July 25, 2012

Oh, No... Tell Me It Isn't So...

A heartbreaking tale of woe today. Last week I told you about the jelly rolls I recently purchased, and showed you this photo of the blue log cabin blocks I'd put together for one of the quilts...


I went to Spotlight with a friend to pick up the binding and backing for her quilt (the American Civil War prints) and took along one of the blue log cabin blocks so I could get the fabric needed to finish that one, too.

Oh.. pain.. pain.. regret.. great gnashing of teeth...

The store we went to is down in the city - about an hour's drive one way (that's where my friend lives). I came home and today (3 days later) realized that I must have left that block in the store at the cutting counter.


I can't believe I did that. I just can't believe it.

However... fortunately, I need 7 blocks for the quilt - and had actually made 9 (was going to make cushion covers with the remains). So I'm OK. Just a little rattled...

July 18, 2012

Jelly Roll Blues (and Purples)

When my friend Julie and I were at Spotlight picking out the fabric for quilt 14, I found 3 "jelly roll" bundles that were marked down so low I couldn't believe my eyes.  Two blue and one purple (one of each shown here):

Only $4 each!  Who could resist?  Now, I'll grant you, there's not a huge amount of fabric in these rolls: 25 strips 2.5 inches wide and 42 inches long - that comes to about 1.5 meters of fabric, not a huge amount. Still... $4?  Gotta have 'em for that.

Each roll has 6 prints (four strips of each print). I love doing log cabins, and well, there you go. I sat down with my quilt design software and worked out this design:

 It took no time at all to whip together the blocks. No fuss, no muss:

One jelly roll gave me 7 blocks and some scraps. Thankfully, I did buy 2 rolls of blue, so here's the log-cabin blocks (no, I haven't sewn them together yet...):

Now for the headache part. I need to buy fabric for the spaces between the log cabins on the edge. How much to buy - and how to cut out the triangles that will fill in the sides?  My quilt software is simply evil when it comes to estimating on-point designs. The finished quilt will be roughly 54 x 73 inches - and the quilt software is telling me that I need to buy....

.... oh get ready for this...

...6.5 yards of fabric (42 inches wide).


I think 1.5 yards should be more than enough.  I do like the cutting instructions the software gives, however, and expect the measurements the software gives me for the individual pieces should be OK.

I've got plenty of left over jelly roll strips to make a couple of nice borders and the binding, but I'm off to the fabric store to get what I need for those triangles to fill in the log cabins.

July 11, 2012

Quilt 14: Let's Play "Spot The Goof"!

In many ways, this quilt has been one of the most satisfying ones I've done. However... it's also been a bit challenging.

 Two of the prints have stripes. They are lovely, but stripes, I'm finding, can be a little challenging because you need to make sure they are running in the right direction. As I was assembling the little triangle blocks, I had more than one occasion where I got the lines going wrong and had to pull the blocks apart and re-do them.

 I was ultra careful as I assembled the nine-patches, however, and got it right every time. I won't kid you; it wasn't easy... I had to really pay close attention so that the corner squares on those 15 nine-patch blocks all lined up right (there's a wavy stripe pattern in the corner squares.

All was going along well and Monday night I was congratulating myself on how quickly the blocks were coming together... I'd have this quilt top done in no time! I had one more seam to go - and then I saw it... OH, NOOOOOOOOO! Have a look:

Here's a closeup...see the direction of the wavy pink lines vs the wavy blue ones? Oh, nooooo! They should be going the same direction.

So once again, I'm using my LEAST favorite sewing tool:

And now here's the re-assembled top - with all the wavy lines going the right way.

And I'm happy to put this painful episode behind me.

July 4, 2012

Quilt 14: More Quilting with Parrots

I've finished piecing the blocks for the quilt, now into pressing them. And not to be outdone by George, who was my "supervisor" last week, Miss Laka is here to inspect the stitching.
Unfortunately Laka isn't content to sit on my shoulder and behave herself as George did last week (well, as he did for a while, any way). She's way too "busy" to have around when I'm trying to get something done, and her idea of "help" would, no doubt, include chewing a hole in the middle of the blocks - so I had to send her packing.

I'm pleased with the blocks, however - here's one of the blue ones after pressing.

I added narrow border around the nine-patch block, using that dark blue from the center on the corners. The original design didn't call for those little squares on the corners, but once I'd finished the nine-patches I realized that the dark blue in the center needed to be repeated somewhere. Thankfully, there was just enough fabric to do it on all 15 of the nine-patch blocks.

Here, again, was the original nine-patch block design:
As you can see, I've also altered the design to have the triangles pointing outward from the center - and the corners inside the nine-patch are solid squares instead of joined triangles.