Monday, November 27, 2017

Block 11 of the Growing Up QAL

Here it is, the November block for the Growing Up QAL, 


November Growing Up QAL block

designed by my fellow blogger, Alida, of Alida Tweloq Designs.

This also happens to be the last block for the QAL, so now it's on to arranging all of them, and going through Alida's suggested sashing ideas. A lot left to do!

For this month, I went with block 2, as I had difficulty figuring out where to put my three colors, red, white, and blue in block 1. This block design just worked a bit better for three colors.

Notice I was a bit of a messy paper piecer.


November Growing Up QAL messy block part

But once the edges were trimmed, it was pretty again.


November Growing Up QAL clean block part

Unfortunately, I don't have any hints on sewing this one this time. For the curves, I just suggest going slow, don't pull on the fabric, and let the machine do the work. 

Sometimes things end up perfect, and sometimes they don't. In this picture, some points are spot on, others lopped off, and some too long. 


November Growing Up QAL block point check

Maybe if I'd kept the paper on, things would have been different? Can't say I do enough curved paper piecing to know what works. 

As for the layout, I hope to get to it in January, as December is really busy - I'll keep you posted!

Happy Quilting!



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Monday, November 20, 2017

Scrap Happy Baby Quilt

Introducing Scrap Happy, in a baby quilt size! 


Scrap Happy baby quilt


This is my fourth quilt made from the Charm School (affiliate link) book, with Sea Glass, Lickety-Split 1, and Lickety-Split 2 the others. Any more quilts from charms are of my own design (hint, hint - there's some in the works!) but those are for another day.

I must say, I really enjoyed this book, and had hoped to make a couple more from the patterns. But, as I said a few weeks ago, distractions have gotten in the way. So, I'll say adieu to Charm School, (affiliate link) and move on.


Scrap Happy details

I know, this is what you're really waiting for - quilting eye-candy! Let's have a look:


Scrap Happy baby quilt full on view


Made from charm squares, with a fast and fun way to make 4-patch units that easily achieve scrap variety. If you haven't seen the videos on that technique, check out The Charming 4-patch: Fast, Fun, and Fabulous, and The Charming 4-patch on Overdrive!

Ah, the quilting! Crosshatching in the sashing,


Scrap Happy crosshatch quilting

stitch-in-the-ditch on the squares, and a really simple line fill in the sashing stars adds a bit of specialness!


Scrap Happy sashing and star quilting


And guess what? I have a video on how to fill those stars, which can be done on a domestic or longarm machine - yeah! 

To start off, the star has a 1/4" border stitched inside, and two lines in the star arms divide the space for the magic to happen. 


finished quilted sashing star

The video starts with the last bit of a dividing line being stitched, then moves onto the fill.




Pretty easy, right? Just another idea for a star fill, if ever you need one!

And if you wondering why there's no awesome fill in those 4-patch squares, well, I had one planned, then changed my mind. I really liked the poofy squares that stitch-in-the-ditch provided. Plus, they look pretty cool on the back, with that grey flannel of pink birds.


Scrap Happy quilt backside


Soft and cuddly for a sweet baby!


Scrap Happy baby quilt made from charm squares

Thanks for coming to Charm School (affiliate link) with me!
Happy Quilting!




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Monday, November 13, 2017

The Charming 4-Patch - On Overdrive!

The Charming 4-Patch - Fast, Fun, and Fabulous tutorial and it's companion Youtube video are rocking the quilting world - ready to take it to the next level to make multiple 4-patches?


4.5 inch 4-patch units from charm squares


I promised this is for the over-achievers out there - those that really want to go full throttle with this technique - but anyone can do this!


Sew charms together


Just as in the Charming 4-patch tutorial, sew those charms into a strip. Sew as many into a strip as you're comfortable with, but sew an even number of charms. Another hint to make this all happen!

For my demo, I'm working with 8 charms,


charms sewn into a tube

and cutting 2.5" from the left.


start cutting from the left




Cut units for step 1


With a longer strip, the top layer is folded back out of the way, so that cutting can continue on the bottom layer. 


moving top layer aside to cut bottom layer

The 2.5" piece just cut is folded over and ready for the next cut.


cutting units from sewn charms

Continue folding and cutting on that layer until all pieces are cut. Here there are 8 units from all that step 1 cutting.


units cut from sewing charm squares



Sewing for step 2

Once again, these units are turned and sewn together to make a tube.


sewing cut units from step 1 into a tube



And the cutting begins 2.5" from the left

cutting 4-patch units

As before, fold the top layer out of the way, and work on the bottom layer, folding and cutting. 


What not to do

Now, in the above picture, it looks tempting to just measure over 4.5" to make the next cut. But don't do this, because if the seam is a bit fat, the error is going to carry through to the end of the strip. And that means the units will end up different sizes, and their center seam will be off.

Just treat the folding and cutting as part of the process. Better to measure 2.5" off of the folded over seam, eliminating cutting errors to the other units.


Charming 4-Patch - On Overdrive Video

This tutorial wouldn't be complete without a Youtube video, Charming 4-patch on overdrive, showing the process step-by-step.





Final Charming 4-patches

And here they are, all 8 4.5" 4-patch blocks, ready to go!

4.5 inch 4-patch blocks from 8 charm squares

Make a checkerboard or make them scrappy - go wild!

scrappy four patch quilt blocks for Scrap Happy pattern

Most of all, have fun!




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Friday, November 10, 2017

The Charming 4-Patch - Fast, Fun, and Fabulous!

The 4-patch block. One of the basic and useful building blocks in many quilt designs.

4.5in 4-patch quilt blocks from charm squares


And today, as promised, I'm going to show you a fast, fun way to make them from charm (5") squares.

I know, you're probably thinking, well, duh, just sew those charms together. That's great if the quilt needs a 9 1/2" unfinished 4-patch block.

But no, I want a 4 1/2" block. So, you say, cut the charm square in half horizontally and vertically, and sew together those 2 1/2" squares. 
Um, no thanks.

What I have to show you today will rock your world! You'll see how to sew those charms, do some cutting, rinse, repeat, and end up with 4 1/2" four patches. 

And for a special treat to explain this process, I not only have pictures that show the making of scrappy 4-patches, but also an animated video of the process using black and white. Ready to see the magic?

Making 4 1/2" 4-patches from charm squares

We're going to use 4 charm squares for this demo. For you overachievers, I have a demo using 8 charms - The Charming 4-Patch - On Overdrive!

Sew 4 charms in a row

Sew those charms together in a row. I've got four rows of four in this picture.

four rows of four charm squares for quilts

Sew the ends of one row together to form a small tube - that's at the bottom of this picture.

sew rows to form a tube

Line up a cutting ruler at the seam and the 2 1/2" mark.

first cut at 2.5in

Cut, then do the same on the opposite seam (right side), so that now there are four pieces - those on bottom.

first units made for a 4-patch block

Pair these units up with different units if going for the all-over scrappy look. We're looking for variety here, with no two blocks identical. There will always be two blocks containing the same two fabrics from those sewn together in this first step. And that's ok. You'll see what I mean later.

Sew block unit pairs together

Now those block unit pairs get nested together and sewn along the short side. Then the pairs are sewn for another long row.

units sewn on short side to make a long row

Did you guess what's next? That's right - sew the ends together to make a tube.

unit row ends sewn to make a tube

Whip out that cutting ruler one more time, and cut in 2 1/2" inches from the left seam, 

cut 2.5in from the left seam

and 2 1/2" inches from the right seam.

cut 2.5in from the right seam

Open or flip over, and take a look!

four 4.5in scrappy 4-patch blocks

Four fabulous 4-patch blocks without having to cut or sew a single 2 1/2" square. How awesome is that???

And notice the variety. Repeat fabric combinations occur in just two blocks (unless the same two fabrics get sewn together as another pair!), and that's it. Total scrappy! And as I was told in a scrappy quilt class years ago, don't over-think it!

Making two-color 4 1/2" 4-patches from charm squares

Now, what if the charm stash contained two colors? Then this is a fantastic way to make a checkerboard pattern with them! Have a look at my Youtube video of the same process using black and white charms - I think you'll see the merit of this technique.


Other size options

By the way, this is not limited to using charm squares! Want to use a layer cake instead? Then follow the same steps to make a 9 1/2" 4-patch block.

Or maybe a wee bit smaller? Eight inch squares make a 7 1/2" 4-patch; and 6" squares would make 5 1/2".

Don't forget about 2 1/2" strips - they too can be used here, just like charms.

Give this a try on your next charm scrappy project - more next week!

Happy Quilting!





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Friday, November 3, 2017

Slots

Here it is, my newest design - Slots!


Slots quilt by QuiltFabrication

After spending many weeks buried in both the Charm School (affiliate link) book, and my bin of 5" squares, I broke away and came up with my own quilt design.

Isn't it awesome? And to think this is a simple rail fence quilt!


rail fence quilt block

Created for two sizes, lap or twin, I made the lap size. This quilt finishes at 63" x 81 1/2", plenty big for two to snuggle under!


Full reveal of Slots quilt by QuiltFabrication

I love this modern design, with the solid background breaking up the piecing - it would make a great quilt for a guy, don't you think?

And this one certainly leans that way, with it's geometric quilting design.


geometric quilting on the Slots quilt






more geometric quilting on the Slots quilt by QuiltFabrication


Love love love! 

Though this one is made with prints with lots of color, it would also be great as a two color quilt. I've been considering making the twin size in a silver background and blue prints - could be striking!

Did I mention the pattern? It's Slots, designed by me, and available at Etsy. Listed as a Confident Beginner pattern, anyone with basic quilting skills can put this together. And I provide detailed instructions for cutting to make the best use of yardage - a definite bonus!

One last picture - doesn't it look awesome draped over the sofa???

Slots quilt by QuiltFabrication draped












Happy Quilting Everyone!




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