Island Batik Back to School Blog Hop

Welcome to my blog! This is my first blog hop. I will be hopping along with you to all the other Island Batik Blogs this month. This is sure to be fun and educational too! Please read all the way to the end to find out how to participate in my GIVE AWAY. Don’t forget to tell your friends about these blogs too. One can never have too much inspiration. In February of 2017 I received my first box of fabric from Island Batik. There was a large bundle of fabrics from the Country Dozen Fabric Line. To see the whole line click here: Country Dozen Fabric Line . There are browns and blues and some teals and blacks too.  What was so fun, was to see chickens, eggs, kitchen utensils, eggs, lemons, silverware and did I mention eggs? As many of you know, my biggest supporter for my quilting business is my grandmother, Esther. I call her, “Grammie.” She raised chickens.  I have a favorite photo imprinted in my mind of “Grammie and her girls.” She was feeding her chickens and thanking them for the eggs she harvested every morning. When Grammie would visit our home to celebrate Easter, she would bring a dozen eggs for each of us. I have two older brothers with families and a younger sister with a family, so 5 dozen eggs came to Westwood, MA where my folks used to live. grammie These eggs were so fresh and tasted so much more flavorful than the ones from the grocery stores. They were such a treat! Before I digress too much, remember the theme this month is “Back to School.” Grammie was homeschooled in Vermont with her sister, Pearl.  Grammie then traveled to Boston to get a nursing degree at Mass General. She was the youngest girl in her class. Her sister, my Aunt Pearl went on to teachers college and became a school teacher in a one room school house in Vermont. Two generations later, I find myself homeschooling our son, Tyler. We transformed every day into teachable moments. I learned so much about how children learn, had fun going on fabulous field trips, learned how to write a myth, and even how to make chain mail from wire and needle nose pliers.  Our field trips were all year long including a Baseball Bat company on Cape Cod which made bats for the Boston Red Sox, Amish country in Pennsylvania, and Hebert Candy in Massachusetts.  Tyler learned to build conveyor belts from k’nex, formed boxes in which he placed homemade chocolates and handed them out to the ladies at St. John’s Bible Study. He learned about farming, different eggs, colors, sizes, cows, stomachs, black-smithing, and so much more. Our daughter did attend public school in a French Immersion program.  She learned to read and write in French before English. Bethany is now a high school Math teacher in NH. What does “Back to School” mean to me?

  1. A fresh start on a new quilt!
  2. Getting organized!
  3. A love for learning and experimenting!

For this challenge, I took some graph paper and looked at my fabrics which I sorted by lights and darks. I started with the drunkard’s path block….Then decided not to choose one of my favorites… I decided that since chickens and especially the roosters wake us up in the morning, whether we slept at Grammie’s house, or living in the suburb of Holliston, I was going to find a way to make squares and half square triangles into chicken coop wire. Then looking through the wire, I’d fussy cut some of the chickens. IMG_20170831_092450 For those of you who know that I love collage quilting technique, rest assured that a collaged rooster is in the works with the left overs….stay tuned! Whether you are studying engineering courses or English courses or quilting courses, on the first day, the teacher usually reviews the basics. Here’s my chicken scratch on paper. IMG_20170830_125812 The size requirement for this challenge was, “bigger than 36″ x 36″.” Since I had used some of this collection in previous challenges, I had to be a little creative where figuring out the border. Do you remember my Chicken Dance quilt? There is some egg fabric in that one.  The pineapple quilt has some of the tan fabrics from this collection too. I just couldn’t wait to start cutting it up. If you would like to know how to make this quilt, step-by-step, go to for FREE pattern instructions, “Back to School Chickies.” I used the small Sew Easy Guide to make half square triangles.  It’s fast, fun and accurate. IMG_20170814_125401751 I quilted it with Superior Threads Fantastico thread #5090. I used my HandiQuilter Sweet Sixteen. The thread did not break once! IMG_20170830_124304558

“Back to School Chickies”

I used my floor for a design wall because my wall was full of my Row by Row quilt. That quilt must be done by Sept. 5th too! Yikes! I best get back to work. Simply follow my blog, leave me a comment on this blog post and you will be entered in a drawing to win the fabrics pictured below. I made 6 1/2″ squares for you to get started on making this project. I’ve added some extra 3″ squares too! IMG_20170830_132926 The winner will be announced on September 30th. Now don’t forget to hop along to tomorrow’s “Back to School” blogger,  Alison Vermilya at Different fabrics are shipped to various ambassadors. It’s so exciting to see all the solutions to the monthly challenges. Welcome Back to School! Enjoy learning something new. Linda Ramrath


About inspiredlayerslinda

I was an Island Batik Ambassador for 2017. I enjoyed the challenge of designing new quilt patterns with this very special batik fabric collections. I teach free motion quilting via my Youtube videos and Doodle of the Month program which anyone can sign up for by sending me an email requesting to be added to the list. I enjoy transforming fabric into unique quilts, t-shirts into memory quilts, and photos to wall art. I joined Toastmasters to find my voice and learn to share my quilts and stories with others.
This entry was posted in #backtoschoolwithisland, Island Batik, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

36 Responses to Island Batik Back to School Blog Hop

  1. Chris says:

    I love the colors you have chosen and of course it is wonderful.

  2. Betsy says:

    I love the tape you are using for accurate seams. Makes piecing so much more accurate

  3. Susan says:

    Hi Linda,
    Love your quilt! Of course chickens are near and dear to my heart as well. I have 7 egg laying girls here in MT.
    Susan F.

  4. Love your quilt. I will get the pattern. I homeschooled my kids and now my oldest daughter is homeschooling hers.

  5. peg says:

    I love these fabrics and your pattern and would love to win.

  6. Allison Evrard says:

    Beautiful quilt! I love Island Batiks.

  7. yellowcatquilts says:

    Absolutely love what you have done with this fabric! Great quilt!

  8. Joan says:

    What a fun project and I love seeing how you make it happen.

  9. Julie A. says:

    I love chickens and I simply LOVE your quilt.

  10. Teri says:

    What a great idea for quilt. Thank you for sharing this.

  11. Verna says:

    Great colors, great for fall.

  12. jrp53j says:

    Loved your chicken stories. I used to go out to the coop with my grandmother and collect eggs when I was about 5. Then one day we found a snake in the coop and that was MY last day to go!

  13. Cecilia says:

    Pretty fabrics! I like your quilt, too.

  14. annalutzbrown says:

    Wow very nice love blog hops to get so many ideas..

  15. rsislandcrafts says:

    This is my first year with no children in school since my oldest started kindergarten in 1993. It feels weird to not be gearing up for back to school time.

  16. Beth T. says:

    Like you, I was blessed with wonderful grandmothers. They made “back to school” memorable, and every-day school days easier–sometimes just survivable. I’m so thankful for them. Now that I’m older, I try to be part of a support system, the way they were. I don’t think I’ll ever be as good as they were, but I certainly had great examples.

  17. Such a nice project, I love the story about your grandmother!

  18. Janet T says:

    Love your quilt. Thank you for letting us know about the Sew Easy Guide. It looks like it would be very helpful!

  19. Angela J Short says:

    Pretty quilt! Awesome blocks! Have a great day!! angielovesgary2 atgmail dotcom

  20. cindy m says:

    LOVE these colors!!

  21. Michele T says:

    I looooove batiks!!!! Great tool for accurate piecing!!

  22. Diane C says:

    Your Grammie certainly had a lot of eggs to bring for your family. I bet you all ate eggs for days. Your quilt is lovely and I really like the blues with the browns. Now I’m off to see what other interesting things you have on your blog.

  23. princess says:

    I love collage quilts but I have a hard time finding them. Maybe I need to look in other places. Thanks for your pattern. Your fabrics will make the quilt the real deal.

  24. Thunder says:

    what a wonderful line of fabric !!! sew fun 😉

  25. Dawn F. says:

    Beautiful quilt out of this great collection! Thanks for the giveaway!

  26. Cynthia Knapp says:

    Your quilt is beautiful! Thank you for sharing your talent

  27. Jayne P says:

    Thank you for sharing your ideas. Your quilt looks great

  28. Barbara Kaup says:

    The chicken theme fabric is so cute–I like your quilt and the “chicken-wire” idea!

  29. Susan says:

    We certainly have some things in common. My paternal grandmother raised chickens when I was very small. I went to a one room school with no running water and two paths (out houses) grades 2 – 5. We had no public kindergarten and I went “to town” for first grade. I was not only the youngest student in my class in the country but also I was the only girl. My daughter in a math teacher in the high school from which her husband graduated in NM. She is board certified. I didn’t home school my children and I sure did lots and lots helping (not doing) with homework. My son’s first grade teacher told him he would have failed if I had not worked so diligently with him at home. I’d love to win the fabric. I have no batiks and would love to try them. You had a good mentor in your grandmother.

  30. Nicole Sender says:

    Lovely quilt! I’d like to try the sew easy guide. Looks really helpful to sew accurate seams.

  31. Grammies are the best! I absolutely love the quilt you created. It showcases the fun prints so well!

  32. Connie Kresin Campbell says:

    Beautiful Quilt, love the batiks!

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