Friday, March 17, 2023

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

purple alphabet in progress using Alyce Blyth from Blossom Heart's pattern

Another alphabet!
I don't make a purple quilt very often. I use purple in my quilts, but decided to make it the focus of this alphabet.

Alyce Blyth has a free quilt-along on her blog Blossom Heart Quilts from 2013, Easy as ABC.

It has delightful chunky modern looking letters for which I used eggplant-range purple batiks on a subtle horizontal washed greyed lavender ground.
I pretty much stuck to her letters with a few alterations and construction changes.
I did re-scale letters from a 2 inch (2 1/2 inch cut) grid to a 1 1/2 inches (2 inch cut) grid.
I kept the frames cut at her 1 1/2 inches.

With this variation, my letters finish 4 1/2 by 6 inches and my framed blocks finish 9 1/2 by 11 inches.

This little chart helped me stay on track

1 square        1 1/2" finished         2" cut
2 squares       3" finished              3 1/2" cut
3 squares       4 1/2" finished        5" cut
4 squares       6" finished              6 1/2" cut

Examples--something 1 by 3 squares was cut 2 by 5"; 2 by 2 was cut 3 1/2 square

I am struggling a bit with the X and may have to resort to paper piecing--a technique I greatly dislike. There is a right brain/left brain thing with it that makes me unhappy to work with it.

BUT, what a great pattern! I am mulling ideas for how to put together and border it.

Thursday, January 26, 2023

16 patch Glacier Bay, top completed


Glacier Bay
96 by 80 inches
top completed 2022

block finishes 8 inches
120 blocks set 10 by 12

Another from the 2 1/2 square bins! Lots of my covid-squares trading with my group are included.
I love the color of Kona Glacier and thought it would work in sort of a Hudson Bay blanket influenced design with the light squares giving that soft wool look. I push my neutrals.

80 neutral blocks
20 checkerboard blocks
20 Half checkerboard and half neutral blocks

Solid: 240 2 1/2 inch squares
Neutrals: 1680 neutral 2 1/2 inch squares

Making half-blocks:
MAKE SURE you sew the half blocks keeping the pressing orientation: 
pieces on top have seams pressed south--pieces on bottom have seams pressed north

Neutrals block:
Make 360 units of 4 squares. Press in one direction
Make 180 half blocks--set aside 20 for mixed blocks
This leaves 160 half blocks
Make 80 blocks of all neutrals
Set aside 40 blocks
This leaves 40 blocks
Sew into 20 two-block units. Press in one direction

Solid/neutral checkerboard blocks
Make 120 units of 4 squares. Press in one direction away from the solid end square
Make 60 half blocks--set aside 20 for the mixed blocks
This leaves 40 half blocks
Make 20 blocks
Pair with 20 neutral blocks and sew 20 into two-block units
Press half the pairs towards the side with neutral block, half to side with solids

Mixed blocks
These are made with one half all neutrals and one half of a checkerboard
Make 20 blocks.
Pair with 20 neutral blocks and sew into 20 two-block units keeping the neutral side of the mixed block connecting to the neutral block
Press half the pairs towards the side with the neutral block, half to the side with the solids

two-block units
Orientation will be vertical in quilt lay-out
note the two-block units are vertical

Lay out into 6 rows of 10 vertical two-block units, pay attention to units for pressing patterns
Make sure all odd two-block-units that are pressed north and even units have seams pressed south.

Sew into 6 rows, then sew the rows together.
All seams nest.

My love of 16 patches continues. Another is in the works!

My design, use at your pleasure.

AND, look at this great stove fabric for the back!
Homemade Happiness Danhui Nai, Wilmington Prints

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

a 16 patch of 16 patches, top completed

16 patch of 16 patches
top completed 2022
64 inches square

Block finishes 8 inches
64 blocks set 8 by 8
32 all scrap blocks, 32 checkerboard blocks

When going through my 2 1/2 inch light squares I found a large pile from reclaimed fabric of shirts. Several years ago I made quilt a few quilts from reclaimed fabrics. I loved working with them then and since scattered them into my other quilts. But, having found a good number of squares, I decided to feature the shirt fabrics once again into their own quilt.

These fabrics are a bit limp/flimsy compared to regular quilting fabrics. I control this by using starch and by constructing the quilt into segments/large blocks instead of by rows or columns. The orange fabric helps stabilize everything as I go.

The mix is of lights to light mediums to mediums.
I added Kona Tangerine as my solid.
I laid it out into a giant 16 patch.

Solid: 256 2 1/2 inch squares
Scraps: 768 2 1/2 inch squares

Make pairs, then four squares units
Press unit to one side. When pressing the units with solids, I always pressed away from the edge that ends with a solid.

Make half-blocks and full blocks: (do not press these yet 
TIP: when sewing the half-blocks I nest the seams with the bottom seams north and the top seams south.
This is because when putting just two units together you are in most control of the seams. Having done this at this stage, all sewing for blocks and in joining blocks will have the nesting with the bottom seams down and the top seams up, locking the nest.

Make large blocks then giant blocks:
Sew blocks into pairs. Press block pairs with all seams going in one direction.

Sew into large blocks, flipping one side so the seams nest. Press to alternating sides.

Lay out the four giant blocks, paying attention to orientation to keep the seams ready to nest. Sometimes I do this by having the blocks all with the backs showing to keep me organized.

Sew the top together.
All seams nest.
Staystitch along the edges.

My design using a traditional pattern.
Use at your pleasure.

Saturday, December 31, 2022

alphabet with checkerboard, quilt completed

Alphabet with checkerboard
quilt completed 2022
About 67 inches square

Setting is mine.
Letters adapted from Lisa Bogean's pattern for Primitive Gatherings.
Construction details are posted here.

Some, but not all, of the letters have fabric where the image references the letter:
Kittens, Eggs, Roosters, Dogs, Teapots and Teacups, Scissors, Horses. Frogs, Musical notes, 
Used up some bits of indigo picked up on a trip to Japan in 1989.
This is my 6th alphabet quilt.

Medallion setting is mine. Use at your pleasure.

My final finish for 2022. It has been a good year.

Thursday, December 29, 2022

red and white streak of lightning, top completed

Red and white streak of lightning Roman square
top completed 2022
about 92 by 74 inches  

Reds are from my shelves, my friends' shelves, and a bit of shopping.
White is Kona Snow.
My goal of having a stack of red and white quilts is making progress! One is quilted, two are tops. They will join my one previous red and white quilt. Four is a stack!
I am putting the fabrics to bed for now and may work on a few more next year.

I'm not giving full instructions, as it will change with size changes.
Every corner is different. Some resolved more gracefully than others! I will put how to resolve an on-point quilt in a separate post some day.

Block finishes 4 inches
Set on point 13 by 16 blocks, with a float. 
Make about 344--not sure on the number, might be more, might be less!

Block cutting:
white: 2 1/2 by 4 1/2 inch rectangles
red: 2 1/2 by 4 1/2 inch rectangles
Also cut some extra red rectangles to resolve right edge--about 16

Setting cutting (overcut to give a float):
Setting triangles: 7 3/4 inch square, cut diagonally twice to yield 4 triangles

I trim one corner of the setting triangles to 4 1/2 inches. BUT I don't do it til I am ready to sew each row to make sure I trim the correct place.
Sew these trimmed triangles to the ends of the rows with the block on top and the triangle on the bottom to control the bias.

Cutting Corner triangles: These will all be different--wait to cut til ready for each corner.Sew the rectangles in pairs to make the basic block
Make about 344

Sew blocks into pairs for the basic unit
Make about 95 pairs
Why to I make pairs? It helps me control the direction of the blocks. And makes the quilt be well on its way when sewing together each row.
(Truth be told, I sew many of these pairs into 4s and 8s so when I lay them I am more efficient. I keep enough in pairs to easily shift the longer segments to keep a balance of what is going on as far as preventing prints touching.)

Pairs--I think "white dash at the bottom, reds make a 7"

Keep enough single blocks to use in layout, one for each row on the right and on the bottom of the quilt
(For my quilt, that was about 30 blocks) and enough red rectangles for the right side of the quilt (about 16).

Lay out quilt. I wait til I see in real time how the right and bottom sides resolve. This can be done on graph paper, but I find I like to see it in actual fabric before I commit.
(I am making a separate post on these edge and corner resolve decisions.)

I keep myself organized by remembering the white dashes along the bottom of each row.
Everything nests--need to watch how you press the single red triangles on the right side to make sure they nest.
I press each row up til I am past the top right and bottom left corners, then I start pressing the remaining ones down.
Make sure you stay stitch the edges when all completed to protect them til quilting.

My directions (what they are...) for a traditional block and setting.
Use at your pleasure.


Wednesday, December 28, 2022

more from the wedding weekend


Janna, Lynn, Beth

favors for guests at the bridal tea--my knit dishcloths

the bridal tea

We placed the rehearsal flowers in the chancel for St Pauls Sunday worship

Cake cutter borrowed from Andy's mother, was used at his parents' 1951 wedding

A dear neighbor gave Eve a floral crown to wear at her bridal tea

Seth, minder of his sister's dog and bouquet 
my sisters came the morning of the wedding to wash windows and scrub the stoep

We used my mother's china at the wedding breakfast

what is a Chicago wedding without a Giant Cannoli?