Feature · I Wish You a Merry QAL

I Wish You a Merry QAL Block 5!

I am so proud to share the Snowman block I designed!  I used Moda Grunge Evergreen, White Paper, Onyx, and Red for the piecing portion of the block.  Mr. Snowman’s nose is a Moda Grunge Orange scrap.

When we first started planning this QAL, I jumped at the chance to make a Snowman block!  Snowmen are my favorite thing about winter and the holidays, especially cute snowmen.  As you can see, I made a lot of not-so-cute and not-so-proportional snowmen through the different iterations of the design I tried.

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Feature · I Wish You a Merry QAL

I Wish You A Merry QAL Block 1!

Today is the day! Block 1 is released, and I am so excited to share my version of this week’s block.  Vanda Chittenden of Quilt in Piece is the designer of this week’s Snowflake Block.  Check out her blog post for the tutorial and the pattern of the block.

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My block is made of Moda Grunge Basics Navy with the snowflake in Grunge White Paper.  I used Heat and Bond Lite for my fusible adhesive and a blanket stitch to secure the snowflake.

A few tips on this block:

  • Cut the centers of the fusible, so that the block doesn’t get too stiff and bulky.  The adhesive really only needs to be on the edges of the each snowflake petal. I also did not cut the snowflakes apart when I ironed on the white fabric.  This helped stabilize the fusible sheet prior to ironing.

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  • Lay out the entire block before ironing on the pieces so you can play with the exact layout.

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  • If you do not have a blanket stitch on your machine, a simple zig zag or straight stitch on the edge will be just fine.

Don’t forget to submit your completed block on Vanda’s linky party, the Facebook Group Page, and/or on Instagram with #iwishyouamerryqal to be entered into this week’s prizes!  One lucky person will win a PDF pattern by Vanda Chittenden and a Sugar Plum Christmas thread box from Aurifil.

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The prize entry window is open from 12AM Eastern on August 1, 2017 until 11:59PM Eastern on August 14, 2017.

As a reminder, I have a quick links page to catch up on the blocks in this QAL and my associated blog posts.  You can also get to that page by clicking the I Wish You a Merry QAL button on the right sidebar.

Happy Sewing! I can’t wait to see your blocks!

Check out the other hosts!
Abbie @Sparkle On
April @JANDA Bend Quilts
Becca @Pretty Piney
Bobbi @Snowy Days Quilting
Diane @Cwilt
Jennifer @The Inquiring Quilter
Laura @Slice of Pi Quilts
Sandy @SandyStar Designs
Sherry @Powered by Quilting (This is Me!)
Vanda @Quilt in Piece

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weekly update

Off to a retreat… last minute!

So some time earlier this week I had a mini panic attack that I was not getting nearly enough stuff done.  Stitch Supply Co. is having one of their “per person” retreat weekends, which means anyone can sign up to claim one of their 16 beds at their retreat center without renting out the entire space!  So that’s where I’m headed today and can hopefully focus on getting stuff done!

If you follow me on social media, you’ve probably noticed a slow down in progress in general, and that’s partly due to secret sewing but really it’s the effect of my life getting super hectic. And if you don’t follow me yet, you should! Here are my Instagram and Facebook pages.

Here is a quick rundown of the projects that got some focus this week.  S.W.A.K, the quilt I’m making for a blog hop later in August has all the HST units trimmed, and I’d say it is 50% assembled into blocks for the quilt top.  Hopefully, I’ll be able to finish the quilt top this weekend, but now I’m not quite sure how to show a sneak peak without giving it away.  So maybe I’ll try to take photos if and when I decide to quilt the thing.

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I made a little bit more progress on my Peacock EPP project.  I had divided the papers into little baggies by strips and of course didn’t label them.  So by the time I figured out the baggie I opened on the very right hand side, I decided just to sew those together. I was trying to go left to right on the piece, but that plan is now out the window.  What are quilters, if not flexible?

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Last but not least, can you guys believe it?  The I Wish You a Merry QAL starts in 4 days!!  It’s seriously time to get hyped!  So here’s a little bit more information about prizes, and I’ll repeat this on Tuesday just in case you forget.  Each block release, there will be a prize for people that share their block on Facebook, Instagram, or the Linky party on the designer’s tutorial site.  The giveaway time frame will be from the release date at midnight Eastern to 11:59 PM Eastern the night before the next block is released.  For example, Block 1’s giveaway timing is going to start at 12:00 AM Eastern on August 1 and run through 11:59 PM on August 14. Be sure to share your completed blocks! There are lots more prizes during this entire QAL so I hope you will join us!
If you haven’t checked out the QAL Facebook page, what are you waiting for?!

Anyway, I gotta run to the retreat, have a great weekend everyone!

7/28-8/4 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Weekend Retreat!, Monday PM, Wednesday PM

Projects I want to work on:
I Wish You a Merry QAL
PBQ104
S.W.A.K.
PBQ103

Goals for the Projects:
I Wish You a Merry QAL: Block blocks and more blocks, the QAL starts Aug 1!
PBQ104: Start sewing the pieces together to make the top
S.W.A.K.: Finish the quilt top!
PBQ103: Finish the pattern for the testers.  (I’m behind, eeekk!)

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Tutorial · weekly update

Moda Modern Building Blocks Quilt Tips and Tricks

I finally finished this quilt top! I have a very strong love/hate relationship with this quilt top for many reasons.  Before I started, I had already heard this quilt pattern wasn’t the easiest to follow and that it was wasn’t the easiest of quilts to make.  This blog post is dedicated to my assessment of the quilt, the quilt pattern, and any tips and tricks for assembly.  If you’ve made this quilt before and have things to add to my list, please comment below, and I’ll get this post edited for future readers!

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So here it goes…

Skill Level:

  • Advanced Beginner/Intermediate

Pattern:

  • Each of the block patterns are shown with the finished block, semi-exploded diagram of the block to help show how the block is sewn together, and then cutting instructions.

Block Cutting Tips:

  • The cutting instructions are such that you *shouldn’t* need to trim the blocks if you have an accurate and consistent 1/4″ scant seam.  If you would like to trim blocks, make sure to add 1/8″ to each of the squares that require a single diagonal cut.
  • Square up all the flying geese and Half Square Triangles (HST) before assembling each block. Because I was lazy (at least I admit it), I used the exact cutting instructions thinking I could get away without squaring the block.  Nope, I’m not that consistent with my seams, and it was very apparent on blocks with lots of seams.
  • There is a google doc sheet that shows the full cutting instructions for the block from Liz Harbour.  However, there are a few minor mistakes in the sheet from typos so be on the look out for those.
  • Always cut the largest blocks first.  If you don’t, you may not have enough fabric left.  If you bought the kit and cut the largest blocks first, you’ll end up with a nice stack of Bella Solids to use as scraps in the end.

Sewing Tips:

  • Instead of cutting all the HSTs apart before sewing them back together, look at which HSTs can be made with the method of sewing 1/4″ on both sides of the diagonal line, then cutting the HST apart.
  • For some of the blocks, the flying geese can be made with the no waste method.  So there is no need to cut the different sized triangles in the cutting instructions.  This is if there are 4 flying geese that are identical and have the same colors of corner triangles in the block.
  • Nesting seams takes some extra planning ahead.  Make sure to mark which directions the seams should go for easier assembly.  If you do not want to think, press the seams open to avoid them being bulky.

Pattern Corrections:

  • Block 7: This block is overall TOO small.  If you sew it with the cutting instructions, your block will end up about 18″ square, rather than 18″ finished (18 1/2″ square).  You can fix this by cutting the E pieces 5 1/2″ squares rather than 4 3/4″ and the F pieces 5″ squares rather than 4 3/8″.  After the block is finished, trim the block to size.
  • Block 8: the A piece is too small.  Piece A should be 4 3/4″ rather than 4 5/8″

**There may be other corrections, but those were the ones that were obvious or really off that needed correcting!

Did I miss anything?  Comment below!  Thanks!

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Here are some of the assembly photos of the quilt.  I really do love how this quilt turned out, and it’s the largest quilt top that I’ve made finishing at 84″x96″.

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So I didn’t work on anything this week other than finishing up this quilt top.  I also realized not having to post a Quilter’s Planner block each week has give me validation that I can skip blocks for which I’m just not feeling it.  Maybe I’ll do this week’s block, but we’ll have to see!

6/20-6/27 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Friday PM, Saturday AM, and Sunday afternoon

Projects I want to work on:
Quilter’s Planner Block
BCBarnQuilt
Designing for PBQ

Goals for the Projects:
Quilters Planner Block: Complete this week’s Block
BCBarnQuilt:  Complete the quilt top/block
Designing for PBQ: Work on new block designs, making a design a day.

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