Friday, May 31, 2013

Pressing matters

I'm sewing light and dark rectangles together and pressing toward the dark.

Then I'm making four patches by sewing the top two units together, then the bottom two. These units are pressed toward the edge without a seam. Then those two parts are sewn together and the center intersection is fanned out to distribute the bulk.

These four patches of sorts are sewn into larger four patches following similar piecing and pressing. Top and bottom units sewn together and center intersection is fanned out. Then those units are pieced together and that center intersection is fanned out.

My plan is to construct "blocks" in this manner and then sew those blocks together in the same way until the quilt top is done. The seams should all nest together as long as I stick to this plan. I prefer putting tops together like this rather than sewing long rows of blocks together because the shorter seams are easier to manage and keep accurate. Eventually, I'll have some long seams. There's no way around it. But I'd rather have a few per top than one every row.

Friday, May 24, 2013


I saw a scrap quilt on Pintrest that I thought was a good idea. Then I saw it again. And again. And then I stopped staring at Pintrest and started cutting scraps into 2 1/2 by 4 1/2-inch rectangles and sewing pairs of lights and darks together. Sometimes a medium is a dark and sometimes it is a light.To me this adds interest to the quilt.

The idea is that you cut the scraps as you finish other quilts, but I couldn't wait. It's made a decent dent in my scrap collection. I'm planning on a layout of 14 x 19 pairs, which would make my quilt 56 x 76, but it could easily be bigger. I have the scraps to do it, but not the space on the design wall.

I like the border on the original quilt, but I think mine will be borderless.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Knot my problem

Ever get these little knots when appliqueing? I do. A lot.
I remember a quilt teacher (can't remember which one) told us how to easily fix these types of knots by putting the needle at the base of the knot and pulling up until the knot pops out. The pictures explain it better.
It's been a great tip for me over the years, and it occurred to me I should share it.
If anyone has tips for the other kinds of knots I seem to get in my applique, I'd love to hear them.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Note to self: Make this into a baby quilt

I was looking through my baby-suitable scraps to see what I could use for a quilt when I found a magazine and the note I left myself. Sometimes I can't figure out why I have dog-eared a page: My past self found inspiration in something that completely puzzles my present self.
American Patchwork & Quilting, Quilt Sampler, Spring Summer 2011.
Fortunately, I left myself a note and after taking another look, I had to agree with myself. Yes, Laura Boehnke's Color Option would make a good baby quilt. Too large though so I redrafted to a smaller size.
The center came together quickly, but I didn't like the border fabric I thought I would use.
Nothing else in my stash really worked for me. The bright lime actually seemed to dull the quilt. What I liked, I didn't have enough of so it was off to the quilt shop.
She still had more of the blue I'd used in the very center, and I found a magenta fabric to match that in the print for a quarter-inch flange.

Top is done, and measures about 40 x 48 inches. I found a nice blue and lime green leaf print in the sale rack for the backing so now it is on to the quilting.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

A decade in the making

Flag quilt, 56 x 77
I first blogged about this quilt four years ago when it was a six-year-old UFO! My flag quilt was quilted by Maggi Honeyman in a Baptist fan pattern on her longarm. I don't remember how the original was quilted, but this old quilting pattern seemed appropriate, like wind blowing the flags around.
Yes, those cornerstones are half-inch squares.
The binding was completed some time ago, but I kept forgetting to get a picture. After the binding is on, I consider the quilt done, but lately I've been feeling a bit guilty about not putting labels on my quilts. It's taken 10 years to get this far, what's a little more time to add the label? Does anyone have a good method for making labels?