Sunday, June 1, 2014

Hive #1 - June 2014 Block

What is your name? Hey, I'm Amanda. I'm What the bobbin? on IG and flickr.


Where do you live? Austin, TX. Yee-haw, y'all!

Tell us about your family. I am a mom to two adorable children. My daughter is 3, my son is 1.


Aren't they cute? My husband is a software engineer, or computer scientist as he likes to be called.

Tell us about how you got interested in quilting. I have had the desire to learn to sew since the early 2000s at least. I didn't buy a sewing machine until 2008/9. It sat in a box for almost a year before I took a beginner sewing course in late 2009. I was scared! Then, my daughter was born in 2011 and I didn't really get into quilting until late 2011. It began with reading all the fabulous quilting/sewing blogs I could find. Isn't that the way? So here I am, completely hooked. I'm thankful for a hobby that allows me to make gifts for others, as well as myself. Selfish sewing is just delicious, don't ya think? 

How do you organize your fabric stash?


 My stash is organized by color (mostly) in plastic drawers shoved into a closet. I recently started keeping all my many novelty prints in separate drawers. Yes, there are two drawers full of novelty prints.  I use novelty prints A LOT.


I have another plastic drawer chest that holds office supplies etc. There is one lonely drawer at the bottom for apparel weight fabrics, voile, linen, challis, etc. I have really been getting to apparel sewing lately.

Who is/are your favorite fabric designers?  I love Anna Maria Horner, Lizzy House, Anne Kelle, Sarah Jane, and of course, Heather Ross. I'm sure there are some I'm forgetting to mention. I like what I like, when I like it. Ya, know?

What is one thing you have learned that you wish you knew when you first started quilting? Just do it. Get over how scary it might be to sew your first zipper, and do it already. I mean we have all wasted valuable sewing time wishing we could make something that we saw someone else make, or even better, something that is in our imagination . You know what? You can make it. Just try! I mess up a lot. I mean. A. Lot. But at least I trying instead of just wanting to try. DO. IT! :)

What is your favorite sewing/quilting tool and why should we all go out and buy it? Um...everything? Ok, Ok, I'll narrow it down. Besides Fancy, my Janome 6600P, I would have to say my favorite sewing tool is my rotary cutter. I can't imagine having to use scissors. I mean, that wouldn't be pretty. But I guess a rotary cutter sounds kinda lame. We all have one, right? So, I would have to say my new Fons and Porter glue pen. I have recently discovered glue basting! I mean, what an eye-opener! I am not really a fan of hand sewing. Yeah, I said it. But, my kids like to play outside all day, everyday. I'm trying to get a little sewing in when I'm out there with them. Try glue basting. It's SO SPEEDY!

Who is your favorite fictional character and why? (Could be from a book, movie, TV show, etc.) I would have to go with a character from my favorite book, White Oleander by Janet Fitch. The main character in the book is a girl name Astrid (love the name). She is strong, witty, and goes through an awful lot in life. I just think it is a beautifully written story about an imperfect life.



For my block this month we're making Fussy squares, also known as, economy blocks, square in a square, etc.  We are making really large fussy squares! These beauties are 16" finished. Fun, no? It was a no brainer for me to chose this block since I've been hosting a fussy block swap (4" blocks)over on flickr since July 2013. I can't get enough of these blocks.

1 - 8.5" fussy cut center block
1 - 9.25" square of fabric for the inner triangles (green triangles)
2 -9" squares for the outermost triangles (purple dot triangles)

Color Palette
Think bright and happy for the color palette. No muddy colors for this block, please.  The center should be some novelty fabric fussy cut. (Hopefully you have something in your stash :))

Fussy cut your center square (8.5"). I have a 9.25" square ruler I used to cut out my fabric. I then trimmed it down to 8.5". Isn't this princess castle cute?


For the inner triangles, cut out a 9.25" square. Then, you will cut it into four triangles crosswise.


Pin one triangle to the top and one to the bottom of the center square. Make sure to center the triangle on the sides, and pin in place. Sew using the standard .25" seam allowance. I like to press the seams open. It's totally up to you though.


Repeat for the left and right sides of the center square. At this point, I like to trim the little bits of the triangles that stick out.


Next, cut out 2 9" squares of fabric for the outermost triangles. Then, cut those squares in half on the diagonal.


As with the previous triangles, pin a triangle to the top and the bottom and sew. Repeat with the two remainging triangles on the left and right sides.


Et voila! You have a super cute block. What a fantastic way to show of some of those special prints? Let me know if you have any questions. If this tutorial is unclear, there are plenty of other economy block tutorials floating around. Just use the measurements I provided.

I can't wait to see the blocks you make! Thanks, y'all! :)

wtb orange

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