August 29, 2016

How I made the Wonky Improv-Curve Quilt Top

This is a photo of the instructions that were given on making a Wonky Curves block.  I started with smaller squares because most of the fabric I pulled was half yard cuts, so no 20-inch squares.  But, hey, it's improv!

This is the link to the original instructions.

This is how I made my quilt top:

First I cut a 16.6 inch square from each fabric.  Then I stacked them and drew a curved line on the top fabric.  The stack was too thick to use a rotary cutter, so I cut the curve the old fashioned way and using scissors.  Then I stitched together pairs of mismatched fabric.

Next, I drew the second curve and repeated the process.  You can see that the blocks were not laying absolutely flat, but that wasn't a problem until the third curve was stitched in.

I thought of a couple of solutions but decided to "sleep" on it.  I've always been able to problem solve while sleeping.  I work up this morning with my solution.  I did a trial to make sure I'd be happy with the result.

First I sliced two blocks in two.  You can see that the cut edges ended up curved!  I used the top and bottom of each piece to make a straight line and get rid of the curve.  Then I joined one-half of each block, to make two new blocks.  I trued them up to 13.75 inches square, to get rid of all those jagged edges.

And these two blocks are the result.

I performed the slicing, trimming and re-joining process on the remainder of the blocks, but this time, I didn't work with two blocks at a time, so the placement was more random.  Above isn't the final layout, but it's close.

May your bobbins always be full

July 3, 2015

Half Square Rectangle Tutorial

It's been about four years since I made a Half Square Rectangle quilt.  One of the important things I forgot and that I didn't pick up on when I scanned a couple of other tutes about making them, is that you can't do everything exactly the same!

So, here's my tutorial, and if you read it thru, you'll see what I mean.

For my project, I started with 5" x 7" rectangles.  Then I matched them up into pairs.

Place each pair right sides together, and draw a diagonal line on each pair.  If you want all you pairs to be identical, draw all the lines the same.  If you want to be able to form a diamond with your HSR's, draw some top left to lower right, and some top right to lower left.  (This is the part I forgot!)

Now rotate the marked rectangle a quarter turn, so they look like the photo  above.  Take them to your sewing machine and stitch a scant 1/4" seam on each side of the drawn line.

Cut along the drawn line.  Take them to your ironing board and press the seams open.  Go back to your cutting board and true them up to 4.5" x 6.5".

I haven't stitched these together, but you can see how you can turn them to get different looks.

This is my "cheat-sheet".  If I want to make diamonds I need to do half one way and half the other. 
May your bobbins always be full

September 29, 2014

Patchwork Heart Quilt Top with HSTs

This quilt is similar, but different from the previous Patchwork Heart Quilt Top.  The cutting and beginning construction needed to be adjusted, so I thought I'd post this tutorial.

Patchwork Heart Quilt Top with HSTs

Fabric: at least 21 FQs for best variety, more is great, I used 22. Five dark and the rest light and medium fabrics.

Finished size is 49” x 49”.
All seams are scant ¼ inch.
All seams are pressed open.

From 3 light prints, cut (1) 5.5” square
From 5 dark prints, cut (15) 5.5” squares, 5 from each
From all the light and medium FQs cut (4) 3.5 x 18” strips

1. First make the mixed HSTs by matching 3 sets of light and dark squares, right sides together. Stitch around all four sides of the squares. Slice on each diagonal of joined pair. Each quarter will be a HST when open, press the seam and true up to 3.5 inch square.

2. Using the same method, pair the rest of the dark squares making the dark HSTs for the heart center.

3. Looking at the photo, lay out the mixed HSTs with the dark side toward the center of the heart. Use the dark HSTs to fill in the heart.

4. Chose 3 light color strips cut (6) 3.5” squares to fill out the background, on the lower quadrants. Stitch the squares together in each row, press the seams. Now, stitch the 6 rows together, press the seams. You now have a heart block, 36 patch block. There will be extra HSTs, you can use them for the quilt back or another project.

5. Next, using strips of light and medium fabrics, stitch together a 3 strip block and a 4 strip block. Cut the blocks, cross-wise across the strips, at 3.5”, producing 2 sets of identical strips. Join 2 three block strips, on the short end, twice, making 2 six block strips. Repeat for the four block sets, making 2 eight block sets. Stitch the six block sets to the right and left sides of the heart block. Press the seams. Stitch the eight block sets to the top and bottom of the heart block, and press the seams. This is the center of the Patchwork Heart Quilt Top.

6. Now, this is the easy part. Take the remaining 3.5 x 14” strips and divide then into twelve sets of 4 strips. Try to make them all different in composition. Stitch the strip sets together producing twelve 12.5 x 14” blocks.

7. Cut the twelve 12.5 x 14” blocks, cross-wise across the strips, at 3.5”, producing four identical strips. Have some fun mixing up the strips to make 16 patch blocks to use to frame the center heart block.

8. Join 2 sets of 16 patch blocks together, join to the right and left side of the center heart block. Join 4 sets of 16 patch clocks, end to end, and join to the top and bottom of the quilt top. Be sure to press the seams between each step, and you are finished!

Note:  There will be extra four piece strips and HSTs, I use these to piece the quilt back.  You could also use  them for a pillow or throw them in your scrap bin.

May your bobbins always be full