Friday, September 11, 2020

Been Busy

 What's in the bags you ask?

TEN finished quilt tops! Ready to be sent to the long arm quilter's.

I'm not big on purchasing fabric on-line but I bit the bullet and went for it. I was so pleased with Sew Sister's website. The colours they show on the website are exactly what you get! I put in another order yesterday for the back fabric of two more finished tops! I'm on FIRE!!

Friday, September 4, 2020

I Love Colour

Funny I love colour yet I am often wearing black! 

Working on more scrap things...this time knitted socks.

These are the two leftover bits I decided to put together.

Who would have thought I'd get such a fabulous fabric!!

They're gorgeous!!

Monday, August 10, 2020

More Half Square Triangles

Half Square Triangles have got to be the most versatile blocks in quilting. Do you agree? There is just so much you can do with them.

I've been sorting out boxes in the basement and found these large blocks (16 inches) mostly done! I added a few stars until the quilt top measured 80 inches square. It didn't take that long because I always have  box of HST's in different sizes and pre-cut squares ready to go. 

Looking good! I do love scrap quilts. There is so much to admire!

I had seen the quilt blocks (MY quilt blocks) on Pintrest ages ago when Pinterest first came out with a caption saying something like, "this is a nice quilt". Thanks but...there was no reference back to my blog or my name anywhere. I was very upset. Maybe that's why it ended up in the basement.

It's complete now and I need to buy some backing fabric. Next step will be dropping at off at the long arm quilters.

Saturday, August 8, 2020

Tip #12


Sometimes when trimming half square triangles the ruler slips because of the seam bulk.

Leave your baby finger off the ruler as a stabilizer. I learned this trick in Italy from Annie!!

Make sure your other fingers are "up" on their tips instead of having your palm flat over the ruler. That helps make sure your fingers are inside the cutting line.

You only have to cut yourself once with that super sharp rotary blade... am I right?! OUCH!

Cut while in a standing position. Your weight can lean in over the ruler holding it in place and you get a better sight line to make sure you are cutting accurately.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Tip #11

Here are a few tips for sewing a back for your larger quilts.

Often you have to sew two widths of fabric together to cover the back of a quilt PLUS the extra at the top, bottom and sides. The amount you leave as an overhang depends on how you will be quilting it. Check wth your long arm quilter to see what they prefer. Mine likes about 5 inches extra on all sides.

Below is my diagram to help explain how I do it.

To calculate the amount fo fabric I need, I use 40 inches as my Width of Fabric. With good quality quilters cotton you sometimes find it can be 42 inches. But I calculate using 40inches.

In the diagram below you see my fabrics that will equal 80 inches wide and the length of the quilt plus the extra.

Lay the two pieces good sides facing. I sew the seam on one side with the selvage still on.  I sew about 1 1/2 inches away from the selvage. When it's sewn I cut away the extra leaving a 1/4 to 1/2 inch seam allowance.

I am not a fan of a centre seam on a back fabric although there is nothing wrong with it if you want to leave it so.

If not, you can place the panels good sides facing and sew the other selvage side together in the same way. (see diagram below). Cut away the selvage leaving a seam allowance. You are left with a tube shape.

Using a scissor cut along ONE of the folds. (the fold in the fabric when it comes off the bolt)

When you open up the fabric you will have your seam lines at about the first quarter and the third quarter of the back.

I find doing it this way is less cumbersome and I do have control of the many metres of fabric as I sew.

I like to iron my back seam open so it is less bulky. (another good tip!)

Monday, July 13, 2020

Tip #10


When you quilt by machine it is recommended you lengthen your stitch length. It will make the stitching smooth and will not pull on the layers of fabric and batting.

If your machine is computerized, every time you shut it off it will reset to the standard stitch length (mine is 2.2 mm). When you turn it on again you'll need to reset your stitch length.

I place a post-it note on the machine to remind me to switch the stitch length and remind me of what length I was using.

Scrap quilt. I found a bunch of unexciting triple rail blocks in a box
so I put them together and found  a way to
make them look good! I'm happy I turned  some nothing into something.

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Tip #9


Perhaps you've noticed antique quilts in museums with a very visible centre fold line. The eye picks up that middle crease very easily.

The best way to store your quilts is to fold them in thirds avoiding that centre crease.

If you want to be extra cautious, you can roll up a piece of fabric and place it in the fold then fold your quilt over that tubular barrier. That will help avoid a visible crease.

Some collectors like to lay their quilts on a guest bed and have them flat. The quilts are just piled up one over the other. I think that makes them more difficult to access but at least they lay flat. 

Another interesting way is to roll them. I use a pool noodle as my centre support. I use this method for my textile art work.

For the quilts that are in use, I fold them in thirds then roll them into a large cylinder shape. They stand upright in a basket near the couch readily available! Love to see all the colours!!