Monday, 26 February 2018

February 2018 Bee Block Round-up

The February  Stash Bee block was chosen by this month’s queen Tracy (@tracysbitsnpieces). She picked the Vintage TV block by Lori Holt. She asked for a novelty fabric for the screen and two different fabrics for the TV and accents on a light background fabric. I have a limited stash of novelty fabrics so it was out with the Dr Suess fabric again for this block. After seeing everyone else’s TV screens I’m wondering if I should add at least one more to my stash…

This month’s colour in the 2018 Monthly Color Challenge hosted by Jen over at Patterns by Jen is blue. I’m keeping up with my scrappy 16 patch blocks so far. I’ll be linking up for the end of month check in.

Anne from Brown Paws Quilting (@brownpawsquilting on Instagram) is this month’s queen in Bee Inspired. She asked us to make scrappy strips and then slash a white background square at least twice and insert our scrap strips. I decided on an X. It was tricky trying to get the arms to match up after the second cut. Her tutorial is here. Finished size is 12 inches.

Happy sewing


Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Hold the Pickle Quilt Block Tutorial

As I promised last week here’s my quick and cheap tutorial for the Hold the Pickle block.

The block is effectively a  Pickle Dish Variation variation and once I modified it to remove the Drunkards Path units it lost its dish shape. I’ve named the quilt I’m making already as my Hold the Pickle Quilt, thus these are Hold the Pickle blocks.

I’ve given myself some parameters for fabric choices that you can ignore completely for your version. I’ve decided that I’m trying to achieve a sweet and pretty vintage effect so I’m using pastels for the backgrounds (B1 and B2) for the simple quarter log cabin units (not sure what to call these bits), low-volume prints as background for the star sections (B3) and checks, dots, and small scale florals for the focus prints in the centre (F). Star points are S. That’s what you’ll see in the photos.

I’m also using a tri-recs ruler these days to cut the fabric for the triangle in a square unit but I started out doing them as paper-pieced. You can find a pdf here from Generations Quilt Patterns for paper-piecing templates and paper-piecing cutting templates.

For this block we make 3 inch finished units.

So now that we’ve all got our templates ready we can start cutting.


For the triangle-in-a-square units, start with strips of your chosen fabric (S and B3) wide enough to fit your templates on and cut 8 star points and 4 background triangles. 

Cut two 3 ½” squares from the B3 fabric.

From the B1 and B2 backgrounds cut one each
          3 ½” square
          3 ½” x 6 ½” rectangle

From the F fabrics cut a total of four 3 ½” squares


This part’s pretty easy.

(Notice how suddenly my fabrics have gone all wrinkly? That’s because a gust of wind blew them all over the garden and I had to chase them and grab them quickly in my sweaty little hand. Thoroughly annoyed I took the photo ANYWAY. Notice also that I have the far left star point section upside down - don't do that.)

Sew the B1 and B2 squares to two F squares, then attach the B1 and B2 rectangles to make the quarter log cabin units.

Lay out the star points S around the B3 triangles to make sure you’ve got everything lined up okay and then stitch together.

Arrange the different bits to make sure everything’s pointing in the right direction. Sew together two triangle-in-a-square units to the two B3 squares and two triangle-in-a-square units to two F squares (black arrows). Sew these two sections together (red arrows).

Sew the sections together like a four patch and *ta-da!* one block done! The block is 12" finished.

I hope this all makes sense to you. If you have any questions or need some clarification, please comment and I’ll endeavor to fix it.

I’ll be linking this up to Cheryl’s (Meadow Mist Designs) and Yvonne’s (Quilting Jetgirl) new quarterly tutorial link up.

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Making Progress #1

I have made a start and finished the flimsy for my Regatta Quilt Along project. The QAL is being held by Roseanne over at Home Sewn By Us. This is a Quilt Along with a start date but no set finish so you can pick it up whenever you like. I need a seaside inspired cushion for my front lounge room and this is the perfect design (front lounge sounds very formal but it functions more as a casual neat (rarely used) study slash storage room than lounge since it has only one over-sized lounge chair in it, a desk and lots of shelves). I downsized the pattern by making the strips only 1 inch wide finished and reducing the number. I love the stripe variation this pattern gives. The free pattern is by Block M Quilts and is available here.

Modern Plus Sign Quilts book, co-authored by Paige from Quilted Blooms and Cheryl from Meadow Mist Designs is out NOW(!!!) and I can show you a smidge of what I’m working on for an upcoming blog hop. Yep, it’s got plus sign blocks in it. I love them! And if you do too, you should definitely check the book out.

I have made another two Hold the Pickle Quilt blocks. 

I’ve had a bit of interest in these blocks and I’m in the process of writing a tutorial. I’ll be posting that next week.

I’ve included a photo of the pattern for my latest knitting project to avoid confusion ;-). So far the shaping (I think it’s the rabbit’s stomach) is looking very suspect and I think by the time I come to knit the head and nose area it should be hilarious. I’ll keep you updated. My aim is to finish this by Easter which should be very do-able even for someone who knits as little as I do. The pattern is available for free here and uses DK yarn.

And finally. I have a product recommendation for you if you come across fabric that bleeds. This stuff, Retayne, really works. I had some dark purple good quality well-known brand solid that was bleeding like a haemophiliac (yes, I’m a confirmed pre-washer). I was thinking I was never going to be able to use it until I came across this product – it really works wonders! In Australia I bought it from Punch with Judy. You can buy it from a lot of on-line stores but you can’t post it internationally, well not to Australia anyway. Perhaps it’s explosive.

Happy sewing