Announcements · Block of the Month · IEMQG Meeting Recap · Important Dates · Quilt Challenge · Show and Share

January Meeting Recap

We had a very well attended January meeting. What a great way to begin the new year! Our president, Candy Scott started the meeting off with some important announcements. She was followed by an introduction to our 2023 Block of the Month program by member, TriciaWilliams. Next we saw many fantastic show and share items from our talented members. Program Vice President’s Laura Green and Jennifer Boling wrapped it up with a fun, informative, and interactive workshop on modern wedges. Following the workshop they announced our first challenge of 2023 – the Modern Wedge Challenge!

Did you miss the meeting? Do you need a brief review? Then read on because we’re have all the details right here!


  • 2023 Membership dues are now due. The cost is $45 and includes one book of Opportunity Quilt raffle tickets. Go to Members’ Corner for more information.
  • Sign-ups have started for our 2023 Retreat, November 6-9th at Vina de Lestonnac. Total cost is $410, and includes four nights and all meals. Deposit of $100 required. Go to Members’Corner for more information.
  • Drop-in Sew: on Zoom. Link goes out the Sunday before. January 9th and 23rd, 7 – 9pm.
  • Saturday, February 4th Meeting: Guest speaker Carolina Oneto
  • Saturday March 4th Meeting: 2022 BOM Reveal. Have at least a quilt top to show.
  • Sunday June 4rd Meeting: Guest Speaker, Veruschka Zarate of Pride and Joy Quilting
  • Saturday, July 1st Meeting: Wedge Challenge Reveal
  • Fabric of a Nation Exhibit at Skirball Cultural Center now through March 12, 2023. Click here for more Info

2023 Block of the Month

Guild member Tricia Williams kicked off our program with Half Square Triangles (HST’s). This year each block will be made with 16 same-sized HST’s. This modern take on a sampler quilt was designed by Omaha Modern Quilt Guild Member, Stephanie Jacobson and is used with her permission. Members will need a total of 192 same-sized HST’s. The size of the finished quilt will depend on the size of the HST’s each member chooses to make, and whether or not sashing is used. There are plenty of ways to make HST’s and we will share some of them on the Block of the Month page here. Check out the page for all the details, some inspiration, and some helpful tutorials.

Modern Wedge Challenge

Put on your thinking caps and your Machingers and join our 2023 quilt challenge, “Wedges”. Grab your 9°, 10°, 15°, 45° or whatever size wedge you have and create! We will show off our quilts at the July 2023 meeting. For the rules and other helpful information, check out our our 2023 Challenge page.

Show and Share

Our talent members had quilt a variety of work to impress us with!

Blog · Upcoming Meeting

Don’t Miss our February Speaker and Workshop

Brenda Gael Smith, Serendipity Patchwork & Quilting

We are thrilled to have guest speaker Brenda Gael Smith, of Serendipity Patchwork & Quilting speak at our February 5th meeting. She will be joining us via Zoom from the central coast of New South Wales, Australia. Brenda Gael’s lectures and workshops emphasize free form piecing, effective design and use of color to create a fun atmosphere that encourages creative momentum.

Don’t miss her February 6th Workshop!

Her class, Geometricks is sure to improve and innovate your improvisation skills by 100%. You will learn tips and tricks for creating geometric shapes with freeform piecing: triangles, quadrilaterals, and hexagons. You will be able to explore the design possibilities of repeating motifs and learn how to join irregular shaped blocks.

The cost is $30 for members and $40 for non-members and runs from 2 to 5 pm.

To sign up for the workshop:

Send an email to letting us know you are taking the class and let us know if you will be paying via PayPal or personal check. We’ll send you the Zoom link for the class and the class supply list. Solid reading colors work best.

Get to know our Volunteers

Volunteers are the fuel that powers our guild. We would not exist without the efforts of these wonderful members. This month we are featuring four of our committee chairpersons who have volunteered repeatedly throughout the years. Next month we will feature a few more. We still have open volunteer opportunities . Volunteering is a great way to get to know our talented members and with Zoom, it is easier than ever to volunteer from the comfort of your own home. Please consider being a volunteer. We would love to have you.

Kimberly Wingert, Membership Chairperson

My background is in art history and I love the history of American quilts and quilt culture. I began quilting because of my love of modern quilts and Amish quilts which are connected by their simple beauty. I was born in Southern California, but grew up mostly in Minnesota. I returned to Southern California to finish high school. My husband, Andy and I were happily married for 38 years. We have four adult children, two boys and two girls. Sadly we lost Andy suddenly in 2020. I am so thankful for the time we had him in our lives. Although it pushes me a little out of my comfort zone, I am happy to support our guild by volunteering as Membership Chairperson.

Becky Brekke, Fundraising Chairperson

I am happy to volunteer to be the Fundraising Chairperson this year! I have served in a variety of positions since I joined the guild in 2017: Social Media, Secretary, Co VP-Programs, and VP Communications. I have enjoyed the time I have spent on the Board immensely, but this year decided to step back and take a much-needed break. This move also gives others the opportunity to get involved – the experience is truly priceless. 

If you didn’t know, I am an Illinois native and a California transplant for the past 12 years. My husband Tim and I thought we’d only be living in California for 3-4 years – lol! We share our home with our two fur babies, Emily, 16 and Archie, 7 months! And this year my dad became a snowbird and is staying with us until the weather is bearable in Illinois. So, as you can imagine, there’s never a dull moment. I am a contract administrator/office manager for a small family business specializing in the water/wastewater business. I have been in this industry since 1996 and is how I met my husband in 2001! 

If you’d like to get your feet wet and join a committee – come join me in fundraising; it is very rewarding to help insure the guild’s financial success for the upcoming year. A few years ago, I led the guild’s fundraising event called UpCycle Sale Event. It was very successful, and I feel we need something like this again. It motivates me to DESTASH! Contact me or any board member with any questions!

Barbara Mathews, Facilities and Retreat Chairperson

Hi, I’m Barbara Mathews, widowed with three grown daughters, 5 (pretty much gown) grandchildren and a great grandson on the way. I’ve been sewing as long as I can remember – from making Barbie doll clothes, to my own clothes, then my children and grandchildren’s clothes!  Now, I get to make some goodies for my soon-to-arrive great-grandson! 

I’ve been quilting for about 15 years, and enjoy a wide variety of projects.  I’m leaning more toward smaller projects – lap-size quilts, table runners, art quilts – and I’m really enjoying felted wool applique and collage.

I belong to two guilds, and have made many good friends over the years, hosting a couple of friendship sewing groups at my home in Lake Mathews.  Currently, I’m Committee Chair for retreats and facilities, securing and making arrangements for retreats and places to hold our regular meetings and other gatherings.  I would welcome any suggestions in these two areas.

Evie Rienstra, Block of the Month Chairperson

My interest in quilting began at age 3 when I was given a crazy quilt made with conversation prints and embroidery on every seam including the seams hidden under the whisker shield. That quilt ultimately ignited my desire to learn how to make my own quilts; however, I had no idea how or where to learn.

Eventually I attended an Eleanor Burns lecture and a spark was lit. Within a short time, I completed my first quilt — a log cabin, of course. Two years later I joined my first quilt guild and found a community that shares my passion. I’ve joined a few more guilds since then. Like potato chips, sometimes one isn’t enough.

My goal with the IEMQG Block of the Month is to provide patterns that spark the imagination and stimulate creativity. I look forward to seeing what is produced with this year’s BOMs.

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

October 2018 Block Lotto – Witches Hat

This month’s block is Witches Hat, but was originally called ‘Triangles 4 Fun’.  You’ll start by printing out the one-page pattern to show the cutting diagram here. The rest of the instructions are found below for constructing your triangle block!  Happy Triangles!

You SHOULD spray and iron your fabric before cutting triangles; as you can see – I didn’t.

Align the print triangle fabric “down” ¼” from the point of the background triangle (yellow fabric).

After the first ¼” seam is sewn, align the points of the background triangles and stitch the second side,

After pressing – like a good quilter – you’ll have this.  Square up this module to 7 ½” wide X 6 ¼” high.

Add the 1 ¾” strip at the bottom to complete the square. Re-trim for a 7 ½” block.

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

August Block Lotto – Square in a Square

August 2018 Block Lotto Challenge

Improv Square in a Square

This month’s challenge is inspired by a Pinterest post I can no longer locate.  I’m sure no one has EVER had that happen before!!

The quilt was composed simply of an improv square in square blocks. No sashing, no repeating pattern, no color theme – it was stunning.  This month’s challenge is going to be that quilt!

Create an 8 ½” square in a square block. The “inside” square can be any solid (or, reads solid).  I used up some scraps and leftover squares from another quilt. The “outside” square should be a light neutral/white/beige. I used improv techniques for several of mine – again – just to use up odds and ends from my stash.

The inside square can be ANYWHERE in the square! You can put it in the middle, on the edge, in a corner. Make it big, make it small, on point. Have fun with it.

Bring your squares to our August 4th meeting and let’s see who wins!

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

July Block Lotto – Wonky House

Wonky House Tutorial

Block measures 12.5″ square
Seam allowances are 1/4″ but don’t need to be perfect
Press seams to the side that is darker
I suggest you read through all the steps first before beginning

You will need at least four prints for the house, roof, door and windows (more for additional windows, chimney, etc.), a background fabric and a green print for the grass.

I find it extremely helpful to mark off the finished block size on my cutting mat with painter’s tape.  This helps to keep proportions accurate and ensures you don’t cut anything too small!!


Looking at the final block picture above, you will see that it is basically three sections – the base, the house body and the roof.  Begin by cutting the base 13″ long and at least 4″ wide.

For the house body, it is easier to cut the door and window first and then “fill in” the area around them with the house pieces. They can be trimmed and adjusted as you go, but you don’t want a door or window that is too small or too big so I start with them. I like to cut the roof triangle now so I can “see” how it is going to come together.

These measurements are a good starting point, yours may be different. I like to start with straight edges and I trim them at angles later.

Now cut the house pieces.  Using the picture as a guide, cut a piece for below the window, between the door and the window, the right side, the left side, and the top.  Remember to cut them too big and trim as you go.

The numbers indicate the order to sew them together.

To make it wonky, trim the angled edges as you go.

To make your angled edges match before sewing, cut one piece to the desired angle, and then use a clear ruler to cut the second piece.  In the picture below, I first cut the blue door piece at an angle. Then I placed the red piece next to it – straight.  I placed a line on my ruler along the cut edge (the 3/4″ here, but it doesn’t matter). Then I cut the red piece.

I did this on both sides of the door.  Doing it this way keeps everything on the straight of grain which prevents distortion.

I used the same method to angle the window.

After sewing pieces 1 – 6 together, trim the top edge and bottom edges.  They can be straight or angled.

Sew on the top piece.

Trim the sides and do it wonky!!

Cut two rectangles out of the background fabric..  Mine are 4″ x 8″, but you will want them to be at least an inch bigger than the finished background area.

Using a clear ruler, cut the angle to match the sides of the house in the same manner
as you did the door and window.

Sew the two side pieces to the house body and trim the top and bottom edges even with the house.

It is looking pretty cute, right?  I know you are dying to see how it looks sitting on the green grass, so go ahead and sew that to the bottom edge.  First cut the angled edge on the green rectangle to match the angled edge on the bottom of the house.  You should be pretty good at that by now!!

Notice that the block is extending beyond the blue tape – that is good!  You will trim it up nice and square when it is all done.

Test the roof triangle to make sure you are happy with the fit now that the house is done.  If you want the roof to extend beyond the sides of the house, keep in mind that you’ll lose about 1/2″ in seam allowances.  Trim it smaller if you need to.  If it turns out that it is too small, toss it in the scrap bin and cut another one.

This is my foolproof method of making sure the roof and background fit together nicely.

Cut a rectangle at least 1 inch bigger on all sides than the finished piece will be.

Place the roof piece on top of it in the exact location of the finished roof.

Line up your ruler with the edge of the roof and cut through both thicknesses.
(oops – the sun was coming through the window!!)

Put the underneath piece of background fabric in the scrap bin.

Sew the roof piece to the right background piece and then the left

background piece. Don’t worry about the seam allowances or the edges not lining up – the piece will be trimmed down.

(If you want to add a chimney first, cut one of the background pieces in half where you want the chimney to go.  Piece the chimney with the background fabric and sew into place.)

Trim the lower edge and sew it to the house section.

Using a 12.5″ square ruler, trim the block to size.  If you don’t have a 12.5″ ruler, I recommend you get one!  It is the one ruler I couldn’t live without!!


I hope this all made sense and was easy to follow.
If you have any questions, please leave me a comment and I will be happy to help you!

If you’d like a PDF printable file, you can find one here.

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

June Block Lotto – Arrow Block

This is NOT an original design; I used several online sources for inspiration. I changed and combined them to come up with something a bit more modern. I’m not a great quilt mathematician, but I made several of these and they worked well for me. I have ALL kinds of respect for those bloggers who make video and picture tutorials. I thought I’d taken photos of each step of the process, but alas, these are all I have.

This is a really fun and easy block that looks much more complex than it is. It only took me about 45 minutes to cut, press and assemble.

Cutting Requirements – ALL STRIPS ARE CUT FROM THE LONG SIDE OF FAT QUARTERS – approximately 22”
Three [3] 1 ½” strips
Two [2] 1” strips One [1] 1” strip for shaft (Dark)
One [1] 1” X 5” rectangle (I used low volume red text prints for my shafts (I thought blood should go with arrows) – it seems more defined than a solid, but it’s a personal preference)
Three [3] 4 ½” squares – cut on diagonal
Two [2] 4” X 15 ¼” improv strips 1.

1. Cut three 1’ strips and two 1 ½” strips from 5 coordinating fat quarters. The fabrics and colors are completely up to you – brights, solids, prints, pastels, anything goes. Arrange to your liking, sew and press seams in one direction.

2. Fold the finished strata in half and align edges

3. Make a 450 cut at the end, then another 450 cut – 4” out. Since you’ve folded right sides together this gives you mirrored feathers.


4. From the leftover central portion of the strip cut the center triangle by using the opposite 450 angle on your ruler.

5. Here is what your “leftovers” should look like.

6. Make two [2] 4” X 15 ¼” improv strips – the fabrics should be low volume or solid neutrals. I forgot to take a separate picture of my improv strips, but you know what to do.

7. Cut three [3] 5” squares from low volume neutrals and slice diagonally.

8. Complete your feathers by sewing one triangle on each end. Finished feather unit is 9 ¾” X 4”.

9. Add the improve strip to the top of the feather. Your piece should now measure about 24”(+/-) depending on your trimming. I prefer not to trim the bottom of my feathers or the top of my arrowhead.

10. Assemble the other side of the feather.

11.  Sew together the arrow shaft and the shaft end, and then assemble the arrow base. The finished base/shaft unit should measure 24 ¼” X 8”

12.  Center the remaining triangle and using the arrowhead, make a simple flying geese unit. Don’t match the bottoms!! You need the additional width from the triangles to make everything match. The finished flying geese unit should measure 4 ½” x 8”.

13.  Sew the arrowhead onto your shaft unit and yippie ki-yay! The finished block is 8” X 28 ¼”. It won’t take too many to make a fun quilt.

For a print-friendly version of the pattern instructions above, click here.

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

May Block Lotto – Magic 8 HST

Magic 8 HST Method – Not my original idea

Use a 12” square of one bright/bold solid and one neutral solid to create EIGHT 5 ½” Half Square Triangle Blocks.

Each 12” finished square = 8 blocks = 8 entries for End of Year Grand Prize!

  1. Place 2 squares right sides together and mark diagonally (green line.) Stitch scant ¼” on both sides of both lines.

  1. Lightly press stitched square.
  2. Cut (blue lines.)
  3. Press then trim each HST to finished size.

Voila! 8 HST’s with 4 stitching lines!!!

To obtain a PDF version of this pattern, click: May 2018 Block Lotto Challenge

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

Block Lotto 2018 – General Information from Shelley Wardrop

Block lotto is fun!  I’m challenged to attempt a block outside my skill set, to stretch my design imagination and combine colors that aren’t my favorite. Often the block is fun and  I’m inspired to make a entire quilt of my own.

For those new to Block Lotto in our Guild, we receive a block pattern, idea and size specifications  each month, then you do the rest. When you return your completed block the following month, your name is entered into a drawing to win all the completed blocks. Making a quilt using the competed blocks is another opportunity for expanding your skills and imagination.  This year you will have 9 monthly opportunities to participate! Block Lotto will be “dark” during April for our Negative Space Challenge, September for the Song Title Challenge, and in December.

I’d like to “kick it up” a notch this year. I love raffles and opportunities to win something! Anticipating the drawing and dreaming of what I’ll do when I win the prize excites me.  That’s one of reasons I love Block Lotto. I’ve never won, but I might!

For each entry block you compete throughout 2018 you’ll be entered into a year long raffle. Compete 1 block, you’ll get one raffle entry; compete 5, you’ll be entered 5 times. There are no monthly or annual limits to the number of entries you can accumulate.  And there are no raffle tickets to save.  The drawing will be held at our December holiday party. Two lucky winners will each receive a basket of ‘quilty goodness’.  What could be better than that?

So let’s get going! Your first opportunity to enter is this Saturday at our February 3, 2018 Guild meeting. Create a 6.5″ improv block for your entry for our February Block Lotto.  In the event you have questions, feel free to let me know either at our meeting or by posting a comment here, on our website!

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

February/March Block Lotto – Paper Pieced Kite

We’re offering a head start on the February/March Block Lotto. Windy March days inspired this block. We’re “borrowing” the paper-pieced pattern from The Quilting Company website. We’ve requested and received permission and Gayle has printed copies of the pattern for us on paper-piecing paper for those that feel a bit tech-challenged downloading the kite pattern themselves. However, we encourage everyone to follow this link to download the entire {and adorable} baby quilt pattern and print your own.  While you’re there, you can check out the other wonderful patterns available on the Quilting Company’s website!

There are two different kites in mirror image – you can do one of each or choose the right or left flying kite. Remember, each block is an entry for the monthly and annual raffle. Plan to use a light blue for the sky and your choice of solids and/or prints for the kite. If you want, use the downloaded pattern to add a tail to your kite(s).

If you’ve never tried paper-piecing, I think you’ll discover that it is both challenging and allows precision points.  You can find numerous tutorials on YouTube to get you started . We’ll also be offering in person assistance at the February 11th Sit and Sew (make sure to RSVP if you haven’t already to Trish on the post found on our website here).

The raffle winner gets all the kites at the March 3rd meeting.  Happy quilting!

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

January 2018 Block Lotto – Stash Buster Improv


Did you make a New Year’s resolution to whittle down your stash?
Go on a fabric diet?
Complete more projects?

This project is perfect to help keep your resolutions.  Make a 6 ½” improv block using ONLY what you have in your stash.  You can’t buy anything new.  Use leftovers, re-cut rejects, re-design bloopers. Pull out your UFO’s and PIGS. Use solids, prints, fussy-cuts, pastels, florals, civil war or modern – mix them all up and do something new.  Add embellishment it if you want, but again, only use supplies from your stash. You can even make more than one!

Blocks are due on February 3, 2018. Winner to be announced at the IEMQG meeting!