Exploding Block [Head]

Exploding Block [Head]

Inspired by Jenny’s Exploding Block Tutorial, I decided to one day make a quilt from it.
That day came when I was shopping to make my Husband’s Daughter’s Baby – who had just graduated to a big girl bed – a quilt. I had a quilt in mind, big then I saw the kitties! The kitties wouldn’t work with that quilt, but they’d be happy in an exploding block quilt framed in pink and turquoise, so I got them. I skipped up to the cutting counter, and told them I wanted it all. Cuz, come on, it’s KITTIES!

I also bought some turquoise, and I knew I had some pink at home.

fabric

I made my first test block, then spent 5 minutes trying to pull the layers apart to cut them.
Being a production junky at work, I tend to stream line things. At home I usually am more relaxed – something my co-workers would never believe. However, my work brain kicked in as I had found what I call “the time suck” So, to eliminate this time suck, I cut up some little pieces of left over batting from trimming a quilt.

I was only making 24 blocks, so I only needed 24 aprox 1″ sq pieces of batting.

I cut 4 strips 6 1/2″ wide to make 24 kitty squares,

2 strips 6 1/2″ wide to make 12 pink squares,

and 2 strips 6 1/2″ wide to make 12 turquoise squares.

I used a 6 1/2″ ruler to cut the squares from the strips.  A marking pencil and very sharp pointy sicssors are also needed.

exploding_block_tools
Since I would be cutting the pink and turquoise pieces after sewing them to the kitties, I drew my lines on the wrong sides of the pink and turquoise pieces – corner to corner – before sewing them. It is important to mark them before sewing them together, and to offset the ruler by the thickness of the marking pencil to get the line dead center.

Take them to the sewing machine . . .

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I placed each kitty, pretty side up,  put one piece of batting in the center [I swear I ironed these first!], and then placed the other pieces [pink and turquoise – one piece at a time], pretty side down on top of the kitties.

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Then I sewed 1/4″ seam on all 4 sides.

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Now I could seperate the fabrics with ease!
Simply fold on one of the lines, and nip the perpendicular line to get a starter cut.

I finished cutting on all the lines right down to the corner, and popped out my batting pieces.

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Iron them back, and we have our kitties peeking out at us from their little pink and turquoise frames. These will be 8 1/2″ at this point.

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Now, one thing to keep in mind is that, while this looks like a square in a square, it’s not. The big difference is that the points will be nipped off, which will be fine with many fabric designs. Other designs [or obsessing] may cause you want to actually make a square in a square, but I resolved not to obsess over this quilt [yet].

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Because the points would be cut off, I decided to sash it, and found a bit of brown floral for the conerstones.

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The center of this twin sized quilt is finished [currently 39.5 by 59.5] and ready for borders

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and then I made a mistake.

I sent Mom a picture of what I was making.

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Opon receiving her quilt last year, my Mom has now taken an intrest in my designs.

Who knew?

She texted back that she thought the borders were kind of plain, and asked why I didn’t extend the design out more. After explaining to her that the borders weren’t added on to make the quilt bigger, but to frame the design on top of the twin size mattress, and that they would actually drape down the side of the bed, I decided to get all fancy shmancy about it.

New design – which I did not show her.

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I am still cutting all the oddly shaped pieces. Thanks Mom.

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I guess she hasn’t heard “Finished is better than perfect” yet. She will. After my head explodes I’m having that engraved on my tombstone.

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Dish mat – Because You Just Can’t Buy Awesome

Dish mat – Because You Just Can’t Buy Awesome

Time to complete: 2 weeks.

Why not?

It took me 2 months to buy the dish rack. [and 1 week to buy the towel which is included in the project time] Besides, aren’t you tired of seeing tutorials that say you can make an entire quilt in a hour?  You look at it and feel inferior before you even try. Well, if you make this, you can beat my time, and feel awesome.
I saw this nice dish rack at the store back in December for $20, but it only came in white, black and turquoise. The curtains I made are turquoise, with birds, and bird feeders with bits of red in them by Judy Niemeyer , and I need some more red in my kitchen! Not to be defeated, I went home and googled it. I found the red, but it was $50!!! I’m not paying that, so I back burnered it.
A couple of weeks ago, I was at the store again, and there were those dish racks taunting me. Now the black was sold out, but I didn’t care. I wanted red! Then it hit me. I can make red happen. I bought the white one, got it home, and got to work.
I don’t know why I googled it. I wasn’t going to pillowcase the stupid thing. I am going to quilt it! You betcha!
I think I will play with my Strip Tube ruler I bought months ago.
I measured the counter top and decided I want it to work out to be 23 +/- 1″ by 26 +/- 1″
I figured 4.5 finished blocks would take me there, and went with 2 1/4″ strips.

I first sewed the turquoise to the red I had bought for hot pads and the like, then sewed the two strip sets together with opposites facing each other.

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I skipped the instructions, and placed the ruler over the seam, as high as it would go without the peak hanging off the top, which turned out to be the 5″ mark. Gee, I did that right, didn’t I?

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Open them,  iron, trim ears.

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I played around until I got kind of a inside out on point pattern.

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I like to lay it out, admire it for awhile, then flop em over on each other, and pin it on the edge I will be sewing incase I lose my mind and forget where I am to sew. Hey, it happens!

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Of course I have a quilt going on and Mustang has white thread with the 1/4″ guide already installed, so rather than run these pieces through, stopping to pin the rows, and starting again to sew the rows, I will run a piece of the quilt through every time I need to stop, and just leave it there until I start again. Some call these leaders and enders. I call it multi tasking.

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Now the backing. How about a nice thick towel? I couldn’t find one I liked that didn’t have that wide flat band on each end. I ended up getting one big enough so that when I cut off the ends with the bands, I will have enough left over to make 4 hanging towels. Yeah, I could buy towel-like fabric, but I like this better for $9, and can you really put a price on having pre finished ends for hand towels? I didn’t think so.

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I was going to practice some free motion quilting, but I am a Ditch Girl, and I liked the pattern sew much, that I didn’t want to ruin it. I’ll learn later. Yep, I’m going in the ditch. I like it there. It’s nice and quiet, and no one bothers me.
I sewed around the outside before trimming it because this stuff sheds!

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I did get to practice my binding. Yay!
I sewed the binding strips together, and the mailman came.
My Sewing Sampler box had arrived. It was my very first, so I had no idea what it would be like. It contained a Kona color of the year charm pack, a pattern, a 45mm blade, needles, fabric wash, and a thread cutter thingy.

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and another box, of something Brat [who uses our address because she was stationed in Japan], sent to her friend but it got returned as undelivereable. What is it?

What to do? Oh cake. Lets do that first. Open cake, taste cake, improve cake. There, that’s better.

By the way, I heard you gasp when you saw the can of Sanders chocolate sauce on this quilt, but remember it is a dish drying mat. It will get dirty.

Back to the sampler box, which happens to contain a thread cutter. Let’s try it.

It works! I really thought the little thing would topple over when I push the thread down on it, but it didn’t. Would I buy one? Nope. Am I disappointed? Nope. The handy thing about this is, when you are seperating a bunch of strips or chain sewn pieces with scissors, you always run the risk of cutting into the fabric. This gadget pretty much prevents that. The blade is so far down, it would be difficult to get fabric down there.

Now on to the binding!

I use what some call the pocket method. I could learn a different method, but not today.
Basically, once your binding is made, you open part of it, iron a dog ear [left side down if you sew on the right], and sew it on for about 6 or 8 inches. Then you sew off of it.

Fold the binding back over and start sewing where I left off.

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I keep my binding wrapped on a piece of cardboard, and lay it down as I sew.

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I sew off the corner, and do the corner fold, which took me forever to figure out what the heck those books were talking about. I like corners now. Mostly because each one brings me 25% closer to being done.


Now when I start getting back to that pocket, I stop with the needle down. Then lay the binding down [that is how I measure it] and cut at an angle about 2″ past the begining. One inch is probably enough.

Then I tuck it in, and finish sewing it down.

Take it to the ironing board and iron the binding flat, leaving the corners alone for now.

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Flip it over and pin the corners.

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Iron the binding over making sure it covers the stitch line, and clip it down. Don’t you just love these little guys? I have like 200 of them!

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I will be sewing just outside the binding which will catch the other side.
hmmm, should I use walking foot or my ditch foot? Some machines have a needle left/right adjuster knob which would let you use the walking foot. Some don’t and you will have better luck with the ditch foot. My Viking does, but . . . .


You know it! In the ditch it is!
I hand turn the wheel to bring the needle down and make sure it’s going to go where I want it. Nope. Gotta switch adapters. I knew one of these wasn’t the right one.
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I remove the clips as I get to them, and since my corner pins are on the back side, I remove them when I get real close, stopping with  the needle down.

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and we have a winner!

6 blocks across, and 5 down made it 22.5 by 27.

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Oh. I guess that means I have to wash dishes now.

Jenny’s Starburst Quilt Enlarged

Jenny’s Starburst Quilt Enlarged

Many people have seen Jenny from Missouri Star Quilt Company’s video on making a quilt she calls Starburst, and would like to make it bigger. Me too.

Yes, I am breaking another rule, because I haven’t made this quilt yet. I’m actualy playing with HST’s right now in another project, but I thought I’d have some fun ‘on paper’ with this for a moment. I’ll post that project later.

Starburst Quilt Video

Jenny’s quilt is 58×58 including a 4.5″ border [49×49 without border]. It uses 16 colored  Layer cake pieces [or 10″ square], and 16 background layer cake [or 10″ square] pieces. She has 8 rows and 8 columns.

I designed the same quilt using 36 colored Layer Cake pieces [plus 36 background Layer Cake pieces] based on her method shown in the video above resulting in a 6″ block.  The blocks will actually be close to 6.125 which is 6 and an 8th inches. Trim them down to 6″ or not, but just know your quilt may be slightly bigger than my measurements if you don’t. Being bigger doesn’t seem to hurt here, since that is the purpose of this.

With same size border [4.5] as Jenny’s it will be 81×81
[72×72 without border] I also colored the original 8 rows and 8 columns of blocks differently to help visualise the added on rows. There are 12 rows and 12 columns in this version.

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Color option with the incomplete diamonds on the outside edges blending into the border, which I like better.

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Here is the same thing, but using 49 layer cake pieces [plus 49 background Layer Cake pieces] to make 93×93 with the 4.5 border, or 84×84 without. Layer cakes tyically come in packs of 40, so you’ll have to hit up your stash.

There are 14 rows and 14 columns. Again, I have colored the original 8 rows and 8 columns of blocks differently to help visualise the added on rows.

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If those aren’t big enough, here is a 100″ square one with the incomplete diamonds on the outside edges blending in to the 2″ border, that will take 56 [each of the red and background] Layer Cake pieces [or 10″ squares]. Not 64 if you are paying attention, because  28 of the HST’s plus 4 corner blocks are paired with the border color.

Again, I have colored the original 8 rows and 8 columns of blocks differently to help visualise the added on rows. This one has 16 rows and columns.

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I hope you enjoyed my resized version’s of Jenny’s lovely quilt!

and now I can get back to my tiny little HST project.

Breaking the rules – Disappearing 9 patch

Breaking the rules – Disappearing 9 patch

Who names these things anyway? I mean did they make a 9 patch, not like it, slice it up and say, “Hey where did my 9 patch go?” and their accomplice answered “I dunno, it seams to have disappeared”?

This quilt was in my head from the moment I saw a picture of one.
The instructions seemed simple enough, but I wanted the small patches to repeat, and all the pictures I found were scrappy.
Like usual, I had to modify. and educate myself.
A co worker had wanted me to make a quilt.
Sound familiar?
This wasn’t the first co-worker who had asked. The first one wanted a Spider Man quilt, and he’s a big guy, so that would be no throw. I had to tell him the bare facts: The fabric would cost over $100, and if I only charged $100 labor, he wouldn’t be happy with paying it, and I wouldn’t be happy with doing all that work for that, so we’d have 2 unhappy people at the start.
but this co-worker wanted a baby quilt for a gift for his new Grand Daughter. He only had a budget of $60 and wanted pinks. I told him I would see what scraps I had, because the budget would quickly be used up in fabric and batting. I found I had a charm pack I paid $2 for on a daily deal, plus some fabric I had left over from other projects, and told him I could do it, as long as he didn’t mind giving me all the design control.
Wheeeee!
Now I could do an experi-mental 9 patch!
I had already broken my first rule: I have 2 price points – “Free, if I want to”, and “You can’t afford me, if I don’t”.
Breaking that rule was like the first scratch on a new car. I was set free – of rules.

A nice size baby quilt will take 12 of these blocks. There are 4 corners, 4 background pieces, and one contrasting center piece in each, so I will need 48 prints, 48 backgrounds, and 12 contrast pieces. Using charms or 5″ pieces should result in a 39×52 quilt before borders.
I got out that 42 piece charm pack, and began cutting 12 – 5″ squares in a co-ordinating color [yellow] I found at a thrift store for $2.
I had some 108″ Kona white set aside for curtains, and figured I wouldn’t miss a couple 5″ wide strips, so I cut 48 5″ squares of that.
I dug up enough scraps to make 6 more 5″ squares in cordinating colors, and I was ready to assemble.
Now, here’s the thing: when you combine a precut with pieces you cut, they don’t always match.

Disappearing 9 patch patches

This precut had pinked edges, and mine didn’t. Some say to measure from the outside [or peaks] and some say the inside [or valleys] but knowing my 5″ squares were dead on [I obsess] I used my cut pieces as my guide, and sewed my 1/4″ seam from those.
I probably broke another rule here by making every printed square orient so that all prints were in the same direction. No easy feat since I would be turning every other block. [more obsessing]
Would people notice? [I would]

So, I put the pieces I wanted to orient ‘up’, in the 2 opposite corners on every 9 patch block. It doesn’t matter which two corners, as long as [1] they are opposite, and [2] they are the same for all 12 blocks. See the girls in the upper right, and the trees in the lower left pieces shown below. You will see why when I slice and turn the blocks later.

Disappearing 9 patch block

Once the 9 patches were done, I had some trimming and squaring to do.
The rule I did not break: People don’t tell you this, but when you trim, you don’t just willy nilly even the edges. You not only have to make the blocks all the same size, but the pieces in that block must measure the same distance to the outside edges. If you just line up your ruler with the bottom corners and start slicing off excess fabric, you will have problems. Knowing the middle squares measure 4.5 inches [5 inches minus the 1/4 seam on each side] after being sewn, that is where I want to start. These blocks will measure about 14 inches. Then  after trimming, cutting and resewing, they will have a finished size of 13″ if I did it right.

Disappearing 9 patch_trim

You want to line up the center patch in the middle of your ruler, making sure the 45 degree angle on your ruler goes from point to point on the whole block, as well as that center patch, and then trim the top and side, spin, and do it again. This will ensure that your block is truly square.

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Once trimed, slice in half both ways

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Then turn 2 of the 4 resulting patches in opposite corners. Notice I did not turn the little girls, or the tree.

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So happy I had my husband build me this 24″ rotating mat!

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Now to agonise over block placement

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Take a picture and walk away. See if I still like it, and either rearrange [always] or begin sewing [never]
Oh, and did I fail to mention that he wanted the baby’s name in the quilt?
It took me 3 weeks to find someone to do this – that was still open by the time I got to my home town after work. Given the cost of embroidery machines, $8 was a bargain.
I broke another rule by making the top border bigger then the other 3.

Disappearing 9 patch_embroidered

Now to check it with the backing I bought for $15 and see if I still liked it. It had to be pink. The quilt needs more pink!

Disappearing 9 patch_assembled

Knowing who this quilt is really for – the parents – it’s always for the parents. I guessed that they may not be familiar with how flat hand made quilts are, so I broke another rule and used #3 thick batting – doubled. Twin size [72×90] for $15 worked for this 43x 58 quilt.

Disappearing 9 patch_quilted04

Yep, and not only that, I had exactly one inch to spare for the backing!
Many quilters want the batting and backing to be 4″ bigger on all sides.
I blew that rule up with a 43″ quilt on a 44″ wide backing.

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Of course I stiched in the ditch. Ima ditch stitcher. There I said it.
Embrace who you are. I embrace the ditch!

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I wasn’t done breaking rules yet. I used yellow thread on the spool, and pink in the bobbin.

Disappearing 9 patch_binding_back

Disappearing 9 patch_binding_front

I managed to stay under the $60 in materials for this quilt, but just barely. I mean who can go shopping for a 2 yard piece of backing and not see some fantastic fabric you must have for a future project?
There’s another rule I broke: buying pretty fabric without any project in mind, figuring the pretty fabric will tell me what it wants to be in due time, . . . and I will obey.

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Crime Scene – Quilt Sandwich Assembly

Crime Scene – Quilt Sandwich Assembly

That’s what Quilt Sandwich day looks like at my house. A crime scene.  I reserve an entire day to do it, and sometimes, I run from the room screaming!  Occasionaly blood is spilled. If doctors wanted to get a true stress test measurement, they would have you make a quilt sandwich.

All the cute videos on YouTube will never accurately depict what really happens when assembling a quilt sandwich.

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This is not the biggest quilt I have done, but it is 75″ by 75″ and I have 12′ square of heavy plastic that I lay down to protect . . . um, what am I protecting? The floor from the quilt? Or the quilt from the floor. I don’t know, but it seems like the right thing to do. Oh yeah, I spray baste, which some say is a crime by itself, . . . and I pin. If I gotta wrestle this thing through the throat of a domestic machine, I need all the help I can get.

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Starting with Hubby getting out of the house. As soon as I roll the rug up over the bed, and lay down the plastic in the only remaining space, which happens to be in front of the door, he will have to come in. Like magic, or a cat when you get up from your chair. Except, the cat knows something life changing is going to happen when I lay that plastic down, and  she is smart enough to disappear for the day.

So, here I will show you the horrors from within . . .

Here I have laid down the back, pretty side down, smoothed it flat, then the batting, smoothed it flat, took a break, then laid down the top, and smoothed it flat. Seems inoccent enough, but something may be lurking under the layers, like wrinkles!

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Then I get out my giant stick [cardboard tube], and pin the edge to it, keeping the pins at a flat  angle, because this  will be tightly wrapped  . . . . unlike myself.

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Now, I roll, keeping both sides straight and even, keeping the fabric ahead of the roll smooth before I get to it, so it can’t get away from me, and put a wrinkle in my plans.

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When that is done, I carefully lift the roll, and repeat with the batting.

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This is where I sometimes find a wrinkle hiding, and wipe beads of sweat, like someone who has narrowly escaped a tragic accident.

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After a coffee break to get the taste of copper out of my mouth,  I place the roll at the top, unroll about 18″ or so, then pull it back to spray the fabric, while commanding it to “Stay put” and smacking it down flat.  They say use the spray sparingly, but they aren’t paying for it. I am, so . . .

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Once the first 18″ are stuck down, I kneel on the batting behind the roll, and then spray, unroll, stroking every inch of it heavily, unroll, spray, repeat. Next is the top.

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Position, spray, unroll, more petting, unroll, spray, repeat.

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Then I pin in spots where I think I will not be sewing. Of course if I was thinking, I probably wouldn’t be doing this. Yes, I would. I’m stubborn that way.

About 1000 pins, and a couple of band aids later, I roll it acording to how I will sew,  . . .  I mean stuff . . . it through the throat of the beast. I am a ditch stitcher, so I will be sewing this in agony, I mean diagonally, because the blocks are all on point. Of course they are. Who do I think I am? Doing a quilt on point. As if!

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The corners do not have seems, so I mark them before I carry the body out to the sewing machine. It’s disappearing ink, so if I need a break, I have to take it before I make my mark! Yep, bathroom visit, several bobbins filled, more coffee, stitch settings correct after the bobbins, another bathroom break . . . . Out of my way, I’m going in!

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The next few scenes are just too horrific to show, . . .  my hands hurt, my legs are cramping, neck is stuck in an unnatural position, and I can’t see straight anymore, but I won!

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Love Knots

Love Knots

Quilting is a journey.

Sometimes a quilt represents the end of one, and sometimes the beginning. Every quilt I make, I do with the person I am making it for on my mind. Whether they know it or not, they took that journey with me. I learn things about them, as well as myself.  This quilt has a few names, but I like “Love Knot”
After finishing my Featherweight test quilt, made with what turned out to be a hideously ugly jelly roll, I decided to make my Mom a quilt for mother’s day. It was February, so I had plenty of time, and the wheels turned in my head of traveling the 800 miles to hand it to her on Mother’s Day! My Mother and I had turned a milestone about 10 years ago, and somehow this would be symbolic of my having moved on from the past, and into the  future. One where neither of us would see ourselves as a failure.

Such lofty goals.

I found a pattern I liked that magazine’s often send you for free to consider subscribing to them, called “Spice market”. It was a partial log cabin, lots of angles, so not too ‘girly’ or old fashioned, and I hadn’t done a log cabin yet. I had turquoise [not teal] and silver [not gray] in mind, but every time I went to the store, I couldn’t find the shades I had in my head. The tones were all muted or distorted from what I had in mind. I wanted bright and cheery, yet warm, and it had to match her decor, because this was to be a couch quilt. Big enough for Mom and her 2nd husband to snuggle under.

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More lofty goals.

I soak in a hot tub every evening and read books or, look at quilt books, and dream. Before I even had the fabric picked out, I saw a pattern in one book and ear marked it. Later, I saw the same pattern in a log cabin book, and ear marked that. Two books – one pattern – two different methods, and names, but I still liked it days later. It was the same block as in the free pattern, but the block orientation, and color placement was the key. The secondary pattern with the two main colors linking together is what put it over the top. I had to make this.

 

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hmmmmmmmm, changing your view, changes the outcome.

On one of my trips to the fabric store, I found a cheery print with turquoise, navy, silver and green, and tried to work other colors in. I never could find the right silver. Then I found the perfect backing, but it was in 2 pieces, and my coupon was for “one cut” We worked it out, and I ended up with a 2 yard piece and a 2.5 yard piece of a lovely batik in silvery blue with brown grape leaf motifs. Then I found a brown floral batik. [Mom’s new husband loves chocolate!] Still later I found a nice gray leaf print by Amy Butler. I now had both warm and cool colors, and was ready for a test block! Unfortunately, this pattern would need at least 10 test blocks to see if I liked it all together.

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There’s a learning curve in these log cabin blocks. Two books with two sets of instructions. The instructions I chose to follow had me sewing strip sets, sub cutting into square blocks, then sewing the two blocks together on the bias just like half square triangles, and I quickly learned that cutting the blocks from the strip sets had to be very consistent!

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When cutting blocks from strip sets, it is neccessary to line up the rulers lines to the seam lines. Every. Time.

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I picked up some Omnigrid Glow Line Tape on a whim awhile back, and applied the tape to my ruler, to help line up the squares as I cut them. I got better blocks after that.

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Just like pancakes, the first blocks will not be used!

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*except to pin on my wall to keep me oriented when assembling the good blocks.

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checking them out in my audition booth that I made

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and here we are . . . . I see a pattern emerging!

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Border, or no?

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Yes, a chocolate border it is!

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Finished!

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As it turned out, my Mom was going to visit my sister 2 states over, the week after Mothers Day, so, no, I didn’t take it to her, but I did hand it to her the first week of June, when she stopped by on her return trip home.

Home is where the heart is, and a piece of my heart now resides there.

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Steps to Perfection #1 Procrastination works

Steps to Perfection #1 Procrastination works

We bought this place 3 years ago in the late fall, and I planned on making curtains for every window. As it turned out, other things demanded our imediate attention. Like heat. but that’s another story, so I hung blankets in the windows, and took care of other things. I always had the design in my head, which I altered, and re altered many times. Last summer, while trying to sleep with the windows open and one fan blowing in and the other fan sucking out, it hit me that it was too darn light in here.  If I had made those pairs of curtains half and half to match the glass, I would still have too much light in the room! Thank God I had procrastinated!

In actuality, I had sewing issues soon after moving in. The best area to cut or sew in had either no light or too much light during the time I was home to do it. So first I had to make curtains to block the light out of my eyes where I’d be sewing in the evening, and then, find a way to light up where I’d be cutting. and that’s why it took so long to get to these bedroom curtains. Life is like a puzzle sometimes. You have to put one piece in place before the others will fall in.

So what some call procrastination, I call “planning”

Problems to solve in this room: Too hot and too light  in summer at 8pm when I go to bed, and  too cold in winter due to having only one heat vent.
So that means I want room darkening, plus very thick. Yet another Job for my Viking Husqarna with low gear to punch through all the layers. Now, I already have window treatments, so these will fit inside the window frames, under the other treatments. Both windows are the same size, but one has blinds, and one has oversized drapes to effectively “move” the window to center it behind the bed. Each window will have a 20″ fan in it during the summer.

Now that you know how I got there, here are the curtains I ended up with. Notice the 60/40 split for the window fan.

Bedroom_Closed

I wanted a clean look on this wall, hence the neutral upholstery fabric. Above is with blinds open, below is with them closed.  I can still add a valence after I reupholster the one armed couch – yet another project – which will go below this window.

Bedroom_UnderBlinds

Here is the window with fan installed, and one side rolled up.

Bedroom_Open

How they are hanging. I used 1 1/4″ wood closet rods, because the curtains are heavy, and those handy “Cup Style” rod holders, which is 2 plastic end caps, one of which has a cut out to slide the rod in. This open cup also spins, so you can simply turn it to be open at the top once the rod is in place, to lock it in.

 

The layers: Upolstery fabric [faces inside room], cheap dark grey blanket, thick [1/2″ to 3/4″] quilt batting, and med to heavy high thread count cotton for the back.

To make the rod pocket and maintain the desired overlap without bunching, I added a strip of fabric with a cutout on each side.

 

I made the finished size 1″ bigger on all 4 sides so they will overlap against each other and the frame. The seams are 3/4″ to create fullness, and they are sewn pillowcase style, and turned right sides out through as small an opening as I can stand to hand sew afterwards. Painters tape works well for the quilting when you don’t want to mark the fabric. Just stick it down, pin it in a couple of places, sew next to it, and then pull it off.

 

The first step to perfection is procrastination! Brought to you by Viking 21a and me.

Curtain1_WhatImSewingThrough02