Friday, March 15, 2019

Crazy Seasons Mystery Quilt block 5!

Good morning!
It's time again for a new block on this fun adventure! I am loving seeing everyone's beautiful work on the Facebook group for this project! If you don't know about it.....go check it out! Twice a month, a designer releases a beautiful Free Crazy block for you to download and make, or you may order a nice kit from each designer, so you don't have to work so hard choosing fabrics and making decisions! At the end of this fun project there will be a finishing kit as well, from Rhonda McCray of Farmhouse Threads, who organized this wonderful idea! Thank you Rhonda!

Okay.....the moment you have been waiting is my block!
You will find the free downloadable pattern on my website, as well as the kit, should you chose to purchase one. You may also order the printed pattern, if you don't want to bother with the downloading and printing! Here is the link to my website....there is a button to click at the top of the home page.

A couple things I found very helpful in making my block...

I hate to trace templates for Crazy quilts...what if I don't do it exact?  I found these wonderful printer friendly freezer paper sheets that you can just copy the templates to with your printer!
It saved a ton of time, and there are 50 sheets in the pack, so you can use them for the next blocks as well.  Once I copied the patch templates onto the freezer paper sheets in my printer, I cut them out on the drawn lines, pressed each one onto the corresponding fabric, and cut out using my rotary cutter and ruler, leaving a 1/4" seam allowance past the edge of the ruler. I didn't include the seam allowance, because I know some of you may be doing another method where you will need a larger seam allowance, so you can decide! I chose to sew my blocks together by machine. Here is a picture of my fabrics cut with the freezer paper still on them...the nice thing with the package of copier freezer papers, is that the numbers of each patch will automatically be there, and the placement diagrams of the applique as well! In my picture, you won't see that, because I didn't have the  pattern written yet when I did my block.
All the instructions are in the pattern, but I wanted to just show you a few things. After your patch pieces are sewn together, I found it really helpful to stitch around the edge of the block as Shawn from Rusty crow did. Then I fused the whole block onto Shape Flex fusible interfacing. This really helped the block to not stretch or fray, and it was so light and easy to stitch through!  

You will either do your crazy stitches next, or you will do your wool applique. That is all up to you. I did my wool applique first, but it may have been easier to handle the fabric for the crazy stitching, had I waited on the applique. I have some photos for you showing how I did the flag. I cut the red wool the whole size of the flag, and then appliqued the white strips and blue star field on top.
Here is how I did the stitching. I love using a chalk wheel to mark stitching lines on my wool. If needed I use a small ruler. Its just a nice guideline and I really believe that things don't have to be absolutely perfect to be beautiful!
Next I added colonial knots in the spaces.
Here are a few more photos showing how I made lines and did simple stitching....
On the sunflower, I drew the lines, made running stitches on the lines for texture, and then filled in the spaces with colonial or french knots.
I did the same thing for the Bee Skep...drew lines with the chalk wheel, followed on the lines with a running stitch. 
This is a cool variation of the feather stitch. By now, you have all made feather stitches on the previous blocks. For this stitch, you follow the seam line, and instead of going back and forth with each "arm" of the feather, you stay on each side for three stitches. Then I added a french or colonial knot at the tip of each one. here is an example with contrasting colors for you to see.
The regular stitch is on the left, and the variation on the right. I drew a seam line to follow with pencil, just so you could see. 
Just a few more pictures for you of the stitches close up that I used. They are all simple ones, as I'm not a proficient crazy stitcher! Well, I might be crazy...but I'm not proficient! Ha ha!  This one is just a simple cross stitch with a french or colonial knot inside each space.
This photo is just to show you the detail on the spool. I used the chalk wheel and free handed some zig zags, then stitched over with a back stitch.
In this photo I just wanted to show you the simple feather stitch with a french or colonial knot at the end of each stitch, and the star stitch. These are just long straight stitches caught up in the middle with a tack stitch! Very easy!

I hope you enjoy making this block and all the blocks! Keep posting them on the Facebook Group "Crazy Seasons Mystery Quilt." Below you will find the list of all the designers participating and the date when the blocks are all released on their websites! 
Happy Crazy Stitching!

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Splendid Sampler II, it's my turn!

Good morning!
It's time to share my block, Little Willow, on page 112 in the Splendid Sampler II.  For those of you new to my blog, I'm Jenifer Gaston, owner of Woolen Willow Designs, and Owner/Partner of Primitive Quilts and Projects Magazine. I've been quilting for 25 years and sewing since I was a little girl. 

The designers were to say what their happy place was, and that was hard to answer. I'm most happy with my Granddaughter and family! But I really do love being in my sewing room playing with my cotton and wool! When I was a little girl, I used to count willow trees, which I love, on car rides to see family that lived far away, and my parents planted one for me when I was 12. I tend to put a lot of them in my designs, and the name of my former quilt shop with my sister Gretchen was The Woolen Willow. Here is my block!
This block was adapted from a larger quilt I designed for our magazine back in 2011, with a 12" block. So to shrink it down, I needed to use paper piecing. I don't do much paper piecing, so I was happily surprised at how it turned out. The trick to making it work is to get that 1/4" seam perfect when you make the strip sets, and when you piece the sections together.  The block on the right was my trial block before I made the one for the book. the one on the left will go in my Splendid Sampler II quilt! I have several blocks made, and hope to get time to get more done in the weeks to come! 
Here are the blocks I have made so far!
This is such a fun project to be a part of, and I'm so thankful to have been asked to join the designer team, thanks Pat and Jane!  To celebrate, I would like to offer a giveaway prize of my book with Martingale, Primitive Style, and a one year subscription to Primitive Quilts and Projects magazine! Just comment once below, or on my Facebook posts about the Splendid Sampler, or you can follow me and comment on my Instagram post @Jenifer Gaston.  Be sure to check back, as there is a great Mystery Quilt post coming up tomorrow, and you just might see a sneak peak of it at the bottom of that last photo! Check out for more information on prizes and other blocks being released and join in the fun on the Facebook group as well! 

Have a Splendid day!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Week 7, Farmhouse Threads and Friends Garden Mystery Quilt!"

Happy Friday! I can't believe it's been almost a year since I posted on my blog. Gee wiz! Here is your free Pattern, and the link to my website, if you would like a kit!!!! The blocks sure have been pretty so far! Next Friday, you'll go to!

Have fun, and post your finished blocks on Facebook!



Friday, April 14, 2017

Block 6, Farmhouse Threads and Friends, Summer blog hop!

Good morning stitching friends!

Today is my turn on the hop, thanks to Joyce Weeks, and Rhonda, for switching dates with me. I also want to thank all of you who sent up prayers of comfort for my family.


I was really happy to hear that this would be a patriotic themed quilt hop, because my Husband and I are both Navy Veterans!

Look how young! That was about 34 years ago!

Okay, on to what you have been patiently waiting for! Here is your block #6! I love flowers, and flags......

Click here for your downloadable pattern...

And here is the link for a kit, if you would like one!

Don't forget to place your applique pieces on point! Here are your materials

2"x2" gold wool for star on vase

2 1/4" x 5 1/2" green wool for leaves

1/2" x 5" brown wool for flag pole

3 1/2" x 4 1/2" pumpkin wool for flowers

1 1/2" x 2" blue wool for flower centers

1 1/4" x 1 1/2" dark blue for star field

3" x 7" brown wool for vase

2 1/2" x 3 1/2" red wool for stripes

3 1/2" x 3 1/2" white wool for flag base and white star

3" x 5" green wool cut on bias for stems


Don't forget to reverse the pattern if you plan to fuse. You only need to cut red strips, and lay them on top of the white flag base.

When cutting the green stems....if you cut the whole piece on the bias, you can just cut strait stems, and then curve them as much as you need to, and pin in place. You can also still use a fusible web on this piece.....after you fuse, just cut the strips, peel off the paper and it will still curve to press in place!

Make sure to cut the stems long enough to tuck under the flowers and vase....for the leaves, I just butted them up close to the stems.

If you use a fusible, or want to try one...I love the "soft fuse" and do have some on my website! The next block will be at with Kathi Cambell, next Friday!


Happy stitching, and Happy Easter,







Friday, March 31, 2017

Summer blog hop switch

Good morning stitching friends,

Due to a death in my family, my blog hop date has been switched with Joyce Weeks original date. If you go to Farmhouse threads blog, you can click on the link for Joyce's blog. I do have my block made....but it will be a week or so before I'm ready to make kits. Sorry for the inconvenience, and I'll see you all soon. Have fun blog hopping!


Monday, August 15, 2016

So much to share! A give away, a sew-a-long, and of course, a sweet picture!

Hello stitching friends! I have a few things to share with you today! Many of you have asked for a sew-a-long, so I'm starting a new one! It's not too large, and I'll try to post a block each week if I can! Here is the first block....

You can click here for the template....

And click here if you would like to order a kit of the background fabric and wool!....

Also, I have created a Facebook group called "Primitive Stitchin' with Jeni Gaston" where all the templates will be as well! There will be several free patterns there, and you can share photos! I'm a little challenged with links and things, so the Facebook group will make it easy for me to share, without asking for help, as I usually do! Haha!

On the Primitive Quilts and Projects magazine newsletter that goes out tomorrow, there will be a give away! It's for the Martingales calendar with my table runner pattern inside! Go to, and sign up for the newsletter and take the survey!

Here is the calendar....


Last, but most certainly not the least........sweet Henley is growing so fast! She started walking a week or so ago! Here she is yesterday wearing a sweet dress from our friend Kay Harmon! She was getting a book read to her!


Please share your pictures of progress on the sew along on the Facebook page! Just ask to be added in!

Thank you and have a great evening!



Friday, June 24, 2016

Harvest Mystery Blog Hop!

Good morning friends!

Today is my turn for the..........

Farmhouse Threads and Friends

Harvest Mystery Quilt

Blog Hop!

Our Christmas Mystery Quilt Blog Hop was so popular last year - we are doing it again!! For 12 weeks, beginning June 17th we will share with you free patterns from some of our favorite designers to complete a Harvest Mystery Quilt just in time for the season. Each week, one designer will post the pattern to make a Harvest block using wool appliqué on cotton fabric. The patterns are free for you to download and print, and kits will be for sale by the designers. Week 12 will include the instructions to put all of these blocks together with some fun borders to complete your quilt. Finishing kits will be available from Farmhouse Threads. Make sure you sign up for each designer’s blog/website to receive the free patterns. Please share our blog hop with your friends and have them follow along!

Week 1, June 17 - Rhonda McCray, Farmhouse Threads

Week 2, June 24 - Jeni Gaston, Woolen Willow Designs

Week 3, July 1- Lisa Bongean, Primitive Gatherings

Week 4, July 8 - Joan Grenke, Bits and Pieces by Joan

Week 5, July 15 - Joyce Weeks, Geoff’s Mom Pattern Co.

Week 6, July 22 - Kathi and Taylor, The Cottage at Cardiff Farms

Week 7 July 29 - Kathy Campbell, Heart to Hand

Week 8, August 5 – Shawn York, Rusty Crow Quilt Shop

Week 9, August 12 - Debbie Busby, Wooden Spool Designs

Week 10, August 19 - Gloria and Vicki, Olde Green Cupboard Designs

Week 11, August 26 - Linda and Donna, My Red Door Designs

Week 12, September 2 – Finishing Instructions from Farmhouse Threads

I have made a cute pumpkin block! You can't have too many pumpkins can you? I know I love decorating my home with a lot of them come Fall! I think Fall themed projects might be one of my favorites to stitch! Here is my block......

Click here for the pattern templates...

Click here if you would like to purchase a kit! (I'll use the same fabrics, or a good substitute in kits!)

To make the block you will need...

13"x13" olive green print for background

8" x 10 1/2" textured light tan wool for large pumpkin, moon and star

5 1/2" x 6" hand dyed pumpkin wool for medium pumpkin

4 1/2" x 5 1/4" red stripe or plaid wool for small pumpkin

3 1/2" x 4 1/2" medium brown plaid wool for the medium and large pumpkin

1 1/2" x 3 1/2" dark brown plaid for small pumpkin stem

Use your favorite method to prepare the wool pieces for applique, but don't forget to reverse the shapes if you plan to use a fusible web! I drew some dotted lines to help you with the placement of the shapes on the block! I like to use a whip stitch to applique, and I also used some wool threads to make curved detail lines on the pumpkins with a stem stitch!

Enjoy the hop, and visit Lisa Bongean next week! Check out all our Facebook pages as well, because some of the designers are posting their blocks there!

Happy stitching!