Thursday, July 31, 2014

Hive 7 - August Block Tutorial

What is your name?
My name is Tiffany. And it is seriously hard to find a picture of me. So here is one from 5 (!) years ago. The only thing that has changed is the length of my hair. I loved this length though. A little about me, I have my bachelor's degree in Music, classical piano to be more specific. At one time I had aspirations to get my Master's in Music Theory, as that's where my real musical strength lies, but I never did it. And now I have my dream job of stay at home mom anyway. My kids are homeschooled. My goal for the coming school year is to really buckle down and have a schedule for schooling. I tell people we use the "fly by the seat of our pants" curriculum. It's time to change that I think. My girls get ticked if I make them do more than one subject in a row. The horror! This year schooling will include sewing and piano lessons.

Where do you live?
I live in Washington. It's a tiny town in Georgia. It's about halfway between Athens and Augusta. My husband grew up here and has wanted to move back forever. He finally got the chance last year. We've been here since last August after spending 8 years in Colorado Springs.

Tell us about your family (Spouse, kids, grandkids, pets, etc.)
Jake and I will have been married for 10 years August 20. He's an electrician by trade, but currently working for a generator company.

He's pretty handy too. This shelf/rack is the latest creation he's completed for me. I may have spent a day staring at it. That also may or may not have had something to do with the fact that my table had been piled high with junk and unusable for 2 months.

My kids: I have 4. The girls, Dakota and Georgia, are identical twins. They just turned 9 in July. Dakota is my sensitive tomboy. Georgia is a prissy fireball. My youngest, Memphis is 2.5 and a total hoot. He's also a total pain in the tush at times.
This is Justice, my 3rd born. He passed away 4 years ago at the age of 20 months. He was determined and a complete joy.

Tell us about how you got interested in quilting.
My mom tried to get me to learn how to sew when I was about 12. I wasn't interested. For years I joked that my method of sewing was to pick out a pattern and fabric and give it to my mom. Before Justice was born, I got all the fabric to make him a quilt, but never got around to it. About 8 months after he died, a friend of mine shared pictures of a quilt she had made. I loved the pattern, and had recently seen some fabrics I wanted for no particular reason. So, I decided to make the same quilt she had with the fabrics I'd found. I ended up choosing a different pattern, made the blocks, and still haven't completed that quilt. But I'd been bitten by the bug. I found that time spent at my sewing machine was quiet time for my brain and healing for my heart. So here I am. I guess I could say, "I quilt because I grieve."

How do you organize your fabric stash? (Picture appreciated)
My stash storage is currently in transition. I recently had my girls sort everything by color. But I haven't managed to refold it all yet. But here is where it will all end up eventually. Right now, the top shelf contains a few recently acquired bundles and some of the FQs I've used in bee blocks. I figure it will all slowly migrate here as I use it. You don't want to see the disaster where the rest of fabric currently resides. Trust me.

I have 2 of these carts.

Who is/are your favorite fabric designers?
Jenean Morrison and Anna Maria Horner are my current favorites. But mostly, I just buy what I like. I don't usually buy complete collections, because then I feel like I have to use them all together. Then they never get used. So lately, I've been focusing on buying specific colors. Like I realized I'm lacking in the yellow department. My next fabric purchase will likely be a bundle of yellow blenders.

What is one thing you have learned that you wish you knew when you first started quilting?
Change your needle and rotary blades more often than you think you should. I always keep at least 5 new needles and blades on hand now. I stock up when there is a sale or I have coupons.

What is your favorite sewing/quilting tool and why should we all go out and buy it?
Glue. I started glue basting in January after I hit a pin and did this.
I had to take my machine, my baby, in for servicing after hitting this guy and shattering the needle. (There's a piece of the needle missing here.) The needle went out of alignment, and the machine was skipping stitches like crazy. It was not pretty. So anyway, I'd been hearing about glue basting for at least a year at the time, and it sounded like a crazy idea. But I was finally convinced by someone to try it after she saw this picture. I used to hate sewing long seams. It seemed no matter how well I pinned, something always shifted. There is no shifting with glue basting. I thought glue basting would take more time, but it doesn't AND there's no stopping to remove pins while I sew. Seriously, try it. Here's the method I use.

Who is your favorite fictional character and why? (Could be from a book, movie, TV show, etc.)
I don't play favorites with books, movies, TV shows, etc. I just like what I like at the time. So since I've been on a Psych binge again recently, I'll go with Shawn Spencer. He just makes me laugh.

All right, on to my chosen block. A few years ago I was part of a bee where everyone made the Garden Fence Block from Hyacinth Quilts. I have a few blocks in my chosen colors, but I need more, lots more, for my quilt top. So, my colors are good ol' primary colors, bright yellows, royal blues, and red reds. I never tire of this combination. Please use a solid white for the sashing. I used Kona, but Moda Bella is fine too. As far as pressing goes, I like to press to the side, but I'm not picky about however you choose to press.

Cutting instructions:
Color 1: 1 - 4 1/2" x 4 1/2" 
Color 2: 4 - 2 1/2" x 3"
              4 - 2 1/2" x 5" 
White: 2 - 1 1/2" x 4 1/2"
            2 - 1 1/2" x 6 1/2"
            4 - 1 1/2" x 2 1/2"

Sew the 4 1/2" strips to either side of the square. I usually sew the 2 1/2" white strips to 2 of the 3" strips and 2 of the 5" strips at this point also.

Sew the 6 1/2" white strips to the center piece and finish the outer strips by adding the other 3" and 5" strips.

Attach the outer strips,

and you're done!


Shena said...

I'm not in your hive, but I wanted to say that you have beautiful children. Their smiles are lovely and your son Justice has the most beautiful eyes. I'm sorry for your loss.

CitricSugar said...

Got my blocks done - will get them in the mail this week!

Tiff Blakey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tiff Blakey said...

Dang. And here I am finally getting my butt in gear and packaging yours up as I type!