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Merge Quilt and just what is a HRT?

This week we’re going to look at a fun little tutorial that I wrote up on the Modern Quilt Guild blog for making HRT’s. What is an HRT? Well, if a Half Square Triangle is an HST shouldn’t a Half Rectangle Triangle be a HRT? Plus, Half Rectangle Triangles is just too many syllables so we’ll just call it the HRT. The fun thing about HRT’s is that they are maybe even more versatile than the HST. [Geeky side note: Since a square is a rectangle, isn't a HST technically also a HRT? Just sayin!]

This week I’m going to show you a few quilts that I’ve made or am working on using HRT’s. Plus, I’ll fine tune the tutorial a bit so that you too can make long skinny HRT’s with minimal fabric waste.

The first quilt in the series is a quick baby quilt made with the long skinny HRT’s that I call the Merge Quilt. Ever since I was able to accept that Green was my favorite color, I always stash great green fabrics when I see them. I also have a pretty substantial collection of grey prints as well. So, when I saw the super cute Green Owl fabric by Annika Wester for Kokka I knew I had to make a quilt with all my green and grey fabric! I love this quilt and think that it is quite unisex. I have an idea for a much larger quilt using HRT’s of the same dimension but with lots more solids and a little less juvenile. If I can only find the time!

(Now that I’m posting this I realize that all of my pictures are blurry. :-(  So I’ll have to update this and share a few clearer pictures with you later. But, I’ll go ahead and post it for now.)

Here’s the clearest shot:

A little detail of that great Owl fabric!

The blurry front.

The back – also blurry.

Merge on a turtle.

I’ll take a few better pictures and post them soon!


Nancy@OwensOlivia - November 19, 2012 - 5:47 pm

I’m so glad I found you! I love all of your quilts and your aesthetic! I like that you approach quilting with an engineering mind. My husband is an engineer, and I don’t have any of that in me! :)

There was one particular quilt that sent me here and it is behind you. It’s orange and white with two blue stripes. They are spherical. I just can’t find it on your blog.

I’m excited to try this tutorial! Thank you so much for sharing. I wish you the best of luck in the future.


liberty Worth - April 12, 2012 - 2:00 pm

After seeing this quilt, (in it’s many stages) you’ve got me so itching to try that tutorial. love this quilt.

Kelly - April 12, 2012 - 5:54 am

super cute and innovative!

Life before the MQG. . .

Sometimes, I sit and try to remember what my life was like before the Modern Quilt Guild. It’s only been 2, almost 3 years since we started the LA chapter but, it is such a part of my life that it seems like it’s always been there. Good friends, great outings, weekends away, shoulders to cry on, laughing till it hurts, sharing life with people who love the same things as you do! What more can a girl ask for?

I can’t wait until our Los Angeles Modern Quilt Guild meeting tonight! My mom is in town and I’m bringing her so that should be fun. And our swap committee has organized our first swap of the year. It’s a white elephant style Tote Bag swap in honor of Earth Month. The main rules are that it has to be awesome and that it has to include some patchwork or quilted element. This is what I made. Well, the bag not all the goodies inside.

Grocery Bag
Not quite a tote but, it’s a great reusable grocery bag AND I made 4 reusable produce bags to go with it so I thought it worked. I chose to make a grocery bag vs. a tote because it can fold or roll down nicely to fit in your car without taking up too much space. When it was finished I thought the bag was a little small so next time I’ll enlarge the pattern. So cute though! I think I want to make a bunch for myself to use to go grocery shopping!

I started to make my own pattern but, in the interest of time I used the Simplicity 2806 pattern for the grocery bag. I liked it because it looks like a grocery bag and it had a lining which I needed because I wanted to include patchwork on the front. The only changes that I made to the pattern were the patchwork piecing on the front of the bag, I didn’t include a pouch, and I added a french seam on the bottom. Easy great pattern though!

I got to use a random combination of a lot of my favorite fabrics. The background is Kona Coal and the lining is Alexander Henry Heath in Tomato. The patchwork on the front includes Art Gallery Pure Elements Lemonade (a new favorite), Lotta Jansdotter Echo Woven in Espresso (love this), more Tomato Heath, Connecting Threads Taupe Solid (yummy), Kona Robins Egg (I use this way too often), Timeless Treasures Crosshatch Sketch in Nectar (perfect in all colors), Robert Kaufman Metro Living Dots Blue (the perfect blue) and last but not least the green is a print from Liesl Gibson’s Lisette Collection at Joann’s (LOVE).

Produce Bags
For the the produce bags I found this great tutorial. I followed it roughly.:-)I used netting instead of the “scrubbie mesh”. I used the rough dimensions. I would probably make some of the bags larger. I made my own ribbons which I would make a little different next time so that they’re not so bulky. But, what I LOVE about the tutorial was the way the bottoms of the bags are sewn. Genius! Overall I love how they turned out and I know what I’ll do differently next time. I need at least a half dozen of these as well. I guess I’ll have to add it to the list!

For the straps I used Lemonade again, Kona Robins Egg, and Persimmon Shot Cotton.

I personally love it! I’m just concerned that everyone else’s “Tote’s” will be a lot more complicated compared to my simple grocery bag. Is it awesome enough? Let’s see how many times it gets stolen tonight! (Question: Ummm, can you steal your own gift in a white elephant gift exchange?) If you’re in LA come join in on the fun!

Shelby - August 8, 2012 - 8:29 pm

This bag is beautiful and a wonderful idea! I’m a member of the Knoxville MQG. We’re having a swap soon, and I’m defiantly going to ask for some of those mesh bags.

NaomiRuth - May 23, 2012 - 9:58 am

I love your bag and thanks for linking the tutorial. I’m wondering what the netting material you used was? I haven’t been able to find any – can you show a link to the material?

[...] may have seen the grocery bag and produce bags I made for the LAMQG Tote Swap. Well, look what I got during the swap! Total SCORE! It was made by the fabulous Lori L the [...]

Holly - April 24, 2012 - 5:03 pm

The MQG has definitely changed my life for the better and I thank you and Alissa for getting the ball rolling!

Sherri ~ daintytime - April 18, 2012 - 7:25 pm

Love your GIANT photos. And I’m impressed that you have your blog plan in place. Isn’t it a lot of work to keep it up! Welcome back.

How many people attend the LA Modern Quilt Guild?

Liberty - April 10, 2012 - 9:00 pm

These are great! If I’d been able to come the other night, surely I’d have stolen those in the swap.

Mary Ann - April 10, 2012 - 6:04 am

Now these are wonderful bags, I am off to mark the tutorial and find the pattern. I have resolved to be more “green” in my day to day activities and having such cute bags will surely help me remember.

Nicci P - April 9, 2012 - 7:39 pm

I just read your feature in the Feb issue of LHJ and wanted to say congrats! I follow your blog already and admire your style, but particularly enjoyed your comment about how your grandpa loves to watch you work. I, too, would set my sewing machine up at my 94-year-old Papa’s dining room table in order to spend more with him and he loved it. He was a welder by trade, but an engineer at heart and he was always thinking of ways to improve my machine and the quilting process. I think he practically designed a long arm without realizing it!
Keep up the good work!

Lisa G - April 5, 2012 - 1:36 pm

I love how humble you are! Über talented and yet you feature a grocery tote and admit you used a Simplicity pattern! You are my newest favorite gal!

Emily - April 4, 2012 - 2:56 pm

These are so awesome! I love that your guild has a “swap comittee” I think ours needs one! I love swaps and the bonds that form because of them!

Kristy Daum - April 4, 2012 - 2:41 pm

Reminiscing about life before the MQG…Wow, I’ll have to do a blog post of my own like that. What I do know is that it was super boring before :-)

I think your “totes” are great and anyone would be excited to get them…especially because it’s a 4 in one gift.


john - April 4, 2012 - 8:43 am

Hey hey!!! so glad to have you back. I really love your color choices and style. I’ve missed your blog. Thanks for publishing again.

johnny b.

Cristina Schweitzer - April 3, 2012 - 10:54 am

Wow. Great bags. I’m sorry to have missed the meeting. I’ve been redecorating my son’s room and swamped with that. I hope you’re well! Enjoy having your mom in town! Cristina

Kelly - April 2, 2012 - 7:27 pm

i love the fact that you – who is so talented, and makes amazing things ALWAYS – questions whether or not it’s “good enough.” it’s an awesome bag. wish i could be there!!

sue - April 2, 2012 - 7:06 pm

awesome – i love the mesh bags.

I’m back. (This is not an April Fools Joke!)

Hey you guys! I’ve missed you. Seriously.

I’ve been working on my blog relaunch for awhile and the time has finally come! I had neglected it and it didn’t have a real focus so I decided that I needed to take a break, step back and look at it and decide where I wanted to go with it. Being pulled in so many directions it can be hard to maintain a blog. BUT, I decided that it really is important to me. And, I’ve heard from so many of you asking me to do the same. (Thanks for the encouragement!) So, here it goes.

To start out on the right foot, I’ve planned out a fun next 13 weeks for the blog. Each week will have a sort of a theme. There will be lots and lots of quilts and other sewing projects, maybe even a few tutorials, and a ton of giveaways.


Fun Giveaways over the next 13 Weeks!


For giveaways, I’ve pulled a bunch of things from my own stash but, I also have goodies from some wonderful sponsors: Pat Bravo/Art Gallery, Free Spirit, Michael Miller, June Tailor, Moda, and Janome. Lots and lots of fabric, books, rulers, color cards, project packs and at the end of the thirteen weeks, there will actually be a sewing machine given away! I’m thinking of making the sewing machine giveaway through a modern quilt blog scavenger hunt! I’m so excited! More details to come soon!




Karen Desparois - May 19, 2012 - 4:12 pm

Love your work – glad you’re back!

Liberty - April 10, 2012 - 8:56 pm

In so glad you’re back. I’ve been waiting!

Lynda M O - April 9, 2012 - 6:31 am

Good to see you again, Latifah, wondered what had kept you….

Looking forward to seeing your next months’ fun. Thank you.

Margaret - April 8, 2012 - 7:44 pm

Glad you’re back!

Nicole - April 5, 2012 - 6:55 pm

Welcome back! Can’t wait to see what you stitch up next!

Sharon T - April 2, 2012 - 6:46 pm

So glad to see you back! And a give away, too! Thanks!

Ann - April 2, 2012 - 3:46 pm

So glad to ‘see’ you back. You certainly do make it enticing and what a way to make it easy to forgive your absence.

Kelly - April 2, 2012 - 12:38 pm

SOOOOO glad you’re blogging again! i only intermittently check blogs these days, but when i saw you had posted, i came right over! looking forward to the next few weeks!!

Dree - April 2, 2012 - 8:28 am

Can’t wait! Your quilts are always so impressive.

Melissa - April 2, 2012 - 7:32 am

Well, hello again! I can’t wait to see what you’ve got up your sleeve. :) You are always so inspiring and brilliant with your quilts and blog posts. I can’t wait! :)

Sewjournal - April 2, 2012 - 5:05 am

Welcome back!

jan - April 1, 2012 - 11:55 pm

So happy you are posting again! Always an inspiration!

Donna - April 1, 2012 - 10:55 pm

So glad to see you again! You do amazing work!

katie@ swimbikequilt - April 1, 2012 - 8:37 pm

Yay. I’m glad you’re back. Or rather, the blog is back. :)

DianeY - April 1, 2012 - 8:01 pm

Welcome back! I’m so glad! Your projects are always such a source of inspiration!

Anne - April 1, 2012 - 7:08 pm

Wow! I’m glad you’re back, and may I just say, you know how to make a HELL of a [re-]entrance! :D

“Gossip Girls” at the LA County Fair

I thought it would be fun to see some modern quilts at the LA County Fair, so I thought I’d enter one. It’s not really a show quilt BUT, it is definitely different than any other quilts at the fair. We usually go to either the LA or Orange County Fairs every year. My primary goal is usually to get a turkey leg (Hehe) but, this year I wanted to grab a picture of my quilt hanging.

Remember this quilt top? Well, it got quilted, bound and named “Gossip Girls”. It was then dropped off a few weeks ago as a submission to the fair.

Here it is on display at the LA County Fair:

The funny thing is, my ONLY intention was to have a modern quilt at the fair but, it looks like she has a little ribbon pinned to her!

Next year, I’m going to see if we can get the LAMQG to enter a whole bunch of quilts. Maybe we can get our own section. . . Hmm. . . I think we should get MQG’s all across the world to enter quilts in their County or Local Fairs!

How fun!

Shauna - April 1, 2012 - 1:14 pm

Hi- found your blog and gorgeous quilts through the Ladies Home Journal artical. In the article you state you design and draw on the I-pad. Which app do you use? I’m looking for a new one.
Love your work!

Lindsay - March 29, 2012 - 9:09 am

Loved reading your post on the MQG blog! Also, I wanted to let you know that I posted a review of Modern Blocks today and featured “Saturn’s Rings.”

Babs Bayliff - March 9, 2012 - 12:13 pm

Is there a modern quilt guild in Phoenix, Az?

Sue. - January 14, 2012 - 7:13 am

Hello! Congratulations on your showing in Ladies’s Home Journal! The article was great! It is so nice to see modern quilting done by a young and modern woman! Too many times they feature old granny style ladies with old granny style quilts…not this time! Hope to see you around Flickr again!

Smiles to you!

Beachgirl Sews.

Yemisi - January 13, 2012 - 5:42 pm

Hello, I saw your name in one of the magazines here in Northern Arizona. I am interested in making contact with you for discussions about how you can help me with my quilting ideas.
Your work are excellent and beautiful.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Patty Simmons - November 17, 2011 - 7:41 pm

Wow! Congratulations! That’s so exciting!

Arita - October 13, 2011 - 6:59 pm

Great job on the quilting and winning a prize.

Pippa - October 13, 2011 - 4:34 pm

It turned out beautifully! Love the name, too ;) Congrats!

Eileen - October 12, 2011 - 10:04 pm

Yay! How fabulous is that?! Congratulations! :)

ali - October 9, 2011 - 8:57 pm

What a great design–it has so much energy and, for lack of a better word, pizazz!

liberty - October 2, 2011 - 10:56 pm

Latifah…. that’s GREAT!!!!
so fun to see your work in that fun setting.

Holly - September 28, 2011 - 4:57 pm

Good for you for entering your quilt in the fair! What a fun surprise to win a ribbon, even if it is for “tapestry”! One of the members of our guild entered a collaborative quilt into our local fair and we got first in the contemporary quilt category!

kendascrafts - September 28, 2011 - 9:43 am

congrats on the ribbon! The quilt looks great!

Alison Marie - September 27, 2011 - 8:09 pm

Way to represent! and hooray on the ribbon! I wanted to enter something this year, bit things have been a bit hectic…..This looks great finished!

Lynda M O - September 26, 2011 - 6:57 pm

Love your quilting and happy for a ribbon, too !~!

Ann - September 26, 2011 - 2:17 pm

Congrats. Did you pick up your &5 prize money…or does LA hand out larger prizes?

Melissa and Piper - September 26, 2011 - 12:44 pm

I am SO proud of you! First that you had the idea to enter it into the fair, and second that it won second place! (It should have one first.)
I think a couple of FRMQGers are going to enter quilts in the Denver County Fair next year. We’ll be sure to let everyone know if any of them win! :)

CC Baby Quilt Set, Part 2

Since Katie, Cici’s mom, is an active member of the Los Angeles Modern Quilt Guild I figured she would get lots of quilts for little Cici so I wanted to make her something more than just a quilt. I hadn’t sewed garments in a LONG time so I wanted to do this and I wanted it to coordinate with the quilt without being too matchy-matchy. So for the dress, I picked one of my favorite of the Art Gallery Paradise prints called Ivory Double Bloom and picked a coordinating Art Gallery print, Ashy Tealight for the bloomers and the trim of the dress. I loved working with the Art Gallery fabrics! LOVED! They are super soft and have a very high thread count. I loved the little details of this project like the bias binding facing on the inside of the arms of the dress which match with the bloomers.

Then, the pattern I picked (Simplicity 2668, see below) had the cutest coat that I wanted to make as a lightweight coat for Cici – so perfect for Los Angeles nights. So, I searched for a light to medium weight suiting that would coordinate with the two prints that I had already chosen. No major name brand, just suiting fabric that I found at Michael Levine’s in downtown Los Angeles. I think it’s a wool blend but, I’m not 100% sure. Don’t you just LOVE IT though?

As I mentioned this whole set was was made using Simplicity Pattern 2668.

A few detail shots. . .

The fun thing about sewing patterns is making them your own. I made the dress as is but, I changed a couple things on the coat. For one, I added a lining. Linings make things like coats and jackets hang a lot better and I thought it would feel better on Cici’s skin.

Also, I changed the sleeves. The ruffle at the bottom of the sleeves were actually gathered and not pleated but, I thought a pleated sleeve would look a lot classier.


Marianna bridge - August 18, 2012 - 8:24 pm

I love tour work and your bog. Thank you!

Dixie Latsha - March 18, 2012 - 8:11 am

I love to quilt, I started sewing at a young age also. I am drawn to bright colors and patterns also. I can’t find a quilt club for myself. I am from Pennsylvania and the old fashion quilting.

Elisabeth - January 9, 2012 - 3:02 pm

That coat is so super cute. It looks a lot like one my mom, who didn’t actually really sew, made for me when I was tiny. I still have it hanging in my closet, 50 years later. Mine was (is) sage green wool, lined with something silky, but it had a little velveteen collar.

And guess what my nickname was when I was that age? Cee-cee (because I could not say “Lisa”).

Isn’t that funny?

abi - November 29, 2011 - 8:49 pm

That little jacket is so super adorable. Great work!

Eileen - October 12, 2011 - 10:13 pm

Super super adorable! It’s such a cute set! and I’ve been looking for a dress pattern that’s not too complicated for a friend and I think I might be able to handle that dress! :)

Fabric Fascination - September 18, 2011 - 3:58 am

My daughter would love something like this for her little girl.

jeannette - September 7, 2011 - 5:02 pm

those are really nice! you did a great job on them!

Lynda M O - August 30, 2011 - 4:55 am

Beautiful outfit-your work is very professional looking. The pleated sleeves are a wonderful subtle touch that add class to the garment. Lining makes it all so much nicer, too.

Pippa - August 26, 2011 - 5:04 pm

Oh gosh, you make clothing now too?! Too adorable for words ;) As much as I love freewheeling quilting, I have to admit following clothing patterns can be very rewarding. Yours turned out beautifully.

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