One Block Wonders

December 5th, 2011

I am inspired to make a new quilt—based upon the designs seen in the book One Block Wonders by Maxine Rosenthal. Several friends have made successful quilts using Maxine’s book, and I found a terrific Alexander Henry fabric that may make a dynamic quilt. Maxine suggests designs cut with a 60-degree triangle (use any of the great Clearview Triangle rulers) , or a 45-degree triangle (perfect when cut with the Fast2Cut 45-degree half diamond ruler!).

Here is the Alexander Henry Harajuku Lady fabric:

Alexander Henry Harajuku Lady fabric       One Block Wonders by Maxine Rosenthal

I purchased several yards. The book recommends at least 6 repeats plus a few inches for cutting / cleanup. I am cutting 3-3/4″ wide strips, and subcutting through all 6 layers to create sets of identical 60-degree triangles. Watch the blog in the coming days, I’ll show you what I come up with! If you are working with this fabric, please send me YOUR photo, to share with readers!

Hollyhock Garden “I Do, Too” quilt

November 7th, 2011

Here is a very cute design by Cherry House Quilts – I Do, Too. Designer Cherri House has created I Do in several sizes. I laid out a smaller version, using nearly all pieces of the Hollyhock Garden collection. The circles were cut out, gathered over a stiff piece of freezer paper, and sprayed with starch. After pressing the edges, the paper form was removed, and I machine appliquĂ©d the circles to the background squares. Contact Cherry House Quilts to purchase the pattern. Enjoy!

Cherry House Quilts - I Do, Too


Hollyhock Garden I Do, Too quilt

Hollyhock Garden Quick Star-in-a-Circle quilt

November 5th, 2011

Here is a great small quilt, the pattern is available in my book Quick Star Quilts & Beyond, featured in different fabrics in the book.

Hollyhock Garden Star-in-a-circle quilt   

To create this quilt, I first lay out the fabric, and place a diamond ruler over the printed motifs. Position a hinged pair of Quilter’s Design Mirrors at one pointed tip to preview how 8 repeats would look. Remember, you are seeing a mirror image, so the finished design would not look exactly the same unless the fabric itself had mirror-image motifs.

Once you decide which area you’ll cut from, trace the larger shapes (from the fabric) onto the surface of the Fussy Cutter 45-degree diamond ruler. You do NOT want to outline on the surface with the printed ink (the bottom). Draw on the smooth, unprinted surface (the top) using a permanent marker such as a Sharpie or Ident-i-pen. Rotary-cut 8 identical diamonds—repositioning the ruler each time, locating the next printed shape.

Fussy-cut 45 degree diamonds

Create a template using the pattern in the back of the Quick Star Quilts & Beyond book. Layer the fabric wrong sides together, and cut 8 pairs of background wedges through both layers. Note, when the pieces are separated, right side up, you should have 8 pieces angled one direction, and 8 identical mirror-image pieces angled the opposite direction.

Fussy_cut_background wedges

Assemble the star with the background wedges, as described in the book. Applique the large star with circular background wedges over a simple square with mitered borders from the companion fabrics of choice.

Hollyhock Garden – two quilt ideas

October 25th, 2011

I’m having so much fun sewing quilts and small items for the home with these fabrics!! For you lucky quilters who visit Houston this year, please watch for the Timeless Treasures booth, and see the quilts in person!

The first quilt, Glowing Jewels, features the three gradient fabrics: pink, blue and green. I LOVE working with gradients – because each ordinary piece is shaded, and no two pieces are shaded the same way. This is a free pattern I have designed for Timeless Treasures. I’ll upload the link once it is available.

Glowing Jewels quilt by Jan Krentz

Glowing Jewels – 2011 by Jan Krentz

The next quilt is a great Starburst variation – similar to the great big Starburst I made from the Michael James collection of fabric, called Colorstripes. (see the quilt and pattern in my book, Quick Star Quilts).  I designed this pattern so you can strip-piece the 3″ strips of fabric, rather than cut individual diamonds. Once the pattern is available, I’ll be sure to let you know that link, too!

Hollyhock Garden Starburst Quilt by Jan Krentz

Hollyhock Garden Starburst quilt – 2011 by Jan Krentz

Please let me know what you think of the quilts and projects! Thanks!

Hollyhock Garden – pair of aprons, placemats, napkins, table runner

October 3rd, 2011

I was thinking of ideas for Market in a few weeks in Houston. What if the fabrics were used around the house – let’s say as kitchen or dinner table items? Aprons, table runner, placemats, napkins? Use any pattern you have on hand, or patterns purchased at the local quilt shop.

With the expertise of my friend, Betty Alofs, the fabrics are transformed! Betty made reversable napkins with a mitered border on one side – very classy. The table runner is a great pattern by Karen Montgomery of The Quilt Company, called “The Easy Striped Table Runner”.  Comments, anyone??

Hollyhock Gardens placemats_napkins

Betty Alofs' quilting (detail)

Betty Alofs' quilting (detail)

Hollyhock Gardens Table runner

Karen Montgomery's "Easy Striped Table Runner" design, sewn by Betty Alofs

Hollyhock Garden fabrics – companion prints

October 1st, 2011

There are three companion prints that coordinate with the Hollyhock Garden collection. They include a small dot, a blended painterly stripe, and a gradient blend. I am really happy with the different companion prints, as they work with the collection, and are useful on their own.

Working with the gradient fabrics by themselves have also been fun – and the projects have been very artistic and contemporary! Click on any of the images for a larger view.

New Fabric line! Hollyhock Garden!

September 30th, 2011

I am delighted to tell you about my new fabric collection! The designs were inspired by the old-fashioned Hollyhocks seen growing along the fences in most gardens. In our area, hummingbirds are a common sight, as they flit from flower blossom to blossom. You can preview the entire collection here on Timeless Treasures’s website:   Hollyhock Gardens

I am also working on some great designs that I’ll post in the coming days! Ask your local quilt shop to carry the collection. The colors are bright and cheery, with a range of pieces that will also blend into the stash you currently own.

There are four floral / leaf prints: an all-over leaf in dark greens (suitable for background, or fussy-cutting the leaves for applique), a small-scale pink tossed Hollyhock flower print (great, bright color – the blossoms could also be used as petunias, or hybiscus if you embroidered their distinctive stamen). The leaf and flower sizes are about 1-1/2″ to 2″ in these prints.

The second pair of prints are larger scale – about 1-1/2″ to 3-1/2″ in size. The large hollyhock print features teal blue hummingbirds here & there, and the matching border has 4 repeats, selvage to selvage. The images are so pretty! They are perfect for fussy-cutting as applique motifs, or cutting large chunks for easy piecing!

Border print with companion large floral

Another new quilt

September 1st, 2011

I am teaching the Framed Diamonds / Dancing African Ladies quilt in Grand Junction, Colorado, Oct. 15, 2011. The location is Quilters’ Corner in Grand Junction. Due to my travel schedule, I am unable to loan out the original Dancing African Ladies quilt. Therefore, I selected two related fabrics from my stash (these are older fabrics, no longer available):

a floral print and a stripe

(Cutting directions available in the Quick Diamond Quilts book).  I cut the tropical floral print at a 22.5-degree angle (to control the grainline) and sub-cut into 45-degree angles. The grain runs through the center of the diamonds, and the quilt will be stable once it is pieced.  I also cut the striped fabric on an angle, and sub-cut into quarter diamonds. These are the ruler sets I used, in addition to the long 6″ x 24″ ruler.

click the image above to order the Fussy Cutter diamond rulers, or the Quarter and Half ruler set

I sewed combinations of framed diamonds, and arranged them on my design wall. I alternated a pieced diamond with a floral diamond, all arranged in rows. The edges looked a little too “blendy” between the striped diamonds and the print, so I added a narrow dark brownish batik fabric trim at the edges of the striped diamonds.

I pieced the rows of diamonds diagonally, creating larger sections, and finally assembled the entire top. I sewed 3 fabrics together, creating borders. The borders were added, and the corners mitered finish the design.

Early Sept 2011 – Summer recap

September 1st, 2011

I have been off the blog for a while now. My travel schedule has been steady, and our summer was filled with family reunion, bathroom remodel at home, shipping, teaching, travel between engagements, and so on!

two fabrics for the Dancing African Ladies quilt

 I have gotten a couple of sewing projects completed. The first is a quilt design that originated with two fabrics (above). I created the Dancing African Ladies quilt – and it is a featured pattern in my book, Quick Diamond Quilts and Beyond.

My son and his wife really like this quilt, and I wanted to make them a quilt using the same fabrics and diamond technique, but add a pre-printed panel from the Julia Cairns African collection (the fabrics are no longer for sale).

(click image to go to Julia Cairns’ website)

The diamonds were oriented in a radiating star placement, slightly off-center, with the sunshine (in the panel) as the central radiating point. The pieced elements were completed, and the panel was appliquéd into the pieced diamonds. Here is the finished quilt – machine quilted by Sylvia Fox.


Dancing African Ladies Starburst with printed panel by Jan P. Krentz, 2011

Autumn 2011 PBS Series: Why Quilts Matter

August 10th, 2011

–I am looking forward to this new series! Watch on your local PBS station this fall (2011):  If your local station does not carry the program, please write or call and request they add it to their programming! You may also purchase the series on DVD for future viewing.

The Kentucky Quilt Project – Why Quilts Matter