Archive for the ‘Piecing in progress’ Category
I started my blocks and while I was VERY tempted to do color coordinated blocks ESPECIALLY after seeing the one Jackie posted (yes, she pieced the blocks, assembled and has it already tied!) I took another look at my large string bin and decided I’ll stick with my kitchen sink version.
A reminder for those joining in — don’t forget to press! I make 8-10 blocks at a time and always press the previous string before adding another one. If you’re making more than one block like I do, you can add two strings to each block on either side of the center before having to get up to press.
In addition to making the block look nice and neat, it gives you the opportunity to check that you don’t have any gaps in your seams and to pick out those stray strings that get caught up in the seams. For those of us who quilt the HeartStrings tops this is SO important. Getting our hopping foot caught in a strip that isn’t completely sewn down is time consuming as is having to stop and repair the quilt AND to pick out stray strings.
I square my blocks up from the back and a 9.5 inch ruler and rotating mat make it easy.
My first blocks are finished but I’ve got a ways to go to finish the set of 48 that I need for my HeartStrings quilt. Remember, to participate you don’t have to make a full set. You can send in as many blocks as you want for group quilts.
I set up the tying table last night and my goal for the next couple days was to tie and bind two HeartStrings tops. It was a perfect activity for a solitary Sunday afternoon and evening. The tying is done and I plan to bind them later today.
This morning however, I made some border blocks for the Bricks and Stones quilt. The beauty of this design is that the border blocks are the same size as the body of the quilt so I’ll sew them together when I’m assembling the top … No borders to add afterwards.
I’ve had some questions about this quilt and there will be an instruction sheet with my measurements when I’m done but I thought I’d answer them here too.
The circles will be fusible appliqué finished with a narrow machine stitched zigzag edge like I did on the DP & Circle quilt
For the border, I’m using my Accuquilt GO Chisel and 3 inch half square triangle dies but if you don’t have the GO or these dies, you can get the same effect as demonstrated below.
To use the Chisel die, you’ll need half your pieces reversed … That just means that you’ll cut half with the fabric right side up and half with it wrong side up.
You could cut 3.5 inch squares paired with a 3.5 inch half square triangle. You’d want to use the same fabric in the half square triangle and the square.
Or if you like to sew squares on corners … You could use a 3.5 x 6.5 inch rectangle and a 3.5 inch square. Sew on line and trim leaving a 1/4 seam allowance, press open. Make sure you make mirror images of these . Looking at my drawing you can see the sewing line is top left to bottom right for one block and bottom left to top right for the other.
I wasn’t sure how the log cabin die would work either but I knew I could figure it out once it arrived.
They suggest you put address labels on the die to label each strip but I just wrote it in with a sharpie. Here’s the full die and the largest block you can make is 12 inches finished.
My fat quarter is not long enough to cover the die so I decided to go with an 8 inch finished block which will use 1-8 on the die.
To cut one block you’d cover those 8 blades with a black/white fabric and a red fabric. Because I want a scrappy quilt, I’m cutting 8 reds and 8 black/whites for each 8 blocks and then mixing the fabrics up in the block. You could make a two color quilt and just use two fabrics but I like scrappy quilts. Here are my first 8 blocks cut … You’ll see that there are 8 black/white pieces and 8 red. I showed them mixed up in yesterday’s post so I won’t show that photo again.
Once I have them cut and laid out … this is the order of piecing.
The strips finish at 1 inch so if you count across both ways you will see there are 8 logs. In my particular block, the last red round is NOT used. I’ve set that aside and will either use them in the piano key border or toss them in my string bins.
Here are my first few blocks tossed up on the design wall
I stopped by the quilt store on Saturday because with Adam’s visit on the weekend versus Mon/Tue/Wed I was going to have extra sewing days. I needed something quick and easy so I decided I would piece a Happy Blocks top.
One charm pack, two coordinating fabrics and I could make a top that was set 6×7 blocks and measure 51 x 68. When got home I saw that there were about 8 mostly solid squares in the charm pack and I didn’t want to use them as is. I decided I could cut a square and frame those twice … Since I could get 4 squares from each charm … I could increase the size of the quilt …. I chose to set the blocks 7×9 which would measure 59.5 x 76.5 …. A very nice size for a donation quilt and rather than using novelties like we did for our HeartStrings Happy Block Project, the colors and fabrics make this suitable for an adult.
For a while I worried whether I’d bought enough of the framing fabric but knew I could always change my setting to 6×8 or 7×8 if I didn’t have enough fabric. Usually this isn’t an issue for me because I am either working very scrappy and have plenty of fabric in the stash to substitute or I’ve worked up the quilt in EQ before starting and have an actual plan.
Luckily it’s all worked out and I’m just about finished piecing the blocks.
I made a similar one a couple years ago but was able to add fabrics from my stash to supplement the charm park. Since I didn’t have that option … Adding in the pieced blocks worked well. So if you have just one Charm Pack sitting around and don’t know what to do with it this would be a good, quick, option!
On the to do list is finishing assembling these blocks on the design wall. I can’t believe how long they’ve been up here without me working on them.
Of course, as soon as I started working on them I remembered why I hadn’t just finished up this top … Lots of pinning needed to get the pinwheels to line up.
So it won’t be done today but I will work on it a bit each day until it’s finish.