Friday, September 1, 2017

Hive 4 September Tutorial: calling all scraps

After much deliberation, I finally decided on a block.  Super scrappy improv.

Fabric pull:  Find the scraps in your fabric.
*This is going to work best if you don't have all rectangles, but if you do end up with all rectangles it'll still work.
*Please aim for bright colors with whites, greys, and blacks.  Try to avoid browns, pastels, and large pieces of novelty fabrics (small pieces of novelty are ok).  However, if some of those get in it is fine.
*The scraps should be big enough so that when you sew them together you can still see them.  Scraps should be smaller than about 5" on a leg for a triangle and about 4" for a square.  Again, these are just size guidelines rather than rigid requirements.

I pulled way more than I needed for the four blocks I ended up making.  You don't need this many!

Final size:
Really, any size is going to be fine.  Any shape is going to be fine.  It would be nice if you got at least one 8.5"x8.5" square and one 9"x9" square, but if it ends up taking you too long just send me whatever you have after the 1.5 hours is up.  My goal is to have a variety of scraps and I can always add to yours if I need to.

I'm going to set them like the coral shown in the picture below.  This will create some order from the chaos (and will hopefully allow any odd final shapes to be easily used).

I'm going to show how I put the pieces together below, but as long as it ends up looking rather haphazard, that's fine.  You could also follow the tutorial from Chris W Designs.  It isn't quite the same, but gets the idea across.

1. Grab two pieces that have a side of approximately the same length.  Sew together; press. (You can press open or to a side.  There may be some places with a lot of bulk; that's fine.)

2. Either sew a third scrap to your set of two or put two pairs together.  It doesn't really matter how you put them together too much yet.  Try to keep the sides that you sew together about the same size.  Trim off any excess in the seam; press.

3. Continue repeating step 2 until you have one or more pieces of a decent size.

4. Then you need to start getting picky and figuring out how you're going to make everything into a square of the right size.  If you have multiple pieces, roughly arrange the pieces into a square (or into one unit if you suddenly realize you didn't make enough).  Trim some sides so that they can go together.  Add pieces if needed to make an edge a little bit bigger.  If you only have one piece, figure out what you can add to make your piece into a square.  (Side note: if this is completely throwing you for a loop just put some scraps together and send them to me.  I can put them together.)


5. Although I trimmed my finished blocks, you do not need to do that.  The upper left is the block that was used in the instructions above; you can see that I connected those two strips, added the large green triangle, and had to make a third strip to get it to the right size.

Just remember, you can't do it wrong.  Please let me know if you have any questions! 

1 comment:

Pam Chamberlin said...

I love doing this kind of improv piecing! Kind of like a fabric tornado on my table until the block finally emerges. I'm not in your hive, but I'll definitely make you up a block.