D9P Quilted

This disappearing 9 patch was pure joy to make from start to finish!  Precut friendly, easy, quick!  I highly recommend this pattern to all experience levels.

I went scrappy with mine, but you could go any way you like!  My neutrals are very busy blacks and I love the loud combinations with color.

The color combinations I chose reminds me of the old granny square afghans that are found on the backs of many couches.

 

I quilted this in teal thread.  I was going to go black thread but realized just a tad extra of color is not going to take away from this busy quilt.  I went with squares and rectangles in a nice free motion forgiving geometric pattern.  Sorry no video as I have a hard enough time drawing a straight line let alone quilting one free hand.

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I also dug deep into the stash and did some panel quilting on an old vest fabric.  This is an excellent way to practice free motion feathers.  No video of this because of the thread matching so well, it would not show up on camera.

vest

I managed to sew one more Alone Star.  This week is slated for binding of one last quilt to put into the Quilt Hop here in town.

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I did not meet much of my quilty goals.  It was a week of extra driving and allowing others to take up much of my time.  That is over with, and as a result, have greater peace of mind.  A wonderful way to start the weekend, or any day….with piece of mind Quilty style.

Linking up with Julie, The Crafty Quilter, for the work in progress on my disappearing 9 patch.

 

Thanks for stopping in, would love to hear from you in the comment section!

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Alone Star! Anniversary ~ Tutorial

Wholly Toledo!  I just celebrated my 3rd WordPress Blog-iversary!  Jeeze in the three years I have made many quilts.  I will have to do a recap soon.

My Lone Star 4 patches are coming along, and I got the itch to stitch them together.  I learned a few things and thought I would do a tutorial to capture the moment for those interested in mastering Y-seams.

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Notice the two blocks above right sides together stitched starting at the center point, stopping short about a 1/4 inch at the other end.  This is key to Y-seam success.

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Next at the point of stitching end and where the two halves come together at the point, fold back one 4 patch out of the way to prep for the next step.

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Pin square block to 4 patches at seam fold back, matching the three points.

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Stitch. Ensure the start point of stitching starts 1/4 inch from the raw edges.

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Here is the seam without the machine in the way.  Notice the stitching begins at 1/4 inch in.  Do not back stitch at anytime.  This process may require to remove a stitch and back stitching would make that more difficult.

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Now ensure that your raw edges are in alignment on the next side  Pin, then stitch.

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Here is the flip side of the block.  Imagine the purple edge nearest the bottom of the photo.  That is what you stitch next.  The opposite side of the Y.

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Again take special care to not stitch that first 1/4 inch.

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After stitching both sides of the Y clip the seam bulk, near side and far side.  The middle is the orange, do not clip the orange.  This will require you to fold parts out of the way while carefully trimming.

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Far side is now trimmed too.

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Press seam open.  I finger press all seams on the star as they are all bias.  I do not want to distort those stretchy edges.

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Press the orange as shown above. Repeat this process for each Y.  Incidentally I have made big squares for the smaller Y’s.  When pressing at the end, I find this more forgiving.

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Sew two star quadrants.

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Ensure you repeat the 1/4 inch stop at the Y.

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Finger press open.

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To bulk down this seam and to remove a mountain forming, I have clipped the raw edge at the seam.  This helps a lot!

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Fold back at the Y and place a larger orange square.

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Pin.

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Then stitch.  You will come to the square overage from the first 4 Y seam.

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Trim with scissors approximately flush with other raw edge.

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On the flip side repeat, ensuring that the other 4 patch is folded out of the way.  Mind your 1/4 start at the Y.

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Press square completely flat.  Remember right now you are only finger pressing.

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Repeat for the other half.

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Join halves and now join two more large corner orange squares.  (and laundry is almost done, HA!)

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Press….start at the outside of the block and work your way in.  If the center becomes a mound, spray starch on the mound and press out the mound.  Press …..DO  NOT IRON…..press there is a difference.

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You are now ready to trim.  I use two sides at a time to trim, coming out from my star points 1/4 inch.  Move ruler to the other two sides and square up the block.  Notice my larger squares are in the corner.  If you turn the block and place the smaller squares in the corner it sets the block on point and cuts the block smaller.  (ask me how I know :)!)

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One side is off a bit but this is a true square.

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So now do I sew them together on point?  Or in rows.  I will be making more blocks and then make that decision.

This Alone Star is coming right along.

Specifics:

Used the parallelogram die from accuquilt to cut the pieces.

The large squares are 5 inch, the smaller ones are 4 1/2 inches

Thread used for piecing is 50 wt.  If you use thicker thread, it can affect your angles and mess up your seam allowance.  Adjust accordingly.

I gave a tutorial on sewing the 4 patches together if you are interested to see those notes, click here

Well that wraps things up for the week.  My goals for the upcoming week:

  • Create more scrappy Alone Star blocks
  • Backing purchased for D9P and that will need to be sewn.  I aim to quilt that next.  I will do a geometric square pattern and will upload a video of how that is done in the coming week.

In the meantime, enjoy the weekend, and thanks for reading my blog!

Dreaming Big and A Thrifty Score

I try to hit the thrift shops once a week.  I have found that certain days are better for finding stuff I need or want.  This week, after digging through the craft boxes under the infant tables I found a bag of scrap fabric.  Upon closer inspection, they were strings!  Some sewn!  The colors of hunter green burgundy, and mauve all reminisce of a time not too far back in the 90s.

This will become something some day.

And a few weeks back I finished the dream big panel.  Had not gotten a good time for photo op, that finally happened.  Got to practice my feather work.  Not perfect, but perfect enough to use.

dream big

dream big 1

The backing for this finally finished up the bolt.  I have had this awhile and glad it has been reduced to scraps.  My thread did not match well, but I kind of like the contrast.  Lavender and teal thread.

dream big 2

I am going to have 9 quilts this year for our annual Quilt Hop.  I bet I will never come close to that number in the future.  (All though there was that year where oodles of babies caused me to have 16 quilts, lots smaller ones.  Since those were gifts they were not shown at the hop)

I still have the D9P to quilt.  Still looking for a backing.  Still brainstorming on my quilting options.  A bit of work left to do in the next three weeks.

In the mean time, I probably need to shift my focus on some UFOs.  My project shelves are cleared of much.  Those UFO’s remain.  I need to pick one and stick with it, overcome the hurdles in my mind and just sew.

Do any of you get that way?  You come to a point where it is not new and shiny as projects go and you lose interest?  I have become this way in the last few years.  I think it is because of pinterest dangling the carrots of beautiful masterpiece quilts that so inspire.  Lovely eye candy out there, it seems to have unfocused me a bit.  I need to get my focus back.

Well I am off to do the motherly deeds of the evening.  Have a fantastic week and thanks for reading my blog!

Good Fortune Completed!

It all started on Black Friday 2018.  The first clue.  I opted for my neutrals to be black.  I sewed meagerly until the revel in Jan 2019.  And then I sewed like the dickens!

First it was fabric selection.

Then the clues:

And finally I sewed all the clues and caught up at the end of Feb.  Top done.  Now awaiting the perfect backing.  Eventually found, and quilted with a panto around the edge as well as the stars with the same panto as a medallion.

And the final product!

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This is probably the prettiest quilt I have ever made.  Glad I went cheddar!  Glad for all those glorious pieces.  The borders really make the quilt.  I look forward to this years mystery.  You know I have participated three years now doing the Bonnie Hunter Mysteries.  Each year I learn something new.  This year I learned all about contrast!

Each year all the clues are broken down into 4 patches, HST’s, flying geese, and TST’s.  A gob of them pieces each week, sewing madly, blindly, having faith what you are doing is right.  And then it all comes together and you are soooooo glad you trusted in another quilter’s knowledges as right before your eyes you have a real, true, work of textile art.  This is one that I want to use everyday, but I want to save it forever as a keepsake.  Good Fortune will wrap it’s loving arms around many loved ones in it’s lifetime, that is what it is all about!

The end of June

The end of June is here, whoa!  Pulling up my reins to try to slow down life!  This year is flying by.  With June coming to and end, that only means one thing, The begining of July, naturally.

Cramming as much as I can into a week seems futile, but we all muster on, making as much as we can with the time that we have.

I have done well with this 100 mph week.  Setting of an actual goal has helped me so much.  Some weeks you just don’t get them done, but most of the time I meet or exceed my expectations.

Last week’s goals:

  • Finish quilting and binding of tshirt quilt (binding still needs to happen)
  • start quilting good fortune (Good Fortune is quilted)
  • Sew some more leader ender 4 patch diamonds.  (Done)
  • Accuquilt some more fabric for opposite blades  for the 4 patch diamonds (Done)
  • Demonstrate video  how to use the seam ripper properly for quicker rip-out results (Done)
  • Come up with a new plan for the D9P quilt top (Done)

I have managed a snippet of video on how to rip out quilting while it is on the longarm.  I share this as I struggled doing it the wrong way.  The wrong way can make a shredded mess of bits of thread.  My method is easy, fast, with no little bits of thread.  And yes, that is me in the southern drawl voice!  Oh gosh, I hope you will not need to turn on closed captioning to know what I am saying!?@

For those of you who knew right off the bat how to do this, kudos.  These are the little things in life.  🙂

Also I have briefly filmed quilting on a meander/ large stipple on the Tshirt quilt.

 

Good Fortune was loaded and the quilting is done!  I chose a pantograph pattern that was in a 4 inch row format.  That went around the outer border, cornering the same outward direction all around.  The same panto also had the same design I used in row quilting as a medallion.  I did this medallion within the stars.  I free motioned in the opposing blocks.  In between the black and blue border where no panto happened I free motion small stipple to fill the gap.

good fortune quilting medallion

I hope I did not over quilt it as I want to use this and be warm!  I chose black thread, because I really wanted the piecing to show and not the quilting.  I was a bit afraid of choosing the wrong design and ruining the beautiful top.

good fortune

A tad of new 4 patch leader enders have emerged from the opposite cuts in the Accuquilt.  Here is a small amount of blades laid out as well as a larger ensemble.

A new plan was stitched for the D9P.  A new photo opportunity will happen this weekend.  Stay tuned.

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I ran the squiggle lines all the same going around the quilt.  In other words I trimmed 7 inch strips going with the grain for the full yardage which was the perfect size for this job.   In each corner of the quilt I placed the only 4 orphans leftover from making the D9P blocks.  This now measures 66 X 66.  I do not have the right backing fabric for this.  I would like to have a large floral on black or a geometric design on black for the backing.  Although my options are wide open.  I suppose I could go pink on the back, or blue, or teal with a pop of even more a color.

A visit with my LAQS will probably help this one along.  I am crossing my fingers the right one comes along with the right price.  🙂

A busy week, a productive week, and as all of us are, ready for the weekend!  Here I come Saturday and Sunday!  Whew!

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog!

 

Lone Star Blade Tutorial

Ahhhhhh, sewing on my vintage machine, which never gives me any problems, so named Abacus because I can really count on him.  Always there for me to improve my mood.  🙂

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Some stitching happened today.  Started off that I either lost my prescription glasses out of my purse in the parking lot at work, or they fell out of my purse in my drawer at work.    I rely heavily on seeing with them as the no line bifocals really improve small details and I don’t feel so dang blind, LOL.

So a quick run down the street where I keep my inexpensive off the shelf readers.  I keep a pair with my longarm, because I don’t know how many times I have been absent minded and just left my prescription glasses behind and then am handicapped enough I cannot thread the needle.  Absent minded and blind….a good combo on the way to old town LOL.

A few things in stitching these 4 patch blades I have learned along the way and I thought this was a good opportunity to share with those that struggle with this same issue.

Angles are funny.  I can look at it and think that I am squarely sewing, only to find I am scooootched off enough that it will throw the block off during its final construction.

For years I have made alignments with pins.  I call it a pin baste, call it whatever you like.

Here we have the two halves of the 4 patch sewn.  These go very fast if you chain piece.  I chain piece the two halves in succession so when I press they are already together and I do not have to look for a mate.  Notice below they are connected with thread.

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Next I trim the dog ears, simply with scissors.  I also clips the thread holding these together at the same time.

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Snip Snip!

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Now onto alignment.  For years I have stuck a pin at the 1/4 inch seam allowance where the two fabrics meet, making the pin go down through the wrong side of the fabric, repeating for the other half just like this.

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The above is time consuming but you can get it spot on if you slow down, take your time, and pin baste.  Yup, lots of us quilters do not like using pins, but sometimes the accuracy improvement makes it necessary.

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After I have this pin basted with a pin, I fold the two ends up and compare the dog ears on each end.  If they match in size, I proceed and know my accuracy is right for points to match perfectly.  If they are not perfect I retry.

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Once your accuracy is deemed close enough, stitch.  I have started pressing my seams open which creates a dog ear on each end that will have to be trimmed.  You can opt to press it in the direction which would eliminate the dog ear trimming.

These extra steps sometimes get frustrating and takes the fun out of quick sewing.  Then I had a huge lightbulb moment.  Matching raw edges which I just trimmed the dog ears from, simply match the seam allowance.

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See the funny angle or eye illusion in this picture.  The seam allowance is in perfect alignment, but the ends overhang greatly, or sew it seams, LOL!  This plays tricks on these eyes, and so just eyeballing it will not work anymore.  Kudos to you if you can do it with the naked eye.

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Notice where I am pointing with my pin.  You will align the edge of that seam allowance with the seam on the above piece.  The seam’s raw edge matches perfectly to seam finished edge.  Pin baste.  So far this is by far the quickest and easiest method for all this weird angle stuff.

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Some of these are done with the first method and some with the second method.  I found the second method to be most accurate, and easier.  The two center diamonds are perfectly nested.  The outer two are off by and few threads, and if you take a few steps back you would never notice.  It will directly impact the alignment of the next raw edges you sew during phase two the sewing of the 4 patches together.

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Above the point is very nicely aligned be the raw edges are offset.  This is showing the difficulty I am having while piecing these beauties.  The good news is that all of the raw edges at this point are bias, so if they are imperfect, you will be able to ease them in the next step.  This is turning out to be very forgiving.  Lone Star quilts look so hard, and now that I am working one, I am changing my opinion.  I do not recommend this if you struggle with making your points matching in other projects or if you are new to quilting.  Your frustration level might be high and it may become a UFO (unfinished object).

And in brainstorming (mentioned in my previous post)  for the D9P, here is the backing fabric I so wanted for this but currently do not have enough of.

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I supposed I can wait until Good Fortune is quilted, and use the leftovers from it to help finish this.  but I really only want one seam for the backing.  Perhaps my mind is changing and will make this as a wild sashing for the front.  It auditions well with all of this quilt and it pops  with color.  Perhaps the backing just needs to be a solid black or muted black.  I am still brainstorming.  When I come across something I see that will work, I will know it, until then I will continue to seek out a solution.

In summary, our eyes can play tricks on us.  In my youth and having sticker book fun, the placement of the sticker was so easy.  Right where you wanted it, you were able to put it.  Now I seem to have an eyeball on the cheek syndrome as it looks perfect before I stick it, and that that perfect place and funny angle after the sticker is stuck IS NOT PERFECT.  In fact it is WAY OFF.  I assume this is some kind of depth perception problem.  You know the kind, when you are hanging clothes on the line and you go to grab the clothes line only to find your eyes have played a trick on you and you are no where close to grabbing it.  I recall a tidbit of a George Carling routine speaking of the depth perception and clothes line trick your eyes play on you.  Sewing weird angles and the success of this relies on good depth perception, pin basting, and experience of the good, the bad, and the ugly.  A direct result of who you used to be, who you are today, and who you will become tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog!

 

 

 

 

Black Cohosh Life

close up photography of pills
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

In the last few cool, rainy months, it has been impossible for my hair to be dry.  Normally in my routine, my hair is washed daily, twisted up into a bun, and the air conditioning at work slowly sucks the moisture out.  Lately when I take it down at night, it is still very wet.  My hair is down to my waist line and very thick.  The only thing changing in the last few months was lots of rain which is why I thought my hair was not drying.  And then it happened.  Life is starting to make changes for me.  They are natural changes, and I am excited about these changes.

photo of woman covering face with her hair
Photo by Bennie Lukas Bester on Pexels.com

So what happened?  While at work sitting at my desk, looking through a microscope, I felt a rush of heat start in my chest and slowly rise to the top of my head, and then it was gone.  A heat sensation rising within, I could feel the natural blush form on my face with this event.  My first hot flash.

gray microscope on table
Photo by Francesco Paggiaro on Pexels.com

And then I got to thinking…..is this why my hair is not drying?  When you have thick, long, wet hair and twist it into a bun, it takes longer to dry.  Add rain, hinders more drying.  Add a bit of movement in muggy conditions with a fur coat on your head, it is gonna sweat.

Yup, sweat was happening and I only noticed it with vacuuming in the hot house, I would just pour in sweat.  Hum….I guess it is happening.  My body rains uncontrollably.

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Photo by Vlad Kovriga on Pexels.com

So back when I had the hives and was on a boat load of steroids, I started sweating bad in the night.  I mentioned this to my coworkers.  They thought This was hormonal imbalance, and it was, but not for the reason they thought.  They advised black cohosh, a natural way to achieve a higher level of estrogen when you have sudden dips.  Back then I bought a bottle, never took any.

And then my hair not drying, and the one hot flash, the mood swings, I have started taking it.  I did not take it for a few days, and then last night I got really angry, of three different ink pens not one would write.  Frustration levels high, pens thrown away, black cohosh orally, I feel better today.  I woke up with a dry head of hair, got a good nights sleep, and worry about my attitude towards things that don’t go as planned.

I think god made this plan for women on purpose.  In a timeline, you hit this new time in your life about the time you have teenagers.  This gives you the rage and fury to deal with them….nurture mom gone, mean mom ….. yikes!

The week started out marvelous and ended in a funk.  I will be discussing the end to my long hair as I have hated it for years, but I keep it that way because one person in the world likes it.

black calendar close up composition
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

So the good start to the week and a funky end also was the case for my sewing and quilting.  Lots of progress and good healthy sewing.  Lots of quilting that started well, and then stalled with a major tension problem all of a sudden, and a new love/hate relationship with the seam ripper.

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Goals met:

  • Tshirts pressed, trimmed, sewn into a top
  • Backing for good fortune sewn
  • Backing for D9P not sewn as it seems my local area quilt shop….I bought the whole bolt of fabric to back good fortune, I had bought all they had….sold out forever.  Brainstorming what to do about this…*sigh*
  • Start quilting the D9P did not happen as I did not have backing.
  • Sew some leader ender 4 patch diamonds

Goals exceeded:

  • Start quilting the tshirt quilt
  • made a slip cover for the rolling pin

This weeks goals:

  • Finish quilting and binding of tshirt quilt
  • start quilting good fortune
  • Sew some more leader ender 4 patch diamonds
  • Accuquilt some more fabric for opposite blades  for the 4 patch diamonds
  • Demonstrate video  how to use the seam ripper properly for quicker rip-out results
  • Come up with a new plan for the D9P quilt top.

I seems like I have ranted here….*sigh*…….sorry.  But I hope I have communicated at least one thing you can use as a take away.  Thank you for putting up with this and reading my blog!

tshirtquilttop

 

 

 

Get down, Boggie, oogie, oogie!

I am in the fast lane, with the pedal to the floor, zooming through my goals set for the week.  This song suddenly popped into my head!  A lovely earworm for you to sing in your head while sewing!….Urban dictionary defines earworm as “song stuck in your head” lol!

 

  • Good Fortune backing sewn….check!
  • Sleeve for rolling pin sewn…..check!
  • Tshirt quilt, shirts pressed, cut, sewn, and now bordered into a top…..check!  Backing fabric ready!

tshirtquilttop

  • 4 patch blades are moving under the foot, a nice stack now ironed ready to mate with others…..check!
  • Backing for the D9P…..I love the backing fabric selected for this, but the piece is not big enough.  Other fabrics in my stash pale in comparision, so I will have to make a trip to my LAQS….still on the todo list.

I have the urge to quilt.  Didn’t happen tonight, sheduling conflict for Wednesday…..Thursday and Friday here I come!

May music stave off the midweek blahs, and boost your sewing superpowers!  Have a great week and thanks for reading my blog!

 

Lone Star Leader Ender

During Wednesday, the day I spent with mom, I took some busy work to do.  I took a bag full of fat quarter sized pieces down to 3 inch by 4 inch, and was determined to make my scraps as useful as possible.  Mom is the keeper of the accuquilt system.  The night before I decided to utilize my scraps using a one block system, meaning everything I cut would all be the same shape to make a quilt full of all one block.  At first I wanted to do a 60 degree triangle, but while thumbing through the blocks decided to go with diamonds, they are a girls best friend, right?

So I grabbed the parallelogram 45 degree die.  This was one of the first dies I gave mom and it was still in it’s package.

accuquiltparallelogramHave you seen the pattern they associated with their die?  If they would change it up to the Lone Star they would probably have more sales as NO ONE want to cut out these tiny pieces!  

I decided to make 4 patch units, a good leader ender project.  When I first started cutting, I folded my fabric strips on the die for the pass through the machine.  I learned that if I did that I would not be able to keep track of how many I cut for the reverse angle.  So I ran all my fabric through right side up.  I have enough pieces and boy are they small to make 1/2 of the star points of a lone star.  The next step will be to cut out all fabric face down.  I have plenty of scraps and cut for 5 hours.  I still had a bag of fabric after all that cutting.  It just never goes away!

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See how one side is longer than the other?  This is why I could not go argyle style.  And I will have to play with the layout as I may have to have an odd number of strips.

In this Lone Star leader ender wake, I also accumulated new wonky strings.  I have enough strings that I can make a scrappy string border if needed.  It felt very good to move all of those scraps from the scrap drawer and I can’t wait to start stitching on them.  This will probably be my summer project and it will take me a while.  My plan is still to sew matching scraps into 4 patches and then make bigger with those subassemblies.

I am not going to lie, originally I wanted to make an argyle quilt.  And I could but it would require a gob of rotary cutting a wonky shape with funny angles.  After playing with the layout, it will be Lone Star all the way.  And as much color as I have in these scraps, there is enough neutral that it gives it a very pastel, soft look.  I am excited!

I have met my goals set from last week’s post.  Dream big is bound.  The comissioned tshirt quilt, the shirts are now logos with fusible stabilizer on the backs.  Sometime this weekend I aim to trim them all the same size and perhaps a bonus to-get them stitched together.

I have added to my stash, 2 jelly rolls called terrarium.  Both in different colors, and both will be slated for jelly roll race quilts.  I also got a moda scrap bag for only $8.  Inside were 32 different pieces all of the same fabric line, all perfectly 3 inches thick.  I will have to do some math to see what the jelly roll race pattern size would end up.  I am excited about the new fabrics too!

I am excited to get sewing on the t-shirt quilt.  I really am wanting to quilt!  So perhaps I will get the disappearing 9 patch loaded and play with some thread this week.

Goals for the upcoming week:

  • Trim t-shirts all the same size and layout
  • sew backing for good fortune
  • sew backing for D9patch
  • Start quilting d9p
  • sew some leader ender diamonds

The weather is finally warming up.  Here it is mid June in Texas and I finally turned on the a/c.  Usually that happens in April for humidity, and may for heat.  Summer is finally here.  Those rays feel good on the skin, and I look forward to farmer tan lines on the tops of my feet were the sun meets the sandals, and at the edge of my sleeves on my arms.  Vitamin D here I come!  🙂

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog!