Day Four, I think I’ll Make it!

It’s Day 4 of a quilt a day for 5 days but today, instead of 1 quilt I have 100 quilts to share! (Going for extra credit!!) My mini quilt collection was on display during a presentation on Friendship Quilts during the St Joseph, MO quilt guild’s show last weekend so I snapped a few photos! 50 minis

Here are the first 5050 more minisAnd here are another batch of 50, or so.

I didn’t make all of them – I swapped with friends. Over many years, with many friends we made them in groups of 5, or 7, or 10 then we traded. So I would make 10 all the same and go home with 10 all different. That’s how I got so many.

For kicks, when I got home I pulled out the ones I made and put them on the design wall and snapped this photo. Minis by BarbI know, mostly easy quilts. Here’s the thing, I don’t really like making minis, but I love owning them!

It’s been awhile since I’ve linked to Judy Laquidara’s Patchwork Times and Design Wall Monday so let’s do that for fun today. Click here to check it out.

I nominate Sue Phillips to the five day challenge (she made some of those minis!!)


Day Three of Five

It’s still Day 3! I haven’t missed it yet! Here is my quilt picture of the day – a sweet little basket quilt that I made in 1993. No, I didn’t remember the year I made it but I looked on the back and there was the date, right there on the label.Purple BasketsThis is just a small wallhanging and the reason I selected it for today is because it’s hanging in the living room – over my purple sofa! See you tomorrow with another quilt – in the meantime, label your quilts! You never know when it will come in handy!

I nominate Theresa Ward to show a quilt a day for five days.


Poppies for Day Two

It’s day two of a five day challenge showing a different quilt each day. Yikes! The day is almost gone. So quick, before the sun sets, here is my quilt of the day.

“Poppies” is an original design – hand appliqued by me and machine quilted by Denise Mariano. Yesterday I forgot that I’m supposed to nominate someone else – today I nominate Reese Hansen.Poppies


Five Day Challenge

I’ve been nominated to post pictures of my quilts for the next five days. My friend Kelly Ashton is the one who got me into this. Here’s the thing, I’ve been reading about 365 Challenges – do something, apparently anything, every day for a year. I’m intrigued but my first thought is I’ve already done that – remember the “Star a Day Quilt?” I didn’t even know I was doing a 365 Challenge when I made it! I was just making one star – each day  – for a year!

I’m not quite ready for another year long commitment. But this is just five days! I can handle finding and posting pictures of my quilts for the next five days. (And the challenge didn’t say anything about them being finished so don’t be shocked if you see quilt tops!) Here goes:

Day 1: Applique, because it’s my favorite! Here is “Blue Pot” first up for the simple reason that she is hanging in the entryway at the moment so was easy to grab a photo. “Blue Pot” is hand appliqued and machine quilted. (Theresa Ward of Always Quilts did the beautiful machine quilting.)01-64 B1201 Finals.indd

“Blue Pot” is a little bit famous because she is the cover quilt of my book “Back Basting Applique Step by Step” (Martingale)


And here is “Purple Pot”, she is a first cousin to “Blue Pot”. It’s the same pattern but Miss Purple is stitched entirely by machine. I did the machine applique and Theresa Ward did that pretty machine quilting.Purple Pot

I’ll be back tomorrow with more quilt photos. You can also follow on Facebook (Barbara J Eikmeier Quilter) or Instagram (bjeikmeier).


16 in ’16 – A New UFO List

No, I’m not going to finish 16 UFOs (unfinished projects) in 2016. I’m not even going to suggest that it’s possible. But I have a lot of UFOs so to narrow down the list this year I’m going to focus on the number 16. Here it is, my 2016 UFO Challenge, (NOTE: There are no prizes or awards, just the fun of challenging myself and seeing how it comes out.)

1. “Baltimore Album Quilt in Taupe and Crimson” Let’s play around with that number 16:  I have nine blocks completed in a 25 block applique quilt. That leaves 16 more to make. It goes on the list.Baltimore in Taupe and Crimson

2. I am well into making “Ladies of the Sea” a pattern by Sue Garmen. It’s a 16 block applique quilt. So, sure, why not, let’s put it on the list too.ships and border 1 adjusted


3. And let’s put some pieced blocks on the list as well. I have a whole pile of pieces cut out for 16” drunkard path blocks. So how about if I finish that quilt this year? Can I do it? That’s a lot of curved pieces?drunkard's path pieces16 inch Drunkard's Path block

4. Forest Galorist is a charming animal quilt that I started the week my precious granddaughter Etta was born. I really want to finish it this year and have been trying to figure out a way to make it work within the theme of 16. I counted the animals – there are 15! (It should have been last year!) I could say I will finish it before she is 16 months old. That would work. Naw, I think I’m just going to add an animal making it 16 animals!Forest Galorist pattern Forest Galorist blocks

5. And one more thing, just for kicks, I love making Lori Smith’s little Fat Quarter Quilts so I’m going to make 16 of those little darlings in 2016. These are not officially UFO’s because I haven’t started any of them (except in my mind) but it will spice things up to include it as a goal.

Do you have any UFOs that have anything to do with the number 16? Make your list, check it twice, and I’ll see you around in 2016!


15 in ’15 – the Final Results

Did I really say that back in January 2015? Did I say I was going try to finish 15 UFOs in 2015? What was I thinking?

Now it’s 2016 and since I threw out the challenge, so to speak, and some of you not only took it on for yourself but you even got your whole quilt guild to do it I thought I owed you a tally of my own progress on 15 in ’15.

First of all what do I consider an UFO?
1. It must have already been started prior to Jan 1, 2015 to make the list. That means no projects that I have bought a pattern and fabric for but have yet to start. No kits that I collected a month at a time but have yet to cut into. It has to already have had something done to it – cut out, strips cut, a few blocks made, etc.

2. What do I consider completed? I get into trouble in this category because I have a habit of thinking that once the top is done the project is completed.  However, for my 15 in 15 challenge I was clear with myself that finished meant finished. Quilted. Binding stitched on. Binding turned and finished. Label on the back. Finished. All the way.

Drum roll, please! Here are my 2015 completed UFOs.
1. “Grandma’s Garden in Pastels” – perfect to start the list because it took me 15 years to finish it!Pastel applique
2. “Earth” was a completed top on Jan 1. I got it quilted early in the year. I got it’s binding on in Oct. Dang those bindings drag me down!Earth
3. “Disappearing Nine-Patch in Indigo and Shirting.” On Jan 1st it was a pile of blocks. I finished this one in time to give it to a friend before her first chemo treatment. I’m glad it’s finished but not glad for the reason it got finished in an emergency. disappearing ninepatch for Doris
4. “Picnic Baskets” pattern by Jan Patek. The picture is dated Jan 6, 2015 making this project officially the first finish of the year. I made the top while on retreat with my guild in Nov 2014 so it might also officially have resided on the UFO list for the shortest length of time. See? It can happen!006
5. “Red and Tan Baskets and Stars”, pattern by Whimsy. I love this quilt. I worked on it during at least three retreats that I can remember and finally put it on my Pennsylvania Tues quilt group’s UFO challenge list. That motivated me to get it done – otherwise there would have been a penalty to pay of one fat quarter.Red and Tan baskets
6. “60 degree Kalidoescope”. Many of the UFOs in my pile were started as samples when I was teaching the Marti and Me Club at Quilting Bits and Pieces in Eudora, KS, this one included. It’s not very dramatic but it’s done!kalidoscope
7. “Brights and White” from The Quilting Bee in Cache, Ok. I got this back from the quilter the first week of Dec 2014. I sewed the binding on it a year later, just in time to include on my 15 in ’15 list!Brights and White
8. “Emma’s Quilt” Ages ago I started making quilts for my nieces and nephews when they graduate from high school. When the great nieces and nephews started coming along I saw that there would be no end to the graduation quilt program so I changed to baby quilts for the new generation. Dear sweet great-niece Emma was 1 ½ years old before her quilt was delivered. This picture was taken the day she got her quilt.Emma and quilt
There you have it! All the UFOs I completed for 15 in ‘15.

Are you saying, “Wait a second, that isn’t 15 – it’s only 8?” Well, yeah, it is only 8. Drat it anyway. And look at how many of them only needed sewing the binding on. My challenge should have been “Just Bind It!”

It’s only 8 but it’s 8 more than zero which is how many it might have been if I hadn’t given myself the challenge in the first place!
So, if you didn’t get 15 UFOs done in 2015, don’t beat yourself up, pat yourself on the back for what you did get accomplished.

What are we going to do for 2016? I don’t know about you but I’ll be making a shorter list!
Next time I’ll share my challenge for 2016! See you then!


Coming Soon: Vintage Sampler

As soon as I knew I was going to be creating a fabric collection I wanted to design a Block of the Month program that used every fabric in the collection. Here it is, “Vintage Sampler”

Vintage Sampler by Barbara J. Eikmeier

Vintage Sampler 82″ x 89″ by Barbara J. Eikmeier, machine quilted by Maria Pate

I’m a big fan of quilt shops – I’ve not only shopped in my fair share of them but I also teach at quilt shops and have worked the retail side in a few as well. As I designed “Vintage Sampler” I thought about the quilt shop marketing the program, their staff cutting the kits, and, of course, I thought about the quilter who would be sewing the blocks. I, along with my editorial team, have been working for several months, striving to produce the pattern in the most economical way possible. As an added bonus I wrote the cutting charts with three different cutting methods – regular rotary cutting, using Marti Michell’s templates (my favorite method), and using a die cutting system – mine is Sizzix but we used finished sizes with a shaded shape so you can easily translate to a different system.

Paintbrush Studios will be showing the Vintage Sampler quilt in their booth #2318 at International Quilt Market, Spring 2015 in Minneapolis, MN. You can see a blog post with detailed photos and more about the quilt by hopping over to Inspired by Fabric.

Shops are receiving information now and the program will be starting in late fall or early next year depending on how each individual shop schedules it. If you are a shop owner and will be at Spring Market, and would like to learn more, stop by Fabri-Quilt’s booth and plan to attend my Schoolhouse on Thurs at 530 pm.

I have more stories about the fabric collection and the sampler quilt still to come. I’ll announce new stories on my Facebook page.


Made in the USA – Vintage Shirting and Dress Prints

I’d like to introduce you to Vintage Shirting and Dress Prints – a fabric collection featuring reproduction prints from 1880-1910. Ready for shipping now from Paintbrush Studios/Fabri-Quilt.Swatch cardYou may wonder how this came about – a farm girl from California ends up designing a fabric collection.
Sometimes I wonder myself!

Here is the short version of the formula that worked for me: Start with loving quilts – making new quilts and collecting old quilts. (That began in 1984).

Add 25+ years of interest in quilt history with classes, workshops, fabric camps, and a lot of reading about quilt study and the dating old fabrics.

Mix in a longtime membership in the American Quilt Study Group with more reading and studying of quilt research.

Know generous people who frequent garage sales and find unusual old quilt tops and are willing to share. (Thank you Sharon!)

Then be in the right place at the right time when Paintbrush Studios, a Kansas City, MO based fabric company, is looking for someone to design reproduction fabrics.

Viola! That’s all it takes to become a fabric designer via the route of quiltmaking.FQ VintageMy first collection features shirting prints along with cotton dress prints that were popular during the late 1800s up to 1910 (and in some cases, beyond). The colors are as true to the original, unwashed, unused vintage goods as possible. Deep claret red, deep indigo, chambray blue, cadet blue, and the black mourning prints of the era.

Vintage Shirting and Dress Prints, are 100% reproduced in the United States of America. That means the cotton was grown here, the yarn was spun here, the fabric was woven here, and the final goods were printed right here in the US of A. With so much of our industry moving overseas, I am thrilled to be part of a fabric collection produced at home.

I, along with Fabri-quilt, will be at Spring International Quilt Market in Minneapolis, MN from May 15-17. If you’re there, stop by booth 2318 to see the goods and the block of the month project that I designed for the collection.Color Card front
Ask for Vintage Shirting and Dress Prints at your local quilt shop and watch Barb’s Favorites for more about the fabrics, the Block of the Month, and Spring Market!

Ready for shipping!

Ready for shipping!


15 in ’15

It’s January. It’s a new year.  Time for goal setting. I don’t make ‘resolutions’ – I prefer to call them goals.  And out of the blue the other day, I decided to make a goal of finishing 15 UFOs this year. 15 in ’15. And just to be fair, I might as well add, that doesn’t mean I’m not starting anything new, in fact I might start 15 new projects this year too and end with a net zero.

Here is what’s on my design wall today – I’m slowly but surely making progress on this project from Di Ford’s beautiful book, Primarily Quilts. The translation from metric isn’t exact so I have struggled a bit with things coming out incorrect sizes but I’m muddling through and finding ways to make it work. (Those crooked borders are not a problem with metric conversions. They are a problem with the photographer.)119Next I will make English Paper Pieced hexagons that go over those striped borders. Do you ever do English Paper Piecing? A frisbee is a very helpful item for keeping everything contained.118Have you made  a list of quilting goals for 2015? Check back to see how I’m fairing on finishing 15 in ’15 and tell me about yours.


Front Basted Applique, see it on QNTV

It’s Design Wall Monday and I have something new on my design wall! I started it way back in Jan but set it aside to work on the Star a day quilt, now I’m back to this project from Di Ford’s book, “Primarily Quilts, 19th Century Inspirations”. 172Those hexagons flowers are made with 1/2″ hexagons and English Paper Piecing. My friend, Roberta DeWire, taught me EPP several years ago when we were on retreat at her family’s lake house in PA. Thank you Roberta!068

The appliques are cut from a large scale print and I’m in the process of hand appliqueing them in place. This technique is referred to by many names; fussy cutting, cut out chintz, and broidere perse, to name a few. I call it broidere perse and am using “front basted applique”, a method I talk about in my book “Back Basting Applique Step by Step” (see pages 29-30.)

Check out the current episode of Quilter’s Newsletter TV, the Quilter’s Community, where I share “front basted applique using die cut shapes. (Free this week only, after which a subscription is required.) Click here to go to the video.

Let’s see what others have on their design walls today by linking to Patchwork Times. Click here to visit Judy and friends.