Easter is coming!

and with it, a hope for rebirth, renewal and hope. I decided it was time to experiment with watercolor piecing that I’ve only wanted to do for about….umm….two decades now, maybe 25 years! I have managed to accumulate a whole bin of florals, but I see these days, it’s easy to simply buy a jelly roll. (For example, Missouri Star Quilt Company has some simply gorgeous selections I’ve treated myself to.) Because jelly rolls are getting so popular, I designed the whole wall hanging with 2 1/2″ strips (except for the purple and white drapes). Buy a jelly roll or just cut your own strips. Check your scraps! My draped cross was inspired by a cross outside a local Episcopal church that was kind enough to let my art organization use its building for numerous meetings after we were ousted by a tornado.

Anyway, it’s finally made its way into a pattern, on sale for just $3.50 between now and Easter. It’s simple piecing with stunning results:

“Leading to Easter” cc2017 by LJ Christensen

I really hope some of you will make it and donate to your churches, but it’s beautiful to grace the walls at home, too, and such an inspiration to make.

Click here more info and to buy

All these floral fabrics remind me of how the dogwood flower is supposedly reminiscent of the cross, including the bloody tinges on the edges. I can certainly see how that legend would develop. The dogwood by my house aren’t blooming yet, but they aren’t far from doing so, such a harbinger of spring! I never can quite get enough photos of them.

“The Dogwood Cross” by LJ Christensen
“A Dogwood Branch” by LJ Christensen
“Shining in the Darkness” by LJ Christensen

Right now the world can use a little light in the darkness and hope for the future. Let’s create some hope in the sewing room!

A Tisket, a Tasket…

Wait, I said that LAST week with the basket-woven baby blanket, “Baby Basket-Weave Blanket” pattern, which is STILL on sale for just $3.50. However, let’s not forget the Mama Bunny. All the kids get baskets–shouldn’t Mama Bunny get one, too? It’s the perfect Easter decoration for the kitchen or little gift for the hostess of the big meal (do you eat ham? or do you go out and brave the crowds?)

AND if you don’t celebrate Easter or don’t care to have eggs on your walls, just fill it with appliqueed flowers. Back floral print fabric with paper-backed fusible web, fussy-cut out the flowers, iron them down and satin-stitch around them. How easy is that? The basket, made from bias tape, gets sewn right on top (or let the flowers/leaves peek out the edges).

On sale for a month for just $1.50, click here for more info.

“Easter Egg Basket” cc2003 by LJ Christensen

I DO have some new photos, though–same Platter Pad basket, but now filled with flowers instead of eggs!

Easter FLOWER Basket I by LJ Christensen
Easter FLOWER Basket 2 by LJ Christensen

For the two above, I made my OWN bias tape and used florals from a couple different print to match the colors in the small print border.

In case you’re wondering why I don’t have a NEW pattern this week, I have a good excuse. I spent the week editing a central Alabama art news magazine for The Kelly art organization. I’m on the board and editor of the magazine, so I was super busy. The Kelly (if you’re curious)

However, I PROMISE a new pattern next week because it’s already pieced. It’s similar to “Risen,” which I’m also putting on sale for the season, but the background is watercolor piecing. Click here for “Risen.”

“Risen” cc2103 by LJ Christensen

I have the new watercolor version more than half done and the pattern more than half done. In fact, I’ll share it with you here in miniature.

“Leading to Easter” by LJ Christensen

Above is the basic pattern, very simple, but I have some 3D elements in mind that I’ll be adding. So come back next week. I’m aiming for a week from Sunday but not holding my breath.