Here comes Monday again and I’m here to talk about my strawberry snowball quilt failure. Here is how it all started!

Saturday mornings before work in 2015 I routinely watched PBS Think TV’s, Fons and Porter, For the Love of Quilting.

It’s not a secret that I don’t really quilt, but when I saw a demonstration on a snow ball strawberry quilt that looked so easy I though for sure I could make myself one. Of course I was very unrealistic in my expectations.

Well, you know how the story goes? All of us makers have been there, $100 later I have all of my fabrics, blocks cut and sewn but no ambition to put it together.  I place my project in a bag and to the back of the closet it goes for safe keeping.

One crafty Monday I decided to get all of my pieces out of the closet and puzzle them together into one of my favorite things. I had some friends come over to join in the fun.

Leaving the green and the yellow behind I quilted all of my finished blocks together until I had enough yardage for a gathered skirt, a front and back bodice, plus sleeves.  Most of the dresses pieces were made of rectangles. To get my full design I draped, pinned and cut it on the dress form.

Problem solving; the pieces were quilted and had lots of little raw edges. I needed to line or underline them in something so my piecing would not fray. I took some vintage organza and underlined each piece by baste stitching directly to the organza. This also gave my dress great form. Sewing is full of problem solving!

The dress has a side zip due to the diamond back design I created.

Behind the scenes

The secret dress I designed for horror novelist JJ Philips fit her perfectly and looks amazing!\nShe even wrote about me on her website!


Did you know my husband makes beer and beer recipes for Yellow Springs Brewery?  Let’s see if he reads my blog and sees this. On December 23 they are gearing up to release Maxxdout an Imperial American Stout in 22 oz bottles. This Imperial Stout is brewed with crisp American 2-Row malt and plenty of chocolate and roasted barley, then dry hopped with Amarillo and Centennial hops. Big, hoppy when fresh, and perfect for those wintry nights. If this doesn’t get your palate wanting a nice big stout, then maybe hearing it’s a whopping 13% will! Bottles available for purchase promptly at 3 pm in the taproom that day with Maxxdout on tap along with two different variations – Coconut Rum Maxxdout and Blueberry Maxxdout! Yum! Bottles are $15 each with a 3 bottle limit per person. So, make sure to bring a friend  

Thank you for reading!

Tracy McElfresh

Tracy McElfresh is the owner of Tracy’s Sewing Studio LLC.
Tracy McElfresh