Thursday, October 6, 2022

Hive 1, October Block for Minnie


Hi Minnie,

That is a lovely, fun block! 

They came together quickly, although I struggled to find suitable Christmas fabric in my stash (shocking, I know!).

The blocks are going in the post today.

This will be such a nice quilt, can't wait to see what you do!

Happy sewing,


Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Hive 3 - October

Hello hivemates! 

I have gone back and forth on what quilt block I would like to choose. Thus, I am reverting back to my obsession with all things historical and choose one of the oldest, most versatile and downright lovely quilt blocks: Ye Olde Log Cabin. 

I was inspired by this blog post which is a great reference: 

Traditionally, the center of a Log Cabin block is red: representing the warmth of the hearth as the center of the home, and I would like to stick to that for the 3.5” center block. Per the traditional version of the Log Cabin block, I ask you to choose two colors of fabrics with each side of the block being different shades of the same color (or the same fabric if you choose that. No biggie). I would ask you not to alternate colors but keep them to each side. Use whatever colors suit your fancy as long as they are:

red, orange, yellow, gold, brown, green, or purple (if it’s warm enough) Think of the colors of fall leaves and all of those rich tones of autumn. Maybe make yourself some hot cocoa and put on fuzzy socks. It can’t hurt! ;)

Some of you may wonder what “warm” colors look like. This is a picture of the fabric I chose for my block. Note how I chose six different fabrics but only two colors are represented. Yes, there is blue in one of my yellows, but it still reads as warm and fits in perfectly with the other colors!

The finished block will be 12.5.” Use an accurate ¼ inch seam with this block. If you have trouble maintaining a ¼ inch, a quick tip is to use plain masking tape cut to ¼ inch taped to your sewing machine. I make sure my fabric follows the edge of the tape, and it keeps it nice and scant! 

You will begin with a red 3.5 inch square

The rest of the strips will be strips cut 2 inches wide from your chosen colors. I prefer to precut my strips. It makes the sewing process go by MUCH quicker. I sewed my strips clockwise (or the wrong side). Regardless of how you choose to orient your block, What is important is that you continue in the same direction for the whole block. 
For my example, I will be using six colors. Like I said, choose however many or however less colors you want as long as they are within the same family on each side. You know your stash!

Cutting requirements are as follows: 

Of Color A:     1 3.5 X 2 inch strip      1 8 X 2 inch strip 
                         1 5 X 2 inch strip         1 9.5 X 2 inch strip 
                         1 6.5 X 2 inch strip      1 11 X 2 inch strip 

Of Color B:     1 5 X 2 inch strip         1 9.5 X 2 inch strip 
                         1 6.5 X 2 inch strip      1 11 X 2 inch strip 
                         1 8 X 2 inch strip         1 12.5 X 2 inch strip 

Begin with the Color A strip face down on the 3.5 inch red block. You will work your way around the entire center square.

The first round is complete. It should measure 6.5 inch square. 

You will continue on until all of your strips are added, and the log cabin is completed. Remember to go the same way the entire time.

There you have it! A 12.5 inch log cabin block! 

Please let me know if you have ANY questions! Enjoy! 


Emily was unable to post this herself. I have done the best I could to transfer her PDF to this blog. If you have any questions, please contact her directly.

Monday, October 3, 2022

Hive 1 Blocks for Nicole


Sorry these are slightly late, but here are my September blocks, I had a lot of fun looking through all my favourite fabrics and finding some that will work well together.

I hope you like the colour choices :)

The blocks have gone to the mailbox today and are on their way to you!

Saturday, October 1, 2022

Finished Quilt, Hive 1, 2021, May Block


Hello Bees!

This is my second StashBee finish this year (2020's at Easter, this 2021's one in August), and I’m intending to finish this year’s as well (the top is done).

As I mentioned in my StashBee tutorial, the T-Junction block design came about, while thinking what choices I can make to improve my personal life amidst the Covid 19 restrictions (‘all those choices and decisions sewn into a quilt’ – “T-Junction Block”). 

What I didn’t mention in that post, is that I am in psychotherapy since 2019, because I suffer from depression (since I was 11). This kind of therapy is very slow, but (finally, after trying so many other methods) effective. I came to the conclusion, that I have to change my approach to keeping the depression at bay. Until then (2019), I had always pulled myself out of ‘the dark hole’ by telling myself, that ‘I get through the next day’. However, this doesn’t prevent me from falling back into it again! Now I use the approach (working on it!) to ‘choose life’ instead. 

Hence, this was the perfect accompaniment for the T-Junction block. And the quilt is overall colourful and vibrant, as my life should be.

Hoping with this statement to help others out there, who use quilting as their therapy tooπŸ˜‰

Without the help of my hive mates, I would have never attempted this design (just thinking of piecing 155 5” blocks would have put me off!). Thanks to my very generous hive mates (one even sent me 20 instead of the asked 6! You were just amazing ladies!!), I had already about 2/3 of the needed T-blocks before starting to put the top together.

Everyone involved in producing this quilt, is mentioned in the Label, which was so extensive, that I decided to put it across the entire back 😊.

Thank you all again for helping me making this one happen.

Happy quilting,


Hive 4 October Tutorial - Trees and Gnomes for Marissa

Hello friends! 

My name is Marissa, and this is my first year in the Stash Bee. It’s been so much fun so far! I have been trying to decide for months what block I would want to do as part of the bee. I’ve also had an improv gnome and tree quilt pinned in Pinterest for years. I was looking at it again recently and realized it was part of a Stash Bee 7 years ago. I checked with the author, and she’s happy to let me use her instructions for my block. Please tag her (flyingparrotquilts) in your instagram post!

Here’s the original blog post and pattern:

The original pattern makes a 15” block in a 3x3 pattern - 6 blocks of gnomes or trees, and 3 blank blocks. It’s also REALLY scrappy. I’m requesting some changes to the original pattern for both time reasons and because I struggle with lots of scrappiness. 


Overall, I love solids, blenders, batiks, Christmas fabric, geometrics, etc.

Background fabrics: I’d really love low-volume whites, creams, and very light grays. I’d prefer that each gnome or tree have only 1 background fabric, but the block as a whole can have multiple. If using only one background fabric, please don’t sew the nine-patch together; I would like to mix up the blocks.

Please no solids for the background. White on white is fine.

These are the fabrics I’ve pulled from my stash:

Gnomes: any color for the body except red or green. Brown or black for the boots, and whatever skin-tone color for the face. Batiks, solids, blenders, fun patterns and colors, whatever works.

Gnome body ideas:

Gnome legs:

Trees: Any greens as long as the fabric reads green. Batiks, blenders, solids, Christmas fabrics, etc are all good. Brown for the trunk - whatever you have that reads as brown.

Tree fabrics - Some of the greens I have:


Given the time requirements for the stash bee, I'm asking for a 4 patch instead of a 9 patch. Please make either 2 trees, or 1 tree and 1 gnome, and then also send two blank background pieces. 

Please don't sew the blocks together - I'm going to mix them up and combine them into larger blocks. You can trim to 5 ½” x 5 ½” or leave them untrimmed.


Background fabric:
2 squares 5 ½” x 5 ½” (blank squares - these can be the same or different from the tree backgrounds)
2 rectangles 5” x 6” (background for trees and gnomes; these should be the same fabric)
2 rectangles 1 ½” x 6” (background for tree trunk/gnome legs, should match the fabric above)

1 or 2 green rectangles, 3 ½” x 4.5-5”
1 or 2 brown rectangles about 1” x 1 ½” or 2"

Gnomes (if making any):
1 rectangle, 3 ½” x 4.5-5”
1 skin-colored scrap, about 3 ½” x 1” or 1 ½”
2 brown or black rectangles, about 1” x 2” (if doing really angled legs, you may need 2 ½")


Follow the blog post instructions ( for piecing. 

Here are some additional pics to clarify some of the process:

Each rectangular background piece is used for 2 tree/gnome squares - the angled cut divides the piece roughly in half while also cutting the side of the tree. 

If your tree fabric is shorter than your background fabric, align it with the top when cutting. 

Place the ruler at any angle across the tree fabric, with the bottom corner of the tree fabric aligned with the ruler. 

The background piece on the right (labeled 1) is used for the first tree. The background piece that is under the tree (labeled 2) is used for the second tree (or the gnome).

Layer the tree with the right background piece. Set aside the other piece for later. 
Overlap at the bottom edge so that the edges meet where the seam will be, and sew. (The overlap doesn't have to be exact, but helps to keep enough space at the top for the seam allowance.)

Press your tree and cut the second side. Layer the tree piece on top of the second rectangle. You're aiming for 2-2.5 inches on the left of the tree. line up the ruler with the top of the tree, and cut. Choose whatever angle makes you happy.

The angled piece on the left is used for this tree; the one under the tree is used for the second tree.

Flip over your tree so it's layered with the piece on the left, right sides together. Set aside the piece labeled 2.

This time overlap your pieces at the top and sew.

Press, and admire your tree progress!

Cut your trunk. This can be angled or straight. You'll want to aim for roughly the middle of the narrow background rectangle.

Sew the trunk into the background pieces.

Square the top of the trunk and the bottom of the tree. If your tree or trunk ends up being on the narrow end (just around 5.5"), you'll want to be careful to cut the bottom at right angles to one of the sides, so that you don't end up with a too narrow tree section. This one is 5.75", but you can see I'm lining up the lines on the ruler with the side of the block (bottom of the picture) rather than the bottom of the block to make sure it's not too angled.

Admire your lovely tree.

These are the pieces for the second tree/gnome:

If making a gnome, you'll want to insert the face fabric in the body. The blog has great instructions for this, but I tend to place my face a little lower down on the body - about 1 3/4". I like big hats. 

Here are additional pics of the process for a gnome face - this is with two angled cuts. straight cuts are also great; sometimes I do one straight and one angled for variety.

slightly angled ruler:

layer face with top (right side) and sew:

align bottom of face with a line on the cutting mat to make it easier to tell where the face piece ends:

layer bottom piece over face piece:

place your ruler so that it is cutting on the right side of the line on the cutting mat (marked in red here) and cut the second angled side of the face (if doing angles):

remove extra pieces

layer and sew:

admire your gnome's face:

Repeat the process for the second tree/gnome. When making your cuts, you can either follow the cuts from the background piece (just cut the tree/gnome fabric) or change the angle of your cut.

Line up the top of the tree/gnome with the top of the background fabric. I use the line on the cutting mat to know where my gnome/tree rectangle ends, so that I know where I need to position the ruler:

Different angle for the tree/background - green line is where tree fabric ends; keep ruler to left of line to make sure it's a straight cut all the way across fabrics

Same angle for tree - line up ruler with background:

Sew and do the second side (again, you can do the same angle or a different one). Make sure you're leaving as much room as possible at the top of the gnome head so that your hat doesn't get too small.

Admire your gnome/tree top:

If doing a trunk, repeat the same process as before.

For the background between the legs, I aim to have the top section measure 1/2"-3/4". That keeps the legs from being too far apart and ensures that even if I use wider leg pieces, or have a narrow gnome, that they'll still fit under the body.

When piecing the legs, I find I have to be careful in my placement, so that the leg piece doesn't dip too low:

You can see here that the leg piece is dipping down below the top of the background piece

Leg piece shifted up higher:

When your legs are sewn into the background, trim the top of the legs and the bottom of the gnome and sew together. 

On this gnome, I wanted my legs more to the left - I use the ruler to make sure that when sewn, I'll still be able to trim to 5.5":

Press and admire your finished work. You can trim your blocks to 5.5" or send them untrimmed. 

Short Gnomes:

I wanted a shorter gnome, so I moved the triangle down when sewing the first background piece:

For the second background piece, align your fabrics at the top when sewing:

finished short gnome:

I've been getting a little carried away with making gnomes and trees - I even gave some super-skinny trees a friend! But you can see there's no need for them to be centered, or symmetrical, or perfect, or anything like that. I hope it's fun!

And a mockup of what this quilt might look like when it's done (made in prequilt):