Card Trick Quilt Block Tutorial

I received this most encouraging testimonial about my online video course from a member.  So, to answer her question, I made up this simple tutorial.  You can watch the UTube video, or take a quick glance at the pictures here.  The UTube video/slideshow is more detailed.

“Hi Martha,
I bought your lessons via the internet and have been busy quilting since Christmas and loving every minute…..My family are all HUGE Oklahoma Sooner fans and I’ve been buying OU fabric to get enough to make a quilt for my brother (who played baseball at OU)….I would really like to try the Card Trick block and wondered if you had a tutorial or directions that I could purchase or view?  I love your tutorials and have referred back to them many times…..You are a wonderful teacher and that’s coming from a teacher, herself…..Thanks so much.             Mary T.”

Card Trick Quilt Block









Here is the (video) audio slideshow I made.  Enjoy!!!












Mother’s Day Give-Away!!

(Give Away Closed)

I’m doing a Mother’s Day GIVE-AWAY on my CustomCareQuilts blog.  Go check it out and enter to win a Mug Mat or Tea-time mat for your mom.

It's tea party time, your mom with her friends, or you with your friends.

Sometime in the next couple days, I plan to post a Tea-time mat tutorial for you to enjoy and for you to make your own personal mat for your mom.

If you don’t win, you can make some mats yourself for your mom, or buy from me if you like.  Keep a look out for another mug mat or tea-time mat tutorial very soon–a how to for a very mini quilt 🙂

Happy Quilting!!!

Addition to getting your corners even

I just wanted to add a note to my previous post on getting even corners.

I said I usually just put one pin in whereas some say they put in two pins, one on either side of the seam.

I was sewing some blocks together again just the other day, and my corners constantly seemed to be off, so I figured I would put in two pins, immediately on either side of the seam.  And, waaala, my seams came out pretty much perfect every time.  So, now I know, taking the extra time to put in two pins, really works.

It amazes me, that after many many years of always only doing one pin, I now am going to keep doing two pins.  🙂

How do I get my corners to come out even?


My name is Terri, I love to quilt.  I am getting better at it.  I am having trouble with corners.  I sew squares together, but when I go to sew the rows together, my corners don’t come out even . Help!    Terri

Hi Terri, Here I have some pictures demonstrating how I sew my rows together to have my corners match up.  Here i have all my rows for this quilt sewn together.

Sewing rows together

Here you see that seams from one row to the next, are ironed opposite to the other. In this way they will easily match up when you pin the rows together.

Seams ironed opposite direction to next row

Flip the first row onto the next row so you can pin the two rows together.

Flip first row onto the second to pin rows together

Slide the seams together to match evenly, and even out the bottom raw edge.

Match up the seams

Then pin together making sure the layers don’t shift as you put the pin in.  Put the pin in further up, and then come back up about a quarter inch from the bottom, which is pretty much where you are going sew when you sew the two rows together.  This is to prevent as little shifting of layers as possible.

Pin rows using one pin per seam

Some like to pin the seams by putting a pin on either side of the seam.  You can do this if you like and you feel like it helps.  I never do it.  I feel it doesn’t really make a difference doing it with one pin or two, so doing one pin is just simpler for me.

Pin rows together using two pins on either side of seam

Sew your rows together.  You can go right over the pin if you like, but just be cautious and go over it very slowly, so if you hit the pin, it won’t break your needle.  You can even use your side wheel to manually sew over the pin.  Then take your pin out, but not before you’ve sewn over the seam, or at least right on top of it.

Sew rows together

Like I said, you can sew just over the seam before you get to the pin, although the pin should be placed as close to the seam as possible, so there isn’t any chance for layers shifting.  Then you can remove the pin before you sew over it if you are really not sure about sewing right over it.

Sewing right over the pin

This is about as far off as It usually gets.  If you are working with other than 100% cotton fabrics, it could get further off than this.  If it does get further off and you are not happy with it, just take out the seams and try again.  To me this on is not too far off.  It won’t be obvious at all especially after it’s quilted and finished.

Just slightly off

My rows are all sewn together for this baby quilt I’m making for a friend.  All it needs now is a border to finish the quilt top.

rows are sewn together and ready for a border

Enjoy quilting and remember, there are no quilting police :).

Dish Soap Apron tutorial

In the past year or two I’ve been introduced to many Moda fabrics designers.  I love the variety of lovely fabrics that are designed.

Dish Soap Apron I made

Last year when following a blog hop giveaways by the various Moda designers, I fell in love with this Dish Soap Apron tutorial.  I believe this is the first time I actually made one the many tutorials myself.  I made a dish soap apron and gave it, with the dish soap, to my sister at her bridal shower.  Here’s the one I made her, and here’s the link to Camille’s lovely tutorial.

Enjoy browsing through her amazing blog.  I love the reds and the aquas.  So bright and cheery.

Small or large needle for Hand quilting question


On the tutorial where you show the hand quilting with a small needle, how long does it take to learn that technique. I would think a larger needle would work better because you can get more stitches on it. I have never made a quilt, I am learning thru your tutorial. Lisa

My Answer:

Hand Quilting

You could begin with a larger needle, but it’s harder to poke through all the layers, and you won’t be able to make such tiny stitches. You could always begin with a bigger needle, and see how it goes, maybe until you have the momentum going. You could also practice just putting a piece of muslin on a ring and then take a big needle and sew through the fabric and then back up and so forth. It does take practice, but I’m sure you’ll get there. I’m glad to hear you are learning, and looking forward to seeing how you are doing and what you are making.  All the best to you.

Baby Clothes quilt question

Question:  I have a few questions about quilt-making. I’d like to make a quilt out of my baby’s old clothes as she outgrows them.

One question I had was about the size of the quilt. Is it really necessary to know the exact size I want from the start or can I make it and keep making additions to the same quilt for a year or so?

Secondly, a lot of the baby’s clothes are that stretch-cotton you know t-shirt material. I don’t think that will hold up well without some sort of backing. Any tips on helping it maintain it’s structure or should I only use the usual cotton materials? If I need something to put on the back for support what is the most basic way to go about this – I’m abroad mind you so crafting supplies are hard to come by.

Answer:  Hi Stacey, the lovely thing about quilting is that there is no one specific way to make a quilt. It’s pretty much piecing what you want and how you want, together. You can use used, new fabrics, clothes ect…

In old days, they used all scraps.  I read a story once about even the slaves collecting whatever scraps they could find new or used, to make a quilt, and then when they could find some extra cotton somewhere, which they picked all the time in early American history, they would use it for the batting ect.

Down to your specific question, you do not need to know the size of your quilt to

T-shirt memory quilt on the right to be enlarged by adding more blocks

start off.  There are no rules to quilting.  Start piecing together what you have and you can make it as big as you like.

I’m actually doing this with a lady’s children’s clothes.  She brought me a selection about a year ago and I put them together, but didn’t finish the quilt.  A  couple months ago, she brought the top back and more blocks and pieces of various clothes to add to the top.

Muslin piece on the left and t-shirt fabric on the right

About the stretch cotton or t-shirt material, the way used most often by quilters, is to back it with a light interfacing which has an iron on glue on one side.  You put it on the back of the t-shirt block, and then iron it from the back so if the t-shirt block has raised sort of lettering, that your iron won’t stick to them.

But, if you don’t have this, using a muslin, or any regular cotton fabric for the backing is just

t-shirt piece and muslin piece the same size

fine.  This could be an old white cotton shirt, or any used fabric is just fine, as long as it is not too old and the fabric is rotten, like tears really easily.  You might not want to do a dark fabric if the t-shirt fabric is light and so forth

I would cut the backing piece the same size as the front.  Then pin the two pieces together

with the t-shirt piece right side up and the other

Closely pin the two blocks together

piece on the back.  Pin very close together all the way around, and then carefully sew on the very edge right over the pins.  Be careful when you go over the pins, as the needle could hit the pin.  Then your block is ready to be put into the quilt, together with the other blocks.

I did something like this recently when making a memory quilt for this guy.  There were some

blocks from a sweater he wanted included in the quilt, so I backed them with a piece of muslin.  It kept the piece from stretching, and since the sweater was a wide open weave, it closed it up so later the batting wouldn’t come through.

Just piece together what you have and have fun doing it.  You can even use an old fleece robe for the batting of your quilt.  Enjoy the journey!!