Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Hive #5 - July Tutorial - Converging Corners

It is Kelly here from Hive 5. I've been simultaneously waiting for and dreading this month for so long. I've never joined any sort of bee before so there was that... I have been looking forward to this since I signed up last year but have been dreading the most important part... choosing my block.

First I thought I'd do the flowering snowball block, then I thought perhaps some sort of orange peel block. Next I switched to a feather block. Then houses. Then... Every few weeks since last Fall I had a different block in mind. You can find many of my choices on my Pinterest board.

After going back and forth (and back and forth) I kept coming back to this quilt found on From Martha With Love. Everything about it is just so pretty. And scrappy!

The block is based on the Converging Corners tutorial by Film In The Fridge.

For my color palette, I pulled a mix of floral and geometric prints in tones like mint, coral, blush with some pops of gray, navy, gold, lime, orange etc. Think sherbets with a bit of pop. Please DO NOT use baby pastels or other really deep colors like red as the dominant color. For reference, the majority of the fabrics I used were either Art Gallery's Arizona or Basic Grey's Fresh Cut lines. I also threw some Maude Asbury's Geofabulous and Brambleberry Ridge in there for kicks. A few of the prints even have some metallic gold in them!

A mix of 8-10 fabrics will work well. Try to avoid overtly directional or novelty prints please. I know it is a bit of an eclectic mix but I like it. My 7 yr old son says it is weird. But I am weird so hey... :)

You will also need some neutral background fabric. Personally I do not like bright whites and like ivory tones instead. I chose 4 fabrics to work with. One is a solid Kona in Bone and the rest are very low volume prints. Just mix them up into the block. Please only use very low volume or solids in ivory, creams or off white tones if possible. 

The tutorial by Film in the Fridge is probably best to follow. Her final block is only 12.5". I would love for these to be 16.5" so you can either add extra strips or make them slightly wider than she describes. I'll walk you through a few of the steps here anyway.

I am making two blocks for samples. The block is built much like a log cabin block. You'll need to pick a feature fabric for the center. I suggest making it any size between 3 - 6" square. Next you'll use the background fabric to build out your block to be around 8-10" or so. Please press your seams open as you go.

The next step is to continue building your block's corners by adding strips of fabric. I start in the bottom right then do the top left corner. The length of the first colored strip should be around 2.5-3.5" long with the remainder of the strip being the background color. Each ring of strips should get progressively longer. Vary of the widths of the fabric strips between 1-3" or so. Skinnier strips will require more to complete the block. Aim for 3-5 strips for each corner.

Keep working back and forth from bottom right to top left corner until your block is 16.5". Don't worry about trimming them down or squaring them up. Try to keep the center square roughly in the center but it doesn't have to be precise. Variety will make the quilt interesting.

When finished you should have a block that looks something like this:

Hopefully this will be a fun block for you. Let me know if you have any questions or concerns. 

As for my question for my hivemates... Since I am relatively new to quilting, what is the one tool you think is helpful for a new quilter to get. 

For me, I love my FriXion gel pen for marking. Ink disappears with the heat of an iron. I know, I know... I've read blog posts where people have mentioned how the ink can actually reappear in the cold. I did some testing and yes, the ink did come back a little when I put the fabric in the freezer... but honestly, if ever my house is ever the same temperature as the inside of my freezer, I think some markings on my quilts will be the least of my concerns. :) Overall I love this handy little tool and use it all the time.


Allison said...

I really like how random this quilt is, and I especially like that your fabric pull is fresh and bright. I've not had too much experience with marking pens, but the one I have used I often have to use a good amount of water to get rid of the markings... and sometimes after several tries. I'll have to try your version.

Greetings from Germany!


Hi Kelly, let me know when you get my block pretty please and take a pic of it if it meets the standard, I want my block to be as beautiful and yours and others..