Monday, May 22, 2017

Making Fabric

Yep, with few moments here and there this weekend, I made fabric. From scraps that is. Then cut it up again.

scrap fabric squares

Now I should have been finishing up the strip quilt, but this weekend, I just wanted to sew. The doesn't-take-much-thought kind of sewing. Plus, the scraps were calling.

aqua scraps as of 5192017

Helping my mission, I realized I didn't have an aqua RSC17 circle, or pieces for small pinwheels, both to be set aside for future quilts. Not seen in the picture above were these sort of circle-y things I made a few years ago, from long, narrow right triangle pieces. I think I wanted them to be flowers. 

That idea didn't go anywhere, and they got thrown in with the rest of the scraps. Well, with a few more pieces, they are now full on circles.

aqua fabric circles

Done! Check circles off the list, with a found purpose for these cast offs!

The rest of the scraps got sorted into light, medium, and dark. Then each value was stitched to a 4" x 8" rectangle drawn on phone book paper. 

fabric scraps stitched to phone book paper
Then trimmed up, and cut into 2 4" squares, to later be made into pinwheels.

4 inch scrap squares
Notice more of those long, narrow right triangle pieces. Boy, I sure had a lot of them! But now there are usable squares: 8 pairs of lights, 5 pairs medium, and 6 pairs dark. That may be enough to make a baby quilt! Now that scrap pile is down to this:

My mission of using up the odd shaped scraps has almost been accomplished! So if you are wondering what to do with your scraps, try making your own fabric for use in a future project. Have fun with it!

Happy Quilting!

Friday, May 19, 2017

3 Tips for Making Strip Sets

I needed a long strip set for the back of my latest quilt, and want to share a few tips to make the process of sewing long strip sets quick and easy!

strip set group

Tip 1: Keep strips at 20" or less in length, for easier sewing. Strips can be cut to the final length then sewn, OR sewn the full 20" then cut to the needed length. In the picture below, I chose strips cut to a final length of 12".

stack of twelve inch strips

Tip 2:  Sew strips in pairs. It's easier to sew several groups together than to continually sew to one long strip. Keeping the strips in order, place approximately 12 to 16 strips near the sewing machine.

group of strips

Starting at the bottom (that's the left in the picture), flip the first strip onto the second, lining up the seam edges. Repeat with every other strip to create pairs of strips.

making strip pairs

With strip 1 on top, stitch the seam of the first strip pair. 

Tip 3: Chain stitch the all pairs. Neatly stack the pairs behind the machine, so as not to confuse which strip is on top.

chain stitching and stacking

Keep the pairs attached and stacked. The last pair sewn is on the left in the picture.

chain stitched strip pairs

Starting with that last pair, clip the joining thread, and press the seam. Place a marking pin in that strip pair to keep track of it's position in the entire strip set.

strip pair and chain stitched pairs

Clip the joining thread between pair 2 and 3. Open pair 2, placing the bottom strip on top of the first pair, aligning seams. Stitch together,

strip pairs one and two

then press both seams.

strips pairs sewn together

Continue adding strip pairs, building a group of strips. 

strip set group

Repeat all steps to finish enough groups for the long strip set, then stitch all groups together.

long strip set

In no time a long strip set is ready to go for the next project!

Happy Quilting!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Midweek Makers #72

Who's ready to share this week on Midweek Makers?
I am! Here's the updated progress on the aqua scrap quilt.

I went with Elaine's suggestion of orange-red, giving this quilt a striking impact. Just a bit more stitching, then it's on to quilting!

While on the subject of scrap quilts, did you see these beauties from last week's Midweek Makers? Kate at Smiles From Kate made a scrap improv backing,


including instructions on how to do one yourself.

Kathy at Kathy's Quilting Blog pulled out an older RSC UFO that just needs a couple more blocks.


And Maggie of Making a Lather put her Wild and Goosey blocks up on the design wall, to see what she needs to add.


Aren't those great scrap projects? Ladies, be sure to post a well-deserved 'Featured' button on your blog!

grab button for Quiltfabrication
<div class="quiltfabrication-button" style="width: 150px; margin: 0 auto;"> <a href="" rel="nofollow"> <img src="" alt="Quiltfabrication" width="150" height="150" /> </a> </div>

It's your turn! 
  • Please link directly to your specific post, not your main blog page.
  • Link any recent post that has to do with sewing and fabric.
  • Visit the other party-goers and leave a comment - it's a great way to make new friends
  • Grab the Midweek Makers button code to put on your post or sidebar to let everyone know about the party!

grab button for Quiltfabrication
<div class="quiltfabrication-button" style="width: 150px; margin: 0 auto;"> <a href="" rel="nofollow"> <img src="" alt="Quiltfabrication" width="150" height="150" /> </a> </div>

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Block 5 of the Growing Up QAL

This month's block of the Growing Up QAL is an improv block, right up my alley!

Using scraps from the red, cream, and navy of the other blocks, I started out making four patches.

The finished block needs to measure 12.5" x 12.5", and the easiest way to achieve that is to lay pieces on a 12.5" x 12.5" square cutting ruler. Then start playing!

After sewing the pieces on the left together, I decided I wanted a more modern, offset look on the other side.

Fortunately, there were wide enough pieces to fill in at the bottom and bring the block to 12.5".

Just need a bit more on the right side.

Hmm, not liking all the cream at the top. Maybe I'll add some red in the corner.

Much better! Now to trim to 12.5" x 12.5",

Growing Up QAL Improv Block

for a modern improv block! Many thanks Alida, at Alidatweloqdesigns, for a fun exercise this month! Check out the Growing Up QAL linky party to see all of the blocks made so far in this QAL.

Tomorrow, it's Midweek Makers and I'll share more progress on the aqua scrap quilt - see you then!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Hanging Sleeve Mania!

Seven hanging sleeves. Yep, seven. That's what I get for entering so many quilts into the fair.

The fun part -making up the sleeves! Referring back to my Hanging Sleeve Tutorial from a couple years ago, I put the pedal to the floor and had all seven sewn up, ready to go in under an hour. What a jackrabbit I am - woohoo!

Enter the turtle, the slow part - hand stitching to the quilt backs. We've heard it before - slow and steady wins the race. The only thing I'm racing against is the clock! This is definitely a sit-in-front-of-the-TV kind of project, so as not to take precious time away from major sewing. 

But as everyone knows, quilts need sleeves in order to hang in a show, though I have extra reasons to get this done now: 
a) these quilts need get off the spare bedroom floor,
b) I need the floor space in said room to continue with the aqua scrap quilt, and 
c) hubby would like to keep the door open to said room, which is shut to keep cat hair off of the quilts,
d) and though they haven't said anything, I'm sure the kitties would like to lay in the afternoon sunshine in that room. 

Good reasons to get this accomplished this weekend, don't you think? Hope your weekend is better!