Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks: Blocks 5 and 6

5 - Spiked Pinwheels
Block 125 on page 34
Robin Koehler
Nestlings by Robin
36 pieces

My block is made a little different than the instructions in the magazine.  I visited Robin's site during the blog tour and saw different variations of the block made into quilts.  I was so fascinated by them that I put this block high on my list to make.  It's the same block that's used in the tree skirt sew along but looks completely different with two prints instead of two tone on tone fabrics.

6 - Maywood Blossom
Block 137 on page 40
Deborah Johnson
In the Doghouse Designs
22 pieces

This is my first applique (mixed technique) block.  I figured I should start some of these now so I will not have all applique blocks at the end of the journey.

I have 2 online bloggers participating so please visit their pages. 

P.S.  I'm having so much fun!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Design Wall Monday

I completed my Blocks of the Week and made separate posts for them last week.  NOTE to participants:  I plan to work on Blocks 125 and 137 from Quiltmaker mag and block 3 of the drunkards path pattern. 

I finished the Tidbits on the Vine top.  For pattern info, visit last week's Design Wall Monday post. The floral border is a little too bright for the pastel fabrics inside but that's all I had in my stash.  This quilt will belong to someone in my family. I still have about 10-12 more quilts to make for family members. 

This photo is a lot strange as it's too big for my design wall and it was hung upside down which I didn't notice until adding photo to my blog.

This quilt top I thought I'd finished in February of this year for my cousin.  Sometimes being nice can become a chore.  Prior to making this quilt top I'd made a complete quilt and was about to mail it to her.  She then asks for a quilt with a motorcycle on it.  It took a few years for me to get motivated to make a quilt for her again.  Then in February I finished this quilt which is approximately 66" wide by 57" long.  I showed her a photo and then she sends me a photo of her motorcycle club logo which is purple, black and white.  She asked for the logo to be included, to make it large enough to wrap up in, and to add all colors, not just red, white, black, and blue.  Hm, needless to say, this quilt went on the back burner again (I also had the back pieced).  This weekend I decided to get this top completed by adding two rows of tumblers to the top and bottom, including some logos in the shapes.  It's not what I would have done with this quilt, but under the circumstances it's now a quilt top that's twin-size and I'm officially done with it, no matter what future requests I may or may not receive.  I still need to add about 24" to the pieced back before it can be quilted.  Here is how it looks now - a little strange if you ask me.
I saw the Philadelphia Pavement quilt on a blog last week and knew I wanted to make one and had the pattern already.  I started cutting strips with my go cutter.  I have just four rows of a quadrant pieced.  I have a plan on how to adapt the pattern to piece this quilt a little easier. It will be a long term project as this quilt has abut a millions squares (slight exaggeration but not by much).

I didn't get much quilting done this week, even with two days off as I spent portions of two days shopping.  I went to JoAnn's on both days, Hancocks, the mall, and a quilt shop that I'd recently received a gift certificate from.  I didn't spend too much and purchased things already on my list that were on sale, using additional percentage off coupons.  I didn't even purchase one gift from the stores I visited so I went online and order a few items for some of my quilting buddies.  I just have one or two more items I need to pick up.  Did you shop any this weekend?

 -------------------------- Type-u-later, http://www.teaquilts.com

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Many Paths All Around - Drunkard's Path Block 2

Here is block 2.  In order to get a few more fabrics into thequilt, I made the corners in a different fabric.

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Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks: Blocks 3 and 4

3 - Odd Fellow's Chain
Block 159 on page 51
Karen Combs, Karen Combs' Studio
73 pieces

I had a bit of a challenge using this fabric line for this block.  It would have been so much easier to just use a lot of the solid prints for contrast.  However, I purchased this line to get out of my comfort zone.  My center star does not contrast as much as it should but it's staying that way.
4 - Tumbler Star
Block 194 on page 68
Benita Skinner, Victoriana Quilt Designs
20 pieces

I tried using another teal print with this block to use one color family as shown in the magazine.  However, it blended too much.  I did determine that the reason I'm having so much problem with contrast is because while the fabrics change colors, they do not change value, other than the chocolate brown prints.  I'm determined though to use the fabric line in as many blocks as possible; I may have to add some supporting fabrics though.

OOPS!  I forgot to add that Judy has started her blocks so please visit her blog too.

added 11/25/10 -- Cathy now has her four blocks posted.  Visit her too.



Monday, November 22, 2010

Design Wall Monday

These blocks are at the top of my design wall.  This week I started two self-made challenges.  You can read more about them by clicking on the respective links.  The drunkard's path block is one challenge and it's the first of twelve blocks.  The two middle blocks are the results of starting the Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks challenge.  The last block is a Mountain Top block I use for chain piecing.  I decided to make another block instead of making HSTs.  I now have 10 blocks.

I'm still in the process of cutting scraps and decided Sunday to cut pieces for "Tidbits on the Vine", a free pattern from Henry Glass & Co.  I made the background scrappy to use some of the brown scraps I have that never seem to get used.  Instead of using the flowers and leaves from the pattern, I decided to use the flowers I made with my GO! cutter.  The leaves I also cut with the cutter using the designer dies by Ricky Tims.  I cut the dies and then trimmed off sections to use for leaves.  What a great way to use the dies and I hadn't thought of that prior to the purchase.
 In addition, my Scrap Quilting Club met on Saturday and I posted a separate blog entry for that.  Another post I uploaded was for the Strip Tease Tutorial.  Visit Patchwork Times to view more design walls.

Enjoy the holiday week.  I hope I get my three challenge blocks completed for the week with all the fun.
-------------------------- Type-u-later, http://www.teaquilts.com

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Strip Tease Tutorial

You will need:
36 jelly roll strips that are medium or dark in value. I used 2.5” strips that a friend cut from her stash so my quilt is scrappy, not from one line of fabric.

36 light jelly roll strips. You can use from different fabrics in your stash; however, I used the same fabric throughout. If you use one fabric, you will need 2-3/4 yards of fabric to cut your strips.

9.5” or larger square up ruler. I’m using Omnigrid but any brand will work as long as there is a diagonal line running from one corner to the other in at least one direction.

Step 1:  Sew your strip set together as shown in the photo with an accurate ¼” seam (really important.) You should have 12 strip sets in each arrangement for a total of 24 strip sets. Press seams toward medium/dark prints.

Step 2:  Take one of each type of strip set (like the two shown in step 1) and place right side together. If you have sewn accurate ¼” seams, the seams should lock in place with the outside edges of the strips meeting. Sew ¼” seam (keep it straight as you’ll be using this line later) on both long sides of the strips, making a tube.

Step 3: Using the photo as a reference, line your strip up as shown (I’ve cropped the strip so you can see better) with the diagonal line along the seam line (look up at the top). Trim this edge with your LEFT hand. Yes, I can here you…you need to learn to use your least dominate hand some times. Just try it.

Just showing the edge trimmed. Put the trimmed edge in a pile. It will be used later, but not right now.

Step 4: Slide the ruler to the left until the end that is closest to you is abutted next to the seam line. The edge of the ruler should stop right at the stitched line, NOT at the tip. In addition, the diagonal line is still on the sewn line at the top of this photo. (Sorry that I didn’t use contrasting thread so you could see the sewing line better.) Your ruler should be aligned exactly as shown in the photo, if not, do not cut. Adjust your ruler and then cut along the edge of your ruler. These are your blocks. Do not open them just yet, continue cutting.

Step 5: Pull the ruler down to the bottom and align the ruler as indicated above. Continue cutting across the width of the strip. Because of the variety of strip lengths, you may get 5 or 6 units from each strip set.

Step 6: I like to trim my triangle points while the block is flat. That way I only need to make one cut per corner instead of two. Align your ruler to stop at the stitching, keeping a line on the ruler parallel to the edge of the triangle. Trim the top. Repeat for all triangles.

Close up of the trimmed edge with ruler moved down slightly so you can see the technique.

Step 7: Press your seams open. (Please ignore the dog ear on this block; of course I got in a hurry trying to sew and take pictures.) I like to press seams open to reduce bulk as 8 fabrics will be meeting in the center point.

Step 8: Layout time! You need to decide what size quilt you will make. I recommend 12, 15 or 16 block layouts. Here are some possibilities with blocks laid out from 4 strip sets.

This layout uses 4 blocks from the same strip set. Notice that the Medium/dark prints creates a large diamond with opposite fabrics facing. Since you started with 12 sets of strips, the maximum number of Great Blocks you could make would be 12.

Here is a close up of just one block so you can get the idea.

This layout is very similar to the one above but it is a little different. Notice that in each Great Block the large diamond is now made with your light background fabric and that the 4 fabrics in the small diamond matches. Again, since you started with 12 sets of strips, the maximum number of Great Blocks you could make would be 12.
This is a scrappy layout where none of the fabrics in the Great block match. This is the layout that I chose. With this layout, you can opt to make a quilt with 15 or 16 blocks. But wait, I have another layout choice for you to ponder.

This zigzag layout is also very effective. It is laid out in scrap layout without any like fabrics touching. Your layout will be more varied when you use all the blocks (remember I only used blocks from 4 strip sets here.)

After you decide upon your chosen layout, lay out all your blocks, making sure of your arrangement. Now is the time to balance your fabrics in the layout.

Step 9: I recommend working on one Great Block at a time or marking your entire row with masking or painter’s tape. Use masking tape if you will be sewing your blocks right away; otherwise, use painter's tape.

I made my Great Blocks one at a time and returned it to the design wall after sewing. To make the Great Block, sew top two sections together and sew bottom two sections together. Press seams open.

Step 10: Sew the center seam to complete the Great Block. Press seam open. Repeat for all your Great Blocks.

Sew your Great Blocks into rows. Photo shows two rows of blocks sewn together.

Continue sewing the rows into a completed quilt top.

But what about the scraps I have leftover?
Now that the quilt top is completed, you have a lot of leftover units from the edges of the strips. They will look something like this depending upon if you consistently place the strips in the same position when you cut (light strips on outside on top OR dark strips on outside on top.) Press open the seams of all units.

I found a few layout possibilities with the remaining pieces. I laid them all out before sewing so I had a plan. Here are a few of the arrangements. There are subtle differences in each one.

Sew the blocks together, ignoring the outside edges as they will not match.

After you have sewn the blocks together, trim them to the largest size blocks you can, trimming off the selvages. Each block will be a different size.

Here is a photo of all blocks made from leftovers. I plan to use this in a scrap quilt with odd ball size blocks. However, you can use the blocks with additional fabric/s to make a back or in any other project, like totes, mug/table mats, etc. The goal here was to sew the leftover units into blocks.

This was a project for my scrap quilting club.  To see more variations, view these posts.  You will have to scroll down as different participants brought various tops to the meetings for show-n-tell.

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Scrap Quilting Club

On Saturday, we had our last scrap club meeting for the year.  This club was started in March of this year and we met every month for nine months, working on nine different projects.  This month we had a party (no pictures of all the fun) and we brought food, had lots of show and tell (all photos not shown here though), and had so much fun sewing and socializing.  This meeting was sort of a wrap up of the previous 8 months and I am so proud of the group and their efforts with keeping up with the projects.  Some of the quilts and/or tops you'll see this week may have been shown on the blog previously, but they completed the quilting or added borders.  I'm sorry to report that a couple of photos I thought I took were not on my memory stick.  Remember, all pattern sources were in previous posts as the projects were assigned.  Click here  for a search of all scrap quilting club projects where you can find links to patterns.

-------------------------- Type-u-later, http://www.teaquilts.com
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