About Me

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Bigfork, Montana, USA
Bigfork Bay Cotton Company is a full service, brick and mortar quilt shop, as well as a retail/wholesale pattern business. You can view our pattern line on our website, but on a more personal level, we'd like to invite you into our shop and share with you the joy of quilting in our corner of the world!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


This is it! Just the last two borders and this one will be ready for quilting!
Make sure your quilt top is pressed very well!
Cut two of the 1 1/2 inch strips in half. Sew one half to each of the remaining four full strips. Lay two stripS across the center of the quilt top. Trim edges even with the quilt top. Sew to opposite sides of the quilt top, easing the quilt top into border, if necessary. Press towards border.
Repeat for the remaining two strips.
Add the four focus fabric border pieces in the same manner.

Here is a closeup...I just thought you might like to see how cute this border fabric is! I have had it in my stash for awhile, just waiting for the right project and the right baby..... I am anxious to get this one to the quilter. With white batting, the shadows of the seam allowances will disappear, and I think the contrast between the light and the light/medium fabric will show up more.

Here is another version of the quilt, with a Michael Miller Christmas fabric and Fairy Frosts. As you can see, in this quilt there is much more contrast between the light and the light/medium. This just came back from the quilter yesterday, so I haven't added binding yet.

To finish it up, layer and quilt as desired. (Or do like I do....send it off to the quilter...)
To bind it, join the seven 2 1/2 inch strips of DARK fabric, end to end, to form a long binding strip. Attach to quilt in your preferred method!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


This beautiful new design by artist Brenda Yirsa needs a name! Do you have a suggestion? If so, please email the name (and yours!) to traci@bigforkbaycottonco.com by midnight, October 15th. You must email your name....we won't be checking comments here. After we have accumulated all of your suggestions, we will send them to Brenda and she will choose a name.
The first person to submit the winning name will receive a free fabric kit with pattern. Anyone else who submits the winning name will receive a free pattern!
You can enter as many times as you'd like!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


This is a really quick step! You will use the strips you pieced in step 3.....
Sew the two shorter strips to opposite sides of the quilt top. Press towards the quilt top.
Sew the remaining two strips to the other sides of the quilt top. Press towards the quilt top.

Friday, August 12, 2011


How is everyone doing? Did you get your blocks put together? This month we're going to put them together with some simple sashing and cornerstones. It may appear that we are at the end, but we have a little more finishing up to do. I know it is a busy time of year with summer winding down and families getting ready for school. This is a quick step!
BIG OOPS on my part. Do you know how I usually take photos as I go along? Well I did do that this time. However, I didn't notice until I took the very last photo that I didn't have an SD card in my camera! So you will notice that the first two photos are cropped from the final one, which leaves a "little extra" around the edges. I think it's still clear enough what to do....
Subcut the eight 2 1/2 inch LIGHT/MEDIUM strips into 2 1/2 X 12 1/2 inch rectangles. You will get three per strip. You need a total of 24 rectangles.
Subcut the 2 1/2 inch DARK strip into 2 1/2 inch squares. You will need 16 squares.
Using twelve of the LIGHT/MEDIUM rectangles, and all of the DARK squares, make four strips as shown below. Press away from the DARK squares.
Using the remaining LIGHT/MEDIUM rectangles and the blocks, make three rows as shown below. Press towards the LIGHT/MEDIUM sashing strips.
Lay out the strips as shown and sew together. Press towards the sashing strips.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


I am sure that by now some of you have been playing with the components, trying to figure out the block. Let's see how many of you are correct!
Subcut the 4 1/2" strip of FOCUS fabric into 4 1/2" squares. You will need 9.
Lay out the block components as shown below:
Stitch into rows. Press the center row towards the center (FOCUS fabric). Press the other rows away from the center.
Stitch the rows together. Press either way, or press seams open...whatever makes the block lay the flattest.

See you next month!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


and the winner is.....NICKI REID!!!

Here are Debi's own words regarding this contest and her choice:

"I want to thank everyone for such wonderful names. I really could not decide. And I changed my mind over and over. I hope some of you won't mind if I use some of those fantastic names for my future creations. I will give you credit of course. My biggest dilemma for choosing a name was this little giraffe's gender. I made him/her and I still cannot decide if he is a boy or she is a girl.

Here is the name I have chosen. Zuri. Which means beautiful in Swahili. I have a strong love for Africa and its amazing landscape, and spectacular animals. And most of all the beauty in the women and children there and how they persevere over challenges with such grace. Zuri represents all of the loveliness that is Africa for me."

We did receive multiple submissions of this name, but Nicki's was first! She will win a fabric kit with pattern. The others that submitted this name will receive a free pattern!

We are still probably about a month out from delivering this pattern...but we are accepting preorders now. Why order now instead of waiting until it is ready? The first 50 orders will received patterns signed by Debi Hubbs! This is the first time we have offered this! Debi is becoming very famous....this autograph is priceless!!
The pattern will cost $12 and the fabric kit will cost $46. As always, the fabric kit will include the pattern, all fabrics needed to complete the top as shown above, and the binding.

Call now (406-245-5718) or visit www.bigforkbaycottonco.com to order.

Oh yea, one more reason to order soon.....for a limited time, all Zuri orders will be 10% off!

Friday, June 10, 2011


Please read all instructions through before beginning!
Subcut the remaining four LIGHT, 2 1/2" strips into 4 1/2" lengths. You will need 36. Subcut the MEDIUM/DARK #1 strips into 2 1/2" squares. You will need 72. Using the method used in Step 1, sew the squares to the rectangles to create flying geese units.
Using these units and the units from Step 1, sew pairs of geese together to create the units shown.
*Hint: When sewing the two flying geese units together, place the one from Step 1 on top. That way, you can see exactly where the point is, and stitch just up to it without cutting it off!
Press towards the flying geese from this step.
You should have 36.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Please read through all instructions before beginning!

Subcut four of the 1 1/2" LIGHT strips into 1 1/2" X 4 1/2" rectangles. You will need 36 rectangles. Stitch these to the long side of the unit pieced in Step 2, opposite the side with the triangle.

Using the thirty-six 2 1/2" squares of FOCUS fabric that were set aside earlier, place a square on each unit pieced above, on the opposite corner from the light triangle. Stitch diagonally, fold open, and press.

Trim one or both inside layers to reduce bulk, if desired.

Friday, May 6, 2011

.~Name the Giraffe Contest.~


Submit name suggestions to:


by Midnight June 5th, 2011

Bigfork Bay Cotton Company recently licensed this adorable giraffe design from Debi Hubbs to add to her ever growing collection of art quilt patterns.

The giraffe design didn't officially have a name, so Debi and Bigfork Bay Cotton Co. thought it would be a great idea to have YOU name the pattern! Isn't that so fun?

To submit names simply email traci@bigforkbaycottonco.com.

You can enter as many names as you like. In case of duplicate names, the first name entered will be chosen. We need to name the giraffe soon! So get your names in A.S.A.P.

The contest officially closes Midnight June 5th, 2011.

And the winning name gets?

The person who selects the winning name will receive a pattern signed by Debi Hubbs and a matching fabric kit!

The pattern will not be ready until the end of June. However we are offering pre-orders so click here to visit our website or call us toll free at: 866-245-5718.

Good Luck to all of you and we can't wait to see what name Debi picks.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Please read through all the instructions before starting.....

Subcut FOUR of the remaining five strip sets of 1 1/2" LIGHT and 1 1/2" LIGHT/MEDIUM strips into 12 1/2" lengths. You will need 12. Subcut the remaining strip set into 2 1/2" lengths. You will need 16. Set these aside.

You will need 12 of these.

You will need 16 of these.

Subcut the 2 1/2" strips of FOCUS fabric into 2 1/2" squares. You will need a total of 60. Set aside 36 squares. Draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of each of the remaining 24 squares. Lay a square on each end of the 12 1/2" strips cut above. Stitch on the diagonal line, fold back and press. Trim inside layers, if desired, to reduce bulk. (I trim the FOCUS fabric layer.) Make sure the diagonal lines are placed so that the long side of the triangle covers the LIGHT fabric, as shown.

From the 2 7/8" LIGHT/MEDIUM strip, cut 2 squares, 2 7/8". Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on the wrong side of each square. Place one square of LIGHT/MEDIUM on each 2 7/8" FOCUS fabric cut earlier, right sides together. Sew a scant 1/4" on each side of the drawn line. Cut apart on the drawn line, open up, and press towards the FOCUS fabric. Trim out the inside layers, if desired, to reduce bulk. You should have four half square triangles.

Using the units pieced above, make TWO each of the following strips:

This completes step 3!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


I have been working on this new shop sample. It looked so simple, but it caused me some headaches! It is based on a free downloadable pattern from Michael Miller Fabrics called Graphic Garden. I made some changes in the sashing....the original called for some straight cuts and some bias cuts...I didn't want to do that so I made all straight cuts. I thought that would make the pattern more "user friendly". I did have some other problems, so I went to the website last weekend to see if there were any pattern corrections posted, but the pattern is no longer there! I had to make some changes in the sashing, so I will have to rewrite the instructions. I like the way it turned out....do you?

Thursday, March 17, 2011


I know many of you have seen these handy thread catchers before. I see them a lot at craft shows, as well as in shops, both for sale and in classrooms. ANYWAY, they really are easy and quick make. If you haven't tried one, now would be a good time, since I'm sharing my step by step instructions. It took longer to type the instructions than it did to make one.
There are a lot of other uses for these things besides your sewing and cutting tables. You can iron some fusible vinyl to the lining fabric and make a little garbage can for your car. Instead of filling the pin cushion, you can make longer straps, sew them together and slip over the headrest to hang behind the passenger seat. Or make the bag a little bigger to store toys and/or books in the car. You can tweak the size a little bit....perhaps lengthen the straps....., don't fill the pincushion, just tuck it into the cushion and hang it over the arm of the couch to collect remotes and TV Guides (do they still make TV guides?...probably not....). You can make one to slip in between your mattress and box spring to hold your book and booklight. The possibilites are endless!

Supplies Needed:
2 Fat Quarters
Scrap of muslin or other fabric , 5 1/2" X 8 1/2" (should be a tightly woven fabric)
18 1/2" of strapping tape (If you don't have any around the house, check with your local grocer or office supply store....they throw away tons of this stuff, or you can often buy a piece from your local shipping store)
Play sand, rice, or beans
Thread to coordinate with fabric (We recommend Aurifil thread.)
3" X 5" piece of rubber shelf liner or rug liner

Cutting Instructions:
From each FQ cut one rectangle, 18" X 10". Decide which will be the outside, and which will be the lining.
From the lining, cut one rectangle, 4" X 10".
From the outside fabric, cut one rectangle, 6" X 9"

(The muslin piece is not shown in the photo.....)

Fold muslin in half, right sides together. Using a short stitch length, stitch raw edges together, leaving an opening approximately 2" in one of the short ends. Turn right side out, if desired. (This will not show, so it's really not necessary to turn it inside out.) Set aside.

To make the straps, fold the 4" X 10" rectangle in half lengthwise, right sides together. Stitch along long edge. Turn right side out and scootch the seam to the center. Press. If desired, topstitch 1/4" from each long side. Cut the strip in half to yield two straps.

Lay the 6" X 9" rectangle, right side up, on the table. Lay the two straps on top of the rectangle, along one of the 6" edges, matching raw edges. Each strap shoud be approximately 1/2" from the center of the large rectangle.

Fold the rectangle in half, enveloping the straps inside. Use pins, if necessary, to keep the straps where they belong. Stitch along one short edge and the 6" edge. Trim the corner.

Turn right side out and press. Press the raw edge under 1/4".

Fold the large (18" X 10") rectangle for the outside of the bag in half along the 18" side. Stitch along each side. Open seam apart at bottom of bag and lay seam flat against the bag bottom, centering the seam. Measure in 1 1/2" from the tip and mark. Draw a line across the bottom of the bag perpedicular to the seam line. Stitch along the drawn line. Repeat for the other side. Trim, if desired.

Repeat for the other large rectange (the lining fabric), but leave a 1/4" opening in one side.

Place one bag inside the other bag, right sides together. Slip the pin cushion in between the two bags, with the pin cushion hanging down between the layers, and the raw edges of the straps matching the raw edge of the bags. The right side of the straps (the side without the seams) should face the lining fabric. Pin the straps in place along one raw edge. Try to center the straps along one of the long sides of the bags. Stitch together

Carefully turn right side out through the opening in the lining.

Slip the strapping tape in between the bag and the lining (through the opening in the lining). This will feel a little cumbersome, but it's the only way to do this. Overlap the ends of the strapping tape approximately 1/4" and tape together. Slide the tape to the top of the bag as far as it will go. (Adjust the tape if the strapping tape isn't the same size as the bag.) Place some pins around the top of the bag just underneath the strapping tape to hold the strapping tape in place. Stitch around the top of the bag, close to the tape, but take care not to stitch through the tape...your machine won't like that....

Stitch the opening in the lining of the bag closed, either by hand or machine. (I did it by machine....after all, it is inside the bag and really won't show.)

Using a funnel, fill the muslin bag with the sand, rice, or beans. Stitch the opening closed, either by hand or machine. If you are doing it by machine, be very, very careful not to spill sand on or into your machine. Slip the muslin bag inside the fabric bag. Stitch the bag closed.

Stitch a piece of shelf liner to the bottom of the pin cushion, if desired, to prevent it from scooting around on your table.