Scrappy Variety

I love working on all types of quilts but I seem to always come back to a good, old Scrap Quilt!! I just need time with lots of fabrics, doing simple piecing, and seeing what happens!!!

I have been scouring patterns for the last few weeks, trying to decide on a scrap project to start.

While going thru various photos, I remembered a lap quilt that I made for my Mom many years ago…..

It took a while to figure out what the pattern was but I finally recognized the Split-Nine-Patch…..

The block is super easy to make but once they are all made, the fun begins!!

You can place all of the blocks going the same direction….

Turn them into a “streak-o-lightning” pattern…

….or place them in any number of other configurations….

I am thinking that maybe it is time to visit this block again!!!

Another Happy Scrappy

In December of 2008, I “officially” started writing my blog. Previous to that I had used the site to give updates about various travels but had not added any quilting to it.

After a year rolled around, I wanted to do something to celebrate my first year of blogging so I had a give-away.

The hilarious thing is that I only had about 15 readers at that time so the odds of winning were LARGE!!

The winner would receive this quilt…..

….a scrap string pieced beauty!!!

I dumped my scraps on the floor (not as many as I now have)…..

….and started piecing, using Golden Threads paper for the foundation…..

Sierra Exif JPEG

I was excited when fellow blogger, Terry Grant of “And Sew It Goes” fame was the winner. She has not been as active in the past few years but you should still check out HER BLOG!!

Several years later, she did a tour of her studio….a wonderful two-story house, and it was exciting to catch a glimpse of my quilt on display on the shelf under the young woman quilt……

Over the years, my anniversary celebration has become less and less, and frankly, I have forgotten about it completely in the last 2 years!!

But, the memory of this quilt still remains….the fun that I had in making it and the fun in gifting it to a stranger!!!

Quick Irish chain….

On Saturday, I was determined to spend some time in my studio and finish up the last of the “what can you do with a 6-inch block” quilts!!

To recap the story, this time last year I was given 200 six-inch blocks that were to be used for charity quilts. I have proceeded to make 5 different quilts using those blocks as my inspiration. THIS POST describes the last one that I made.

Now I only had 15 squares left and most of those were a white-on-white type of design. I tried to come up with a design that could use those as an entire block and landed on an Irish Chain!!

And, even better than using up the last of the 6-inch blocks, I could make use of the overstuffed box of 2.5-inch scrap squares!!!

Now, have you found a flaw in my math??? When I was planning this quilt, I kept thinking that the white blocks were 6.5-inches and not 6!!! So the 9 patches using 2.5-inch squares would be too big!! ARGH.

I kept thinking about it and decided to go ahead and use those squares but to increase my seam allowance…..

After I sewed the first pairs of squares, I took them to the ironing board and ironed them BEFORE I cut them apart….

That may sound silly, but it is so much faster and easier to do it this way!!!

After the eighteen 9-patches were finished, I measured and found that they were just a smidge over 6-inches. I started to just leave them and “finagle it” while I was piecing, but then decided to go ahead and spend the time trimming them down.

I knew that the trimming would mess up the squares a bit but since there were no matching seams, I did it anyway!!! There wasn’t much to trim…..

Now it was time to layout the quilt using the 6-inch blocks that I had on hand. There were three that had too much print so I substituted those with some of my own……

I guess that these can be seeds for a future project!!

Before I started sewing the blocks together I, fortunately, remembered to move my seam allowance back to the normal position!!

Once the inside was pieced…..

….it was time to talk borders!! I decided to go with contrasting colors…..

It ended up with more of a “Christmas vibe” than I had planned, but I still like the vibrant colors!!!

And most importantly, the 6-inch blocks are GONE…..FINISHED……KAPUT!!

More 6-inch squares

Over the last few months I have been slowly working thru a stack of 6-inch squares that were donated to my charity bee. I started out with a pinwheel quilt, followed by a chinese coin and another unnamed design…..

…and yet I still had 58 left to use!!!

As I was scanning Facebook, I found a simple pattern that used triangles in each corner of a square and, when placed correctly, had a fun, motion-filled design.

Last weekend, I had a free day and a need to do some PIECING and fabric fondling so I pulled out the designs and got to work!!

Since I recently purchased an Accuquilt machine, I naturally wanted to use it to cut the triangles!!! I folded the squares in half and then put them over the dies and ran them thru the machine….

Perfect triangles with little fabric waste was the result…..

Now I needed to cut the 11×4.5 inch rectangles and ran into the problem of how to cut a strip that is wider than my 6.5 inch ruler!!! I imagine that some of you have had this problem as well, so I made a video to give you some tips……

Once cut, I found the center of both the strip and the triangles and used that to guide the placement and sewing of the triangles…….

When ironed, they looked like this…..

Now I needed to cut the pieces into 7.25-inch squares. This size wasn’t specified but was simply the largest square that I could cut from it.

I drew the guidelines on my ruler using a water-soluble marking pen….

and then used the guide to make the cuts……

When I left my studio at the end of the day, the quilt top was at this stage…..

I am going to make one more row to go on the top and may place the blocks so that the “square” will be in bright red fabrics.

It was a sweet day to spend in my studio, especially when there is a scrap quilt at the end of it!!!

Kaleidoscopic Fun!!

I don’t know about you but I used to LOVE the cardboard tube kaleidoscopes that we played with as kids!! As an adult (sort of), I still love to look thru one of the amazing handcrafted kaleidoscopes that exist.

Many years ago (1992 to be exact), our guild brought in Katie Pasquini Masopust (before she was super famous) to present a Kaleidoscope Quilt class, and I was immediately hooked!!

We started out with a piece of flannel taped to the wall and started working from the center out…adding each round as it came up.

As I worked thru the day, I kept cutting off small corners of my scraps and putting them in a circle around the piece so that I could decide what the next round would be.

When it came time to finish the quilt, I kept thinking about those triangles scattered around the kaleidoscope and wanted to figure out a way to incorporate them into the border and maybe some of the other blocks. I remember lying in bed one night and trying to figure out exactly how I could piece them in and realizing that it would be a mammoth task to accomplish. THEN the epiphany came….. why not do them as prairie points so they would add dimension to the quilt AND be much easier to piece!!!

THE PERFECT SOLUTION…..

I was using scraps for much of the piecing and was running REALLY short on greens!! So short that I didn’t have enough to add the triangles in the corners!! This seemed to be the only way to go…..

I love the final quilt and it is a great addition to my Spring decorating…..

….and I just have to smile when I see the prairie points!!!