Do Good Stitches – Wonky Starry Night Quilt

I am so excited to say that I have finished a quilt! This one was assembled with blocks made from the oh so talented ladies of the Do Good Stitches Trust Circle. I asked the ladies to use solid blues and whites to create wonky star blocks and they did such a beautiful job (as always!).  This particular quilt has be actually quilted since March…but I really struggle to bind quilts so sadly it languished a bit in my “to bind” pile. I decided this week that it was ridiculous and unfair to everyone who helped make it and got my rear in gear! You may even remember my super angry concentration face (I’m not grumpy, I promise!) in this blog post.

Wonky Starry Night - http://blog.sewbittersweetdesigns.comI decided since the entire top was solid that I would use a very nice blue and white print for the binding. I like the fun contrast. This quilt will be donated to a child in the Foster Care System which is the group that Trust Circle sews for.

Have a happy and healthy Monday everyone!



Posted in 2016 Finishes, Charity, Do.Good Stitches, Innova, Long Arm Quilting | 5 Comments

Sea Creatures Customer Quilt

I am so lucky, I get to share with you another customer quilt that I’ve been lucky enough to quilt. This was also done for my mom. She sure has been busy lately!

Sea Creatures Quilt - http://blog.sewbittersweetdesigns.comI did a light custom quilting design on this quilt. I combined two designs from the book I reviewed last week with pebbles and love the outcome.

Here is a close up on the quilting:

Sea Creatures Quilt - http://blog.sewbittersweetdesigns.comI really wanted the fussy cut sea creatures to pop so I did a quilting design that focused the attention inside the blog. You will be happy to know that my mom is quite pleased with how this quilt was quilted as well…which is good since it is hers!

I would love the opportunity to quilt for you! Feel free to check out my Long Arm Services page and on the side bar under categories, select Long Arm Quilting to see more examples of my work!

Have a happy and safe weekend! I will be here hanging out with my Anne and working on my next customer quilt.



Posted in Custom Quilting, Customer Quilt, Long Arm Quilting, Spike | 7 Comments

First Customer Quilt and Pricing

Happy Friday Everyone! This was a big week for me! I did my first “customer” quilt. Customer is in quotations because it is for my mom and she will never have to pay me, because, hello! She’s my mom!  That being said, I treated her/our quilt like I would have any other quilt and did my best work on it.

You may remember me piecing some Preppy the Whale blocks back in May.

Whale Blocks - http://blog.sewbittersweetdesigns.comWhen my whales were combined with my mom’s whales we ended up with a gorgeous baby quilt! The quilt turned out precious and we decided that the quilting needed to add some movement to the quilt. Check out the waves that I added going in opposing directions.

preppy the whale wave quilting - http://blog.sewbittersweetdesigns.comI did a simple wishbone design in the borders to finish it off. I love how it turned out. This quilt is 45″ x 47″ which means it would fall into the hourly quilting category for my pricing. Please checkout the Long Arm Services tab at the top of my blog to see more about my pricing.

Here is a fun finish shot. Now this quilt isn’t truly finished yet because it isn’t bound, that’s my mom’s job because I’m not the biggest fan of hand work. I will be shipping this to her as soon as I finish her second baby quilt!

Preppy the Whale Customer Quilt - http://blog.sewbittersweetdesigns.comI hope everyone has a lovely weekend and please don’t hesitate to reach out and contact me if you have any questions regarding my pricing and quilting services!


Posted in Custom Quilting, Customer Quilt, Long Arm Quilting, Spike | 7 Comments

Book Review – 180 Doodle Quilting Designs

I am so excited to have the opportunity to review the new 180 Doodle Quilting Designs – Free-Motion Ideas for Blocks, Borders, and Beyond book that Martingale just published!  This book is so exciting because there are multiple designers who are all well known for free motion quilting and it shows some of their best designs and has directions for how to do those designs!

The book starts out reminding us of that love of doodling that we all possessed as children and gives great tips and hints on how to improve, or rather revive, your doodling techniques. It also shows how to go from designs in a book, to doodling them yourself to quilting with step by step instructions. Another thing I like is that the book has arrows on each design showing you exactly which direction to go next so that you never have to lift your pencil/needle when making these designs.

This is an example of how the designs are presented to you. Three ways showing you how to fill different spaces – triangles, squares and borders.  I love how versatile each design is!

On to my top three favorite designs!

My all time favorite swirl design is in this book! I call the “Vicki Swirls”, in the book they are called “Swirlmania”. Vicki Ruebel of Orchid Owl Quilts shares how to make the design that she is most well known for and let me tell you, they are fantastic. You can see examples of Vicki’s Swirlmania in this post on her blog!

Another favorite design is Spotlight by Sheila Sinclair Snyder of License to Quilt. What I love about this design is the angles and sharp points it creates. Sometimes I want something pointy and angular rather than soft and curvy and this design gives you just that!

I also fell in love with the Organic Checkerboard design by Maddie Kertay of the BadAss Quilters Society and Spool. This design creates amazing texture and can be done continuously without lots of starts and stops. I am not a fan of burying threads so any design that avoids that circumstance is awesome in my book!

This is one book I would highly recommend for anyone that does free motion quilting, whether on a domestic or a long arm, remember, I did FMQ on a domestic machine for YEARS before I bought my long arm this past March, I can tell you that this will help your skills on both types of machines.

You can purchase 180 Doodle Quilting Designs – Free-Motion Ideas for Blocks, Borders, and Beyond directly from Martingale or any of your other favorite book retailers.

signatureDisclosure: I was provided with a pdf copy of the book so I could review it, the opinions presented here are my own and have not been reviewed by Martingale prior to publishing this post. I also received no monetary compensation for this post and there are no affiliate links.



Posted in Book Review | 3 Comments

Announcing Sew BitterSweet Designs Long Arm Services!

Hello Everyone! I’m back after a month long blogging hiatus, goodbyes take a long time and I needed to focus on my family this past month. My husband left yesterday for a year tour in Korea with the US Army and it is time for Anne and I to start learning how to be just the two of us again. We are going at doing hard things, so we will survive this, but it won’t be easy. One of the things I’m going to do to help myself cope is start my own long arm business!  I am very excited to announce that as of June 13 I have a business license and I’m ready to consult with you on how I can help you finish your gorgeous work of art!

I will have pricing information up in the next week or two and plan to offer several conveniences for you including, extra wide backing fabrics, a small stocking of solid fabrics as well as batting to make shipping on the front end less expensive for you.  I hope you will consider me for your next long arm quilting project!

Row Four - Stripper Quilt - Row Three - Stripper Quilt - Row Two - Stripper Quilt - Row Five - Stripper Quilt -

Here are a few of my favorite free hand fills that you may want to consider for your project. I also do 100% custom work, which you can see on this blog post here.  Look for a new Long Arm Quilting tab coming to the blog soon! Please don’t hesitate to email me at melissa (at) sewbittersweetdesigns (dot) com

You can see more of my long arm projects on Instagram and on Facebook.

Have a happy Monday!


Posted in Long Arm Quilting | 5 Comments