What's on the Design Wall

What’s on the “Design Bed”

The Happy Ending quilt top is done!

I first introduced this project in the post Diving into a quilt (and other stuff) and What’s on the Design Wall. As I mentioned in my prior post, I had to move it from the “design wall” to the “design bed” (a concept I borrowed from Claire @ knitNkwilt) as it grew (and grew) in length.

I am not sure what I was thinking. I have no twin beds in the house, but the quilt top (pattern by Lesley Chaisson, from the book Perfect Quilts for Precut Fabrics by Patchwork Place, 2014) measures 81.5 in. x 105.5 in. !!!


So Many Precuts…

I was going to photograph my entire fabric precut collection (jelly rolls, fat quarters, charm squares, layer cakes) but I am not ready to share my dirty little secret.

I will share that I was able to decrease this basket of charm squares (5 inch precut squares) by 2+ packages of 42 charm squares to make the Happy Ending quilt:


It Started on the Design Wall

I have a giant design wall in my hallway (the one hallway in my little house) and I thought I could layout the entire quilt on the design wall.

Building the quilt top:


Um…it is now dragging on the floor:


So I had to abandon the design wall for the “design bed”.

On the Design Bed

Here are photos of the quilt top completed and laid out on the “design bed”:


I used two Moda Fabrics charm packs (Basic Grey line) to make the half-square triangles. Everything is set in Peppered Cottons by Pepper Cory fabric (color PC44-45 – Ink).

Shot Cotton Challenges

Peppered Cottons are shot cottons are fabrics woven with two slightly different colors creating a shimmering effect (source: Purl Solo). Many shot cottons are lightweight and some are rather sheer. They can be challenging to work with and if not cut correctly can had friable and fraying edges.

As shown in my personal example below:


I was discussing this challenge with my friend Susan who is a masterfully precise technical sewer/quilter, and she advised that if I carefully cut the fabric along the straight line of the threads, I would have less fraying.

I also found these tips (which I should have searched for prior to beginning a project that involved a large amount of shot cotton yardage):


Next Steps

I am putting together the backing (yardage from the Moda Fabrics Basic Grey line):


Then it is time to connect with Cindy of A Quilter’s Corner with Cindy Anderson (inastitchquilting.com) on shipping the quilt top and quilt backing to her. She is my longtime blogging buddy and this will be our first collaboration on a quilt!

NEXT POST: Saturday I took my sewing machine in for service and visited the new Sew Many Quilts quilt shop location. Photos and musing to come.

Follow the musings of Sassy the Highly Opinionated Schnauzer at her Schnauzer Snips blog.


Adventures in Retail

Check out Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer’s blog on the Schnauzer Snips page for her latest adventures in managing humans


My recent adventures in trying to sell fabric on my tierneycreates Etsy shop has made me realize I never want to own or work at a quilt shop. People who own and/or work at quilt shops are magical and I am more in awe of them than I was before my fabric selling adventure.

Let’s begin with the background that led to this revelation:

I had heard from other Etsy sellers that the more items you had listed in your Etsy shop, the more visitors you would get to your Etsy shop’s page. My original plan for the tierneycreates Etsy shop was to primarily sell my handmade items and to offer some vintage items (vintage Barbies, etc.) from my personal collection. However due to a pesky thing called a full-time health care industry job (which I appreciate keeps the lights on) I have not been able to make as many handmade items for my shop as I like. Plus I want to make useful, well-crafted, items and not try and mass produce anything. After all there is a reason why people go to Etsy for handmade items.

So how do I add more items to my Etsy shop so I can attract more visitors to my shop?

It was my tierneycreates byline that got me thinking: “a fusion of textile and smiles“. I could sell textiles! I surveyed other Etsy shops that sold fabric and thought – I could do that – I could sell fabric on my shop. One major concern popped up: I have small house with limited storage – where would I store bolts of fabric? Another concern: What if no  one likes the fabric I carry in my Etsy shop and then I am stuck with all this fabric?

Then I had an idea – I would purchase only bolts of fabric that I would like to use in projects. So if I was stuck with a bolt of fabric that did not sell well, then I could use it in textile projects. I would be very selective only stocking unique fabrics, while  increasing the number of items offered in my Etsy shop.

Well that was the plan…


I found a collection of fabric I wanted to offer in my Etsy shop – Peppered Cottons by Pepper Cory. Peppered Cottons are a twist on cotton solids and are like solids with spice! They are considered “shot cotton” as the threads in the warp (lengthwise threads) and the weft (side to side threads) are woven in different colors. This creates to an iridescent or chambray look and the fabric takes on takes on different colors depending on the angle that you are viewing the fabric.

In addition to fabric by yard, I thought it would be cool to try and create fat quarter collections to offer on the shop. If you are not a quilter, a “fat quarter” is a pre-cut section of fabric measuring 18″ x 22″. It is created by cutting 1/2 a yard of fabric along the lengthwise grain (quilting fabric is usually 44″ wide) and then cutting it in in half widthwise. Fat quarters are sold to quilters in coordinating sets of 4 or more fabrics and are a great way to sample a fabric collection.

For many years one of my favorite things to buy at quilt shops were fat quarters. I had watched quilt shop staff cut fat quarter sets. I know how to cut fabric with a rotary cutter, I know how to measure, I thought I could take on cutting fat quarter sets no problem.

Cutting fat quarters nearly broke me.  It was not easily learning to accurately cut fat quarters and it took a long time to make up four sets of 6 fats quarters. I wasted some fabric in fat quarter cutting disasters. Finally I got the hang of it and became accurate but it was so much work. I realize I would never want to own a quilt shop or work at a quilt shop and cut fabric.


I am pleased with the carefully curated fabrics I am offering on my Etsy shop, but once they are sold out I am not going to sell anymore fabric by the yard or cut my own fat quarter collections. I may continue to occasionally offer a cool pre-cut “jelly rolls” (collection of 40 – 2 1/2 inch strips used to make quick quilts) in my shop but my days of trying to be a miniature quilt fabric shop are limited!

Fat Quarter collection of Peppered Cottons