Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The Birds and the Bee Blocks

Appearances can be deceptive.

Generally speaking paper piecing is more complicated than regular straight line piecing.
And therein lies the deception.

Tall Tales Block

This paper-pieced block was completed in one afternoon - start to finish.  The Tall Tales Block was quick and I love how it turned out. It looks so adorable.

Economy Block - 1 of 9

This seemingly simple "economy block" block took three days. It was SO MUCH WORK. It has 81 pieces - go ahead count away. Each of the nine units has nine fabric pieces.

Economy Block - 2 of 9


Picking fabric required careful consideration of contrasts and values. I wanted to make sure that each unit had enough contrast between the three fabrics but also had sufficient contrast with the adjacent unit and yet the whole block had to look harmonious.

Economy Block - 3 of 9

Fussy-cutting, trimming, squaring, ironing galore and yet the points may or may not match.  I am exhausted just describing this 12.5" block.  In any case, it is done.

Finally Done

This economy block monster robbed me of my desire to attempt the next Bee Block.  The Urban Woven Block will just have to wait for now.

Completing Bee Blocks goal is incomplete :-(

Besides, I have a new role to fulfill this year. I am the Block of the Month (BOM) Coordinator for my Quilt Guild.

After the success of My Twitter Feed, several of my guild members asked me to provide the Bird Block as a BOM.

Mirror Image Birds - 9" by 12"

I chose to enlarge the block and also include the changes I made when I was first making the birds.
The new block is 9" by 12".

I completed the enlarged birds block. Also finished writing the tutorial but...now the PDF file is so big that I was unable to email it to my newsletter. Split it into three PDF documents. That should work.

I am having trouble with my June Tailor basting spray.  It is inconsistent. Sticky in some parts and not in others.  Makes the quilt sandwich unstable, causing it to move, resulting in tucks and puckers. I experienced the same problem when quilting Mayflower.

Basting Pins

For now, I have augmented the basted sandwich with basting pins.  Hope I can finish this quilt this weekend.  But I need to find another basting spray. What do you suggest?

Work in Progress

Just feels like I have been spinning wheels but not getting to my goals.  Ten days to go.
I could really use words of wisdom from you!!!

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Quilt Show and Bragging Rights

I had such a fabulous weekend that I am still reliving the experience through pictures.

Paper Doll Mini Quilt

Mari drove from Delaware so that we could go the Quilt Show together.  She brought me fabric (scraps I requested) and my own paper doll wall hanging.

Juicy Scraps

We ate lunch. Her generous compliments on my culinary skills made me blush and she ended up with leftovers :-) That is a win-win situation.

My Twitter Feed on display at the 44th Quilters Unlimited Show

At the show, I posed with my quilt and beamed with delight  every time I heard appreciation for my work.

There was no dearth of eye candy at the quilt show.
We lingered, took pictures and discussed techniques and patterns. Here are a few of my picks.

Happy Fish by Barbara Delaney
These fish are just the kind of blocks that make me happy.

Farm Girl Vintage by Kelley Davis
These vintage blocks are super adorable. Bet there is never a dull moment in making these blocks.

Hand Pieced by Jeanne Culbert
Jeanne is in my Quilt Guild and I am overawed by her patience to put together this beast of a quilt  -all hand pieced!!!

Blue Ridge Beauty by Jennifer McKinney
And here is Jennifer's scrappy beauty. This is her second Blue Ridge Beauty. She made one as a wedding present for her niece. 

The House that Kaffe Built by Denise Racz
I noticed that most houses have yellow windows depicting that the family is in, and a few have black windows, showing that the occupants are out.  Love such attention to detail.

Daryl's Seascape by Madaline Stutes
Meticulously paper-pieced fish make this quilt a favorite.

The Nana & Kyra Quilt by Nancy Fallone
When Nancy's  18-month old granddaughter Kyra saw her piecing, she was fascinated. Every visit, she would pick two squares and hand them to her nana to sew them together, resulting in this quilt.

Mari joined me in chai and samosas after the show. Our discussion of fabrics, patterns and tutorials nicely rounded out my day. So exhausted but very happy.

May I brag a little? Or a lot?

On Sunday, Janet Marney of Quilters Unlimited of Northern Virginia called me to ask for my permission to use My Twitter Feed as the group photo of their Facebook page.
I asked her if she could hold the phone for a minute...while I did a happy dance and finished running around in circles around my coffee table.
Then we both laughed.
Here is the link - https://www.facebook.com/groups/304623407466/

If May was crazy busy, June offers little respite.  As a result I have fallen behind on my Honey Pot Bee blocks. Must finish those in June.

Fabric Squares for the June Block

Me: How is that for June OMG?
Inner Voice: Small but doable.
Me: Well, then let's complicate it a bit.
Inner Voice: No don't
Me: Why not?
Inner Voice: Because you also have to write the BOM tutorial for the Birds block
(I am the Block of the Month Coordinator for my Guild this year and I have been ASKED to provide the Birds block tutorial)
Me: Huh, and I cannot do both?
Inner Voice: You also have to MAKE the Bird blocks for the BOM.

Fabric pick for the Bird Block
Me: YIKES!!!
Inner Voice: Like I said.
Me: No, you will not discourage ME. If I do not achieve my goals that is one thing but to NOT EVEN TRY - that is UNACCEPTABLE!!!

Yes, sometimes Paul is asleep (or out) and the conversation must go on.

For my June OMG, I have a flimsy that is screaming to be quilted and I will get it done. Here is the backing and binding. No, I am not showing the front till it is finished.

Backing & Binding

Three goals for June
1. Finish a quilt
2. Make Bird blocks and write the BOM tutorial.
3. Get up to speed on the Honey Pot Bee blocks.

I will be linking with Elm Street Quilts for the June OMG.

Here is the fabric I ordered from Connecting Threads. At 40% off, I am pretty pleased with it :-)
Joel Dewberry Fabrics 
So, how have you been and what are your June goals.  I will be linking with all my favorite linky parties and as usual I'd love to hear from you.

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