Category — Blocks
Last weekend I was lucky enough to spend the weekend in Michigan’s upper peninsula, sewing and hanging out with Holly, Jeni and Lee (Holly lives up there). I was joking that I was happy they invited me to their Janome Horizon club meeting because they all had matching sewing machines except me!
The drive up from Chicago was about 5-1/2 hours, but having the car to myself, perfect weather, and beautiful scenery made it not so bad.
Jeni and Holly did some fabric dying and everything turned out great. Lee and I did mostly sewing and I was VERY excited to finish the twin quilt top for my daughter’s bed, which focuses on Sarah Jane’s Children at Play fabrics.
Holly’s parents own an awesome BBQ restaurant in town called The White House.
I seriously cannot resist pulled pork and baked beans.
Here I am hanging out in the front with some of the presidents that were carved out of a giant log.
I am so thankful to have such great sewing and blogging friends in the midwest. These get togethers are always so fun and really refresh me.
Now that I’m back home, tonight is the first Naperville Modern Quilt Guild meeting. For those in the Chicago western suburbs, I hope you will come! I don’t really know anything about it yet, but I will be there.
Onto the housekeeping. I know many of you have signed up to be notified by email when there is a new post on my blog. I’m running into a technical issue where I have more subscribers than I’m allowed to send out emails. I’m working on tweaking various settings to try to fix the problem, but really I can’t test it except for when I make a blog post. Sooooo, hopefully I will get it resolved soon but I just can’t say when. In the meantime, if you aren’t getting emails, you can still keep up with my latest posts on Facebook and Google Reader by adding the RSS feed.
July 26, 2012 17 Comments
I received some beautiful fabric in the mail this week – The Birds and the Bees by designer Tula Pink. This fabric was sent to me generously by one of my sponsors, Westwood Acres (you can see all their The Birds and the Bees bundles here). Amanda asked if I wanted to play around with some of this new line and I didn’t really have to think very long before saying yes!
From the first time I saw this fabric online, I thought it would be perfect for a string quilt. I decided for a bit of a less traditional string quilt however. Yesterday I started making blocks that had random amounts of strings on them and I thought I would share a little tutorial for how I made these blocks. They look like butterfly wings to me so….here is my Butterfly Strands Quilt Block tutorial!
Butterfly Strands Quilt Block
Background – Cut squares from your background fabric. These can be any size, as long as you are consistent for all your blocks. We will be trimming the blocks down a bit to square them up, so cut a bit larger than you’d like your final block. I cut mine to 8.5″ x 8.5″ and squared to 8.25″ x 8.25″.
Strings/Strips – Cut random size strips from your fabric, measuring from 1.5″ to 2.25″.
1. Take your background square and cut a 45 degree angle (diagonal) from the square, using either the 45 degree line on your cutting mat or your quilting ruler. Each block should have the diagonal cut in a slightly different location, cutting more off some blocks and less off other blocks.
This is what your block should now look like:
2. Layout your stripes for your block. Don’t trim these yet, just get an idea of what colors you want to use for your block.
3. Right sides together, sew your first strip to the 45 degree diagonal of your background fabric.
Press your seams.
4. Using your quilting ruler, trim the ends of your strip.
5. Repeat with your remaining strips.
6. Square your block. As I said in the cutting directions, I squared my blocks to 8.25″ x 8.25″.
You’re done! Layout your blocks as below by alternating the direction of the string sections.
July 19, 2012 21 Comments
Next month I’m lucky enough to be leading a sewing workshop at the Cincinnati Modern Quilt Guild. I grew up in Cincinnati and my family all still lives there, so this will be a really fun opportunity for me to hang out with all the talented modern quilters in my hometown.
The guild was really great and left the decision as to what we would be working on up to me. I love improvisational quilting so I thought that would be a fun technique for everyone to explore. This is our class sample ~ improvisational log cabins.
These blocks are a bit similar to the pillow I made Jennifer last October. You can see the work in progress below.
I broke down the log cabins by warm and cool colors, incorporating a bit of grey and just a small amount of prints.
The border is a black and white Alexander Henry crosshatch.
I quilted this mini quilt with randomly spaced organic lines. They are all around 1/4″ apart, but I didn’t mark or measure. I used my walking foot and slowly moved the fabric back and forth ever so slightly as I quilted.
This new quilt has a home above my new computer workstation in my sewing space! For more information about the Cincinnati Modern Quilt Guild, you can contact them through their blog or email them at cincinnatimodernquiltguild (at) gmail.com.
June 25, 2012 40 Comments
So…this was the first round where I felt like I had a vision of how I wanted to combine some of the rest of the group’s blocks and start forming the quilt top. I really thought that Penny’s section and Jacquie’s section were meant to be sewn together, right where the negative space intersected. (See below where the Ash and White meet.)
Then for my addition, I added a scrappy section of diagonal turquoise piecing. I actually started working before reading Dan’s journal of inspiration, but it all worked out because in his journal, he wrote that he was inspired by Lu Summers, specifically this style of quilt. I think by breaking from the beginning theme of curves, I went in the direction of that inspiration. Also, in a nod to Lu, I add in some of her new fabric line Summersville. Finally, I think the vertical strip of turquoise echo’s the vertical strip that Penny added when she cut into one of Dan’s original circles.
The quilt is now off to Ashley!
June 8, 2012 15 Comments