August 28, 2012

Hurricane Isaac

     I just wanted to apologize for the delay of the One Block Wonder  follow up. I live in Pensacola, Fl, and we all thought that the hurricane Isaac was coming here. There was alot of hype about this hurricane. It ended up, so far, as being a tropical storm. We spent all weekend working on whether we were going to stay home, put up hurricane shutters. So, we watched hours of the weather channel. Boring!
     I think that since hurricane Katrina, we are terrified that will be us. It was very tragic. Hurricanes can turn, speed up at the last moment, or  fizzle out. They can very be frustrating. This is the first time that I saw that Europe has a hurricane model. It was forecasting a totally different path. It put us in the eye of the storm. Thank goodness they were wrong. The worst part is the gasoline  is gone the minute that hurricane gets  around the keys. Water is never more expensive. People are flat out crazy. 
     Ivan was horrible. We stayed at home for that one. I slept right through it. The beaches got hit hard. Lots of buildings and roadways were lost. I actually live about 10 miles in from the beach. So, the chance of severe water damage or flooding is really not that bad. However, oak trees are a serious concern. They tend to fall and we try to prepare by cutting back the  limbs. That's a major fear though. It's the trees. You would think that we would cut them down, but they are actually protected. I feel sorry for the neighbors. If our tree falls, it will hit their trucks and house. 
Other than the hurricane, school started last week. I did take some time out to make my daughter some shirts for her school uniform. They wear red, white, and navy shirts. So, I decided to make some for her. I have been sewing clothing much longer than quilts. It was simple. I finally got to use the buttonhole part of the machine. 

So, here is a picture of the shirts.

I did get a pattern from Walmart. I am about to make that...after the quilt post. Don't worry.

   Before I forget, I asked my husband if I could have his cabinet from the shop for my fabrics. It would be nice if my fabrics had a nice organized their space. Plus, I will be able to see what is in there. That would really be a good idea..since I have nothing that really goes together. I just pick up whatever catches my eye. (wink) I really don't have that much, but it will look alot cleaner. So, that is on the agenda. I will post pictures of that as well. I gotta get to the sewing den. So, blog at ya later. Have fun sewing.

August 15, 2012

One Fabric Wonder Quilt Block

I just learned a new block that will change the way you look at border prints forever. It is a surprise every time you cut, sew, and press one out.  It come out a little abstract. Although, I am not fond of abstract art. However, I like the look of these blocks.

3 yrds border fabric and backing fabric.2yrds of actual border to go around the outside of quilt. 1 1/2 yrd of another contrasting border. This will be for a twin size bed.

We need 31- 10 1/2” blocks and 18- half blocks.

Today, though, I am just going to show how the block comes together. There’s the regular way of sewing the top together and something else new to this blog, quilt as you go. I am currently at the stage of quilting as you go. So, it will be somewhat incomplete today. In a couple more days, I will show you how to put them together.


This is the cute little border I picked up. Yeah, it’s boring. Not for long though. I’ve walked by all kinds of borders  so many times. I’ve never bought one. There’s a first time for everything. The fabric has been ironed and it’s in half from coming off the bolt 44” wide. Plus, in half again.


This folded version is showing you that they are all going to need to be lined up. It’s a total of 4 layers.


I am squaring of the end of the fabric here.


I checked to make sure that I am cutting the selvage off all the selvage in the layers to make straight edges.


I’ve decided to make these blocks 10 1/2” squares. There will not be much waste here at all. Try not to fudge on the cuts. Sometimes, my rotary cutter can get away from me. I get so aggravated with those mistakes.  Above, I am using the two ruler method. My longest ruler is 6 1/2” wide and short is 5 1/2”.  So, I use all of the 6 1/2 and 4 of the other. You have to hold them together and cut. We are cutting across the width of the fabric. The rulers can shift easily. So, I spread my fingers wide and cut.


Once the width cut is done, I  measured out the 10 1/2” and cut. Then, cut the second block at the outer edge at 10 1/2”.


This is the fun part. We are going to cut from corner to corner. Making a big X. This one side is demo here.


This is the second part of the X where we cut.


It will end up looking like this, tada.


Stack each set of 4  like above.


Lay out the first one, point down.


Lay second one on the side with the  point inward.


Lay them all out this way like this above. Make sure your pattern is lined up ok.


Put the triangle right sides together. Take it right over and sew your seam. Now, hold on here a minute.  These blocks are bias edges. This means, that they can stretch easily. Please try not to tug at the block. When sewing coax them gently. This is not the part where we are fighting with them. Let the machine do the job. The machine will feed the fabric. There’s no need to tug or pull. At first, I really wrangled it. I like the being in control aspect of…really everything. I would get the back of the fabric and hold it as it is coming off. No, no, no. Just glide and caress the fabric. It needs a light touch here.


Don’t move anything yet. We are going to chain piece. Yay!


Put your bottom two right sides together. and sew down from the top corner.  Then you are ready to lay out the next set of four. You can keep doing this for about 10 blocks  or all blocks. I did about 8 and then pulled them off the machine.  I got anxious to see what the blocks would look like.


Here they are laid out all attached.


Where they  come together at the point indicates the set where you’ll make the cut. Don’t cut the thread connecting the sets. Leave those alone. We are almost done.


Open them up like so.


To make the half blocks. You would stop here at the set. These blocks will be fillers on the edge of the quilt later. Here, though, I am demoing the whole block.


Then put them right sides together. At this point, you can open and stack the set and chain these together as well. Just sew the long seam.


This is how we lock seam at the middle. This also makes sure that your seam make the nice pretty points. We want all seams to meet. Now, you can pin it. Some people pin. I have been at it for awhile. So, I just like to sew and hold that spot together and adjust to make sure the the fabric is laying lined up as they are being sewn together as well.


I pressed this one open. Very nice. Point and lines are all good.


This is the back and how it should look to you as well. The one long seam is pressed in one direction and the other locking seams pressed in opposite directions.


This is the other block that came out. I don’t see a border  print that I started with at all. It changes the whole look of the fabric. I think it looks harder than it really is to make these blocks. Then, just continue cutting and lay them out. Move them around and you’ll get what you need to make your quilt top. They need to be laid out on point to look their best.


I laid them out really quick. This will not be the final lay out.


This is a little closer.


This is the right corner. If you were going to sew the quilt top together like this. You would start by sewing the top corner to the middle square of second row on the top.


Turn and sew this side half block and middle block.


Then, the next. Now that row is complete. Bring them back to where you are laying


This is the part that I am going to be quilting as I go. I made the backing fabric 10 1/2” block and cut the batting at that as well.



Lay them sandwiched together. The backing is laid out so that you can see it the fabric if you flip it. Take this and free motion your block. We will not be trimming the blocks at this point.  I will catch you up when I have finished quilting these blocks. Blog at you later. Hope you enjoyed.

© Quilty Dream
Maira Gall