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Sep 24, 2012

Water Pitcher #1 Paper Pieced Pattern

Sep 24, 2012
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Life often goes in phases.  And I as I look back on my quilting "life", it also goes in phases.  Now I am in a phase where working on small projects is good.  I have a quilt top that has been so patiently waiting for me, but it seems so daunting.  So I have been avoiding it by diving head first into blocks.  Paper pieced blocks to be specific.

I mentioned last week I had designed a series of water pitcher blocks.  You never know where inspiration will come from.   I love the collection of pitchers my dining room.  I spent all of last week perfecting this pattern, with the help of Amy/During Quiet Time, to make it much simpler to piece - but with all the detail and finesse of the first version I made.

I am happy to tell you that if you'd like to make a water pitcher of your own, the new paper pieced pattern is now available here in my Pattern Shop and on Craftsy.  This is Water Pitcher #1.  Watch for the other blocks in the series over the next few weeks!

Water Pitcher #1 is a PDF pattern.  The finished block measures 12" square.  The pattern includes written instructions, a diagram of the block, and mirror image pattern pieces.  This pattern does not teach you how to paper piece.  Water Pitcher #1 is an intermediate level pattern.

I enjoyed the aqua and white combination (Peacock Lane and Kona pfd) so much on the first block, I had a hard time deciding what fabrics to use on the pattern version of the block.  You just can't go wrong with Denyse.  I chose this Fiesta pink print from Hope Valley.  I love that it almost feels lacey when used in this block.

Let me know if you make one, I'd love to see it!

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Sep 13, 2012

Crashing the Fabric Shack

Sep 13, 2012
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Last weekend, my mom and I (with Mr. M in tow) set out for a day trip to the Fabric Shack.  This was my second visit there - and it's endless bolts to browse does not disappoint.  I think I would be in real trouble if I lived closer to that place.  Lucky for me, I specifically have to plan to visit the shop, so it keeps my budget in check.

I've decided I am collecting fabrics for a red, white and blue quilt using the book 50 Fabulous Paper Pieced Stars.  I received this book for Christmas last year (from my mom).  
After seeing all the beautiful stars collected by Kati, I wanted to do my own version.  Here's my first block.

And here's the FQs and yardage I picked up at Fabric Shack for my RWB (red, white and blue) quilt.  I'm not sure how many blocks I want it to be, so better make sure I have enough fabric.   /*wink*/ Right?

Other scores from the trip include the remnant pile where they sell the odd cuts at $3.95/yard and precut fat quarters at $1.95 each.  This is where we spent the majority of our time, scouring for goodies.

Check out this cool vintage newspaper ad fabric of muscle cars.  I was stopped twice in the shop asking where I found it.  My stroller was heaping with my fabric finds while Mr. M played happily on the floor.  Other shoppers kept spotting this print on my umbrella stroller.  Love it?  Find the muscle cars newspaper ad fabric here (I met Luana and her daughter at the Quilting Arts TV taping - so nice!)

This is a panel I found in the remnant pile.  It's Deep Deep Sea by Studio E.  Super cute for all the boys in this house.  Find it here.

And more various remnants.  I love to add these to my scrap bins.

A pretty fun and successful trip! Pin It

Sep 10, 2012

100 Quilts for Kids

Sep 10, 2012
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Here is my stop on the 100 Quilts for Kids Blog Hop.  Have you heard?  Since I am at the end of the hop, I sure hope you have.  Katie does such a fantastic job of organizing this charity event.

100 Quilts for Kids is an annual charity quilt drive co-hosted by Katie Blakesley of Swim, Bike, Quilt and the DC Modern Quilt Guild.

The idea is simple:  Make a quilt or 2.  Donate it to a child in need, locally if you can.

It is such a rewarding experience to make something for others in need.  Last year, I organized a charity effort for the Columbus Modern Quilt Guild.  Using fabric leftover from a Robert Kaufman Kona Challenge, we made 2 quilts for children affected by the tsunami/earthquake in Japan in March 2011.

Friends delivered the quilts to a small town in the disaster stricken area in Japan.  Little did we know, there was a Peace Quilt Project going on for babies born in this area to be wrapped in blankets of love.  Our quilts were hung on display in a gallery for the project before being donated to the children.  Here is a link to the newspaper article written about our guilds' quilts.

Be inspired by quilters' generosity at the 100 Quilts for Kids Flickr Group.  And get all the details here at Swim, Bike, Quilt.  Hope you can join in the fun!
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Sep 5, 2012

Flying Squares Block Tutorial

Sep 5, 2012
Pin It A little while ago, Laura Gunn sent me a charm pack of her new line Cosmos Collection from Michael Miller.  The prints are fresh and cheery, and paired very nicely with this bright buttery yellow from my stash.  Laura's gorgeous florals are typically large in scale - and Cosmos follows suit in her style.  It makes me think of lovely flowing skirts sitting down to a picnic.  That said, since I received a charm of each print, it made me think hard about how to show off the prints without chopping them up too much.

Here is a tutorial for the Flying Squares block.  It simply showcases two prints and uses partial seams. Never tried partial seams before?  No problem!  They are a snap.  Try something new with this sweet and simple block.

Flying Squares Block.

Finished Block = 10"

4 - 2.5" x 6.5" solid
5 - 2.5"  solid squares
4 - 2.5"  print A squares
4 - 2.5"  print B squares

1.  Arrange the 5 - 2.5"  solid squares and the 4 - 2.5"  print A squares in a nine-patch block as shown below.

2.  Sew the 3 squares in each row together.  Press all seams toward the print.

3.  First sew the top row to the middle row.  Then sew the bottom row to the previous unit.  Press all seams.

4.  Next sew one 2.5" x 6.5" solid strip to a 2.5"  print B square.  Press toward the print square.  Repeat to make 4 units.

5.  Now comes the fun part!  The partial seam.  Join the nine-patch square and one rectangle unit, sewing only half of the seam.

Finger press the seam toward the rectangle unit.

6.  Add the next rectangle unit, working clockwise around the nine-patch block.  Sew the entire length of the seam and then press toward the rectangle unit.  Continue in this manner unit you have sewn all the rectangle units to the block.

7.  Finish sewing the first seam to complete the block.  Press the seam toward the rectangle unit.  

There you have it!  A new skill and a nice way to showcase some prints.

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