Archive for September, 2016

I couldn’t help myself

September 18, 2016

Every Friday, Missouri Star Quilt Company puts a new video on YouTube. I need another project like I need another hole in my head but I couldn’t help myself. As soon as I saw Friday’s video I pictured the quilt in red and brown. I thought it would be a quick weekend project using the strips from the swaps I participated in a couple of years ago. Each block needs 18.5″ of each of the 2 main fabrics. We swapped half width of fabric so the strips should have been long enough. I was dismayed to discover that most of the red strips were only 15-16″ long. I must have cut off a 2.5″ square for another project and not remembered doing it. That meant I had to go through all the strips and check the length – time consuming. I finally found 23 strips that were long enough and read as red. Some of the swap strips were too pink, too purplish, too rusty, etc. The brown strips were fine although some were a little wider than the red strips. I don’t believe I’ll be swapping again. Kind of disappointing.

I finally got to the point where I could make the first blocks. Since I was working with 2.5″ strips and flippy corners, of course I had to sew a second seam to get a bonus triangle square. I didn’t want to waste time drawing lines so I needed to modify the tool I’m using to sew the diagonal seams.


Quilt in a Day’s Sew Straight

According to Bonnie Hunter’s bonus triangle tip, the seams for a 2.5″ square should be 3/8″ apart. I added a piece of colored tape 3/8″ to the left of the center line of the tool. I sewed the first seam from corner to corner lining it up with the center line as instructed. For the second seam, I lined up the first seam with the right edge of the colored tape I added.


That’s how I do the flippy triangles and get the bonus triangles without wasting time drawing lines. This technique is more accurate for me. Your mileage may vary.

So far I’ve made 8 blocks. Once I got the procedure down making the blocks picked up speed, though I’ll never be as fast as Jenny Doan.

I’m handling the bonus triangles as I go, pressing them and cutting off the dog ears. I’d like to sew them up as I go as well so I don’t end up with another bag of parts. I’m having analysis paralysis – can’t decide which configuration to use.

I could do pinwheels or square in a square.


I could do a sort of checkerboard. Ignore the bottom right set – I didn’t notice I laid them out wrong for this photo.


I could do parallelograms.


I could do broken dishes.


I’m sure there are some other layouts that I didn’t think of.

Should I choose one layout and do only that one with all the sets? Or, should I make all the layouts and, throwing caution to the wind, use them all together in a random setting? I’m kind of tending toward the last option. What say you, gentle readers?

I think the reason I’m leaning toward using all of the layouts is a quilt I saw yesterday at the Pennsylvania National Quilt Show that really caught my eye. It was a Japanese scrap quilt of tumbling blocks where each diamond in the set of three contained a different block. I found myself thinking that the elaborate symmetrical quilts in the show were somewhat boring in their perfection. I was shocked to find myself thinking that.

If I counted correctly, I cut 23 block kits. I still need to cut red strips so I can make up the rest of the 36 block kits needed. I’ll probably wait and do that after these are made so I can make sure I have a suitable range of values.

In between bouts of sewing I’m cataloging my patterns and filing them alphabetically so I can actually find them when needed.