Sunday, July 31, 2022

Using a Sashiko sampler to practice hand quilting


Hope everyone is doing well.

Today I'm sharing a photo of my completed Sashiko sampler. I purchased a kit to make it from They have a nice assortment of Sashiko kits, if you would like to give it a try. Also, they have wonderful content on their site. I am a member and there is always something new to watch, read and learn.

Completed Sashiko sampler with batting added between layers.

Close up of Sashiko sampler stitching, completed with 8 and 5 weight perle cotton.

I decided to use my sampler as a way to practice my larger stitch hand quilting for the border of the tumbler quilt,
 I have been working on.

I layered the sampler with Hobb's wool and cotton batting. (The Sashiko kit came with a printed cloth and a backing cloth.) I used some threads I wanted to try out for my quilt - DMC 8 weight perle cotton and ArtFabrik hand dyed 5 weight perle cotton. I like the way the contrasting thread weights look on the finished sampler.

It was a great way to warm up for hand quilting. Here are some photos of my hand quilting on the Tumbler quilt, in process.

For the hand quilting on my quilt, I decided to use HHLizbeth size 10 blue variegated thread, which I had in my thread collection - from (they have tatting supplies, this thread is great for tatting and crochet as well as quilting by hand). The pink variegated thread is DMC 8 weight perle cotton thread. I may add additional detail with the heavier Artfabrik thread later.

Hand and machine quilting detail

Hand and machine quilting detail

I will share an updated photo as I complete more of it!

Tip for hand quilting: This is an old trick I read about years ago - use a marker to mark the length of the hand quilting stitches you wish to make on the side of your non-quilting thumb. This can help you make even hand quilting stitches.

I haven't decided what to use the completed Sashiko sampler for. I may add embellishment or add on to it to make a larger project, or it might make a nice pillow front. We shall see how it goes! 

The sampler was very relaxing to work on, since you just stitch over the pattern, per the instructions. I may order some more!

Wishing you a fun time creating and many blessings,

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

Sunday, June 19, 2022

Sewing together and playing with the Drunkard's Path Block!

Hope you are all doing well today!

I have been busy sewing together Drunkard's Path blocks. They are a bit tedious to sew but do go together fairly easily. The pinning is the tedious part! Here are the steps I took to sew them together:

(Note: I cut out my blocks using the 4 1/2 inch Drunkard's Path die from Accu-Quilt. The finished size after sewing is supposed to be 4 inches, but I ended up squaring them up to 4 inches. The finished size after sewing will be 3 1/2 inches)

1. Match center tabs on the cut dies. Pin at center with the larger piece (concave piece) on top.

Pin at center tab from larger concave side.

2. Using a Hera marker, I made creases to mark the center spots between the edge and the center tab (pin). You could also finger press or use your fingernail to make the creases. Do this on both sides of the block.

Mark creases with Hera marker
 or finger press

3. Place a pin from the concave fabric piece through the creases, matching up the creases on the smaller (convex piece) back piece. Don't finish pinning through the creases completely at this point.

Place pins at creases from larger concave side.

4. Pin the ends, placing a pin on the edge to sew, matching the corners. I also place a pin on the side to help keep the block straight while sewing.

Pin the ends at both sides.

5. Place pins in the in-between spaces. Complete the pinning of the creases, too.

Place pins in the in-between spaces.
Complete pinning at the creases.

That's a lot of pinning! It is worth it, though, to get a good result.

Then sew together with the larger piece on top. Sew a quarter inch seam. I use my quarter inch foot for sewing, and also line up with the marks on my machine. I sew off of a piece of scrap fabric to get started. Pay attention to your starting and ending spots, to make sure the corners align. If they are off later, you can put them aside to re-sew the corners (something I have had to do a bit). You can chain piece blocks together at this point to save some time.

Sew together with larger concave piece on top.

Chain piece if you like to save time.

Press blocks to the darker fabric. I set the seam first with the iron (setting from the side you wish to press towards). I used my mini-Oliso iron, and it works great! 

Press your seam to the dark side
 (this photo was taken after squaring up the block,
see below how I squared up the blocks)

Press toward the dark side!

Then to have nice square blocks, I squared them up using a ruler and rotary cutter. Square by using the smaller convex block as your guide. I decided to square to a 4 inch block size before sewing. I put some washi tape on my ruler to make it easier to line up the blocks.

Square off using the smaller convex piece
as your guide and starting point.

After edges on left side have been trimmed.

Rotate your mat and trim the other 2 sides.

The squared off block, squared to 4 inches x 4 inches.

I haven't decided on a final layout, but here are some photos of what I've arranged on the design wall so far. I am leaning towards the circular arrangement, with maybe some blocks or strips placed between the Drunkard's path block. May let myself play with it a bit first!

Diagonal arrangement

Circular arrangement

I had put off trying out this die! I will bravely sew curves now and will continue to add them to my projects! Hope you will give it a try too!


Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Final Project Season 13 Project Quilting


I haven't posted in a while! I guess it was a bit of a blogging vacation. My last post was about Season 13 Project Quilting. At the time there was one challenge left! Here is what I created for the final challenge:

Confused Geese - Flying Geese Challenge for Season 13 Project Quilting

Detail of Confused Geese

It is titled "Confused Geese". The final challenge was to use flying geese to make a small quilt design. It was a good challenge for me, since I hadn't made any Flying Geese blocks before, but have always wanted to try it. 

I used a "Quilt in a Day" flying geese ruler set to make my geese blocks. I have had this set for years and hadn't tried it! It was fun, the process is a little strange feeling, and the resulting blocks kind of felt like a magic trick to me.

I later added buttons as an embellishment to my little quilt, hoping this will keep it from becoming confused as a pot holder or mug mat! I finished the edges with a turned envelope finish. I would have liked a binding, but I was in a hurry to finish my entry!

Confused Geese mini quilt with buttons added.

Quilt in a Day mini ruler set for Flying Geese blocks
and a fussy cutting ruler included.

And other fun news! I won a prize in the previous challenge. 2 Benartex fabric charm packs, Gathering and Spring Song. 

5 inch charm pack prizes from Benartex and Persimon Dreams.
 Love the sticker from Persimon Dreams too!

I have already started using them to make a version of a "Drunkard's Path" quilt. I am combining the fabric with Benartex solid fabric charms and also with a Benartex layer cake I had in my stash. I may add black and white fabrics and some other solids to, as I work on the design. I am creating it as an improvised quilt design, rather than planning it all out ahead of time. Thank you to Benartex and Persimon Dreams!

I used an Accu-quilt Go! Drunkard's Path die to cut out the patches. It is a little fussy to sew together the curved blocks and I am squaring them off a bit too. It isn't difficult, just a little fussy! Not sure I will want to be making these all the time, but it is a nice accomplishment.

Cut out AccuQuilt Go! Drunkard's path block pieces on my design wall.

Hope you enjoyed this little update! 

Happy quilting and creating everyone!

Many Blessings,

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

Sew What? Episode 129: Red, White & Cute (shared sewing show!)

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Fun online quilting challenges - Project Quilting

 I can't seem to resist entering quilt challenges. Lately I've been participating in online challenges. They are a great way to connect with others and help challenge you in your creative process.

Currently I'm participating in Season 13 of Project Quilting. Here is a link where you can read more about the challenge and join in if you like! Project QUILTING (

About every 2 weeks they have a series of quilt challenges. For this season, I missed the first 2, but have managed to enter weeks 3-5. Here are my entries so far:

Week 3 - Kitchen Quilt Challenge, "Lemon Kitchen Quilt" (approximately 6 x 6 inches)

Week 3 was a last hour entry for me. I made this little "quilt as you go" quilt the morning of the last day to enter! I am using it as a mug mat in my studio. This little one inspired some Valentine's day potholders which I made for us to use in our kitchen. My husband had asked for new potholders, which I usually don't want to sew, but they did come out nice! I will share those in a later post with some easy instructions!

Week 4 Challenge - Diamond Composition #1 (approximately 8x8 inches)

Week 4 was a challenge to use diamond shapes. I chose diamond background fabric and played with diamond shaped embroidery stitches on my Bernette B79 Sewing machine. It was a fun way to try out my stitches. I folded the center square origami style, then found a button in my collection which matched the same shape. 

Week 5 Challenge - Rhythm and Repetition - "Winter" (approximately 8 x 8 inches)

Week 5's Challenge was to use Rhythm and Repetition. The requirement was to repeat an element at least 3 times. My mini quilt was inspired by my entry from Week 4. I used the same binding and background fabrics. I played with my metallic threads for quilting the triangle shapes. Triangles seem to turn into trees, and I added some scrap book embellishments I had purchased but not used yet.  I had a little trouble getting the greens to match in the photos, when processing in Photoshop. I've noticed I sometimes have trouble working with greens when designing, my eyes have difficulty matching the differences in the greens a bit.

It has been a fun challenge so far! I will try to keep up as much as I can.

There are random prizes given out each week of the challenge, which does help motivate you to enter. It is also fun to see the projects other quilters create.

Happy quilting and creating,


Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk