Hugs and Kisses Block 4

Before I post pictures of Block 4 of Hugs and Kisses, I want to show you something really special.  Joyce Dickens-Loffree from Naples, Florida sent me these photos of her quilt, which won a ribbon at her guild’s show.  Do you recognize it?  The pattern is Peggy’s Puzzle, a free pattern available on my website.  I am so honoured that Joyce chose to make this quilt.  Congratulations on a spectacular finish.  And the label is a wonderful addition.

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Garden Party (1)

Block 4 of Hugs and Kisses is a nice, simple block.  I am thoroughly enjoying making this quilt for a second time.

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As I mentioned, I am making this quilt again, but in browns and pinks.  For some reason, I have a rather substantial amount of both brown and pink in my stash.  So I thought this would be a good time to use some of these fabrics up.  Even the stems are brown and not green:)  I’m not marking the background at all, just using my light box to place all the pieces.

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I’m not sure if you can tell from the photo below, but the brown fabric I used for the large circles has subtle dark brown lines on it.  Notice the lines are all running the same way:)

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So far, so good…..

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The hardest part was deciding where each leaf should go.

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Easy peasy, nice and easy!

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I am absolutely obsessed with the I Spy quilts I am working on for my 2 granddaughters.  Every morning I get up early and hand-piece a block or two.  What a great way to start the day.  The pattern is called Smitten by Jen Kingwell.  So much fun!

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I’m so excited to announce I will be teaching again at The Academy of Applique in Williamsburg in 2019.  I can’t wait!!

 

Til next time…

Kerry

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The Applique Retreat was a Success:)

Last week I hosted my very first Applique Retreat at Fireside Retreat in Orillia.  What a great time we all had!  The food was awesome (it’s always about the food, isn’t it?)

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When I teach classes, I supply the freezer paper templates already traced, so within a couple of hours, the students have actually accomplished something.  Such a good feeling.

I asked the ladies in the group to write a testimonial about their experience.  Here are a couple for you to read.

Diane writes…I just want to thank you again for the fantastic time I had at the Fireside
Retreat. Having never gone to a retreat of any kind you couldn’t of made it any
better.  The ladies were all soooo friendly and sharing.  Hope we’re all able to
get to gather next year again. Being a small group everyone learned new things
and shared so many new ideas.  It was so friendly and we made new friends with
like interest.  We had many many laughs and shared so much. The Fireside is just
the best place. Such a beautiful place and so warm and welcoming like any home
would be.  Felt like being wrapped in a warm quilt.  And the food was the best.
Can’t wait till next year for the next retreat.

Jude writes…What a wonderful and amazing time we shared at the Fireside Retreat with Kerry Burke.  Kerry is not only an amazing appliqué and quilter, but also an outstanding teacher.  The preparation that Kerry did to set up our wall hanging, prior to the start of the retreat, allowed us to jump right in with helpful hints and learning new techniques. Without her prep work, we couldn’t have started stitching our projects.  If you are interested in appliqué, there is no better person to learn from than Kerry.  The Retreat itself is so beautiful.  Decorated with quilts in every room, Fireside Retreat made us feel so warm and welcomed.  Can’t wait to do it again.

 Careful…my head might start to swell:)
I have another Applique Retreat book for April 20-22 (Friday-Sunday) and I have 2 spots left.  I would love to have you join us:)  Here are the details.  Thanks to everyone who signed up for my first Applique Retreat which will be held in March at Fireside Retreat in Orillia.  The response was so positive that I have booked a second Retreat!  The dates for the second Retreat are April 20-22 (Friday-Sunday).  All meals will be included, starting with lunch on Friday.  This Retreat is a perfect opportunity to learn the method I use for all of my applique projects.  It is also a perfect time to catch up on your own applique projects and to be inspired by other students. Your fee of $400.00 includes your accommodation, all meals, your project kit and pattern and class notes.  What is the project you ask?  I am having a block designed specifically for this Retreat and it is still in the works:)  I know you will love it!  I am limiting this class to 6, so if you are interested please contact me at burke.kerry@ymail.com  Here is the project:
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Til next time…
Kerry

A Little Behind….

Yes, I’m a little behind, but I will catch up…I promise:) This is the third block of Hugs and Kisses, a BOM I started on my website in January.

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I have already finished my quilt in this cheery colorway, so I have started another one.  This time in warm browns and rich pinks and burgundies.  I’m not sure which one I love the most!IMG_2475

This is a fairly easy block and it will allow you to practice those points and gentle curves.  You will be a superstar when you finish this block!

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I love to share this next tip…it saves time and freezer paper.  I think it’s pretty slick.  Instead of cutting out a separate template for each part of the center unit, I cut just 1.  So I started by prepping the outer pink circle.

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I cut that outer circle away, so I am now ready to prep the brown flower.

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And then I cut that section off and prepped the 2 inner circles.  Easy Peasy!  I see from this photo my centre circle is a little off-centre.  I will have to fix that!

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Actually, I was working on this block very early this morning.  Stitching first thing every morning is a really good way to start the day.  I highly recommend it!

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I am so excited about my upcoming Applique Retreat.  It’s coming up very quickly.  The March Retreat is full, but  I have just 2 spots left for the Applique Retreat in April.  Here are the details  I’d love to have you join us:)  The dates for the second Retreat are April 20-22 (Friday-Sunday).  All meals will be included, starting with dinner on Friday night.  This Retreat is a perfect opportunity to learn the method I use for all of my applique projects.  It is also a perfect time to catch up on your own applique projects and to be inspired by other students. Your fee of $400.00 includes your accommodation, all meals, your project kit and pattern and class notes.  What is the project you ask?  I am having a block designed specifically for this Retreat and it is still in the works:)  I know you will love it!  I am limiting this class to 6, so if you are interested please contact me at burke.kerry@ymail.com

Til next time….

Kerry

 

Memories of The Academy of Applique 2018

It’s hard to believe The Academy of Applique has come and gone:(  For me, it’s a little like Christmas, I spend the whole year preparing and looking forward to this wonderful event, and then poof!….it over very quickly.  Without a word of a lie, I had the best students…eager to learn, easy to teach and just super nice and friendly people, which can be said about everyone who attended this past Academy.  The fact that everyone loves to applique as much as I do is a bonus!

Here are some pictures from both classes.  I would have taken more pictures in the second class, but I was laughing so hard most of the time:)  We had a blast!

First, it is just a lovely time of year for us Canadians to get an early taste of Spring.  This was the view outside my room.

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IMG_2495The food is awesome, and if you follow me on Instagram @simplebirdstudio you will know what I am talking about. I posted more photos of food than quilts.  The desserts….amazing!

At the beginning of my class, I tell my students that with a bit of practice their work can look just like mine.  And the work that both classes accomplished did not prove me wrong (yes that is another way of saying I was right…their pieces looked just like mine).  That is what I love so much about Prepared Edge Applique.

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Is it mine or is it a student’s flower?  It’s a student’s!!  After just one lesson!IMG_2499IMG_2532Scrumptious!!IMG_2534Almost finished!IMG_2530

Although I offer kits for the classes, I am always happy to see the project in another colorway.  So inspiring!IMG_2531

Nice big classroom and plenty of room to spread out.IMG_2529

I mean…really spread out!  This class was smaller, so everyone had a table to themselves.IMG_2632

Me…taking a bit of a coffee break:)IMG_2537IMG_2513IMG_2553IMG_2631IMG_2547

Til next time….

Kerry

It’s really happening!

Yes, finally, I am off  to Williamsburg to teach at the Academy of Applique.  This will be my second year teaching after having attended as a student.  The kits are cut…the patterns are ready…but I haven’t packed any clothes yet.  That can wait til tonight

Our very first Applique Retreat is approaching very quickly.  The first Retreat filled up very quickly so I have booked another Retreat.  I have a few spots left and would love to have you join us for some stitching, eating and some much needed time just to relax…hopefully!  I can hardly wait!

Here are the details of the second Retreat.  If you are interest, please contact me right away….. Thanks to everyone who signed up for my first Applique Retreat which will be held in March at Fireside Retreat in Orillia.  The response was so positive that I have booked a second Retreat!  The dates for the second Retreat are April 20-22 (Friday-Sunday).  All meals will be included, starting with dinner on Friday night.  This Retreat is a perfect opportunity to learn the method I use for all of my applique projects.  It is also a perfect time to catch up on your own applique projects and to be inspired by other students. Your fee of $400.00 includes your accommodation, all meals, your project kit and pattern. I am limiting this class to 7, so if you are interested please contact me at burke.kerry@ymail.com

As part of your fee, you will receive the pattern and fabric for this lovely block, which I will be teaching at both Retreats, although there will also be time for you to work on your own projects.  This block is the first in a series I am having designed by Marilyn at MT Designs that will depict Canadian birds and flowers.  I must confess, I love this block!

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That’s all for now…I really must go an pack some clothes…and my toothbrush:)

Til next time…

Kerry

Hugs and Kisses – Block 2

It may look like there is a lot going on in Block 2 of Hugs and Kisses, a delightful quilt designed by Sue Garman.  But, really it is quite a simple block.  Trust me:)

First I added the brown stems.  As I mentioned in my last post, I am not marking the background.  Instead, I am gluing all the pieces in place in one shot!  Remember…when gluing stems, it is so much easier to place the dots of glue on the background and not the stem.

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Next I added the large circles for the flowers.  Whenever I use a fabric with a directional print on it, I like to have all the prints going the same way.  Not sure why, I just do:)

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I love to share this next tip whenever I can.  This step saves so much time and freezer paper.  I also mentioned that instead of tracing my templates, I am simply photocopying sections of the pattern onto freezer paper.

So I started with the outer circle and prepped it.  I removed the template and I cut off that part of the template. (Pictures below.) Then I was left with the next shape (the flower).  I prepped the flower and then cut it off and prepped the next shape (the medium circle).  I constructed all 4 flowers with just this one template.  Magical!

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Next, I added the pretty brown flowers and the pink leaves.  Scrumptious!

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Of course, I am doing my quilt this time in a different colourway.  Here is the block with the original fabric:)  If you are part of the Block of the Month doing this quilt, you will receive a Fabric Key in your kit so you will know which fabric goes where.

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I also wanted to mention that some of these blocks, like Block 2, have many layers.  The large flowers on this block consists of 5 layers (including the background).  Since I am planning on hand-quilting this quilt, I have very carefully trimmed away some of the layers.  I am not a huge fan of doing this, but I am less a huge fan of trying to quilt through 5 layers of fabric!  You can see I didn’t trim out the back of the smaller flowers, just the larger flowers.

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Til next time….

Kerry

Hugs and Kisses Block 1 and other fun stuff!

For those of you that signed up for Hugs and Kisses, you should be receiving  Block 1 any day now.  The pattern that you will be getting shows the quilt in blues and yellows, but we will be doing ours in some sunny yellows, oranges and reds, and, of course, a couple of lush  greens.  Here is what your Block will look like.  Included in your pattern will be a Fabric Guide, so you will know which fabric goes where.

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And here is a picture of the  (almost) finished quilt.  I just haven’t finished stitching all of the swags.  I will be saving that stitching for our upcoming Applique Retreat (more on that later).  I am looking so forward to hand-quilting this gem.

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Each month I will do a post showing how I prepped each block.  Block 1 is a very easy block so it won’t take you too long….hopefully:)  Each leaf is exactly the same, so you will be able to practice those perfect points.  I will be doing this quilt in a completely different colorway…warm browns and yummy pinks and rich burgundies, but no green.  If you would like to stitch along with us and use your own fabrics, I now have complete sets of the pattern on my website.

So let’s begin. I didn’t trace the pattern onto the background (like I usually do) because there just aren’t that many pieces.  So, instead, I placed the background on the pattern and simply glued the pieces in place.  You can  glue all the pieces in place and then start stitching.

Whenever I am gluing bias strips in place, I always put the dots of glue on the background (rather than the stem). It is so much easier (and less messy) to handle the strip when it doesn’t have any glue on it.

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Notice when I clip the inner curves of this flower, I don’t clip all the way to the freeze paper.

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Once I remove the freezer paper, I like to put a tiny dot of glue on each petal and always ON the seam allowance.

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And here is the finished block.

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Hey…I just noticed the white polka dots on the brown fabric…and I managed to get a polka dot in each leaf.  I wish I could take the credit, but it was A Total Fluke!

Last week I picked up my Friends of Baltimore/Baltimore Squared quilt from Rose Bell of Fancy Feathers.  I was blown away (I mean really, really blown away!).  I think you will agree that Rose did an exceptionally amazing job of machine quilting.

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IMG_2284IMG_2285Earlier in this post I mentioned our 2 Applique Retreats that we have planned for the Spring.  The first Retreat is full and there is still room in the second Retreat. We would love to have you join us:)  The dates for the second Retreat are April 20-22 (Friday-Sunday).  All meals will be included, starting with dinner on Friday night.  This Retreat is a perfect opportunity to learn the method I use for all of my applique projects.  It is also a perfect time to catch up on your own applique projects and to be inspired by other students. Your fee of $400.00 includes your accommodation, all meals, your project kit and pattern and class notes.  What is the project you ask?  I am having a block designed specifically for this Retreat and it is still in the works:)  I know you will love it!  I am limiting this class to 6, so if you are interested please contact me at burke.kerry@ymail.com

Til next time….

Kerry