Jolly Christmas Quilt-along Update

You may have noticed the sidebar button for the Have A Jolly Little Christmas quilt along sponsored by Sew Fresh Quilts.  Click on it!  The blocks are great! (Even though these pictures aren’t.  I think my camera has been dropped one too many times, or something.)

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I have made three blocks so far–one stockings and two mittens.

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All of these pieces are for the Christmas bow block.

Yes, these blocks are not for the faint of heart, but they are not impossible.  Just read carefully, cut carefully and watch seam allowances.  I am planning a different sort of layout and will keep you posted as it develops.  The finished quilt will probably be a present for my parents.   They are really patient with my constant gifts of quilts.

Twin Pint Size Finish

The twin Pint Size quilts are finished.

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The “boy” version has scraps of green, yellow, red and brown.

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The “girl” version is green, yellow, pink and purple.

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It was an interesting challenge to use the same backing fabric for both and yet make them distinct.

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They will be delivered by Husband to his work in the near future.

If you are worried, “Will I like scrappy, or will it just be chaotic?” consider starting with a backing fabric you love.  Pick colors that stand out to you and then select pieces that match-but-not-too-closely.  If you look at these quilts you will see a wide range of each color, but they do coordinate.  The variety provides interest and texture only possible with scrappy fabrics.  And it really does work!

Once You Have A Good Idea…

Sometimes projects stall because you need one good idea that you don’t have.  That was the case with Tile Works.  I didn’t know how I was going to finish the top, taking the scrappy blocks and making something that would work. (Excuse, please, difficult indoor photography of a large quilt–76″ x 90″.  There is over 2-feet of snow on the ground here and more falling right now.  Outside is not an option.)

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Then, YAY, the good idea came.  Barbara F. said, “How about a dark brown sashing.”  Why didn’t I think of that?

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So, with brown sashing, dark red corner stones and a detail in the outer border that reflects the block design, we have a finished top.

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Thank you so much, particularly to Barbara F., but to all of my wonderful readers-become-friends-I’ve-never-met.  You encourage, cheer, support and help generally.  I am so glad to see this long term project move towards a finished quilt that will bring warmth and color into someone’s life.

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ps–People have asked for the pattern, but I can’t give it to you.  It is a 12″ block pattern known as Tile Works #162 from the Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks publications.

162 1 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 42

It was designed by Monique Dillard of opengatequilts.  Hopefully you will be able to find it and enjoy making something beautiful yourself.

Same-But-Different Blocks

The blocks for the twin quilts are coming along nicely.  It will take 32 for both tops and 24 are complete.

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Notice the same-but-different look.  The blocks on the left are for the “boy” quilt.  The right is for the “girl.” By using two of the same colors–green and yellow–and two different colors (boy = red and brown, girl = pink and purple) there is enough to make each distinct and enough to bring them together.  At least that is my operating theory.

I hope to have all blocks finished and the tops assembled by the end of the week.

ps:  These are made using the Pint Size pattern. Go have a look.  It makes good use of 2-1/2″ squares.

TUTORIAL: Times Two Baby Quilt

This isn’t a full tutorial with step-by-step photos, but, I hope you will enjoy it and feel free to ask clarifying questions.  It is perfect for using up scraps from a jelly roll or other leftover strips (which is what I did here).  I am planning another one with random-width strips in the near future.

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TIMES TWO

33-1/2″ 33-1/2″

MATERIALS

an assortment of strips 2″ wide, or a charm pack and a half-ish, or leftover jelly roll scraps, or whatever makes you happy

3/4 yard background fabric

1-1/8  yard backing fabric (or as required for quilting technique)

batting suitable

1/3 yard binding fabric

CUTTING DIRECTIONS

  1. From your colored fabric, cut at least 108 rectangles 4-1/4″ x 2″.  You can also strip piece the fabric and then subcut blocks 4-1/4″ x 9-1/2″
  2. From your background fabric, cut the following: a) 21 2″x9-1/2″ strips, b) 4 2″x2″ squares, c) 2 2″x30-1/2″ strips, d) 2 2″x 33-1/2″ strips.

CONSTRUCTION

  1. Using the colored strips, piece 6 into units measuring 4-1/4″x9-1/2″.  Create 18 of these.  If using miscellaneous scraps, stitch them together and then trim to form units of the same size.
  2. Form complete blocks using 2 units and one background strip measuring 2″ x 9-1/2″.  Create 9 of these.
  3. Lay out the blocks so that they alternate vertical and horizontal layouts.  This is where I really regret not taking step-by-step pictures, but look at the pictures I do have and you’ll get it.
  4. Join the blocks into rows using background strips measuring 2″ x 9-1/2″.  It will take 6 to do the job. You will make three rows.
  5. Create sashing strips using 3 background strips measuring 2″ x 9-1/2″ and 2 of the 2″x2″ squares.  Make two of these.
  6. Join the rows together with the sashing strips between.
  7. Add the 2″x30-1/2″ strips to the sides and the 2 2″x 33-1/2″ strips to the top and bottom.  Congratulations, you have a quilt top.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  8. Layer, baste and quilt as desired.  I used a simple diagonal through the blocks.  It was something I could handle on my home machine.
  9. Label and bind.  Ta-dah!  You have a quilt.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

TUTORIAL: Pint Size Baby Quilt

Little squares again?  Yep, I never seem to get tired of them.  This quilt is based on 2-1/2″ squares and you might have some of those, or something close to it, laying around.  You can use plain old scraps, jelly roll leftovers, a charm pack (with a few friends)…really just about anything.  I have a plastic shoe box where I put 2-1/2″ squares as I cut them.  All I had to do was sort through the box and find pieces that worked.  Don’t worry…the box is still full.  In fact, the box is ALWAYS full.  Scraps don’t seem to match the laws that govern the rest of the universe.

PINT SIZE

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37-1/2″ 37-1/2″

block size:  8″ finished (8-1/2″ raw)

MATERIALS

192 2-1/2″ squares.  You can use scraps, a jelly roll, or take one-and-a-little charm packs and cut them into quarters

1-1/3  yards background fabric (in the model I used two different colors, but both the white sashing and borders and the very light blue in the blocks is background)

1-1/4  yard backing fabric (or as required for quilting technique)

batting suitable

1/3 yard binding fabric

CUTTING DIRECTIONS

  1. Prepare your colored squares.  Because I am sometimes a little obsessive, mine get sorted by color.  But, you don’t have to do that.  Just make sure a good pile is ready.
  2. Background fabric–for each block you will need 4 2-1/2″ x 2-1/2″ squares and 4 2-1/2″x 4-1/2″ rectangles.   That means a total of 64 2-1/2″ x 2-1/2″ squares and 64 2-1/2″x 4-1/2″ rectangles.
  3. Background fabric, continued–for sashing and borders you will need 24 1-1/2″ x 8-1/2″ rectangles, 9 1-1/2″ x 1-1/2″ squares, 2 1-1/2″ x 35-1/2″ strips and 2 1-1/2″ x 37-1/2″ strips.

CONSTRUCTION

  1. Using your colored squares, create a four patch block.  Be color obsessive (I raise my hand here), or just grab 4 pieces and stitch them together.  The finished 4-patch blocks should measure 4-1/2″ square. Do this 16 times.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  2. Choose one of your 4-patch centers, 8 colored squares, 4 2-1/2″ background fabric squares and 4 2-1/2″ x 4-1/2″ background rectangles.  Lay out your proposed block.
  3. You will create a flying geese block using 2 colored squares and a background rectangle.  Use the “stitch and flip” method. Do this four times.
  4. Assemble the block as you would a 9-patch.  Just join the sections into rows, then join the rows together.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  5. Yay!  You have a finished block.
  6. Do steps 2-5 a total of 16 times.
  7. Lay out your blocks in a pleasing arrangement.  If they are scrappy enough, it probably doesn’t matter.  But, just looking at them all is part of the fun.
  8. Create rows of blocks by alternating four blocks with the 1-1/2″ x 8-1/2″ background strips between.  It will take three strips. Do this four times.
  9. Create sashing rows by alternating 1-1/2″ x 8-1/2″ background strips with 1-1/2″ x 1-1/2″ background squares.  It will take four strips and three squares.  Do this three times.
  10. Sew the block rows and sashing rows together.
  11. Attach the 2 1-1/2″ x 35-1/2″ strips and 2 1-1/2″ x 37-1/2″ strips to the top and bottom and then the sides.  You have a finished top.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  12. Layer, baste and quilt as desired.  I used a simple diagonal through the blocks.  It was something I could handle on my home machine.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  13. Label and bind.  Ta-dah!  You have a quilt.
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Your beautiful creation here…

 

 

Two New

As a teacher, it is hard to get in substantial sewing time during the school year, but now I am out on break and enjoying longer stretches with an assortment of projects.

There are two new baby quilts coming soon.

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Times Two

and…

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Pint Size.

Both quilts just need binding, which I hope to finish today.

Also, tutorials are being written for both, if you are interested.