Thursday, May 31, 2012

TNT - I am in a Book!!!!!


This is something New that I tried a long time ago and I have been dying to tell you all!!!!  I am in a book :)  Yippee Skippee, I still can't believe it is quite real :)  Enter lots of squeals and and a happy dance :)


About a year ago I was asked if I would like to contribute to a second Moda Bake Shop collaboration book.  It took all of about 2 seconds to respond with an Absolutely, I would love to!!!!  Sweet Celebrations has over 35 projects all based on holiday's and celebrations through the year.  And of course, there will be a book tour and all that fun jazz when it gets closer to the release date of October 2012.  I am just so excited that I finally get to say that I am In A Book.  Thank you to the Moda Bake Shop.  It is an honor to be part of this book with so many other amazing quilters!!!

So what have you tried new this week.  Link on up :)


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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

A Tale Of 3 Irons :)

This is a story about Pressing



2 years ago I replaced my old iron from my college days with a new iron.  There was nothing wrong with the old iron but I wanted a new one to go with my new quilting hobby.  The old one looked so beat up and I wanted something pretty.  

So I found beautiful #1.  So white and pretty.  She was super light weight and had automatic shutoff so if I forgot to unplug her she would take care of it herself.   #1 and I were happy pressing for about a year when sadly, the small children running through the house knocked over the ironing board and her with it.  The children were in no danger as #1 wasn't on, however #1 took a beating.  She had cracked and no longer could hold water.  I tried to stay with her for the next month or so, but how can you press beautiful seams without water??

So, eventually, I secretly replaced her with #2 and set her on the shelf.  I didn't want to hurt her feelings by throwing her away.  #2 was brought home by my husband, so needless to say, there wasn't a lot of thought in picking #2.  He would do the job, but he had no automatic shutoff, and never got to hot.  Until one day a month ago, when #1 mentioned to him how much better I liked her than him.  Well this blew his top.  Suddenly he got super hot!!  So hot that he threw sparks across the ironing board and sparks from the wall outlet.  Well I don't like it when irons don't play nice, so #2 was immediately taken from his place on the ironing borad and set on the shelf with #1.  Now they fight all day about who did the better job.

So without an iron I went in search for the perfect friend to press with.  And I found her at Big Lots no less. She was the last one on the shelf and was quite lonely.  So I picked her up and brought her home.  #3 and I became fast friends.  She shuts off when I forget, she gets nice and hot, and she has more surface space so I can press a little more, which always saves me time.  She is very considerate but I wish she would lose a few pounds.  #3 is a bit heavier than #1 and #2 ever were.  But I do like that with her weight comes better pressing.  So here is hoping #3 and I have a long friendship in pressing.

But we will have to wait and see, Irons and me seem to have very fickle friendships :)  If #3 and I don't get along very well I might have to consider looking for a replacement in the Royal Family of Irons.  I hear Oliso is quite the Family name of Pressing!
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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Coming Soon!!

Mark your calendars for June 1st!!  Find your EZ Dresden Ruler by simplicity and start letting those ideas percolate.  (Don't have one, no worries, you will have lots of opportunities to win one!) And lastly, get ready to be inspired . . . Why???

Because the EZ Dresden Quilting Challenge and Blog hop starts this Friday, June 1st!!!  This is a super fun challenge and there will be tons of amazing prizes!!!   And, I am so excited to be part of the amazing blog hop!!  I will be posting on the 8th and can't wait :)  So stick around, it all kicks off on Friday!!!


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Friday, May 25, 2012

Winner and a Bonus!!!

And the winner of the $50.00 Gift Certificate to Green Fairy Quilts is . . . .


According to Mr. Random .Org the lucky number is . . .



Who just so happens to be . . .



Congrats WandaFish!!!!  Enjoy your $50.00 gift certificate :)

And everyone wins today.  Because Green Fairy Quilts is having a special bonus discount for all purchases this Memorial Day Weekend.  Just enter the code BONUS at checkout and see how much you save :)  Isn't it great when everyone wins :)


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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Spinning or Spiraling for TNT

I am so loving this quilt!!   I have named it Spinning or Spiraling.  It looks great in Christmas fabrics but it would also look great in about anything else :)    Here is how to make it )



SUPPLIES

For this quilt you will need 31 Fat Fat Quarters.  I used a Fat Quarter bundle of Countdown to Christmas by Sweetwater but any Fat Quarter Bundle would work great :)



STEP 1 - CUTTING


To make one block you will need a Fat Quarter, a Fat Eighth, and a Fat Sixth (My new term :)  You will use the remaining scrap from the fat Eight for another blocks fat sixth and vice versa.



From your Fat Sixth sub-cut (3) 5 1/4" squares.

From the Fat Eighth sub-cut (4) 2 1/2" x 2 1/2" squares, (10) 3" x 3" squares, and (1) 5 1/4" x 5 1/4" square.

From the Fat Quarter sub-cut (4) 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" rectangles, (16) 2 7/8" x 2 7/8" squares, and (10) 3" x 3" squares.


STEP 2 - FLYING GEESE

Now we are ready to start making some geese.  This is a great method of making Flying Geese that have no waste. And you won't be sewing any triangles along the bias which helps to keep everything nice and straight.   To save time be sure and repeat each of the sub-steps 4 times making your geese in an assembly line fashion rather than making 1 set of  geese at a time.  So grab your (4) 5 1/4" squares and your (16) 2 7/8" squares and let's get sewing.


With right sides together, lay two white squares onto your large print square as shown.  Using your ruler, draw a pen line diagonally from the top left corner to the bottom right corner.

Now go ahead and pin both sides of each square adjacent to that drawn line.  Make sure to put them out far enough that your presser foot won't hit them as you sew on by :)  Now stitch a 1/4" seam along both sides of the drawn line (the black lines represent your stitching lines :)  Remember, you are doing these assembly line so go ahead and chain stitch all 4 sets on the right hand side of the line, and then go back and do all 4 sets on the left hand side.

Clip your threads and then align your ruler along the drawn center line.  Cut your pieces apart along that drawn line.

Now you will want to press your seam up towards your 2 little triangles.

Now, take 2 more little squares and align them on your two stitched pieces as follows with right sides together.  Once again, draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of the little squares from corner to corner.

Now pin each piece far enough out that your foot will go by and then once again, stitch a 1/4" seam along both sides of the drawn diagonal line.  (Remember to chain stitch to save time :)

Clip your threads and then using your ruler aligned along the drawn line, once again, cut your 2 separate pieces apart.

Press up toward the little triangles again.  Lastly, trim off the little corners.


And you are done!!!  You should have a whole flock of geese (16) that are precisely perfect and ready to get flying!!

STEP 3 - HALF SQUARE TRIANGLES

Now onto the Half Square Triangles.  These are my favorite :)   To save time be sure and repeat each of the sub-steps 10 times making your HST's in an assembly line fashion.  So grab your 2 sets of 3"squares and let's get sewing. 

On the wrong side of the darker fabric using your ruler, draw a pen line diagonally from the top left corner to the bottom right corner.

Lay your dark square on your light square with rights sides together.  Pin both sides of each square adjacent to that drawn line.  Make sure to put them out far enough that your presser foot won't hit them as you sew on by :)  Now stitch a 1/4" seam along both sides of the drawn line (the black lines represent your stitching lines :)  Remember, you are doing these assembly line so go ahead and chain stitch all 10 sets on the right hand side of the line, and then go back and do all 10 sets on the left hand side.

Clip your threads and then align your ruler along the drawn center line.  Cut your pieces apart along that drawn line.

Now press towards your darker print.

And now you are ready to trim up your HST to 2 1/2".  Align the 45 degree line on your ruler with the seam line on your square.  Make sure that the raw edges of the square under the ruler are over the 2 1/2" line's on your ruler.  Trim the 2 sides.

Now spin your block 180 degrees.  Once again, align the 45 degree line on your ruler with the seam line on your square.  Align the raw edges of the square under the ruler on the 2 1/2" lines on your ruler.  Trim the 2 sides.

And now you have Perfect Half Square Triangles.  You should have 20 total.

STEP 4 - MAKING THE BLOCK

Lay out the following 4 rows.  For the rest of the tutorial you will press all of your seams open.  This will help to avoid bulk :)

Now sew the four rows together.  Easy enough.  Just lay the first square onto the second and sew a 1/4" seam.  Then press the seam open.  Now lay your 2 sewn together pieces onto the third and sew a 1/4" seam.  Then press.  Just keep repeating adding one block at a time until you have sewn all 4 rows together :)

Now, lay our your 4 rows as follows.  You are going to sew the top 2 rows together and the bottom 2 rows together.

Lay the first of each set onto the second with right sides together.  Take care to pin each of your seams so they match up nice and tight :)  Sew a 1/4" seam along the pinned edge.  Press your top and bottom row and set them aside for a minute.

Now grab your alternate color flying geese and your rectangles and lay them out as follows.

Lay your Goose block onto your rectangle with right sides together.  Pin and sew a 1/4" seam along the pinned edge.  Oh, and if you make sure to cross your stitches directly on top of the little x made by your previous seams you will get perfect points every time :)  Clip your threads and press your seams open.

Now sew your top blocks together and your bottom blocks together to make 2 rows.  Then sew your 2 rows together taking care to match up your center seams.  (Just the same as making your rows from before :)

Now lay the following additional rows out.  Sew the 4 rows together  (same process of adding one block after another :)  Remember to press those seams open to avoid bulk :)

Now just sew the 5 rows together.  Same again, Lay the first row onto the second taking care to pin the seams and sew a 1/4" along the pinned edge.  Sew Row 1 and Row 2 together and then sew Row 3 and Row 4 together.  Then add those rows to either side of center block.

Now grab your top and bottom rows that you set aside.  You know what to do now.  Just lay the top row onto the center row with right sides together, pin the seams, stitch 1/4" and press open.  Then repeat for the bottom row.

And you are done!!  One fabulous Spinning or Spiraling Block measuring 16 1/2" x 16 1/2" unfinished.  Now just repeat Steps One through Four to make 11 more blocks for 12 blocks total.  (You can make these assembly line to speed things up a bit :)

STEP 5 - MAKING THE QUILT TOP

Now, it's time to grab those remaining 7 Fat quarters to cut up.  Sadly, I forgot to take pictures of my cutting so you will just get digital images.  (Sorry).

From 2 Fat Quarters (I used 2 red ones) cut (14) 2 1/2" x 22ish" (trim selvage) strips.  You will be able to get 7 strips from each Fat Quarter.  Set these strips aside.  They will be used to create a binding strip for your finished quilt.
 From 4 Fat Quarters (I used 4 creme ones) cut (32) 2 1/2" x 16 1/2" strips.  You will be able to get 8 strips from each Fat Quarter.  You will be using 31strips for the sashing.  One strip can be put in your scrap pile :)
 From the remaining Fat Quarter (I used a black one) cut (20) 2 1/2" x 2 1/2" squares.  These will be for the squares between the sashing intersections.  There will be a bit of scrap from this Fat Quarter :)

Now everything is all cut out and you are ready to lay the quilt top out.  Using a design wall or the floor, lay your sashing squares, your sashing strips as follows.  Play with the placement of the blocks and sashing until you get a look that is pleasing to the eye.

Now, it's time to start sewing.  Begin by sewing the sashing rows together.  Just sew each piece end to end using a 1/4" seam until you have sewn the entire row together.  Press towards the sashing strips.

Now, you can sew your block rows together.  Start once again by sewing the sashing strips to the side/s of your blocks with a 1/4" seam. (See Row 1)  Press towards the sashing strips (See Row 2).  Now lay the sashed block 2 onto block 1 with right sides together.  Sew a 1/4" seam along the raw edges .  Press towards the sashing. (See Row 3)  Finally, Place block 3 onto block 1and 2 with right sides together.  Sew a 1/4" seam along the raw edges.  Press towards the sashing.  (See Row 4)

Now repeat this process for each row in your quilt top.  Your quilt top should look like this now :)


Now you are ready to sew your rows together.  The is the same process as creating the rows, just on a longer scale.  Place the sashing strips along the bottom (and top for first row) of your rows with right sides together.  It is very important to pin each of your seams aligning the seams of the square sashing with the sashing.  Sew a 1//4" seam along your pinned edge.  Press towards the sashing.

Now lay Row 1 onto Row 2  and Row 3 onto Row 4 with right sides together.  Again, make sure to pin all of your seams.  If you need to ease in a little in the blocks do that but make sure your sashing seams line up. sew a 1/4" seam along the pinned edge.  Press towards the sashing.

Finally, Lay your now Row 1 and 2 onto Row 3 and 4 with right sides together.  Pin your seams, and sew a 1/4" seam along the pinned edge and then press towards the sashing.

STEP 6 - FINISHING IT UP

And your quilt top is all finished!!!  You are ready to finish it up!!  So you know the drill, baste it, quilt it, and bind it.  If you need further instruction or just a little bit of help on finishing it up, please see my 3 part Finishing It Up video tutorial series.  (One for basting, one for binding, and one for quilting :)

Now you can enjoy your wonderful Spinning or Spiraling Quilt!!!  Measuring at 56" x 84" it is perfect for snuggling up with infront of a cozy fire!!


So what have you been trying new this week??

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