What am I doing wrong?

I am once again participating in the mystery quilt from Meadow Mist Designs, this time based on those wonderful cookies called Macarons!!!

For the months of October and November, we made flying geese….and more flying geese…..and even more flying geese!! She has promised us that this is the last of them.

But, it did give me an opportunity to perfect my flying geese technique. But, alas, that was not the case and I am still having troubles.

We are making them by the 4-at-a-time method and I love how they look when they are in process…..

But when I start trimming them down, the point side always seems to be a bit short!! I even marked the first set so I would remember when I used these units in another step……

I figured that I had not been careful enough in my piecing or ironing so set out the next month to do better.

In November, I VERY carefully pieced and ironed, but they still ended up a bit short on one side (normally the left one)…..

‘I am using the Wing-Clipper tool to trim.

Do you have any thoughts about what I am doing wrong???

ALL help will be appreciated!!

The worth of a good grey thread….

Last month I had the privilege of judging the quilts at the Georgia National Fair. Check out THIS POST to read about my insights from the “other side of the table”!!

One of the things that I noticed was how much difference it made when the piecing thread matched the fabrics….or at least didn’t CONTRAST with the fabrics.

Now, I am the queen of putting one BIG spool of thread on my machine….

…….(Signature Natural White) and using it for everything.

But as I was preparing to work on the Retreat scrap quilt, I got to thinking about whether the white thread was appropriate for the myriad of colors that would appear in my piecing.

Based on what I had learned at the judging, the answer to that question was NO!!

So, out came a light grey thread…..

…which was used for top and bobbin threads.

The result is that the stitching doesn’t show and I, yet again, learned how to make my quilts better!!!

It is always amazing how much difference a very small change can make!!!

Here’s to a good grey thread!!!

Teeny, Tiny Piecing

The task for Saturday was to complete two blocks that need to be sent to Jacqui as part of our “Smash That Stash” block swap sponsored by Make Modern Magazine.

Jacqui selected the block named “Pivot”, a very intricate block featuring SIXTY pieces!!!

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I used my new Accuquilt machine to cut most of the pieces and was thankful that it was fast and SO accurate. I think that the accuracy is what made these blocks fairly easy to piece!!

I started out by making half-square triangles, using the pressing technique that I learned from Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs. Check it out HERE.

Don’t they look cute….like little butterflies ready for takeoff….

After they were pressed, I used the Bloc-Loc ruler to trim them down to a PERFECT 1.5 inches ( click HERE for notes about using the Bloc-Loc)

With the first block, I was nervous about the seam allowances so didn’t lay out the entire thing before I started piecing. I started piecing in the center and was so excited to find out that the middle section did measure 10.5 inches…..

And I was ecstatic when the top and bottom sections also matched…..

One block down…..

…and one to go!!

For the second block, I got smart and laid the entire thing out before I started piecing….

This made it SO much easier and faster and this second block went together smoothly…..

It is a good feeling to have these two blocks finished and also to know that working to perfect my 1/4-inch seam allowance is actually showing some benefit!!!

The next two months are my turn to receive blocks and I am looking forward to see what these girls do!!

A Better Way of Piecing

As I was working on the pinwheel top and bitterly complaining about how hard the setting piecing was to do…..

….. my friend Sylvia Schaefer from “Flying Parrot Quilts” commented that, if I had not pieced the pinwheels first, then the entire top could have been pieced in rows……

And, of course, she is right!!!

I got so carried away by my pinwheel excitement that I didn’t stop to plan!!!

Does that ever happen to you?

By the way….you should check out Sylvia’s website and all of her amazing quilts and patterns!!

Well, that is it for the pinwheels…..for the moment. Who knows when they will surface again!!