciding on the arrangements of the log cabin blocks. I didn’t bind it but used the turn method. A few years later I made my mom a twin size quilt with the same method. She still has it in her bedroom.

  • Judith Carlon

    My mother made a double-bed size quilt for her bed several years ago that she had handquilted. The colors were mauve and green on white. After she passed away (20 years ago) my dad moved into my spare bedroom and used it for awhile insisting on using it on a twin-sized bed. He managed to get a couple of rather large black (ink?)stains on it that would not come out. I was heartbroken when I saw them. Dad passed away 12 years ago and the quilt is now mine, packed away. Recently I was rumaging through a box of material scraps that my mother had and found leftover scraps that matched the quilt. I cut out the stains and replaced them with the scraps. Still doesn’t look very good but at least the big black obvious stains are gone. I still don’t use it because I have 3 cats that would snag it with their claws in no time.
    I started quilting 5 years ago when I retired from the working world. I became fascinated with quilting while watching Sewing with Nancy, went out and bought myself a Babylock Ellegante embroidery machine and started taking machine embroidery and quilting classes at my local sewing center and fabric shop; Loving every minute of my time at the sewing machine.

  • Jordan Nuques

    I fell in love with the Moda Jelly Rolls from their Bake Shop. I used very bright yellows, blues and reds to create a quilt for my sister. As I am new to free motion quilting, I decided to just “go for it” because my sister was sure to love it no matter what. I pratciced flowers in the blocks and in the border I quilted special words like “sister,” “friend,” “beautiful,” etc. that represented her. Well, she loved it! And especially enjoyed her word search.

  • Vickie Glass

    My great-grandmother and great-aunt made a quilt top of twelve 12″ blocks on muslin of the Dresden plate pattern and very much look like sunflowers in 1928. The fabrics are probably from clothing and the colors are a strange shades of blue, green and a peachy orange which is the center. They are outlined with black embroidery thread. The amazing thing is the great aunt who did the embroidery and outline stitching was considered blind by the state of Texas. Unfortunately the top was never quilted and stored away in an old chest in an outdoor shed. It got wet and had huge rust spots. I managed to get my hands on it but was unable to remove spots. It had 6 useable blocks.. I took 4 of the blocks, backed them with Kona cotton, echo quilted around the designs and pieced them together to be a wallhanging and bordered them with a blue woodgrain looking fabric. I found some Laurel Birch fabric that had butterflies and hummingbirds with heart labels. The colors accented the colors in the sunflowers and were the inspiration to finally be able to do something with the blocks. I sent the label pieces to my brothers and their wives for them to sign and return. I also sent to each of my nieces and nephews and the were to include their children on theirs. I even have blank ones on there for future children, etc. I appliance all the labels on scattered around the sunflowers. I included a blank one in the center for my parents to sign. This was presented to my Mom Christmas 2005. My Mom and Dad were so
    happy to receive it. I enjoyed every minute of working on it.

    • Vickie Glass

      Should be appliqued not appliance. Auto correct drives me crazy. Sorry about that.

      • Eileen Roche

        No Problem, Vickie. I can’t tell you how many times I write hooping and auto correct turns into hoping! Beautiful story about your quilt. Thanks for sharing.

  • Julie Antill

    My brother died in a tragic accident when my niece was 14. After his death, we took her to live in our home. Many times it was difficult to feel any comfort since we all missed him so much. The most precious quilt that I ever made was from his flannel shirts. Through many tears I cut and sewed, remembering him as he had worn each shirt. I gave the quilt to my niece for Christmas. She had no idea I had been working on it. This year she turned 18 and took this special quilt to college with her. It will always give her comfort when she misses her dad.

  • JodieT

    I have just starting quilting with nothing finished yet. My cherished quilt is one my mother gave me that her grandmother made in the 1800’s. I just finished binding a quilt that my X-mother in law was making for my daughter. She past away two years ago and her daughter gave it to me to work on. It is hand quilted. I have another to make and finish for my younger daughter. She and my daughter made it up and some of the pieces are cut out.
    I am cutting out a T-shirt quilt for my daughter that is from all her cheerleading 2nd grade through Sr. year in High School. She was competitive cheer and school cheer captain in middle school and high school. I love reading all the wonderful stories of everyone’s treasured quilts!

    • Eileen Roche

      There are so many beautiful stories!

  • Cathy H

    My grandmother died last year, she pasted on her stash to me. she always had hopes of making a quilt for all of us, but with arthritis it never happened. I have been making quilts and adding her fabrics to mine knowing I’m helping fulfilling her dreams. It really is making me happy.

  • Katrina H

    I’m going to embroider towel sets for my niece and nephews! Always a much wanted gift!

  • Lisa Boyer

    I came from a family who was not into sewing. The “buttoneer” was the only way things got repaired. Quilting didn’t exist. I started off as a young adult really wanting to learn to sew. Eventually, that desire grew into a passion for quilting and I’ve now been quilting for 20 years. One of the quilts I’ve always wanted to make was a double wedding ring pattern, but have never sat down to do it. I recently inherited an old double wedding ring quilt that was pieced in the 1930’s by hand and then quilted by the Amish. This quilt will be an heirloom for my daughter who is now five and who I am teaching to sew.

  • Mitzi

    My grandmother made me a double wedding ring quilt in the early 1960s; its main colors are pink against an off-white background, a very scrappy look with lots of 1.5″ squares. At the time, I didn’t really appreciate the quilt, but later when as an adult I got into quilting, I began to see the intricacy and skill she had in what I discovered was an entirely hand-pieced and hand-quilted creation. It has been well-used and loved, a quilt conservator would probably blanch at the lack of care it has been given…..but it is a continual reminder of my grandmother’s love and an art form that eventually found expression through my hands as well.

  • Betsy

    My grandmother’s many talents inspired my artistic endeavors. Of all the beautiful things she made, a twin size pieced top is my favorite. She hand cut and pieced it out of 1.5″ scraps from the fifties…some may be from the forties. It brings back many memories every time I look at it….dresses she wore, aprons made for my mom, clothes for my dolls. One reason I started learning to quilt a couple years ago was so that I could finish her quilt and display it.

  • Shirley Hill

    Before my first grandbaby was born, my daughter and I found a picture of a dinosaur that we both loved and decided that had to be a baby quilt. I had never made a quilt! I enlarged the dinosaur to 3 feet tall and made an applique center medallion. (the dinosaur’s name is Mike.) His tail is stuffed and hangs loose. There were wall hangings, crib pads, etc. The quilt is still in use 19 years later – grandson uses it to keep his feet warm. I’ve fixed the tail several times over the years. Every time he asks me to fix the tail again, I am reminded of how that quilt was a sign of the changes to come in my life. Good ones!!!

  • kris kopsell

    I have a quilt hanging on my bedroom wall! It was made by my Great Grandmother 60yrs ago, made of feed sacks squares tied with embroidery thread. I remember it on my bed as a child thru teen years after I was married I hated the thought of it being packed away so I hung it on a wall. It isn’t fancy and it is showing wear, but it shows the love my Grandma Ehle had for me

  • Nancy danish

    Sad to say I don’t have any older quilts that my family have made. the only quilt top that we found 40 years ago my husband and I put together and used when we were first married. After that our daughter took it to college with her and when it became thread bear she carried it in a pillow case. She still had it after she got married.Sadly to say it finally was put to rest.

  • Sara Plotka

    I have only made (finished) three quilts in the 30 something years I have been quilting. I have a “few” that have not been finished. In 1992 I made an 50th anniversary quilt for my Mother and Father-in Law. It was a hands quilt that I saw in a quilt magazine. I traced the hands of all the family members and had them sign their name on their hand then hand embroideried rings and designs on the hands. I satin stitched the hands on blocks then put blocks on point with the two blocks in the center having 2 rings and their names and date. I now have that quilt. I have since had 3 daughters get married over the last 6+ years and have 2 wedding quilts in the process tho a bit late:(

  • Patricia Manamon

    I am hopeing to be the first to pass on quilts to my gradchildern.Here I sit planning my first with some help from this webite thankyou Eileen.I have purchased stripple all seasons borders. .So come Friday i will be off to the fabric store.Fabrics will be pastel for my grandaughter Hailey .Wish me luck.

  • Karen Davis

    The most meaningful quilt I have ever made was for my brother 2 years ago. He was diagnosed with leukemia 7 years ago & valiantly fought it. He lost his battle May 19, 2012. Because he was a great outdoorsman, owner of a tree farm, hunter & fisherman, I made his quilt with the Northwoods fabrics which featured an animal panel as the center of the squares. I backed it with a nice thick flannel because he was always cold. When I gave it to him, he looked at it and just cried. He said I can feel all the Love & time that went into making this. Then he said, I’ll never be cold again! I will never forget the Love that we both felt @ that special moment.

  • Le floch, Anne

    Quilting is not so common in France. What I treasure is a set of practice ‘books’ my mom worked on when she was an apprentice at hand embroidery/sewing. Girls spent long hours stitching in all the different techniques. I know only a few of all the stitches she knew, but it’s fun to hand embroider a blanket with a monogram. And it’s not too much work either.
    Yet I’m just about ready to try it out. I got one block from the hoop sisters to give it a try a few months back. Now I’m setting aside scraps of fabric to give it try.