A Cloud Eclipse and Simple Improv Tutorial

For October, I am the lead Quilter for the Emerge Circle of do.good Stitches. I created the design for our group to make (see below). I’m posting the instructions for my fellow do-gooders on my blog, but I thought WLS followers might enjoy seeing how to simple improv.

COLOR PALETTE

I used this photo of the eclipse as inspiration for the color palette:

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The light on the clouds is awesome.

I uploaded the photo into Play Crafts palette maker:

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These are the colors: Navy (royal is okay too), Black, Light and Medium Grays and Cream/White

USE SOLIDS OR PRINTS OR A MIX

YOU DON’T HAVE TO USE ALL THE COLORS IN THE BLOCKS

For example, you can use cream, black and light gray together. If you don’t have navy, that’s okay with me.

Please avoid prints with other colors in them.

Please make TWO BLOCKS.

SIZE: 12.5″ UNFINISHED

CUTTING INSTRUCTIONS

Cut strips 13″ length  by 2.5″ to 5″ (or thereabouts) width

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Use scissors or a rotary cutter.

Don’t use a ruler.

I learned this technique at the Slow Stitching Retreat in Maine this summer. Heather Jones focused on color theory and we used all solids, but the idea works with prints too! When I’m ready, I’ll write a post about the class and my experience at the Retreat.

ASSEMBLY

In any order, sew the strips together along the 13″ side.

Press seams open or to the darker fabric.

Square up to 12.5″

Great Job!

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Pattern matching prints for quilt backing

This was my first attempt to align fabric prints for a quilt backing.

I used a method I found on Aqua Paisley Studio.

First you’ve got to find where the repeats are and where you to align the two pieces of fabric. I don’t have a photo of that.

Second, fold fabric one-inch and press:

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Third, apply glue to the bottom of the one-inch fold, then align:

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Fourth, flatten the fabric out and sew on the seam where you pressed it:

Fifth, trim to one-quarter inch then press to one side:

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Not bad for my first attempt:

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Let’s Make Pillowcases and A Difference

A PILLOWCASE can make a difference in someone’s life. This is something I learned this week after attending a presentation at my local quilt shop, Blue Crab Quilt Co. The shop accepts donations of pillowcases and donates them to the Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU. Before I moved, I made 3 pillowcases. The shop has collected over 1000 this year and a representative from the hospital shared with us how these pillowcases impact the lives of people we will never meet.Pink pillowcases

I was surprised to learn that they usually have the child pick the pillowcase he or she wants. I learned that sometimes “Spiderman” pillowcases help children cope with having their blood pressure taken. I’d forgotten that having your arm squeaked can be very scary. The representative told many stories of how these pillowcases make a difference. It was inspiring.

THEN I saw a post on Instagram from a fellow quilter in Louisiana. She is amisha12 on Instagram. She is taking donations for pillows and was also asking for people to send pillowcases to go with those pillows. I’m sure a new pillow and pillowcase will make a difference to the people there who have lost everything in the floods. By the way, I’m wandaslifesampler on Instagram.

That’s what I am doing today. I’m making pillowcases.

Quilting Adventures’ blog has a wonderful tutorial.

If you’re inclined to do so, please make a difference in the lives of people you will never meet by making a pillowcase or two.

Wanda

 

How to Fold Fat Quarters

I found a new way to fold fat quarters. It’s my new favorite way. On a whim I purchased 30 fat quarters from New River Fiber Co. in Blacksburg, VA, USA. They were all Denyse Schmidt fabric. I loved how they were folded.

This tutorial shows you how you can fold your fat quarters in this very efficient way.
Once folded, each one measures about 6 inches by 2.5 inches.
top view

234That’s it. Easy.

Eastern Shore: a New Block Blog Hop pattern

Introducing “Eastern Shore”, a 12.5″ by 12.5″ unfinished block, created for the New Block Blog Hop, sponsored by Paintbrush Studio, and hosted today by my quilty friend, Cheryl Brickey, of Meadow Mist Designs.

Paintbrush Studio (formerly Fabri-Quilt) has a new line of solids, called Painter’s Palette. And each blog hopper received six fat quarters of these colors: White, Peach, Coral, Bordeaux, Midnight and Daydream, to create a New Block for the 2016 Paintbrush Studio New Block Blog Hop. The hosts chose these colors, called Ocean Sunrise Palette.

They’re about 40 quilt bloggers who are participating. Today, these quilt bloggers are introducing their blocks. They’re all free patterns.

I live in Virginia, and one part of the coast is called the “Eastern Shore.” Do you see the sun rising over the east coast of Virginia, USA?

Eastern Shore

This is a traditional block. It’s usually in two colors such as red and white. I created this Eastern Shore block pattern (click on link to get the pdf) to show you how to make it, using four of the colors: Peach, White, Bordeaux and Coral, from the Ocean Sunrise palette. Let’s get started with the cutting instructions.

But first, two important tips.

CUT ALONG THE SELVAGE

Why? The selvage side doesn’t stretch as much as fabric cut crosswise. As you sew the selvage-side strips, they will continue to be straight. The crosswise strips tend to bow and you’ll get curves instead of straight strips.

CUT THE LONGER STRIPS FIRST

Why? It’s more efficient. Once you finish cutting the longer strips, you can go back and cut the smaller ones, then the 1.5″ squares.

You’ll notice from the diagram that each strip is 1″ longer as you move up the block. In the diagram, I made the “White” strips in a light gray to make them easier to see.

Eastern Shore cutting instructions

The color key and exact cutting instructions should help:

Eastern Shore Assembly color key cutting start here

ASSEMBLY

CHAIN PIECE EACH STRIP TO THE 1.5″ SQUARE

That means the 1.5″ Bordeaux square is sewn to the 3.5″ by 1.5″ White strip. The 1.5″ Coral square is sewn to the 4.5″ by 1.5″ Bordeaux strip and so on. Follow the diagram. The 1.5″ square is sewn to the strip to its right.

Eastern Shore chaing piecing

PRESS SEAMS OPEN

This will help you get nice straight seams.

SEW SINGLE STRIPS TO THE LEFT OF THE FIRST BLOCK

The 3.5″ square is first. Sew the 3.5″ White strip to the left side of the 3.5″ Peach square. Use a scant 1/4 inch seam.

SEW THE PIECED STRIP TO THE TOP OF THAT BLOCK.

You should match the seams. You should now have a 4.5″ block.

SEW THE NEXT STRIP TO THE LEFT OF THE BLOCK.

The next strip is the 4.5″ by 1.5″ Bordeaux strip. Then sew the Coral/Bordeaux strip on top.

Eastern Shore Assembly second row

 

There are nine single strips and nine pieced strips. Keep sewing the single strips to the left then add the pieced strip to the top until you have a 12.5″ inch block.

Some photos of the process:

This block is versatile just like a Log Cabin block.

Eastern Shore block

I made some additional blocks, using the Midnight and Daydream colors. It’s fun to experiment with the layout.

Let me know which one you like the most.

(Or I could make 30 more blocks and put them together as shown. That would be fantastic).

Wanda