Monthly Archives: May 2016

Mermaid Paper Pieced Quilt

Mermaid Quilt The Mermaid Quilt measures 41″x 41″ and would look adorable on your little girls wall! This quilt could easily become larger with the addition of extra borders. The outer border is comprised of 1 charm pack. I used Moda Charm Pack “Grow”. It has lovely little girl colors and will coordinate with lots of different decor.

Brunette MermaidThe very sweet mermaid is made from 2 blocks that are paper pieced, then sewn together. These are very easy blocks and would be great for a beginner. If you are advanced, you will have this quilt put together in no time at all.

Redhead MermaidBlonde MermaidHere’s a close-up of her face. I made each mermaid with a different hair color. No discrimination here! I found the perfect “flower” buttons for her hair, however buttons are optional, of course. If this quilt were to be used for a baby, I recommend NO BUTTONS! This lovely quilt, as well as many of my other designs, can be found on my Etsy shop: Made By Marney.



Made By Marney

Free Motion Quilting on the Cats N’ Dogs Quilt Blocks

IMG_Best1453 Friends have been asking for suggestions for free motion quilting on my blocks. I quilt every area unless it is very tiny, like the triangular nose on this Schnauzer. I try to use a variety of different sized patterns. Notice how the background around the dog (the dark gray area) has a loose stipple with a few swirls interspersed to create some focal point areas. Compare that to the very loose wiggle stipple in the blue border. In the dog’s beard, I tried to somewhat follow the random pattern in the fabric.

IMG_best55Notice the very tight stipple on the dog’s face and ears. Stitching this tight creates a surface that is rather stiff, but it makes the quilt lay beautifully. This is especially nice for a wall hanging.

Words of wisdom: 1) Use a variety of lines in different sections of your quilt. 2) Quilt across your quilt equally, don’t leave large unquilted areas or they will “puff” out. 3) Keep a notebook (as a resource) of lines and doodles that could be used for free motion patterns.

Happy Quilting!

Cats N’ Dogs Paper Pieced Quilt

Photo of quilt Cats N DogsMy Cats N’ Dogs Quilt was inspired by a customer asking for some dog blocks for her son, who is a huge dog lover. Once I start designing blocks for a particular subject, I get on a roll and come up with a dozen different designs. In this instance, I like them all. And why stop at dogs…let’s toss in a few cats as well.

7. Schnauzer DogHere’s my neighbor’s Schnauzer. He walks this dog every morning and he (my neighbor, not the dog) is always carrying a cup of coffee as he walks. I always thought that was interesting, since he lives a number of blocks away from me and still juggles that cup of coffee on his morning walk with Schnauzer.

9. Who Dat CatThis is “Who Dat Cat”. I love the expression on her face! I want to make an entire quilt just using this cat in all different colors.

4. Happy DogAnd here is “Happy Dog”. He looks like he wants to leap right out of the quilt in glee!

This quilt would be a fun block of the month project! Is anyone interested in doing this with me on my website?

The Cats N’ Dogs Pattern can be found on my Etsy shop: Made By Marney.

“Forest Friends” Paper Pieced Quilt and Table Runner

“Forest Friends” has been such a fun quilt to design. It reminds me of all the wonderful woodland walks I took as a child on the farm. Spring was always the best time to explore the woods and there were all manner of animals, hedgehog, deer, raccoon, owls, foxes, and rabbits. I have a lovely friend, Sue Kerr, who does machine embroidery for me and she chose the perfect font for “Forest Friends.” Thanks, Sue!

IMG_1400“Boots the Fox” and “Bandit the Raccoon” are 2 of my favorites. The tiny black flange around the animals makes a striking outline which I love.

“Blinky the Owl” looks very intelligent. And I’m using buttons to create that wonky eyeball look. If this quilt were being used for a baby blanket, I would switch the buttons to appliqued circles of fabric or wool.

IMG_1400The finished dimensions of the quilt are 37″x 45″ and the runner measures 16″x 40″. The pattern can be found on my Etsy shop, “Made By Marney”.

Writing this post has inspired me to go for a nice long spring hike through, High Cliff, our local state park. Have a great day!






Welcome to My Blog Tour

IMG_1329I am thrilled to be part of the Quiltmakers 100 Blocks Blog Tour. There I am on the cover of Volume 13. This is my first time in a magazine, so I was tickled to see my block included on the cover with so many other great designers. To win a free copy of the magazine, make sure to leave a comment below!! AND include your email address so I can communicate with the winners. I will be giving away 3 free copies. I lucky person will win a copy of my new booklet, “Marney Cards”, filled with patterns for paper pieced greeting cards. To win my booklet, you must subscribe to my website. IMG_1238Subscribe to my website to win this booklet. It’s a great way to use up all those scraps! If you are using a cell phone, scroll all the way to the bottom to “Subscribe to Made By Marney by Email”.

IMG_1334Let me introduce myself.  I am Mary Hertel, and I grew up on a dairy farm in the midwest. After teaching art for 35 years in Wisconsin, I started designing paper pieced patterns. That was five years ago, and now I have a growing business called “Made By Marney”. I am loving my “new career” and I am so glad to meet you! I love designing wonky animals, but for the magazine competition I did a flag design.

Here’s my paper pieced block, “Four Flags”.


Original sketchI am a retired art instructor. My idea came from a project I used to do with my first graders in art class. I had them construct a paper flag, then cut it apart and reassemble it to make it look like it was waving. Here’s one of my thumbnail sketches of the flag, as I was playing around with the idea. I like to start my designs small, about 3″x 3″. Then, after I like them, I blow them up larger. Drawing thumbnail sketches allows me to draw my designs anywhere, laying in bed at night, on napkins in a restaurant, or whenever I get an idea.


After a few tries, I came up with this finished flag, but wanted to repeat it so the block would get bigger. When I joined the four blocks, a nice diamond shape appeared in the center, but wasn’t very straight, as you can see below!

First TrySo it was back to the drawing board to get those flag poles to line up perfectly to make the diamond. The appliqued red star was the icing on the cake.

One Nation from P&BI work in a quilt store part-time now that I am retired from teaching. When this line of patriotic fabric came in from P&B fabrics, I new it would be perfect for my flag.

Four Flags quiltThis is a cute quilt idea using my paper pieced blocks along with some large appliqued stars.

Four Flags Runner with Lacy Red StarsHere’s an idea for a patriotic table runner. The stars on the ends are flat quilted shapes that are sewn together in the corners to resemble lace.

Four Flags with American StarHere’s a quilt idea combining my block, “Four Flags” with one of the other blocks in Volume 13, “American Star” by Lynne Schwarz. There are so many clever possibilities!

Visit my etsy store, Made By Marney, to see more of my patterns and don’t forget to leave a comment or subscribe or BOTH to be eligible for prizes!