It’s nice to finally have a little girl in the mix, especially since I had son and all my nephews are boys. This opens up a whole new world of sewing possibilities for me. Skirts, ruffles, dresses..all things girly! My Babe’s daughter loves Daisy. She snuggles and cuddles her. Treats her. Plays with her.

So I put together this little Puppy Pillow to remind her of Daisy when we’re not around. I didn’t use a sewing pattern. Usually my ideas are kept in my head until I start them and I keep adding to it until I end up with something I like. You will never find me sketching. I had the finished embroidery and the parameters of the pillow form I wanted use and went from there.

Step 1. The embroidered piece was a design I believe I found on French Knots, but I can’t seem to locate the bad. I stitched the puppies on Kona Ash Grey in pink and blue, her two favorite colors. Nobody says your puppies have to be realistic. Have fun with your designs!

SewMod Puppy embroidery

Step 2. I had a lot of Hexies left over from all the previous projects. I created the Hexie flower and appliqued it on another piece of Kona Ash.

SewMod puppy pillow embroidery

Step 3. I sewed those two pieces together.

Step 4. I knew I wanted her name on the pillow. More Kona Ash embroidered with varigaited orange….

SewMod puppy pillow embroidery

Step 5. Now what?..I’m outta ideas:) So I took the measurements to make this strip match the puppy/hexagon piece and  added a cute retro fabric. But I was still short on the pillow dimensions so I then added strips of chevron fabric to the sides and bottom to make up the difference.

SewMod puppy pillow embroidery

Step 6. Embellish. I added a sweet purple varigaited crocheted flower that my mom made in the center of the Hexie, 3 green buttons to the end of her name. and covered my seams with black puppy feet ribbon, a purple gingham ribbon and a satin stitched flower trim I found at Joann’s. End it with a bow and my Puppy Pillow top was complete!

SewMod puppy pillow embroidery

Step 6. The back. What’s more perfect than little puppies riding in a wagon! I used the easy method for pillow backs, The Envelope Technique where one long rectangle of fabric is overlapped in the back to create the closure.  I couldn’t forget to embellish the back, so I sewed puppy feet twill tape to it.

SewMod puppy pillow embroidery

And that’s a typical design process for me. From my ideas to a finish. Just go for it. Be creative!

The Crystal Lake Modern Quilt Guild is doing a BOM quilt and some of the members are helping out by doing the demo on each one. Our demo was the “X and +” block. The demos are done in all the same colors, which are our CLMQG logo colors, but each member can make their own version. Should be interesting to see what everyone comes up with since we all have so many different styles. The demo quilt blocks will be put together and raffled off after we’re all finished.

Our inspiration for this block was a tutorial provided by Amy at

If you live in the Northwestern suburbs of Chicago and haven’t visited us, please do! We have a great time. There is lots to learn from each other. Many workshops are offered throughout the year and it’s a great time to catch up on all those UFO’s you have laying around. We meet in the basement of the Crystal Lake Home State Bank Mortgage Center on Route 14 typically the 2nd Sunday of every month. We look forward to seeing you!

So what do you say let’s get started on this block?

Gather up those fabrics. We used Kona cottons for the demo but you can make this scrappy too. What a great way to use up some of that fabric!

sewmod X and + block tutorial

“X And +” 12 inch finished quilt block
Begin by cutting your fabric:
For the center cross, cut (4) green 2.5″ squares and (1) 2.5″ orange square
For the edges of the cross, cut (4) white 2.5″ x 3.5″ rectangles
For the background triangles, cut (8) light blue 3.5″ squares
For the X cut (4) navy blue 5.5″ squares

sewmod X and + quilt block tutorial

Making the X block:
On the back of the light blue squares, mark with a pencil from corner to corner.

sewmod x block tutorial

Sew directly on the line and using a rotary cutter, trim the seam allowance to 1/4″. Repeat for each block.

sewmod x block tutorial

Press and repeat for the opposite corner.

sewmod x block tutorial

To make the + in the center of the X, sew the blocks in the order according to the picture. Press the seams to the left.

sewmod x block tutorial

Sew the remaining green squares to the white rectangles.

sewmod x block tutorial

Lay out your block according to picture and begin by sewing the X blocks to either side of the green/white units. Press to the right. Finish by sewing the rows to the top and bottom of the middle white/green/orange unit.

sewmod x block tutorial

And here is the finished X and + quilt block for the Guild! Easy,right?

sewmod x block tutorial

This is the one we are adding to our BOM quilt. Paige picked out a variety of hand dyes, modern plaids, and Kaffe fabrics. It’s going to be wild, crazy modern and I am excited to put this together! Check back often to see our other blocks from the quilt.


Happy Easter everyone! What are some of your traditions that you do with family? Is the Easter Bunny visiting this year?

Yes, that’s a curly headed Lorrie with her fingers in her mouth.  I always got a new Easter dress, hat, gloves and pretty patent leather shoes. I loved dressing up for Easter. Even more than the Easter Bunny visit.

SewMod Easter tradition

I passed all of the traditions on to my family plus a little more..

The night before Easter Sunday, we’d decorate eggs.

sewmod easter traditions

Then Russell would put the colored eggs, along with the empty plastic eggs in his basket.

sewmod easter traditions

We also planted magic jelly beans in the garden. And guess what grows overnight?..Lollipops!! A cute little surprise on Easter morning.

sewmod easter traditions

By morning the Easter Bunny had arrived and left a trail of jelly beans from his bed to the exact location of the hidden basket. That Easter Bunny is a sneaky one! All the eggs were hidden and replaced with the “loot”.

sewmod easter traditions

Now the fun part..find all the eggs! Hopefully the Easter Bunny has filled up those plastic eggs with a special goodie. Our Bunny liked adding candy, loose change and some of the scratch off lottery tickets inside them. Here in Chicago, it’s usually too cold to go outside and hide the eggs, so the Bunny hid them in the house. But when I was little, I remember spending hours outside hiding and finding eggs. We all went to Grandma’s house for Easter dinner and all of our cousins were there to play with. Now that I remember back, it was really gross, we ate those eggs after they had been tossed around and played with for hours..yuck. I’m sure mom would not have approved!

SewMod Easter traditions

I don’t remember much about other holidays when I was little, except of course Christmas. But I do remember and have fond memories of Easter and the time I spent with my family. I hope I have passed these traditions on to my son and one day I will be enjoying them all over again when he has a family of his own.

Happy Easter!

SewMod doggie treats

My little Daisy May is absolutely the best pup. Having never been around small ones, she had no idea what to expect. She’s been toted around like a baby, had her hair brushed and put into pony tails. She’s endured countless dress-ups, posed for more pictures than a model and has to share her mama with my Babe and kiddies.
She’s always rewarded generously, a little too generously I might add, for her patience. She is snacked frequently.

Her favorite snacks are the homemade treats that we make. I’ve shared this recipe before but here goes again…

doggie treats sewmod

Oatmeal Peanut-Butter Doggie Treats
1/2C oatmeal
1/2C flour
1/2C corn meal
1/2C oil
1-1/2C whole wheat flour
2 eggs
2TBSP vanilla
2TBSP peanut-butter
1-1/2C water*as needed
Mix all dry ingredients in bowl. Make a well and add wet ingredients. Mix and add water in gradually till moist but not wet. Roll onto floured surface. Cut with cookie cutters and place on lightly greased cookie sheets. Bake @400 for 20min. Turn oven off and let them sit in oven for another 20min. to dry out.

While your letting those cool, take your BFF to the doggie park, for a long walk around the neighborhood, or or even for ride on the

SewMod doggies

Now that she’s played and eaten well, let’s make her a new leash. Everyone loves a new outfit, right? Well, unless your dressing your pup up in the latest trends, then her collar and leash are as close to new duds as she’s gonna get.

Supplies for approx. 3/4″ by 5 foot leash:
2.5″ x 72″ strip of stylish fabric for your leash
2″ x 71″ strip of Pellon Decor Bond #809 iron on interfacing
3/4″ Snap Hook

SewMod dog leash tutorial

Center the the Pellon on the wrong side of the leash fabric, leaving 1/2 inch at each end for turning in and fuse according to manufacturers directions.

Dog leash tutorial

Press the un-fused ends in toward the Pellon.

SewMod dog leash tutorial

Press the leash in half to create a crease in the center. At this point you can use a pencil and lightly mark the crease to use as a guide in the next step.

SewMod dog leash tutorial

Press each side toward the center of the leash.

SewMod dog leash tutorial

Press the leash in half.

SewMod dog leash tutorial

Edge stitch the leash, starting on one end and working all the way back.

SewMod dog leash tutorial

Insert 2″ of one end of the leash through the snap hook and secure using a box stitch.

SewMod dog leash tutorial

With your leash lying flat as shown in the picture above…Make the handle of your leash by folding the opposite free end in approx. 7″ and secure once again with a box stitch.

SewMod dog leash tutorail

All finished! Don’t forget to make some for your pups friends too. Their owners will be amazed at your mad skills!

SewMod dog leash tutorial

Now take your pup for another walk so she can show off her new outfit! Let’s go daisy…

SewMod dog leash tutorial

The Michael Miller challenge fabrics arrived, are cut and are ready to be passed out this Sunday at the CLMQG meeting. I hope you’re as excited as me! This fabric is beautiful and so soft. I have an idea in my head about what I want to do with it, but of course I have to keep it a secret!

Michael miller quilt challenge SewMod MQG CLMQG

We have 2 alternate times for pick-ups for those of you who have registered for the challenge but can’t make it to Sundays meeting.
Paige and I will be at the Starbucks on route 31 in Cary in front of the Super Walmart from 9am to 10am on Friday, April 11th.
Shelley will also have them available from 12-5 Friday afternoon at Material Girl.

I spent all day cutting & bundling these.

Mm quilt challenge MQG SEWMOD CLMQG

And after I bundled them, I added a little ‘fortune cookie’ note to set the mood!

MM quilt challenge fabrics CL,QG MQG SewMod

If you’re unfamiliar with the challenge, visit the Modern Quilt Guild website and catch up because I’m sure you’ll want to see the winners and original quilts that the talented modern quilters come up with!

Now don’t get too excited. I’m not blogging about how I was whoopin’ it up or partying on the beach. I didn’t drink too much. I don’t even think I saw the sun. What I did do, was spend some one-on-one time with my Babe’s kids while Dad worked.

Day 1:Sewing Up at the crack of dawn, they headed over to the house because me and Wendy planned a fun filled day for them. I wanted them to see the studio and get an idea about what I did for a J.O.B. Needless to say, they were in awe of all the pretty fabrics on the shelves and wondered what we were going to make.

I dragged out all the patterns and we decided on slippers for each of them. I’d made these before and they go together pretty fast.

sewmod pigs in a blanket slippers

Oh craps..half of my pattern is missing..the important half..for sizing. You can’t tell kids you’re going to do something then don’t follow through. They tend to frown upon that. Which is precisely why you don’t tell them anything until it’s a sure thing! Surely I can improvise. They’re slippers and I’m a Sewista! Hers were a breeze. Cute as a button. His I screwed up after 3 times. But kids don’t seem to be too particular on the details.

sewmod slippers

Day2: Skating. It’s been a while since I’ve done that. I’m barely able to walk on my own feet much less on wheels! We survived. All but Wendy, who happened to fall on her knee and get a bruise the size of a peach! See, it’s not so embarrassing to hug the wall now is it?

Next stop McDonalds of course. Then back home for movies. The kid thing is exhausting ya’ll! It’s been about 10 years since I’ve had kids this small. Don’t they need a nap? Because I know I do!

Day3:Crafts. I forgot what glitter does. It makes a huge mess! It’s in my hair and my clothes. It’s everywhere.

sewmod crafts

Day4:Blood. A cut finger for her. And he couldn’t possibly let his sister out boo-boo him right? So he loses a tooth. Oh boy! Blood. You can’t shed some blood and not get a treat. So we walked to the 7-11 for an icee. Doesn’t a lot of walking tire children out? Probably,… but not once you’ve loaded them back up with candy and coke:(

sewmod booboo

We had a good time together. But I’m going to have to retrain my mom Spidey senses all over again.

Have you met Wendy? She’s the newest designer for SewMod. Wendy is a longtime Yogi and creator of YogaMod. Being a Sewista and health conscious, it’s only fitting that her first design be reflective of that.

SewMod YogaMod

She’s designed a Yoga Mat Sling with Fashion, Form & Function in mind.

Fashion: She uses the latest modern fabrics. The possibilities are endless when it comes to personalizing the sling with all of the trending fabrics. You could have one made for each outfit!

YogaMod SewMod  mat sling

Form:The Sling is versatile and can be worn over the shoulder or across the body.The metal hardware keeps it secure and your mat won’t slip. The length is easily adjustable using the loops. Bring them closer together for a longer strap and further apart to shorten.

YogaMod SewMod mat sling

Function: .  The Sling can accommodate more than one mat or a towel.
The extra D-Ring allows you to attach your keys, small wallet or a personal accessory.

YogaMod SewMod mat sling

The pattern is in a downloadable PDF and hard copy and it’s designed with step by step photo instructions making the assembly easy peasy! We have the Sling available in pre-cut kits including the metal hardware. And we also have the option of buying one handcrafted by SewMod. So stop by the shop and check them out!

We look forward to more ideas Wendy has to share. And maybe she can also provide us with stretching and relaxation techniques too. I know we could all use that after sewing all day!

Can I just tell you how obsessed I am with this Lotta Jansdotter line, Glimma? It’s a good thing we carry it in the shop…or maybe for y’all it’s a bad thing cause I’ve personally used most of it now. I know she has a new line out now, but I haven’t finished using all of the first one up!

I like it because its gender neutral. Don’t get me wrong..I’m girly, but some people in my life are not so partial to flowers and rainbows(aka…boyfriend). He’s cramping my style on all things pink!

I’d like to show you what I did with a Glimma Fat Quarter Bundle. First we kitted Cannon Beach with it. 20 fat quarters are required to make this, not including the background.

SewMod Glimma Cannon beach dresden

After the quilt top is cut and appliqued, the backing is trimmed away to reduce bulk and I was left with this messy pile that screamed…Make me ‘Glimma’!

Glimma scraps sewmod

So I obeyed. I decided to make a bag to hold, well just about everything including the kitchen sink. Paige designed Sophie’s Bag and everyone has one but me..guess I’ll have to make my own, Paige:) it requires just 1 yard of quilted fabric. First thing I did was take the trimmed backing and cut into useable sizes, and I sewed it together to make the inside piece and handles for the bag. I then just cut as many leftover Glimma pieces as possible into random squares and rectangles to ‘piece’ a top.

SewMod glimma

Design away! Just try to keep your dog from thinking it’s her new blankie:(

SewMod glimma

And this is my new yardage for my bag. And no, I have not finished quilting it. Y’all know how much I hate to quilt! But it’s coming along and soon, hopefully by next week I’ll have an update on the finished bag.

SewMod glimma

So, while you wait patiently while I curse and cry through my quilting, let me show you what I did with my second Glimma fat quarter bundle…

I had serious unruly grocery store bags. My organizational OCD demanded I contain them so I searched Pinterest for an easy sewing project. I made this in about an hour. And yes it’s surrounded by all things pink:)

SewMod grocery bag holder

Then I made these double sided napkins with the rest!

Napkins SewMod

SewMod glimma napkins

But wait, there’s more! Wendy made a clock for her sewing room out of one of them too.

SewMod button clock glimma

I still have a tiny bit left over from my bundles….scrappy potholders perhaps?

A big thanks to everyone who came to see us at the Pride Of The Prairie quilt show last weekend. It was a huge success and we really love vending there. We were so busy I didn’t even get a chance to see the quilts but I heard they were beautiful…bummer.

I worked my mad skills on the booth. I seem to enjoy that process a lot. I love seeing the transformation from a backdrop and a table to something that draws people over..smiling and shopping of course. I wish I had taken a before pic.

sewmod pride of the prairie

Did a little promoting of the Crystal lake Modern Quilt Guild, which by the way is growing tremendously. We now have 61 members and its only our 1st year! I’d say that is amazing, right!

sewmod CLMQG

Took this great shot of the Sassy Strollers Quilt. So sweet…

sewmod sassy strollers

And Paige managed to work her mad skills creating some more SewMod Stacks while we were there. You can find these and many more in the Etsy shop. I added about 12 new sets the other day. The SewMod Stacks pull from different fabric companies & different lines to mix & match. We like to show quilters that you can jump out of that pre-made bundle and mix it up. It’s ok to do your own thing! The SewMod Stacks tend to sell pretty fast. We offer them at a 15% discount.

SewMod Stacks

SewMod Satcks

It was really hard trying to keep Paige away from sneaking off with them for herself!

sewmod stacks

Next week were releasing a new SewMod pattern so stay tuned ya’ll. Until then have a great weekend!


Come visit us the weekend of March 8th & 9th, 2014 in Crest Hill, IL. We will be vending with the Pride Of The Prairie Quilt Guild.

Location: Richland Grade School, 1919 Caton Farm Road, Crest Hill. Just 1/4 mile west of Caton Farm & Weber Road.
Hours: Saturday 9 to 5 and Sunday 10 to 4
Admission: $6

We’ve begun cutting and preparing kits. And we have some new and exciting things to share!


This is a small but wonderful quilt show that we really enjoyed vending at last time. Friendly people and beautiful quilts! We’d love to see you there!

SewMod Designs

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