Sunday, January 31, 2010

Y-seams...I kicked butt and took names!

I've never been able to sew a clean Y-seam.  I pretty much avoid them at all costs but I knew I needed to overcome that in order to teach Sylvia's Bridal Sampler.  I found a fantastic tutorial on the C&T Publishing Blog.

I paper pieced all of my sections INCLUDING the stand alone squares.  For those I did a basting stitch around the outside between the edge and the start of the seam allowance.  I figured that by sewing it to paper I could follow the lines and know precisely where to stop sewing.  When I completed my first Y-seam and it looked beautiful I did a happy dance!!!! (The picture also shows how I basted the square onto paper.)

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As I did each of the 8 Y-Seams I got more and more excited.  If basting my pieces to paper and using the lines from paper piecing so I can clearly see my start/stop points is what it takes to turn out a perfect Y-Seam I'll happily do it each and every time from here on out!!

Here's G-1 from Sylvia's Bridal Sampler - Love in a Mist:


I'm so ridiculously proud of my block that I've been joking that I need to frame it!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Quilting Public Service Announcement

This post is brought to you by the letter I.  That is I for idiot.  The idiot being me...

I feel as if everything I did to get this Pick Farm block made went wrong.  I had my four segments together and then I went to assemble the sections.  I couldn't get my machine to advance, I ended up stretching out one of my pieces.  The paper came off.  It was just all downhill from there.

Here's my nice pucker-ey block:

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I unscrewed my needle plate and cleaned it out.  Hmmm, that wasn't too bad.  I decided to change my needle even though I knew it was changed not very long ago.  I doubt it even had 2 hours sewing on it.  We noticed that my regular needle plate was on, so I switched to the single hole plate.  While I was at it, I changed my 28mm and 60mm rotary blades.  I printed the block on vellum instead of the newsprint that I've been using.  

After a second try, a great looking block:

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When in doubt, change things up.  Check your needle plate, check your needle, clean out your bobbin race.  Start fresh.  Sometimes it makes a world of difference!!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Flying Star

I've been wanting to design and piece this block for quite a while now.  It's now one of my favorites!!!

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

I was waiting impatiently…

For my Mini Moo cards to arrive!  It’s all Beth’s fault.  I’ve been enamored with  them ever since I saw them on her blog months ago.   Now that I look, it’s been a year since I first saw them.  It took me a year to decide what to put on mine. 

So now I finally have something I can hand out with my blog address on it.  I seem to always be writing it out for people.  I love them.  MY pictures printed on the back, my blog address on the opposite side.  Ok, my name and phone number too but for internet purposes I blocked that out of my picture. 

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Yes, I’m easily amused. 

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Block of the Week – Block #4 – Spinning Spools – Walworth County

Jen Buettner – Cre8tive Quilter

Wisconsin Quilt Blocks on Barns - Block of the Week

Block #4 – Spinning Spools – Walworth County

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Your block will finish to 6”. This means that it will physically measure 6-1/2” X 6-1/2” before it is sewn to other blocks.

Cutting Instructions & Piecing Locations for 6” Paper Pieced Block:


(4) 1-3/4” X 4-3/4” Rectangles – Brown – A1, B1, C3 & E2
(4) 2-1/4” Squares – Brown Sub-Cut clip_image006 - A4, A6, B4, B6, C2, C6, E4 & E6

(4) 1-3/4” X 2-1/2” Rectangles – Brown – D1, D3, F1 & F3

(4) 1-3/4” X 4-3/4” Rectangles – White – A5, B5, C1 & E3
(4) 2-1/4” Squares – White Sub-Cut clip_image006[1] - A2, A3, B2, B3, C4, C5, E1 & E5

(4) 1-3/4” x 2-1/2” Rectangles – White – D4, D6, F4 & F6

(1) 2-1/2” Square – Blue – F5

(1) 2-1/2” Square – Green – F2

(1) 2-1/2” Square – Red – D5

(1) 2-1/2” Square – Yellow – D2

Paper Piece your sections and then assemble the block according to the above picture.  To do this you will first connect the C & E sections.  From there, your A section is row 1, F is row 2, C/E is row 3, D is row 4 & B is row 5.

Click HERE to print a clean Spinning Spools Instruction Sheet
Click HERE to download and print the Spinning Spools Foundation Pattern. 

**You will want to Download the file and then print the .pdf file.  When you print, make sure that scaling is turned off enabling the document to print at 100%.  Take a moment to measure.  The dashed horizontal lines on sections A, B, D or F should measure 6-1/2".  If you print directly from the Google Docs screen you might come out with a slightly smaller sized block.**

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

SBS & Barn Blocks

I spent a good chunk of time typing up my class notes for my Sylvia’s Bridal Sampler Club tonight.  I have three of my four blocks written up.  It’s funny that even though there’s a book that everyone will be working out of, I find that there’s a lot of information to share about each block. 

On the Sylvia's Bridal Sampler BOW site this weeks block is Love in a Mist:

Bright hopes

I look forward to putting this block together this week, BUT I won’t be throwing it into the program at the shop quite yet.  I think it’s a little too early to be throwing all these Y-seams at my ladies.  One block with Y-seams is more than enough for February!  I don’t want people dropping out just because we started off with difficult blocks.  I switched to the Bright Hopes block for the group….Bright Hopes as we start this sampler, that we all make it to then end!

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Yesterday I put together my Spinning Spools block since it is Week 4’s Barn Block.

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When I started working on this block, I hadn’t given much thought about how the top, bottom and middle sections were going to piece together.  I mean, I knew what had to be done, but I didn’t think of the angles.  Here’s an example – for this block you’ll need to place the longer rectangles at a 45 degree angle to the triangle.  Sounds confusing but is pretty simple once you go to do it.  Here’s a picture for you to reference:

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Monday, January 25, 2010

Two Finishes

I finished sewing the binding on my Sylvia's Bridal Sampler Binder.  I really like how it came out BUT I still need to design some sort of closure.  A flap of some sort which undoubtedly should have been added BEFORE I assembled it.

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This isn't something I used a pattern for, I just figured it out as I went fitting it to my binder before I made my cuts.  I started out by cutting a WOF strip that was about two inches wider than the height of my binder.  Once quilted I wrapped it around to see just how much I needed to cover the binder itself.  the extra fabric I split in half and used for the inside flaps.  I added the handles before I sewed the entire thing together.  They are actually webbing that I covered with fabric.  The fabric was from Jennifer Chiaverini's fabric line "The Winding Ways Quilt" and printed by Red Rooster.  It's an older fabric line but I had it in my stash and thought it was perfect to use for my Sylvia's Bridal Sampler Binder.

I also finished up the notebook wrap that I was making for my friend Katie.

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I'm really happy with how this turned out.  It's another thing that I make without a pattern.  A few friends are trying to talk me into writing up a tutorial so there might be something in the coming months.  I just do the same thing I did for the binder cover...starting with an oversized piece and then just cut it up as needed for the size of the notebook.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Football?

I think we all know that I just don't enjoy watching football.  I hung out in my quilt studio and got cre8tive.

I finished up the coil wrapped notion tote.  I even wrapped my webbing handles. It's pretty wonky in shape but I really don't care.  Every time I pick it up it seems to morph into another shape.  The handles which look like they're off center were actually measured out before I decided where to place them.  It's perfect for what I want to use it for.

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Next up I worked on a cover for my Sylvia's Bridal Sampler Binder.  This quilt is going to be a three year program so I figured if my binder was going to go back and forth to the shop on an almost daily basis I had to take action.  I decided to add handles to it so that I can just throw it over my shoulder instead of it taking up space in my various tote bags.  Now, I just need to finish doing the binding.

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Lastly I started working on a notebook wrap for Katie.  I just have a few more strips to add to my foundation before I start quilting it and cutting it up into usable chunks.

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After about 5 years of searching for her my best friend from Grade School & Middle School finally popped up on Facebook.  I couldn't believe it.  I friended her right away and we were able to chat for a while and made tentative plans to get together next weekend.  I'm beyond excited.  We have each moved a few times, changed phone numbers, etc.  Turns out she's been looking for me too!!  I had expanded my search the other night to the Facebook page for the High School she attended and just started clicking on people that I knew from my old neighborhood.  Sure enough, there she was as a friend to my old neighborhood pal Pat.  It was exciting to re-connect with both of them.  Pat and I used to play Atari together.  I couldn't even begin to tell you how many hours we spent playing Frogger, Donkey Kong and Pac Man.  I'm pretty sure we wore out quite a few game controllers.  We went to different schools and lost touch which is pretty sad considering we maybe lived 15 houses from each other.  Missy and I endured the awful Sister Yvonne together in 4th Grade and our friendship grew from there.  Apparently my Dad used to bank at a bank she worked at years back.  Of course, he never passed the information on to me.  Lots of years lost for no reason. =(  Now, if only I could find Sandy, my friend who lived kitty corner from me across the ally.  I can't find any of her family members online.

All in all, it was a pretty good day in the life of ME!



Saturday, January 23, 2010

Operation Migration - Roberta Williams

Roberta Williams is an Extraordinary local art quilter.  She teaches a new class, "Hop To It!" by Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts.



Last years' quilt was Roberta's own pattern, "The Heidi Birds."



I think Roberta is amazing!  Of course today she gave me a link to check out -  Operation Migration.  On their 1/20 post titled, "And the Winner is" Roberta's art quilt was auctioned off and went for $5000!  How exciting is that? That is HUGE!  Of course, it's beautiful.  Here's the picture she made it from:



Here's the beautiful quilt:





Years ago, before I met her, I marveled at this award winning quilt:




I didn't make the connection until today that it was made by Roberta.  That Roberta...is she amazing or what?  Make sure you visit her website,  http://www.robertawilliamsdesigns.com/  it's worth the click!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Clothesline Bowl

At dinner on Thursday, Regina made a clothesline tote for Susie.  I fell in love.  I decided it would be the perfect thing to sit on the floor next to my sewing machine table to toss my notions in.  I don't seem to do so well at the little container that I have with all of the pockets.  She also added handles to hers.  I figure it would make for a great thing to take back and forth to the shop for when I teach.  Here's how far I've gotten.  I think I have another 25 or so feet to wrap and add to the project.

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

Still Celebrating Christmas

We went out on Thursday night for our shop Christmas Party.  A few of us exchanged names for Christmas and it turned out Terry had my name.  She had seen me oggling the fabric that I used to make Moneik's pillowcase so she made me one like it, just in a different colorway.  I'm digging the armchair sewing caddy which will make Mike happy because it gives me a place to stick my pins other than the arm of the couch.

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This ornament is PERFECT.  If you see in the background there's a barn with a quilt block on it.  Terry added the quilt block to it.

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Katie and I found the pattern for these crazy Gingerbread ornaments online.  We were both going to make them.  I haven't gotten farther than buying the felt.  Katie on the other hand, MADE hers and had one end up in the dishwasher.  We've been laughing about it for weeks.  I'm now the proud owner of Dishwasher Dude.


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We had the BEST chocolate cake which we all joked that I should have taken a picture of and posted to my blog BUT they all know that food photos have been banned from the blog so you get to see NOTHING!

A good time was had by all.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Block of the Week - Block #3 – Milky Way – Walworth County

Jen Buettner – Cre8tive Quilter

Wisconsin Quilt Blocks on Barns - Block of the Week

Block #3 – Milky Way – Walworth County

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Your block will finish to 6”. This means that it will physically measure 6-1/2” X 6-1/2” before it is sewn to other blocks.

Cutting Instructions & Piecing Locations for 6” Paper Pieced Block:


(9) 2-1/2” Squares – Green – C1, C4, C7, D1, D4, D7, E1, E4 & E7

(2) 2-1/2” Squares – White – A6 & B1

(2) 2-1/2” Squares – Black – A1 & B6
(4) 2-1/2” Squares – Green Sub-cut clip_image006 - A3, A8, B3, B8, C2, C5, E2 & E5
(4) 2-1/2” Squares – White Sub-cut clip_image006[1] - A5, A7, B2, B4, C6, D3, D5 & E6
(4) 2-1/2” Squares – Black Sub-cut clip_image007 - A2, A4, B5, B7, C3, D2, D6 & E3

Click HERE to print a clean Milky Way Instruction Sheet
Click HERE to download and print the Milky Way Foundation Pattern


**You will want to Download the file and then print the .pdf file.  When you print, make sure that scaling is turned off enabling the document to print at 100%.  Take a moment to measure.  Any of the dashed horizontal lines should measure 6-1/2".  If you print directly from the Google Docs screen you might come out with a slightly smaller sized block.**




Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Paper Piecing Tips

Jen Buettner – Cre8tive Quilter

Wisconsin Quilt Blocks on Barns - Block of the Week

Paper Piecing Tip

There are many blocks in the Wisconsin Quilts on Barns Block of the Week that have multiple parts that need to be assembled before they are actually sewn into a block.  One thing I like to do before I get started is to actually write the colors onto my foundation like this:
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Keep in mind, this is the REVERSE IMAGE of your finished block.  You need to work backwards.  This is what your finished block would look like:




I know it doesn’t look like a huge help but believe me, it is!  Especially if you start putting your block together and then have to come back to it later.  I also try to do this before I cut the foundation apart.

When you cut your sections apart do not cut right on the dotted outer line.  Rough cut around each section.  You will straighten this up before you start assembling your sections together.

I find the Add-A Rulers to be a huge help.  I especially like the Add and Eighth ruler for these 6" blocks.  An 1/8th inch seam versus a 1/4" can make a huge difference in more areas than just your assembly.  The 1/8th" leaves less bulk in your seams.  Not only will it make them easier to join your sections but if we're talking about making a quilt with about 100+ blocks, the quilt itself is going to be pretty heavy before you even go to quilt it.