Saturday, July 12, 2014

June Churn Dashes from Hive 12

Here are the vibrant churn dashes Hive 12 made for Kristel in June:
June Stash Bee Blocks

Hopefully these will help her fill out her other bee blocks for a wonderful quilt!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Hive 6 - July Tutorial

Hi, my name is Yanick and I have a fabric addiction. You can read more about it on my blog, Sewn With Curves
I am the current President of the Orlando Modern Quilt Guild. If you're ever in the area, please stop by and say, "Hello". 

I heart quilting!
Where do you live? 
I am in beautiful Sanford, FL. I was born and raised in Miami so I am a Florida native which is becoming very rare!
I'm just off of Lake Monroe!

Tell us about your family.
My partner, Jos, and I celebrated our 13th anniversary this year. We have a daughter-dog named Evie. 

Tell us about how you got interested in quilting.
My dear friend was having a baby and I wanted to make her a present instead of buying something. I was a second-year middle school teacher and thought it would be cheaper and more personal than buying a gift. I was so wrong because I had no idea of the cost of quilting fabric until after I started making it. I was instantly hooked and have been making quilts ever since.

How do you organize your fabric stash?
I am mostly organized using comic book boards and bins to store my crazy collection of fabrics. I like to call myself a burgeoning fabric hoarder. (It was hard to photograph the whole room since it is tiny, so I am giving you a clockwise view instead.)

I try to keep things neat.
My wall of crazy.
This is where random art and quilt supplies are stored.
Recent fabric purchases get thrown in this pile until I
make time to wrap them on comic book boards.
When working on a project, I pull out the bins
as needed and put them away when done.
(Yes, those are old school Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle curtains.
They belonged to Jos's little brothers in the 1980s.)
My design wall is one of my favorite parts of this room.
(I used the floor or dining room table for years.
Now my quilts have 95% less Evie fur on them.)
Side station to store my machines, bins and batting supplies.
There's just enough space for that Juki I've always wanted.
(I love my comics, too!)
Who are your favorite fabric designers? 
I use a lot of Kona solids in my quilts. I adore fabrics from Rashida Coleman Hale, Lotta Jansdotter and Tula Pink when I want to use prints. I've also been collecting fabrics with words and geometric designs. I really just love anything bright, graphic, and modern!

What is one thing you have learned that you wish you knew when you first started quilting?
I wish I knew about sewing scant 1/4 in seams when I was trying to follow patterns. I could never make my finished projects come out the same size as what the pattern said I should have when done. It turned out to be a good thing because I started making improv and minimalist (what is now called modern) quilts in 2004 since I was so pattern challenged. 

What is your favorite sewing/quilting tool and why should we all go out and buy it? 
I can't live without my 14" rotating cutting mat so I don't have to lift and turn fabric that needs to be cut. I find it helps to limit distortion with bias pieces. It's also great for squaring up 12.5" blocks I make for our guild BOM lotto.

My other necessity is a small ironing board I made from an old TV tray table. (I just covered it with a layer of batting and cotton fabric. Staple the batting and fabric underneath and voila - instant small ironing area you can place right next to you.) When not it use, just fold it up and tuck it way. It goes to every guild Sew Day, quilt retreat and workshop I attend.

Who is your favorite fictional character and why?
I love Wonder Woman. As a little girl, I would twirl and spin myself silly hoping that I would be half as cool as Linda Carter. Plus, I really wanted that invisible jet of hers.

Here's my block!

This month I would love for you to make an improv concentric squares/rectangle block using the 6 main colors of the rainbow in ROYGBV (or VBGYOR) order. You can use prints or solids or any combination of the two depending on your stash. I prefer brights over pastels. (My only request is not to use floral prints. Please and thank you!)

Here are some some basics to remember:
(1976 was a good year because I was born!)
Look for anything that will read as bright.
Bright colors with pastels in it are just fine.

Find some strips or make new ones.
Decide on a purple or a red center.
Squares or rectangles?...Surprise me!
Sew your next color on opposite sides.
I have no preference for ironing your seams. 

Place your next strip, right sides together, underneath when sewing
to keep your seams nice and pretty.
If you run short on a strip, that's cool.
You can cut if off!
I like to turn my square ruler slightly before
cutting to make it wonky.
(Not required!)
When starting the next round, remember to turn your block so the seams are secure.
Your next strip should not be sewn on the same side as the last strips added.
(I hope that makes sense.  If you've never made this type of block, check out this tutorial.)
When squaring a round of color, try to leave
at least 1 to 1.5 inches on all sides.
(I went a little too wonky here.)
If you cut off too much, no worries.
I think the green still came out
pretty cool so I'm keeping it.

(Most of my quilting is done at night so please forgive
all of the dark photos on this post.)

Keep going until you've added all six colors. I would love your block to finish anywhere between 6.5" to 18.5". If you have smaller strips in your stash, feel free to make two little ones instead of a larger block. Mini blocks are awesome! You can also make a rectangle if you're feeling extra creative. (I was planning to make a rectangle sample block to share here but ran out of time. I'll post one on Flickr if I can get it done this weekend.)

I would love for each round of color on the square/rectangle to be in the same fabric, but if you need to add another fabric of that same color, you can mix and match your strips. (Just be mindful of reds that read as browns when placed next to each other. Remember to keep it bright!) If you have any concerns, just let me know. I am pretty open to final designs that are not identical to mine shown above. Just have fun and use all six colors in rainbow order. 

I look forward to seeing your creativity.

Wishing you and your loved ones a safe and fun-filled Fourth of July!

Hive 11 block

What is your name? Melissa

Where do you live? Northwest Indiana

Tell us about your family (Spouse, kids, grandkids, pets, etc.) Married, with two kitties

This is Minnie & Pepé (Minnie is the brown one).  They keep me company when I quilt!

Tell us about how you got interested in quilting. I took a sewing class in high school.  One of the teachers quilted, and I wanted to make one (I still have it), then I made one for my grandma.  And it just kind of took off from there!

This is my grandma and her quilt.  It has the only cross stitch thing I have ever finished.  I bought fabric from Jo-Ann's in a fat quarter pack I believe, and just cut along the seams!! I also used some of her and my grandpa's shirts.

This is the first one I made.  It has a little bit of everything in it!!

How do you organize your fabric stash? (Picture appreciated) I just have them in tubs, not neatly folded or anything.

Who is/are your favorite fabric designers? I don't really know designers, I started by buying fabric at Jo-Ann's, and have recently started buying online from shops and shops near me.
What is one thing you have learned that you wish you knew when you first started quilting? I am not sure I could pinpoint one thing.  I have been quilting for almost 15 years now, and even when I look back at things I did three years ago, I've learned so much, and continually learn so much!  I will say my first finished quilt, I didn't know how to use a rotary cutter, and bought a fat quarter pack (I think, they were folded) and I cut along the fold lines!
What is your favorite sewing/quilting tool and why should we all go out and buy it? I love the June tailor any cut ruler.  It makes strip cutting SO easy.
Who is your favorite fictional character and why? (Could be from a book, movie, TV show, etc.) Shrek.  He knows that what really matters isn't on the outside.

My block:

I am going to (I hope) make this easy.  I would like any star block in the colors red, black, yellow or white.  I plan on making another Kansas City chiefs quilt (I put the picture of mine below).  So any combination of colors, you want black and white, go for it! you want all four go for it!  It does NOT have to be solids!!

So any star block that finishes at 12" so is 12.5" unfinished. 

Thank you! Happy Stitching!

Hive 8 - March Blocks

I apologize for the tardiness of this post, but here is a picture of the blocks that our Hive member, Leonie collected for her stint as queen bee in March. She's still waiting on a block from one of our Hive members, which unfortunately seems to have gotten lost in the mail on its way to Germany. I think the blocks look fantastic together and those solid economy blocks really give the eye a place to rest from the busyness of the nine-patches.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Hive 1 - May Round Up

So many of you have opted out of the Flickr API, which allows me to use mosaic makers, that I am just going to put the images I have access to share in a list here. If you know you uploaded your images of this block to Flickr but do not see your picture here, you will need to change your settings on Flickr to allow me to share your photos.

Hive 10 - July Block Tutorial

Hello Everyone - JULY - That’s me!

Sorry this is coming out right at the end of the day.. I've been having trouble with the pictures, but here it is! Yay!

What is your name?
I’m Tabatha Martinez - don’t let my name fool you; I’m a sucker for tall, dark, handsome, and multilingual; so I married a Spaniard. :-)

Where do you live?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Funny you should ask: I live in South Florida. We just sold our house in Miami at the end of June, and due to about a million hiccups, we aren’t closing on our new home until August 1!  So, for now - we are camping out of my mom’s house, all 5.5 of us (I’m 6.5 months preggers), sharing 1 bathroom, until my parents come back from Hawaii in mid July. Then, it will be 7.5 - sharing 1 bathroom.

I’m a native of South Florida, and have only seen snow 2 times in my whole life. And the last time was in high school.. about 13 years ago. We love the beach, and the heat, and the sun, and hate the traffic, gas prices, and well, all the prices.

Tell us about your family.

I live with my wonderful husband, Ed, our three children: Sophia (6), Brody (4), and Thomas (1), and are expecting another precious little boy blessing in September. We also have an aquatic turtle, Bubbles, that we rescued from a very hot March day in our garage.

I’m a homeschooler, so I spend a lot of time with my kiddies, and not a whole lot of time doing anything else, but I wouldn’t change it for the world! My daughter Sophia is a lot like her Momma - bossy, spoiled by Papi, and loves helping with babies. Brody is my jokester (yesterday, in the car - I asked him “What are you hiding in your lap?” After a short pause, he said “I’m hiding only one thing in my lap…” He held up two empty hands, wriggled his fingers, with a very serious face, and said “Jazz hands.” We all roared with laughter). Our little Thomas is constantly smiling and loves to say to everyone. He is a lovely toddler.

My husband is my romantic love and soulmate! He works in operations, but has a PhD in English and Creative writing. He speaks and writes beautiful Spanish and French, which make for lovely holiday cards. 

Tell us about how you got interested in quilting.

I started to quilt in 2008 when my daughter was born, but it didn't really go anywhere. Then, in 2012, I really became immersed in it. And when my DH surprised me with my Bernina, Big Bertha, well - I would love to spend hours every day in front of my machine. I also got a Janome Artistic long arm last fall after falling in LOVE at Quilt Market, and am looking forward to it having a permanent place in my new home once we move in August.

How do you organize your fabric stash?

Well, I buy lots and lots of precuts. I actually have bought so much that besides a Gypsy Wife BOM club that I am part of and woefully behind in, I have been on a no new fabric buying kick since the beginning of the year. As of this minute, my fabric is in storage, or her at my mom’s in plastic bins (my husband would only let me bring 4 bins :-( ); but normally it is stored in this tall bookcases; and I love sitting at my desk gazing over stacks of lovely fabric. I also keep cuts larger than 5 yards in some other shelving, and since I buy white and gray by the bolt, that is usually hidden away somewhere as well.

Who is/are your favorite fabric designers?

I love everything in the world by Bonnie & Camille. I met Camille Roskelley and she was so nice. I have tons of her and her moms fabrics, and also their patterns. Other favorites are Kate Spain, French General, Tula Pink, Kaffe Fasset, and Denise Schmidt. Oh, and Carolyn Friedlander. So many, if I keep thinking I’ll name 30 more.

What is one thing you have learned that you wish you knew when you first started quilting?

Don’t underestimate the power of pinning. I used to only pin as absolutely necessary (or so I thought) and now I pin at every seam intersection and work out from there. Also, the quality of pins. My favorites are probably Little House, and the come in a cute little tin to boot.

What is your favorite sewing/quilting tool and why should we all go out and buy it?

This is probably a little outside of the box, but it would be my iron! I have a Rowenta Eco Intelligence MicroSteaming Iron.  It works so amazingly awesomely; it is also pretty and has a good weight to it. It has great steaming that doesn’t blow up into your face instead of on the fabric. It also goes into “hibernation” mode when you sit it up and don't use it for a bit. There are a million features but it by far the best iron I have ever used. Oh, it also has a nice shape to the tip for going down seams, even though it is a full size iron.

Who is your favorite fictional character and why? 

My favorite fictional character is… gee, I totally don’t know. I will say we are HUGE fans of Batman in our house. Comic book heros in general, but especially Batman. We have memorabilia and comic books and action figures hidden throughout our home (when we have one). He’s exciting! He has a depth of character; he is not a mutant but a real man. This is a picture of a painting in our-now-previous-home, that my husband drew and painted with his Dad from an original he had seen.

The Tutorial

For this month, we will be making a teacup block from Kate Spain’s In From the Cold Free Project.  This project was originally intended to be a Christmas theme, with several different mug and teacup blocks, but you can choose to do either block 2, 6, or 7 from the project sheet found through the link. 

Additionally, this block will NOT be Christmas theme. My daughter Sophia loves tea parties. These blocks will become part of a quilt for her new room. With all the challenges of this year, and the lack of more than 24 hours in a day, it would take me forever to finish, but with your help - there will be one happy little 6 year old in the world!

Finished Block Size: 10.5” x 14.5”

Fabric Selection

Cup Pieces (Patterned): Choose bright happy florals, or stripes, but not too “eclectic” style. Think happy colors, but no neons, and no dark florals (no French General or Kansas City Troubles style) - pink, purple, teal - etc. Think girly, think tea party. If it is from the Camille side of Bonnie and Camille’s colors; you literally cannot go wrong.

Background (solid): Bright white. I using Moda Bella Bleached White for this one. I also often used Art Gallery Snow for my light whites. Whatever you used for last month’s star block is perfecto.

Steam (low volume): Use either a white on white or other low volume combo. Aiming for the steam to be very subtle.

Here are some fabrics that I WAS NOT super fond of for this project:

Here is what I chose:

Cut It Up

I used a big scrap of white and 4 layer cake squares from a Bonnie & Camille Scrumptious layer cake for this block. For my steps here, I am making Block 2. But you can choose to make either Block 2, Block 6, or Block 7 from the project sheet. Essentially, any of the teacup blocks, not the big mugs. But the cutting notes here are for Block 2: if you want to do the Block 6 or 7 variation, refer to the project sheet.

Tip: Some of the pieces for this are pretty small and so I highly recommend starching, or starch-alternative-ing, and pressing the fabric before cutting to give it a little more substance when sewing. :-)

For Block 2, cut:

From Patterned pieces (you can mix and match patterns for the pieces):

Cup Top: 

2 - 2.5” x 4.5”
1 - 4.5” x 4.5” 

Cup Bottom:

1- 8.5" x 2.5"

3 - 1.5” x 2.5”


1 - 8.5” x 1.5”


5 - 1.5” x 1.5”

From White:


4 - 1.5” x 1.5”
1 - 1.5” x 2.5”
4 - 2.5” x 2.5”
2 - 2.5” x 3.5”
2 - 4.5” x 7.5”

Make It

Now that you have all your pieces cut up, let’s put this little beast together. 1/4” seams. Press to the dark when possible.

Step One: Make the Handle

Follow the instructions for making the handle on page 23 of the project sheet. Here’s how it comes together.

Sew one background and one handle rectangle together.

Make diagonal lines on two background squares and sew to rectangles. Then, trim away excess and press it, press it real good.

Finally, sew the three pieces together and then add a cup background piece. And now you have a super cute handle.

Step Two:  Make the Saucer

Follow the instructions for making the saucer on page 24 of the project sheet. Here’s how it comes together.

Make diagonal lines on two background squares and sew to rectangles. Then, trim away excess and press it, press it real good.

Woah, that was an easy step. :-)

Step Three: Make The Steam

Follow the instructions for making the handle on page 25 of the project sheet to make the steam. Here’s how it comes together.

Draw those diagonal lines you’ve come to love on 5 tiny weeny steam squares and then layer, trim and press onto a cup background square. Do this again on the opposite corner. Make 2.

With the remaining teeny weeny steam square, layer, sew, trim and press onto a background rectangle.

Join the units together. 

It’s getting hot in here.

Step Four: Make Teacup Bottom

The teacup bottom is assembled just the like saucer; but using the teacup pieces. Follow the Step 2 instructions for Block 2 on the project sheet. Here’s how it comes together.

Why am I picking out stitches? Because I measure a inch too big. Double check your measurements before you are start sewing. I was able to fix it; but I felt like I was in Geometry again in high school. 

Step 5: Assemble the Cup

Woohoo! Almost Done. Follow the instructions in the project sheet. Here’s how it comes together.

Sew together the three pieces which compose the top portion of the teacup.
Attach the top portion of the teacup to the bottom; press to impress. Then, repeat for the bottom to the saucer. Press.
Attach handle to the teacup. Press it like you mean it.

Attach the steam section to the complete teacup. Press.

And there you have it. No need to trim. One lovely teacup block for my tea party loving 6 year old.

Have fun and let me know if you have any questions! Thank you everyone.