Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Hive 3 August blocks for Debbie

Hi all. Just sharing my August blocks for Debbie. Hope you like them. The owl fabric is one of my favorites. When I sewed these I somehow managed to see something wrong on both. And one was after I had it all together (ugh). 

I can't wait to see your whole quilt together! 

And for the question, I remember my mom sewing when I was little and ways wanted to try. I took home-ec in 6th grade and loved it. In high school I made my first qut and was totally hooked. 

Hive 3 Block - August

I had a lot of fun with this block. It gave me a chance to use this adorable alligator fabric - I'm hoarding the last few scraps.

My mother taught me to sew, then later I took Home Ec classes. I always had a fascination with quilting and completed a few small patchwork projects in high school. I didn't really start quilting until later, and have been quilting sporadically for the past 20 years.

I initially started by taking classes; now I use the internet and my local quilt guild as a resource. I have been a member of the Central Jersey Modern Quilt Guild (CJMQG) for the past 2 years, and am happy to associate with so many talented, creative people.

Hive 6 September blocks

Hive 6 September blocks

Hi my name is Michelle and I live in Kingaroy, a small town in Australia.
I live here with my kids and husband. Even though we dont live clóse to the beach, we do have a beach house where we go most weekends. Australia is very much a beach-loving nation so my inspiration for my block was the ocean. But not your traditional ocean colours. I have included a few pictures (thanks to pinterest) so you get the idea.

As you can see not your traditional beachy colours. 

My inspiration for the quilt was the plus block from Rachel from Wooden spoon.
I asked her if I could use her dimensions and block for this tutorial and she she said yes and would love you ladies to pop over and say hi if you could. 

I think we have all seen these lovely blocks around, they are quick to make. It took me 30min to make two, and I am slow at the best of times. 

So here goes a quick explanation for the blocks I would like
Background - shades of grey - any grey will do, any shade with a print without print,really anything goes. ( I havent included a picture of the greys as Iwould rather not guide you on this one.
The cross in the middle should either be blues ( dark stormy blues) or bright sunset oranges, use the pictures above as a guide. Here are the colours I grabbed 

Don't you just love the  winter sun streaming through the windows.
Ok So you need from grey fabrics the following 4x 5inch squares; 4x 2 3/4inch squares
From the blue or orange you need 2x 2 3/4inch squares, and one 7 1/4inch x 2 3/4inch rectangle . Lay them out as below 

Then just sew together in strips ... see easy as!

So quick and easy. You can make the blues all one colour or mix them up, the greys can be various ones as well, just dont mix blue and orange. 

My question is. How do you sort your stash. I could not find any greys when I searched mine, and I knew I had a few. So lets see if I can get some ideas to organize my stash better.

Looking forward to everyones block. 

Hive 4 August block for Chiska

Hi it's Amanda. This month Chiska asked for a cathedral window block. I actually finished mine at the beginning of the month but hadn't posted yet due to computer technical difficulties loading the photo. Here are my blocks that she has already received.

I dont have a "go to" baby quilt. The last one I made for my cousin's baby, I used Hello Bear fabric and triangles.  

Hive 7 September Tutorial

Greetings from the Rocky Mountains of central Idaho. My name is Jane Holbrook. I live in a unique log cabin home with my spouse, Mike. We both retired young, and moved up to Riggins to  play and work near the wild and scenic Salmon River, and the largest wilderness area in North America. We have been building our cabin while we live in it. We also have a large vegetable and fruit garden, with a high deer proof fence.

Almost finished with the railing for the sewing loft. We harvested the lodge pole pines and tamaracks from our nearby forest, all standing dead trees. Notice the "smart phone" under the stairs?

    I love the Churn Dash Block! I am excited about this variation, and hope you all are tickled by your results. I am asking for a wonky version, in reds, oranges, pinks, and unbleached muslin or ecru tone on tone.

The center is a pink print. The side bars are a red print, and the half square triangles (HSQ) are another red or orange print. As you can see, I like big prints. Be bold! But, use your stash, and let the term wonky be your guide.

Erin Davis of Sew at Home Mummy graciously permitted me to use her tutorial, Wonky Churn Dash.  I found it fairly easy to follow, with the additional suggestions: (The wonky directions follow the classic churn dash. This is the one I want!)

The corner blocks will be 4.25" after you sew the HSQ. Here is my progress:

after sewing the triangle, it completely covers the underlying square

trim to 4.25" 

then, trim the back side
Keep following the tutorial...Sew your side rectangles next.

The next addition is pressing. Erin presses at the end, I prefer mid-stream pressing to help match seams.

I sewed the rows horizontally

Please press the center row outward, and the upper and lower rows inward. Then you can nestle your seams against each other and make snug matches.

Thank you SEW much for your efforts. Any questions, please contact me at thimblepie.gmail.com

As September Queen Bee I get to pose a question. What color(s) and prints of fabric would you like to add to your stash? And, why?   As we have been building our home, I read Creating Your Perfect Quilting Space, by Lois Hallock. She suggested doing a fabric inventory to calculate storage needs.  She said,

"Measure  all the fabric you have. I am not kidding. Most quilters that I work with are stunned by this... If  this has been an extremely painful experience, you should seriously consider reducing your storage needs..."

So, I decided to sell my fabric scraps in my etsy shop. I have sold 28 lbs, or about 56 yards of fabric scraps in the past 4 months. The strange thing is, I still have a lot of fabric, but hardly any scraps. Because, once scraps started selling I cut up my fabric and sold it as scraps. Seriously.

Life is funny, isn't it?
Hi Ladies of Hive #9- blocks for June, July and August- I apologize for the tardiness of my blocks, this has been a crazy summer. Enjoy! Meghan 

Hive 2 September Block Tutorial

6 inch Rainbow postage stamp i-spy block

I turn 50 years old in a few months, and many of my friends are grandparents or almost grandparents, I find myself an Aunt for the first time.  Elizabeth is 15 months old and the cutest happiest little girl ever!  I made her a baby quilt, and now I want to make her an i-spy quilt.  To make it fun and colorful, I want each 6-inch block to focus on a single color.  I hope that in the end, I will have a rainbow of blocks, making this look very much like an i-spy version of a rainbow postage stamp quilt.

Here are a few finished blocks.  They end up at 6½ inches, which means when sewn together they will be 6 inches finished.

I couldn’t find a sample or tutorial for this block, so I’ve made one up below. I’ve added pictures to make it make more sense.  I know personally, I can figure stuff out from the pictures easier than reading all the text.  This really is much simpler to put together than it sounds!  It is basically a block of 36 squares with some of the squares replaced with a larger picture type block.

1.       Select the i-spy item:  Start by finding an i-spy item in your fabric that Lizzy would enjoy. This could be things like a dog, fish, truck, sun, or any item type thing. In a pinch, it could be a block of dots.  It needs to be anywhere from 2x2 inches to 4x4 inches,  It can be 2x3 inches finished or 2x2 inches finished or 3x3 inches finished or 3x4 inches finished or even 4x4 inches finished.  Cut this item out so that it is a square or rectangle.  Don’t forget to leave that ¼ edge all around to make it ½ inch bigger! 
For example, if it will finish at 2x2 inches, the piece should be cut out 2½ x 2½ inches.

2.   Decide where you want to put the I-spy piece within your block:
Sample configurations:

If you use a 2x2 inch finished block for the i-spy item, you will need 32 additional 1-inch finished blocks (36 total minus 4 for the 2x2 inch finished block).  If you use a 3x3 inch finished block for the i-spy item you will need 27 blocks.

3.   Add the color blocks:
The i-spy block will be surrounded by a single color family, so you will need to calculate how many of the finished 1-inch squares you will need to complete the block.  Once you decide on a color, cut out a bunch of 1.5 inch squares.  It would be ideal if the primary color matches the i-spy item, but coordinating is also OK.  Ideally we would be able to ask Lizzy 'find the red block'.

4.       Put it all together:   The easiest way is to start sewing blocks together in twosies.  Then make the twosies into foursies etc. keeping in mind that the i-spy item may have a single row next to it.  I pressed seams open, but you can press to the dark side if you like.

Ok, I have a couple questions, but don't feel you have to answer more than one.

1. How do you organize your solid fabric? Do you sort by manufacturer (Kona, moda, etc.)? Do you label them with the color names or use the fancy color card?  Do you seperate them from prints? Please post a picture of your system if you can.

2. When I was a teenager, I stayed with my Aunt Joanne for a few weeks.  I had known her my whole life, but since we didn't live close, I had never spent any one-on-one time with her prior to this visit.  During this visit, I realized that my Aunt Joanne was pretty much the mom I always wish I had.  She liked the same crafty things that I did, she was very warm and emotional, unlike my mother, and I felt a strong connection with her and still do to this day. 
My question is, do you have that special 'aunt' in your life?  Is there a story about your relationship with a aunt/uncle/grandmother, etc. that helped you at some point in your life?

September Hive 5 Block Tutorial

Hi, Everyone. It's Liz here. I live in the Bay Area in California, with my two daughters, husband, and assorted pets.

Like many people, I debated about what block I wanted to ask everyone to make. But I'm feeling fall-ish right now, and I love so many of the modern maple quilts that have popped up on Instagram and Flickr over the past few years, so I'm going to ask you to make me a maple leaf block.

For colors, I'd like to use a low volume background with mustardy yellows, oranges, fuscias, or "magenta"-y purple (I know that's not really a color, but I wasn't sure how to best describe that). I'm fine with a scrappy low-volume, but I prefer the leaf to be from one fabric. Please stay away from high-contrast low-volume (no black text or black elements). Here are some ideas of what I mean:

Here's an overall diagram for the block (thank you, Google draw, for being so easy to use!).

For this block, you'll need:
  • (2) 5" squares of background
  •  (2) 5.75" squares of background (these will eventually be trimmed down to 5" HST)
  • (1) 14" x 2" rectangle of background
  • (1) 15.5"x 2" rectangle of background
  • (3) 5" squares of leaf color
  • (2) 5.75" squares of leaf color (these will eventually be trimmed down to 5" HST)
  • (1) 7.5" x 2" rectangle of leaf color (stem)
1. Create your half square triangles by putting a 5.75" background square and a 5.75" leaf color square right sides together. Draw a diagonal line from bottom left to top right corner. Sew a line a quarter inch on either side of the line. Cut along the line you drew and press the squares open. Then trim to 5" squares. Repeat with the other 5.75" squares.

 2. Create the stem by taking one of the 5" background squares and cut into two triangles.

Fold the triangles in half to find the middle point along the longest edge and crease it to mark the center. Then take your 7.5" x 2" rectangle in leaf color and fold in half to mark the center point. Line up center of the triangle with the center of the rectangle.

Flip one triangle right sides together on the rectangle, and sew along the entire length. Then repeat with the other triangle. Press open.

Trim the block to a 5" square. I lined up the 45-degree line on my ruler in the middle of the rectangle to guide the trimming.

Step 3: Arrange blocks into the leaf and sew rows.

Step 4: Sew the rows together. Your leaf should be a 14" square now.

 Step 5: Sew the 14" x 2" background rectangle to the bottom of the leaf.
Step 6: Sew the 15.5" x 2" background rectangle along the right side of the leaf

Your unfinished block should be 15.5" square, but no need to trim - I can do that when I get them. Thanks so much!

And my question for my fantastic hive, how do you quilt your quilts? Are you a free motion quilter? A straight line? Long armer? What's your favorite advice for quilting (and if you're a FMQ, for a beginner FMQer).

September Hive 4 Tutorial

Hi everyone!  Welcome to September!

I hope that everyone is having as much fun with this Bee as I am.  Never having participated, this has been a wonderful experience!

When I first learned that I would get to participate, I immediately began racking my brain to figure out what I would like to request for a block.  I stumbled on a tutorial for Reverse Appliqué Quilting and knew that would be a fun technique to try.  If you Google "reverse appliqué quilting," you will find lots of cool pictures and examples of this technique.

My mom (one of my favorite people) asked me to make her a lap quilt and I knew exactly what to do!  Her favorite flowers are daisies (stemming from the movie "You've Got Mail") and I'm so excited for this block!


1 10 1/2" square of dark blue
1 5" square of white (or patchwork of white)
1 2" square of yellow (anything bright)

Here are some of the fabrics I pulled for the main dark blue:

Referencing the email that I sent everyone, you will need to print a copy of the flower.  To begin, decide where you want to place the flower.  I do not care where on the square it is, as long as it is NOT in the center of the square.  I'm going for a little modern mixed in with my flowers. :)  

Turn the blue square right side down, then place the white square right side down on the blue in the area you wish to put the flower.  

Lay the flower template over the white so there will be white surrounding the flower completely, then stitch around the outline of the flower (just like in paper piecing).  I suggest decreasing your stitch length to 1.5 (that worked the best for me) and going slowly around all the curves.  If there are little mistakes, it's no big deal.  

Once you've gone around the entire outside of the flower and done the interior circle (the bold sections), this is what the right side of the fabric will look like:

Back to the back, this is what it should look like:

At this point, go ahead and pull all the paper away from the back (this is the most time intensive, frustrating part but it won't last too long!).  Once you've done that, center the yellow square around the middle circle, then turn over and stitch around the circle from the front - go as close to the old stitches as possible.

Trim both the white and yellow to remove as much of the excess as you can while maintaining a 1/4" around all stitch lines.  Iron down the extra.

Now for the fun part!  From the front side, use a seam ripper to make a small incision in each petal and the center, then use scissors to cut inside all the sewn lines.  Don't worry about getting right next to the stitch lines - I'm looking for a little hazy in the edges.

Once finished, you will have the reverse appliqué!

**Note, I only used one square to try out two different sizes.  I am asking for only ONE flower on each dark blue square.

I'm so excited to see what everybody does!

My question to everyone is:  what keeps you quilting?  The first few quilts are always exciting, but I'm curious what drives everyone.  Why do you do what you do?  My answer is fairly simple - it keeps me out of trouble!  I like working with my hands (remodeling my apartment, building things, making quilts) and also enjoy getting to exercise my creative side this way.