Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Hive 4 - January Block Tutorial

What is your name? Sara Nixon (supersara20 on flickr)

Where do you live?  I live in Kyle, Texas, it is a suburb just south of Austin. 

Tell us about your family.  Right now its just me and my husband Terry.  We have two fur babies though, Millie a chocolate lab and Penny a hound mix.  

Tell us about how you got interested in quilting.  I made my first quilt when I was in high school but I really wasn't into all the fabric with sunflowers and teddy bears that was out then.  I made quilts off and on after that but got back into it about 4 years after I moved to Texas when I found a really great quilt store that I took a refresher class at.  I've been hooked again since! 

How do you organize your fabric stash? (Picture appreciated)  My fabric is a huge mess but I usually do it by color.  The picture is the neat part right now!  I also have a couple really big wicker baskets that I keep scraps in.  My sewing room is one of the guest rooms and I keep all the fabric in the closet.  

Who is/are your favorite fabric designers?  I love Michael Miller's fun fabrics, Bonnie and Camille, Anna Maria Horner, MoMo, there are just so many I can't name them all! 

What is one thing you have learned that you wish you knew when you first started quilting?  Chain piecing and that its just fabric, its meant to be used.  There will always be new amazing lines so no need to hoard it.  Oh, and don't buy fat quarters, they are too expensive when for about $1-2 more you can get a half yard.  

What is your favorite sewing/quilting tool and why should we all go out and buy it?  A great seam ripper! I'm sure you know why!  ;)  

Who is your favorite fictional character and why? (Could be from a book, movie, TV show, etc.)  I sat and thought about this one for a while, I have a bunch of movies and books I love but none of the characters specifically speak to me.  Sorry, answer fail.  

Now on to the block!  We will be making this beauty:  

We will be using this tutorial.  I made this block for another bee I was in and Alia did a great job writing it.  It looks intimidating but it is really pretty easy to put together because of strip piecing.  As you can see from my block above, it is not perfect and I don't expect perfection from you, I just ask that you do your best!  

The colors we will use are:  Navy, coral, grey, aqua and black.  Background will be whites that range from tone on tone white to low volume and white with black pattern as long as it reads primarily white.  Here are a couple pics of sample fabrics I pulled.  Please be sure to use each of the five colors when making your block.  I have no preference for color placement within the block.  I ask you to please use modern fabric and stay away from any licensed fabrics (hello kitty, star wars, mickey etc.) and fabrics that have a lot of other colors, I really want to limit the color pallet to those shown.

I went a little nutty with this and made a pinterest board if you want to take a look!  

The tutorial says to press your seams open, I don't have a preference about how you press your seams, do what works for you.  I do encourage you to take advantage of the tip given about trimming the tip of your three patches like this:  

This tip will really help in lining things up so that your points will match better.  

Now for edits to the tutorial.  When you get to the background.  Please choose six different background fabrics and cut a rectangle of each that measures 4" x 7", split these into two piles of three and cut 3 of each direction diagonally like in the picture below.  (If you don't cut half with each direction cut you'll have a mess on your hands, trust me!)

Now, lay everything out and make sure placement is how you want it since the placement of the fabric can produce two very different looking blocks just by spinning the diamonds and I would also prefer that the background fabrics get mixed up a bit.

Once you're happy with your lay out, attach your white fabrics, I used the same cheat of trimming the tip of my background fabric to help with aligning the edges of the fabric.  Once the background is attached trim the six sections using your 60 degree ruler lines so that they fit together well and sew the sections together.  When it is all put together you should have a 9 1/2 inch hexagon (the sides will measure 9 1/2 inches long.)  PLEASE let me trim this if it turns out big as some may end up smaller and I would like the wiggle room if needed when putting all the blocks together.  As with all bees, if you feel like making extra I won't say no!

Thank you all in advance!  Please feel free to contact me with any questions.  I'm sure you'll do a great job and I am sure I'll love it!



Heather said...

Lovely block. I need to see what I have in your colors and get started.

Beanstalk said...

Remind me again -- were we supposed to post a photo of our bee blocks to the blog on completion, or are they just going on Flickr?

Danny Heyen said...

Beanstalk - You post them to Flickr. Unfortunately, Blogger does not allow enough authorship slots for everyone to have access to post to the blog all at once.