Posts Tagged With: scraps

Small but Mighty!

I’ve had the some of the grand-kids for a visit recently and I can testify to the fact the “though they are small, they are mighty”!  Mighty mess makers!  We didn’t get much sewing done, but we did mend the “blankey” and hem one pair of pants and fix some favorite pjs.  Those mighty kids made their own pizza, helped Grandpa deliver a calf, and played with cousins.  For being so small they have a mighty hold on my heart!

ONLY 5 of the 12

Now they are back at home and my house is much quieter.  I need a small but mighty sewing challenge to accomplish something quickly.  Break out the picture panels and all those small squares we were cutting last year.  I know you’re asking how can those be quick & easy? So here’s the next sew along.

Panel of Winnie & scraps to match

Sew Along #3

Mix 2 1/2″ squares that the colors coordinate with the panel for a patchwork look.  I’m using pastels because of the color in the panel.  I started with a few 5″ squares just for a solid read and contrast in size.

Larger spacers

Design board which I probably won’t follow. 🙂

Assembly line sew the 2 1/2″ squares into rows that match the width of your panel.  Press in alternate directions for matching corners. Trim or square up “early & often”. Make a least 3-4 rows. This is an exercise in MAKING myself be random.  You could spend a life time moving 2 1/2″ squares around.  Just sew!

“Wooden” border not my wood floor. 🙂

I split my panel into two quilts make it a rectangle but still added squares AND get two for the price of one, but you could just add more (or fewer) rows to the top and bottom.  I like the idea of custom sizing to what you need/have so I’m not giving required measurements. I’m using a basic crib size.

A quick and simple way to finish up a quilt top.  Same idea would work for place mats with a focus picture and edges of small (but mighty) squares.  What is your favorite/mighty way to use small squares?

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Categories: Inspire Me! | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Layer cakes in HD versus HC

DH at rest during calving season

My very own DH (dear hubby) has been out with the new baby calves that are coming fast and furiously, even in the COLD weather.  It is necessary to check them every couple of hours all through the night.  He slides in occasionally to thaw out and cat-nap in front of the large screen HD television.  Sitting along side one night, I mentioned I was working on an HC quilt.  He “kindly” let me know that I probably meant HD.  I clarified by saying that the HC made it HD.  He finally opened both eyes, just so he could raise an eyebrow.

I said that high contrast quilts make for high definition.  He thought that was about as funny as stepping on one of my pins.  But I just attributed his lack of humor to lack of sleep.

Let’s talk about HC quilts which are best for all those 10″ squares we pre-cut from the scrap pile last year. I usually like high contrast quilts anyway but they seem especially important with scrap quilts.  Here are some tips to get you sewing.

  • In these ideas it is best to use a light piece and a dark piece, saving the mediums for later.  I know that it may all seem relative to what fabric is laid next to it.  But if you question, “Is this a medium?”, then that’s the one you want to leave out.  Think gray scale and then go to either end.
  • Use an assortment but keep them coordinated within the block.  Say, a light pink and a dark pink.  A tan and a chocolate brown.  You get the picture?  In high definition?
  • As mentioned before, these scraps may not always  be straight of grain so square it up early and often!
  • It won’t take long to have enough for a LARGE quilt, so know what your end goal is.  Place mats can wait for the smaller squares.

Sew Along #2

There’s probably a real name for this one (criss-cross, cross over, King’s X, ric-rac) but I just liked it for the 10″ squares.  SO FAST!

Layer 2-10″ squares (a light & a dark) with the light on top. (The Martelli yellow board is a great cutting mat but looks a little weird with these colors in HD!) 

1 light & 1 dark; light on top

Make 3 – 2 1/2″ cuts vertically. I just pealed the first layer back so you could see the direction.

Cut both layers one time

Make 1 – 2 1/2″ cut horizontally through both layers.  My Martelli skinny-mini ruler is covering what I’m cutting in the above photo.  Remove the light strips and layer or line up to cut one more 2 1/2″ section. Sorry, I switched blocks as I forgot to photo the other one at this stage.

Cut 4 light, longer strips once more

Do a layout according to finished block and assembly line sew into strip sections of the block.  The scrappy blocks are so different you won’t mix them up.  But remember you are going to have TWO finished blocks from each fabric pair.

When you begin to join the strips together remember that there are more vertical seams (taking up the seam allowances) that there are horizontal seams, so your block will NOT be square.

1 from the top & 1 from the bottom

Here’s the part about trim early and often.  Start your seams at the point of the pins in the photo leaving the excess in a trimming spot.  One is at the top and one is at the bottom. Sorry the yellow pin is so hard to see, but the excess purple isn’t hard to see.

Trim then join center

Trim each pair of strips to 8 1/2″ then join the center seam.  Re-square entire clock.

Square it up!

Here’s a completed version but her method involved complete yardages of fabric.

Now there’s some high contrast that even sleep deprived hubby can see in high definition.  I have one more option for you. It’s even faster!  You don’t even have to change the channel.  My inspiration came from here

Criss-cross

and you can find a youtube video here.

 

Here’s option #2:

Chose 2-10″ squares, one light and one dark. Layer together.

1 light & 1 dark

Lay opposing corners on the 45 degree angel line of your cutting mat. Cut 1″ away from that 45 degree line on both sides.

45 degree angle

Should come out looking like this (the lighter one is on the bottom, but the order doesn’t matter).

Do the switcheroo

Fold each piece in half to find center and mark with a pin, or iron, or finger press (remember they are bias cuts so don’t stretch).

Find your centers

Sew the LIGHT center strip to the two DARK triangles and the DARK center strip to the two LIGHT triangles. Square each of the inserted corners to 9 1/2″

Square it up!

Ta-Da!  You will be finished with either of these two quilts before the next blog post comes out.

2 for work of 1

Which is your favorite? I can see them put together in cross over pattern or the first option set on point or…and I’ll be thinking about those medium tones that felt so left out of the HC quilts.  Or maybe moving on to those strips that are left in the drawer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Fight the Chaos Fridays, Inspire Me! | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Sew, Sew, Sew to the end…

For whatever reason, the tune is STUCK in my head! “Lou, Lou, skip to my Lou”  You’re welcome, now it’s stuck in yours, too!  I decided to change the words to fit this blog post AND what needs to be happening in my sewing room.

During 2017’s challenge to Fight the Chaos  I cut an awful lot of strips & squares, but now my cutting table is clear.  So now what to do, Lou?  “Sew, Sew, Sew to the end.”

Greens cut and ready to sew

 

Print out of cutting measurements HERE

Throughout 2018 we will present several projects (not all quilts) that will deal with some of the scraps from last year’s cutting spree. At least start to deal with them.

A few tips before we begin:

  • Not all strips are on the straight of grain, square up as needed
  • It is about color value, not color matching
  • Use one neutral to draw it all together
  • Use it up, wear it out, or give it away (If you are looking for a place to donate beautiful, small quilts, type “YES quilts” into the search box. Sisters At Heart donates these to a pregnancy resource center for women in the middle of difficult circumstances.)
  • Patterns and ideas will be free to download for a limited time

2018 Sew Along #1

We begin with some 1930s reproduction strips.  I had some left over from the PS Project we did called “Pocket Place Mat“. I think they might be multiplying under my table in the basket where I have them stored.

Pocket place mat from vintage linens

My daughter had requested some when she saw that idea so I got busy and did a few more.  After I did her six mats, I began to wonder why didn’t I have my own!

She chose all round vintage pieces

So I did a couple for hubby and me.  Mine are all in blues to go with the kitchen and my crocheted pieces.  I left the pockets off as hubby said he didn’t want his silverware hidden.  He doesn’t have much design style.  🙂

Two for Tea

So, get out those strips and let’s get sewin’. Next month we’ll do 10″ squares.

Sew, Sew, sew to the end

Sew, Sew, sew to the end

Sew to the end, my Darlin’

 

Lost my thread

Now what’ll I do

Lost my thread

Now what’ll I do

Sew to the end, my Darlin’

 

I’ll find a prettier piece

Better than stripes

I’ll find a prettier piece

Better than dots

Sew to the end, my Darlin’

 

Categories: Fight the Chaos Fridays, PS Projects | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

I’m a “Prepper”–Are You?

I’m a “prepper” but with no bunker or ammo or supply stock (other than fabric).  I’m not prepping for the end of the world but I am prepping for the first winter blizzard. Here in Colorado it is very hard to believe that it is even fall let alone winter. But a dear friend (I think she is still a friend even though she totally destroyed the order I had just put into the sewing studio. :/) has given me BAGS of fabric and “stuff” to go through.  I don’t mean little grocery bags, I mean trash bags! Six of them!

bags-web

Bags of friendship!

There were yardages, starts and stops of projects, kits, scraps, books and one whole bag of Christmas fabric.  It is enough to keep me busy all winter.  I’m ready for a little snow on the ground to keep me in the house. If you know me at all, you know I have never met a shade of green that I didn’t like but would you believe that in all those piles there was only ONE piece of green.  Guess I’ll be OK working with the bag of fall colors. 🙂

green-web

Lonely Green

All of us have projects that we start and then put away for a while (Tell me I’m not alone in this).  A couple of these were put away for good reason (not working out as planned), but some I’m sure were just not on a deadline.  So I’m thinking about imposing a deadline on myself to finish these up.  I can’t let my sister in on the decision because she knows my procrastination skills are excellent. The first special treat to work on are the squares of embroidery that are completely finished. They await a special setting that will of course use some of the bag fabrics.

embroid-web

Embroidery blocks

I know a little girl that is REALLY in need of a new quilt for her big-girl bed.  She might like the mouse, or the bear, or the A-B-Cs.  I know that she would like some fabric out of the purple bag.

girl-web

Girl without a quilt.

Other pieces are not my favorites. As my mom would tell me, “Don’t say “Ugh!”  until you’ve tried it.” But I’m prepping for winter not for a character building session, so I’ll pass them on to be used as backs for a charity quilt or book bags for the kids.

charity-web

Ugly fabric. Ummm, backing pieces.

There was even a challenge inside the bags and Sister knows I can’t resist a challenge.  I’ve seen the block in magazines but never attempted it before.  Someone made an excellent start on the 3″ nine-patch blocks set into hexagons and even sent along the extra pieces.  I can just see this finished with maybe some very large wool applique on it.  Back to the design board after I finish this little start up.

9-patch-web

Fun in a bag.

I do have one last confession to make.  I’m keeping something just because.  I have no plan for these blocks.  I have no purpose for them.  They don’t match anything in my house.  But who wouldn’t want to look at butterflies in the middle of the winter and that’s what I’m preparing for.

hanky-web

Wouldn’t they look great with black sashing?!

I’ve got extra needles, now if I can just find a sale on thread before the snow flies I’ll be prepped and ready to be house-bound for a few days.  How are you prepping for winter?

Categories: Inspire Me!, Sister isn't answering her phone, so I'm telling you ..., Uncategorized | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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