We all know that ironing is a BIG part of quilting and sometimes it takes longer to iron than it does to piece. And, woe to you if you don’t get it ironed flat!!!
Back when I was working on the Brown Stripe quilt, I made a video about an easier way to iron when you have been chain piecing. While it isn’t actually a TOOL, it certainly is a technique that will go a long way…..
I am in need of a quilt for an upcoming gift (more about that in later posts) and was trying to figure out what to do. I knew that it needed to be a small wall quilt so I started looking thru my Miniature Quilts magazines….starting with Issue number 2. MANY issues later, I came upon a strip pieced quilt that caught my eye and proceeded to start planning it in my head.
The first ideas was to use the strips that I had been cutting from my scraps, but realized that the smallest of those (1-1/2 inches) was still too big. SO, I moved up a drawer and pulled out the bits that were “too small to use”….ie narrower than 1-1/2 inches. They were perfect for piecing this quilt!!
I drew one of the block sections on Golden Threads paper and then put 30+ additional squares under the drawn one. I then sewed around the design using a threadless machine and achieved all of my paper patterns in one fell swoop.
I started with all of my scraps in the drawer, but ended up throwing them onto the floor so that I could get to them easier.
As I started paper piecing these blocks, I found two things that helped the process go easier. The first was to leave my machine in “Needle-Up” mode. By doing this, I didn’t have to move the needle up after every seam when I was wanting to pull the sewn piece to the back and start sewing on the next one.
The second was to select and cut ALL of the pieces for a certain seam at the same time rather than reaching down into the pile and cutting them individually.
After piecing the paper blocks, I removed the paper and put them together into the quilt top.
My original idea was to put a solid color fabric in the small border, but decided that it lost the sparkle that the rest of the quilt had, so I used a handful of 1-1/2 strips and created the stripe.
It was a fun quilt to make and I am truly happy with the results.
Now it is off to the home opener for the University of Georgia football team.
There has been a wonderful discussion on the British Quilt List about “Crumb Quilts” that use all of your little bitty bits and pieces (those that I normally throw away)…..I know, I am really bad!!!!
Anyway, I got to thinking about them and googled to look for Crumb Quilt patterns. In doing so, I came across a wonderful website with a bunch of free patterns for scrap quilts. I cant wait to try some of these. Click here if you want to have a look.
Well, the Christmas decorations are out of the house and stored in the attic again and we are now decorated for the winter months. The only problem with this time of year is that tax season is just around the corner (I am a CPA) and I know that my crafting time will be limited. So, I am going to spend as much time as possible over the next week and see what I can accomplish!!
One of my Christmas presents was the book “Loose Change” by Claudia Plett and LeAnn Weaver. It is a wonderful book about using 5 inch squares, 10 inch squares and fat quarters of fabric. One of the quilts uses miscellaneous rectangles of fabric that are 5 inches by 3 inches and are bordered on two sides by 1-1/2 inch strips of black fabric. These squares are then put together in alternating directions.
I am hoping to make this quilt using only scraps from my stash, except I know that I may have to buy the black….will have to see what is in the stash. AND, I may switch it to dark blue…..I know that I have a lot of it in the stash.
One of the reasons that I want to make this quilt is because of a tip that I recently read…… Most of you already know this, but when you are string piecing a series of patches, you can sew thru an un-needed scrap of fabric at the end of the piecing line rather than pulling your fabric out and having all of those strings to deal with. This also helps make it easier to start out sewing on the next set of patches.
However, I read that, if you have another quilt ready to sew, you can sew a patch from the new quilt instead of using a scrap bit of fabric. SO, my idea is to cut out all of the pieces for this new quilt and keep them by the machine. Hopefully I will be able to finish the piecing for the second quilt before I even know it.