Friday, March 24, 2023

Hive 1 🌱 for Julia!!

Julia, here are some blades of grass! I've never made a jelly roll race quilt, so it was fun to use this technique for the first time. I'm glad I'd bulked up my green stash for Adrienne's blocks. 😅

They're already in the mail! 

Thursday, March 23, 2023

March Green Grass done!

 I just finished up these fun little grassy blocks.  They should be off in the mail tomorrow or Saturday. 

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Completed quilt from January in Hive 4

 Thanks to Hive 4 and a kind hive crasher for helping me make such a sweet little baby quilt. I mailed it off to its new home today.

Monday, March 20, 2023

Hive 1 March block for Julia

 Hi Julia,

Thank you for such a great block! I thought I had found all my greens for my block but I found MORE green in my stash that worked perfectly for your grass blocks. A jelly roll race quilt is on my to-do list so this was an awesome introduction, it was so much fun to make!

The photo looks more yellow than I expected, I am in a hotel at a quilt retreat this weekend but they really are a lovely blend of green. I got a lot of folks stopping to see what I was up to, they absolutely loved your block!


Saturday, March 18, 2023

Hive 1 March - Blades of Grass for Julia


Hi -

I’ve never done a jelly roll race before. Fast and fun!  Thanks for the opportunity. Hope they look like blades of grass. They were mailed Tuesday 📫


Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Hive 1 March - blades of grass for Julia


These blades of grass blocks came together super quick and were lots of fun. My bucket of green scraps got quite the workout! Thanks Julia for giving us a creative way to support your eco-conscious blanket project.

Friday, March 10, 2023

Crashing Hive 1!

Hi Julia C.! Here is a surprise from Hive 6😄

This was a fun project, I just couldn't resist jumping in (uninvited).

It's in the mail, should arrive on Monday (I'm tracking it).

Take care,


Saturday, March 4, 2023

Hive 1 March Grass Block for Julia


Hi Julia,

These blocks will go on their way this week, the latest next Saturday.

Hope they are, what you are looking for.

Take care,


Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Hive 1 March tutorial - Blades of Grass for Julia

Hello Hive 1! I hope you left all your greens out from last month's block--because you'll need them again for March.

I've had an idea kicking around my head for a few years to make a quilt inspired by lawns. Making and celebrating more biodiverse lawns is one way we can make our own back yards more sustainable, friendly to pollinators, and overall beneficial for our local ecosystems and the environment at large. What better way to celebrate than with a quilt?

This is a smaller block, so I am asking you to make two. 

Fabric selection:

All greens! Kelly green, olive green, minty green, teal blue-greens, chartreuse yellow-greens, green prints, batiks, solids--it all goes. Please no novelty fabrics, but besides that, any green works. 


Cut 1.5 inch strips in a variety of lengths. I've used lengths between 3.5 inches and 16 inches. Dig through  your scraps! (I recommend cutting a slightly generous 1.5 inch--if you're using an acrylic ruler, make the edge on the far side of the line instead of right on it.)

You'll need about 90 inches total length of strips for each block. You can get away with a few inches less, but 90 gives you a little wiggle room to cut down as needed. 


Join all strips at a 45 degree angle. You do this by placing the strips right side together, making sure the corners match up. Sew along the diagonal, and you have one continuous strip. If you want to watch this in more detail, here's a good video

At this point you should have one looong strip. You're going to sew that one strip to itself in a jelly roll race style. To do this, take your one long strip and fold it in half, right sides together. Sew the whole thing, clipping the fabric at the end. You should have one piece of fabric now that is two strips wide and half the length. Repeat that step until you have a block that is eight strips wide. If you want more visual instruction on this, here's a video that shows the process

Please press seams however you like. Make sure to press as you go, it makes everything much easier!

Note: a scant 1/4 inch seam is very important. Since there are so many seams and they all go the same direction, if your seam is not a scant 1/4 inch you can end up with a block that is too narrow. If you're a little on the short side, no worries--please send it anyway, some of mine are a little short too!

Your final blocks should be 8.5 x 10.5. Trim down to get the 10.5 length. 

Thank you everyone! I can't wait to get all these blocks and see the wide variety of greens. If you have any questions, just reach out. And if you want to learn more about biodiversity in lawns, you can read here, or here

Hive 6 March Tutorial

Hello friends! My name is Em, and I live in St. Charles, MO. I've actually lost track of how many times I've participated in Stash Bee, but I think I've only missed one since it started?? How many is that. Anyway, I've put together this 16-inch finished (16.5 inch, unfinished block) that should make a really cool secondary pattern when I put the quilt togther. 

I wrote this block in a way that I felt would keep things simple. If I had been writing the pattern to put a whole quilt together, I would have done things a little differently, but it would result in multiples and more than you need for a single block. If any of these construction methods don't work for you, please feel free to use a method of your choice as the block components are very simple.

The block consists of one 8.5-inch (unfinished) quarter square triangle unit, four flying geese of different colors that will measure 4.5 inches x 8.5 inches and four half square triangles that are 4.5 inches (unfinished). 


Cut five 10-inch squares of the following colors
Black (solid, or black on black print)
Lime green (more green than yellow)
Bright pink

1. Cut all five squares TWICE on the diagonal, creating four rectangles. 

2. Select TWO of the triangles you just cut in the following four colors: green, bright pink, purple, and turquoise. Cut those in half again to creat smaller triangles. 

3. Make the center quarter square triangle. COLOR PLACEMENT IS IMPORTANT. Please arrange the colors as they are shown in my example so that the secondary pattern will come together when I put the quilt together. 

Using the larger triangles, place purple to the left of pink and sew along a short side to make a larger triangle. Place turquoise to the left of lime green and sew along a short side to make a larger triangle. 

Sew these two multi-colored triangles together to make quarter square triangle unit. 

Trim to 8.5 inches. 

4. Make the flying geese units. Place the long edge of a small triangle right sides together with a short edge of a large black triangle. It's important that the colorful triangle extends beyond the tip of the black triangle at the ¼" mark. 

Press that side open. 

Okay, sewing the second side has the potential to be a wee bit complicated. The simple version is that you will add the second side like you did the first (long edge of the colorful triangle right sides together with the short edge of the larger black triangle). 

HOWEVER, the part that extend over the tip of the black triangle will be slightly more than ¼". The reason has to do with where the seam allowances will end up on the colorful block. Imagine a line for the seam allowance ¼" in from the edge all the way around the smaller triangle. The point of the triangle after it's been sewn has to leave enough of a seam allowance for the flying goose unit to be sewn into the block. If that doesn't make sense, just disregard this entire paragraph. 

All you need to know is that you should extend the tip of the colorful triangle a bit more than ¼" past the top of the unit before you sew it, say 3/8". If you don't, you won't have enough seam allowance above the tip of the black flying goose to preserve the tip when you sew the block together. I had to un-sew this one: 

Trim your flying goose unit to 4.5 x 8.5 inches. I find this easiest to do by lining up the 4¼ mark along the top of the ruler at the tip of the goose on the long edge, and then checking that the 4.5 and 8.5 marks on the short edges touch as close as possible to the line where the two colors meet. 


5. Make half square triangles. Line up your block so the colors are arranged clockwise in this order: purple, bright pink, turquoise, lime green. Match the remaining small triangle to make HST units. 

Trim half square triangles to 4.5 inches. 

6. Assemble the block as shown. Trim to 16.5 inches. 

Ta da! You did it! Thank you!!


Hive 5 - March Tutorial - Economy Block for Laurel

sample completed blocks

The Block

  • The Economy Block, if you are unfamiliar, is a square in a square in a square. 
  • I am using foundation paper piecing. If you’ve never used this technique, this block
    is an excellent introduction to FPP.
  • Your completed size for this block is 4.5”.
  • This month is scrap friendly. The largest piece of fabric you will need is 3.5” square.

The Inspiration

There are a few things that have been on my list of quilting to-do’s:

  1. Fussy cutting. I like the look but hate the waste, so how to do it without using mass amounts of fabric?
  2. Small blocks. So much of what I do has large blocks. My first full-sized quilt was a disappearing nine-patch
    made with 10” pieces (that’s a 29” block). I want to piece something that is smaller.
  3. Modern white space. Although I like the idea of small, I also prefer more modern quilts, so I know I need
    to sash or add solids to make a whole quilt.

A combination of small fussy-cut center Economy Blocks fits my first two inspirations. White or grey or some other colour of sashing, yet to be determined, will meet the third.


You will need the standard quilting tools, with the following tools being helpful.
  • Scissors - both paper and fabric
  • A printer to print the template.
  • Spray starch.
  • A fabric glue stick, plain glue stick, or a pin or two for holding the pieces together.
    Since you sew on the paper side, you need something to hold the fabric in place.
  • A 4.5” square for trimming the final block, but any ruler for trimming will do.

Fabric choice. 

You will need three fabrics:

  1. Something to fussy cut. A floral, geometric, small or medium print with a distinct
    motif to focus the central block. An animal is okay as long as it’s a grown-up print
    rather than something cartoonish or for kids. 
  2. A solid or something that reads solid for the second row.
  3. A small overall print for the third row.

See my fabric pull at the end of the post.


All three of your fabrics should be

  1. In the same colour
  2. Should be a ROY G BIV (aka red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet) colour
  3. Should blend. Contrast is not required, but I understand that there may be some lighter and darker fabrics in the same colour range.
  4. No neutrals, so no white, black, grey, or cream. 
  5. No neons as the primary colour. Bright is nice but neon is too bright for me.
  6. It’s okay if there is a bit of neutral or neon in the pattern or in the background.
  7. Modern prints are good, and if you have non-modern scraps to get rid of,
    those work too.

Fussy Cutting

If you are familiar with fussy cutting, skip to the pattern.

If you are new to fussy cutting, you can see an explanation of the process and some of my decisions at the end of the post. There is also a video in the Resources section at the end.

The Pattern

The Economy Block uses the foundation paper piecing technique. This method allows
you to sew pieces of fabric along the bias or in intricate patterns. 

For more information on how to FPP, check out the resources at the end.

General Sewing Notes

  • Reduce your stitch length to 1.5-1.8. This makes the paper easier to remove later.
  • Always start and stop about ¼” beyond the solid sew line. 
  • The next patch will secure the seam ends so it is not necessary to back stitch.
  • You may end up trimming off the backstitch since the block will be trimmed.
  • I press to set the seam, then press the pieces open on the right side.
  • You always press the sides out on an Economy block.

Prepare the template:

  1. Download the Foundation Paper Piecing template here. Make sure you print it at 100%. It’s the correct size if the 1” guide on the side is actually 1”. If you have foundation piecing paper, great. If not, plain paper works fine.

  1. Rough cut the template unit outside the dotted line that indicates the outermost edge. You will use this outside dotted line to trim the final block to size.

  1. The download has two template squares. You can use one to make a frame to find your centre square. Simply cut the centre square out of the other template.

Tips to line up the fabric on the template.

Foundation paper piecing requires lining up the fabric on one side of the template, then sewing it on the other side. You are sewing somewhat blind.

Many people hold the template and fabric up to the light or use a lightbox (or computer screen, tablet or phone will work in a pinch or at night). But the Economy Block is a simple block and so I like to fold my template.

Prepare and cut the Fabric

Here are some of the fabrics I prepared

I starched everything before cutting since triangles are prone to stretch along the bias. 

Fabric B & C blocks are slightly oversized to ensure correct placement and ultimate success.

Sew Fabric B triangles to the Fabric A square

Sew Fabric C triangles to the Fabric B/A square

My Fabric Pull

Here are some images of the fabric pulls.

How I Fussy Cut

If you are not familiar with fussy cutting, all you do is choose a motif that fits in a pleasing way
in your centre square. The image is typically centred with some space between the motif and
what will be the finished edge of the square.


Fussy Cutting

Foundation Paper Piecing

Photo Credits for Inspiration Collection

Credits from L-R

Top Row:
Bottom Row: