Sunday, June 28, 2015

Patriotic Wave Place Mats

My Fourth of July is now complete with the addition of red, white, and blue Patriotic placemats!


Patriotic Placemats to match the Patriotic Wave Table Runner



Made with leftover strips from the Patriotic Wave Table Runner

Patriotic Wave Table Runner



and a portion of the curve from the pattern, these were just as easy to put together! Red, white, and blue plus one star completes the look. To make your own, the Patriotic Wave pattern is available over at my Etsy pattern store.

Quilting was almost the same as the Patriotic Wave table runner,


quilting on Patriotic placemats






with an open McTavishing and two straight lines in the stripes versus one. 


McTavish quilting on Patriotic placemats



Now I'm definitely ready to celebrate! Are you?

Happy Fourth of July!



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Saturday, June 27, 2015

Patriotic Wave Table Runner

Time to celebrate the Fourth of July with this beautiful red, white, and blue Patriotic Wave Table Runner!


Patriotic Wave Table Runner for the Fourth of July



Measuring 20" x 62", it proudly displays the stars and stripes of the USA! Designed by me, the pattern is available at Etsy, with additional instructions for a 14" x 42" size. 

Made with a strip set, and a very gentle curve, this runner was a snap to put together. Applique stars finish off the patriotic look.

Here's another view:


Patriotic Wave Table Runner by QuiltFabrication



And a quilting closeup, using a more open McTavishing in the blue background, straight stitching in the stripes, and double echoing in the stars.

Patriotic Wave Table Runner quilting closeup







So happy to have this awesome red, white, and blue Fourth of July decor - time to celebrate!

Happy Quilting!


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Thursday, June 18, 2015

Spangled Stars QAL Completed Top

We've made it! And just in time to show off for the Fourth of July! It's time to link up all of those terrific Spangled Stars QAL completed tops everyone has been working on!



I've got one top done, and just need to sew the blocks together on the other. How about you?
Everyone would love to see the finished quilts!
Happy Quilting!





Thursday, June 11, 2015

Spangled Stars Quilt Assembly

Welcome back to the Spangled Stars QAL! The blocks are made and it's time for the assembly instructions! All that work has been building up to a fantastic quilt top! Yeah!



If you're just joining in, all of the previous block instructions can be found through the pink links below.


Quilt assembly - June 11, 2015
Completed Top Linky - June 18, 2015
 Completed Quilt, Grand Parade - July 2, 2015


Now grab all of those lovely blocks, and let's make a quilt top!



The assembly is quite easy, as there's very few seams to match. Essentially, it consists of alternating rows of bar/uneven 9-patch blocks, and stripe and cross/star/bar blocks. Attention is required for orientation, and what row is being assembled.




A special note for those making a queen size. This size is the same layout as the double, but it has an extra column of bar blocks and background blocks on each side. Cut (14) 6 1/2" x 6 1/2" squares of background fabric to set in between the bar blocks. 

Now for some of the sewing and pressing. I laid out two rows at a time, 


then stacked each row to go to the sewing machine. The first row is easy to put together, no seam matching involved. The second row does require seams to match at the blue bars.

The instructions for these three blocks has the seams pressed toward the blue bar, which means they won't nest with their neighboring blocks. Personally, I'd rather work with un-nested seams than have dark fabric shadow through my quilt. So here's how to deal with matching up those seams.

Lay the blocks right sides together, and lift up the edge of the top block at the seam to be matched, turning it back just 1/4". Line up the seams, and place a pin just before the first seam. Line up the next seam, and place a pin just before it.


By putting the pins in front, it helps eliminate the push of the top fabric by the foot, throwing off the matching. Sew the seam, and check it before moving on.


The blue bars are the only areas that need matching, which makes this top go together pretty fast. The other block to be aware of is the stripe and cross - make sure the red/white/red stripes in the middle go up and down.


Pretty easy! This is how far I've gotten with one of my twin sizes,

and I have four more rows to put together. Then it's on to sewing all of the rows.

And a word about pressing. This quilt really doesn't work well with the one row pressed right, the next row pressed left idea, because of the star points. So I'm pressing mine based around those stars, with the seams pressed out, away from the star, eliminating bulk. The seam above and below it will go the opposite direction. I'm also treating the stripe and cross block the same way as the star. Sorry no pictures - haven't done any pressing yet!!

Now, go sew! Be sure to link up the completed quilt tops next week. I'll be sending out reminders, along with pictures of mine. 

Happy Quilting!


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Making a T-Shirt Quilt

The last of the five T-shirt quilts is pieced!


They still need borders, as I wanted to assess how much fabric I had left before putting them on. Plus, I have little bits and pieces left that will go in the borders too.


But this post is all about how these quilts were put together, providing ideas for making one. My technique involves 
1) having more than enough fabric (so there's no worry about being short),
2) designing a layout that's interesting, taking advantage of different sized blocks,
3) lining up some seams for ease in assembly, 
4) being creative as the top is put together,
5) and having no fear to cut different sized strips! 

The first step in this process is the shirts. The logos are cut out with plenty of space around them, at least 4 inches. Taking care to use a press cloth on the logos so that the paint/ink doesn't get on the iron, a lightweight fusible interfacing is applied to the backside to help control the stretchy knit. Leaving a 2-3 inch border around the logo, the shirts are trimmed and squared without being overly concerned about size consistency. I ended up with four different size ranges - large, medium (more wide than tall), small (approximately 6" square), and a couple short and wide pieces.

 

Now time for the layout. Loosely using a 46" x 72" layout size, the shirts were arranged in a pleasing arrangement, with small, medium, and large pieces distributed evenly to fit within the space. 


Shirts were lined up in some areas to make sewing the sashing easier. See the white lines in the pictures below.




If a shirt didn't fall on one of the sashing seam lines, it just needs to have strips added to it to bring it up to size.

Now to start sewing. I chose simple blocks that added interest, but didn't become the focus of the quilt. The four patches at the top complement the small logos, while helping to increase the size of block for that area. 


This block is still small, and needs more sashing to bring up the size. Keeping design in mind to distribute color and interest, more sashing was added to the sides.



It's still just a wee bit small, so one more sashing strip goes on the sides. Notice that I am just sewing a strip and then cutting the extra length off. This is a much easier process than measuring the strip to length, and then sewing. 


Now the top and bottom sashing gets added so that the new 'block' fits the shirt to the right. I'm not worried about the shirt to the left, as a sashing strip at the bottom of my newly created unit will fill in the space.


Time to move to the next section, that within the circle.


Again, keeping design, color, and interest in mind, black strips are laid out to see how they look in the space. The blue pieces on the edges of these black strips are the longer sashing strips mentioned above.


I'm pleased with this idea. Now I just need to figure out what width is needed for the blue strips in between. The gap measures 2 1/2", and  1/2" is added on each side for seam allowances. That's very important to remember - add 1/2" seam allowances to the strips. Here, the strips need to be 3 1/2".

I cut a 3 1/2" blue strip, sewed a black strip to each side, added another blue/black unit, and then cut the whole thing to the right width for the space. 


The unit is then stitched to the corresponding shirt. This one ended up a bit longer than the shirt, so the excess was just trimmed away. I'm not going to fret over an 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch size difference between the strips.


Now the little block on the right needs sashing to fit the space. This time, black was sewn to the top and bottom of the small shirt logo,


and two black/blue strips are made for the sides, without a great concern for length. To get the small shirt block centered, it was creased in the middle, as was the corresponding shirt with sashing, (see the circle below) and those folds matched up. 


Sewn on, the excess at the top and bottom is trimmed off after lining up the ruler with the shirt to the left.


Now all of the pieces in that area can be sewn together. The upper corner of the top is now done.


I could go on, but I think you get the idea of how to do this. If the t-shirt block is too small, add blocks or sashing to make it fit the area, being creative in the design. Also, add sashing in between blocks for ease of sewing units together. The result is a fun t-shirt quilt that will make it's owner very happy!

Happy Quilting!



Thursday, June 4, 2015

Spangled Stars QAL Star Block Unit B and C

Welcome back to the Spangled Stars Quiltalong! Today is the last of the block instructions before the final assembly next week. We're almost there!





The schedule is into it's final weeks, and if you're just joining in, click on the pink links to find the instructions for the previous blocks.
Star Block, Unit B - June 4, 2015
Quilt assembly - June 11, 2015
Completed Top Linky - June 18, 2015
 Completed Quilt, Grand Parade - July 2, 2015

Now let's finish up those Star blocks!

Below is the cutting chart for Unit B, the double HST's (half square triangles).






# Star Blocks
# B Units
Dark Blue
squares
White, bkgrnd
squares
Medium Blue
40” WOF
Wall
5
20
(2)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
(2)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
3 7/8” x 1 WOF
Throw
7
28
(2)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
(2)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
3 7/8” x 2 WOF
Twin
15
60
(4)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
(4)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
3 7/8” x 3 WOF
Double
18
72
(5)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
(5)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
3 7/8” x 4 WOF
Queen
18
72
(5)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
(5)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
3 7/8” x 4 WOF
King
24
96
(6)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
(6)  8 ½” x 8 ½”
3 7/8” x 5 WOF


The first HST's are made with the dark blue and white background squares, cut 8 1/2" x 8 1/2". Some quilt sizes will have extra HST's. I'm making the twin size, which has 15 star blocks, each one needing 4 Unit B's, 60 units in all. 



With right sides together,  pair up a dark blue square with a white background square, and mark two diagonal lines from each corner.




Pin them together, and using a scant 1/4" seam allowance, sew along each side of the diagonal line.


It should look like this when it's done.


Time for cutting! A rotating mat works wonderfully for the next step, otherwise do your best to keep all parts together until all the cutting is done. Cut along the diagonal marked lines, then cut lengthwise through the middle, and then horizontally through the middle.


Once all four cuts are made, the HST's can be separated.













Press each HST seam to the dark.

Referring to the chart again, cut the required number of 
3 7/8" strips, then subcut each strip 3 7/8".

















The chart below lists how many squares to subcut for each size.


# of first HST’s
(dk blue/white)
# of  3 7/8” med blue squares to cut
Wall
   10
    10
Throw
   14
    14
Twin
   30
    30
Double
   36
    36
Queen
   36
    36
King
   48
    48

Mark one diagonal line, corner to corner, on the wrong side of each square. Pair these up with an HST from the previous step, making sure the diagonal line is perpendicular to the HST seam line.


Once again, using a scant 1/4" seam, stitch on both sides of the marked line.



Cut on the drawn line, and press to the medium blue.


Be sure to trim up these little units to 3 1/2" x 3 1/2", aligning the diagonal seams with the diagonal on the ruler.

Unit B first trim
Unit B second trim
After trimming, sort the units into two piles, one with the medium blue on the left, the other with it on the right.


Done with Unit B! The next part, Unit C, is to cut the correct number of 3 1/2" strips per the chart below, subcutting each 3 1/2", for the centers of the stars.


# Star Blocks
White bkgrnd
40” WOF
Wall
5
(1) 3 ½”  x  1 WOF
Throw
7
(1) 3 ½”  x  1 WOF
Twin
15
(2) 3 ½”  x  1 WOF
Double
18
(2) 3 ½”  x  1 WOF
Queen
18
(2) 3 ½”  x  1 WOF
King
24
(3) 3 ½”  x  1 WOF

Gathering all units, A,B, and C, follow the diagram to lay out the stars for sewing. Use all pieces from one stack of the Unit B's before moving on to the second stack.




This way, there is no confusion because the stars have different rotations. 



If that isn't pleasing, another set of the first dk blue/white HST can be made, or the originals can be torn apart and the dk blue/white positions switched. Personally, it doesn't bother me, so I'm leaving it!

Following my tutorial on Efficiently Sewing a Nine Patch, sew all the stars together, and give them a good press. It's your choice which way the seams go, because they don't have to nest with anything in the final assembly. These blocks measure 9 1/2" x 9 1/2".

Now stand back and admire your work! You did it! Next week I'll go over assembly.

Happy Quilting!




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