From My Carolina Home

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Square Dance – Coming Down the Middle

Time for our next step in the Square Dance, this month we Come Down the Middle.  This step is easy, and will go really fast, so you can catch up your Do-Si-Do step if you still have some to do.  Also, just a reminder, please do not pin these steps to Pinterest, they will be taken down later in the year after the mystery is done.

Square Dance! at

Pair up your 3×7-1/2-inch Fabric A rectangles with the same size scraps, and sew along the long side (come down the middle).  Be careful to sew a straight 1/4-inch seam. Important, press this seam open. Do Not Trim!!  You’ll find out why next month.

Pair up your 2-1/2 x 6-1/2 rectangles, putting mediums with darks or varying the colors, and come down the middle again, sewing into pairs along the long side.  Press this seam to one side. I usually pick the darker side. Final size of this unit is 4-1/2 x 6-1/2 inches.  Simple this month, so hopefully you can catch up on your nine-patches too.

Watch your seams, as sometimes sewing small bits can end up not having the true scant 1/4-inch. This is a seam that was on a block for the fire quilts project. As the piecer got near the edge, the seam line migrated toward the edge.  At the end there are barely a few threads inside the seam allowance.

Sewing mistakes at From My Carolina Home

So, I re-sewed the seam over the first one, you can see how much off the first one was.  My seam is a true 1/4-inch.  It looks like more because of the zoom to get the detail.  I don’t have this block anymore, or I would have gone back and put a seam gauge on it so you could see, but you’ll just have to take my word on this one.  You can see to the left side, how the rest of the seam wasn’t a true 1/4-inch either.

Sewing mistakes at From My Carolina Home

Here’s a pdf for your sewing room – Square Dance Come Down the Middle

Are you Square Dancing with us? How are you coming along?

Welcome to new subscribers to my blog! I’m delighted to have many new readers to quilt along. Just so you will know, my blog has quilting and sewing, free patterns and quilt alongs, tips and tutorials, travel and mountain living, crafting and stamping, cooking and gardening, tablescapes and decorating, reading and more. It is a wide variety, so don’t be surprised to see a new recipe or something other than quilting.  If you are just now finding the mystery, get the January instructions for cutting, and February’s Do-Si-Do step.

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If you are reading my blog for the first time, you can follow by email by using the sidebar sign up, or Bloglovin using the sidebar link. If you are a Facebook user, follow the From My Carolina Home Facebook page. I like interacting with readers too, and you can put your pictures on our Square Dance 2018 Flickr group for the quilt alongs and projects, and on my new From My Carolina Home Project Sharing Facebook group too. This new group is for anything and everything inspired by my posts, sharing of projects and quilt alongs, sew alongs and stitch alongs, your tablescapes and gardens, and any project inspired by my blog.

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Square Dance! at



Scrap Dance Swing Bag

During my trip to Lexington, I took the Swing Bag to test it out in real use.  I have to say, (brag a bit, LOL!!) that it performed beyond expectation.  I expected it to hold some clothes and cosmetics, and be easy to carry, but I found that it did more than that.  The pattern is easy, mostly constructed flat, and the zipper insertion is a breeze.  You won’t believe how easy it is!  I’ll be making several more of these using up some jelly roll strips and piecing bits to make the next one scrappy.

First, it fit nicely on the top of DH’s suitcase with the handle reaching the top so he could stack it.  Sure made it easy to carry with another suitcase.

Plus, you will not believe how much stuff was in it.  I got all these clothes for a four day trip, plus three pairs of shoes (one a pair of walking shoes) and all my other essentials in it.   There are seven tops, two pairs of shorts, two pairs of long pants, plus sleepwear.

Items with liquids like my hair spray and contact lens solution were held upright in the long inside pocket, eliminating the need to encase them in a zip lock bag (although you could still do that).

All these items were in the bag, and that cosmetic bag is full!

The Swing Bag is wide enough for my cosmetic case to fit sideways at one end, with plenty of space for clothes and shoes.

The pattern has more ideas for adjustments to the pockets for ease of use, and also instructions to add a water bottle strap for use as a gym bag.

The Swing Bag will hold towels and a hair dryer, gym clothes, bathing suit for water aerobics, and a fresh change of clothes for after your shower if you want to use it as a workout bag.  It has more space than you will need for a day trip, and plenty of space for a week’s stay out of town.

A few comments have come in from pattern buyers, here’s a look at what others have said –

Mary (stitchinggrandma) said “I just downloaded the pattern , and I LOVE all the extra photo’s and details you included!!! Worth much more than the minimal $2 investment!” (purchased during the introductory period for blog readers)

Pat T wrote “*Thank you* for all you do, Carole, to teach, encourage, and inspire! I just downloaded your pattern at Craftsy!… Thank you for the extra pictures in it, and the extra details! That makes your great directions very clear to even beginning sewers.”

Gynette said “Just purchased your Swing Bag pattern and I’m delighted with the detail. So many details I missed on the blog. This will be a delightful gift for my high school aged granddaughter. But I will be making it from heavier fabric and a metal zipper for her. Also plan on making one for my quilting buddy, Carol (without the “e”) and one for me. I never seem to get me one made. Thanks for spending your time designing and offering this pattern. Now to peruse my stash for the perfect fabric.”

Click on Scrap Dance Swing Bag for the pattern!

Are you sewing today?



Val’s Tuesday Archives


Scrap Dance Waltz – Trunk Show!

Doing one more update on Scrap Dance Waltz, to show you some wonderful finishes in lots of colorways!  I had such fun designing this quilt, and I now have the red and cream quilt I have wanted for some time.


One of the great things about doing quilt-alongs is seeing what other people do with the same design.  The color choices and borders make a quilt unique, and I’d like to share a few that were shared on our Flickr group for the quilt along.  These are new shares since the last update.

Needled Mom did hers in blue and white, and I like her border choice with small squares of scrappy blues.

Scrap Dance Waltz

Ila did two quilts in low volume prints. She realized halfway through that her blocks in the quilt on the left had two patches reversed. The quilt on the right is consistent with the pattern. Still, they are both beautiful and both have that circular secondary pattern, it is just stronger on the one on the right.  I am sure the sisters are thrilled.


Brenda did hers in two prints, I think she is going to use this as a Christmas quilt.  Beautiful fabrics, and lots of perfect points!


And here are a few you may have seen before, but newer readers may not have seen.

Tanya sewed her quilt with a wonderful grey background and lots of bright scraps.  This pattern really does chew up the scrap bin.

IMG_0360 2

Susan did a lullaby size in lovely blue and white.

Scrap Dance Waltz top finished, piecing the back now.

And Cheryl did a red and green Christmas theme.

Waltz Tango 2

Here’s one of Elaine’s two quilt flimsys, this one with a yellow border.


I hope all these participants who showed their finished flimsy will upload a photo of the quilted finish. I’d also love to see more, if anyone else that hasn’t shared up to now would like to share.  Please be sure that your pictures are set to public when adding to the Flickr group.  In the meantime, here’s the link to the pattern on Craftsy for purchase. –Scrap Dance Waltz on Craftsy! Thank you to all who have purchased any of my patterns!!

And for those who are Scrap Dancing with our Two Step Mystery, be sure to share your progress on the Scrap Dance Mystery Flickr Group.  I plan to show some progress photos of that one soon.

One more quilt along in progress now is the Be My Neighbor quilt along, for those who would rather know what the final quilt looks like.  Join in the fun starting HERE, yes you have time to catch up!

What are you working on now?



Needle and Thread Thursday



Scrap Dance Two-Step Mystery Quilt Begins!


Scrap Dance Two-Step Mystery Quilt Along

Scrap Dance Mystery Two Step is now over.  The pattern will be available in my Craftsy store soon.  Thank you for quilting along, and if you are just now finding it, gather your precut leftover charm packs and jelly rolls, fat quarters, end of bolts, and scraps for the next mystery in the Scrap Dance Series coming January 2018.



Scrap Dance Mystery #3


Scrap Dance Two-Step Mystery Quilt Along

Scrap Dance Two-Step is now over.  Check my Craftsy store soon for the complete pattern.


Sharing the announcement post only, I will not be linking the individual steps.

Whoop Whoop Friday

Crazy Mom Quilts

Busy Hands Quilt Alongs Link Page

Show Off Saturday

Oh Scrap!

Main Crush Monday

Linky Tuesday Freemotion by the River

Let’s Bee Social

Needle and Thread Thursday

Seams to Be Sew




Quilting Donation Quilts

It was a productive time in the last 10 days, as I worked though the backlog of donation quilts I promised to do.  Having the longarm down for three weeks didn’t help.  Most of this is my own making, as I wanted to do several small quilts for the club’s donation to Mainstay and Open Arms, both local charities. I did another of the four patch quilt, and got it on the frame.

Donation Quilts at From My Carolina Home

I still had the Wrought Iron pantograph loaded up, and thought it would do fine for this little quilt. I like the way it overlaps the previous row. Thread was a variegated green Superior with Bottom Line in the bobbin. Warm and Natural batting.

Donation Quilts at From My Carolina Home

Sunday’s are made for hand sewing binding while watching football games.

Donation Quilts at From My Carolina Home

All done with this one.

Donation Quilts at From My Carolina Home

Then, I was asked to quilt a top for a fellow club member, Betty, who has had some health problems. Another member took her blocks and sewed them together with borders. She brought it to me, last week and I was thrilled to see it was Scrap Dance, the original!

Betty's Scrap Dance 1

I love the colors she used. There is a lot more blue than I generally like, but it really works here. I decided to put a swirl pantograph pattern on it to soften the sharper angles.

Betty's Scrap Dance 2

I did the quilting in a lighter ecru color thread, so the texture shows on the light borders. Thread is Essentials on the top, and Bottom Line in the bobbin. Batting was donated to us by the Warm Company, Warm and White.

Betty's Scrap Dance 5

A few minor puckers on the borders were pretty well flattened with some steam and judicious pressing.

Betty's Scrap Dance 3

Overall the quilt looks wonderful. Club member Sharon picked it up to bind it, and it will go to a local charity.  I didn’t have the heart to tell her about the mistake in the bottom row.  Do you like this pattern?  It is for sale in my Craftsy store, click HERE.

Betty's Scrap Dance 8

What are you working on this week?


UFO Busting at Colorways By Vicki

Show Off Saturday at Sew Can She

Main Crush Monday

Whoop Whoop



Scrap Dance Tango is Published

The Scrap Dance Tango pattern is now available in my Craftsy store.  Thank you to all who participated in this fun mystery quilt along!

Tango Cover Shots 6

I am currently in the planning stage for more mystery fun with our scraps!

Tango Cover Shots 3

I can’t decide whether to do a small one for autumn / holiday, or just wait until next year for a full quilt.

Tango Cover Shots 7

Which would you like?  Or do you want both of them? Either way, save those scraps!

Click on Scrap Dance Tango! I hope you will consider purchasing the pattern, as it is those sales that support the costs of the blog and make it possible to bring you new and free projects. Thank you!!



Main Crush Monday

Can I Get a Whoop Whoop!

Oh Scrap!

Val’s Tuesday Archives