Saturday, October 1, 2016

October UFO Parade

October already?  Time for my favorite holiday -- Halloween!  You know, 'cuz you get to dress up, knock on strangers' doors, and demand candy!

First of all, the October UFO number is:

Lucky #7

My favorite number!

Some great finishes this month. First up, three finishes from Kerry that I missed for the September UFO Parade.  I just hate it when I do that, but in my defense, my desktop crashed hard last month. So if I missed your UFO, please let me know!

I happen to know Kerry's first finish is quite an accomplishment -- because it was a BOM at my LQS, Ruth's Stitchery. "Freedom Rings" is a design by Paula Barnes -- and it's a big quilt!

I'm always so impressed by the Bonnie Hunter quilts those California girls finish (and they have day jobs, too!).  This is "Winston Ways," and I don't even want to count how many pieces are in each block!

After two "big" finishes, Kerry also finished this "mini," called "Drop" by Carrie Nelson of Miss Rosie's Quilt Co.

Read all about Kerry's finishes at her blog, Kerry's Quilting.

 Mary J is our overachiever for September -- she finished not one, but SIX quilts this month! They will all be donated to Ronald McDonald House. Mary, I'm sure they will be appreciated.

Here is just one, but you can see all six on Mary J's blog, Zippy Quilts.

Susan has another charity finish for September -- and a great scrappy quilt I want to copy!

Isn't that fun? It was her Leaders and Enders project for this year, and she's planning to donate it to an Aged Care home. Read the details on Susan's blog, Susan's Sewing Space.

I'm off to San Diego to greet My Little Sailor on his return from Japan! And, I get to attend Cozy Quilt's Strip Club next Saturday!

Happy October!

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Friday, September 30, 2016

30 Day Quilt Prep Challenge

I did it! 30 quilts prepped for the long arm in 30 days!

Now, to be fair -- all but two or three of these were completed tops, "flimsies." The challenge was to prepare the backing and cut the batting, so each quilt is ready to be quilted.

And I did it!  Six of them have been passed on to various long-armers. I'll quilt the smaller ones myself, and probably all of the Bonnie Hunter mysteries. I love looking at the empty shelf formerly filled with tops waiting to be quilted. Four years of "52 Quilts in 52 Weeks" makes for a lot of flimsies!

Half the doors in the house have quilts/backs/batting hanging from them:

And here is #30, "Jelly Roll Jingle." (The batting and backing are downstairs on the cutting table.)

Jelly Roll Jingle is my original design. It will be a free pattern for all who attend the December Jelly Roll Party at Ruth's Stitchery and buy a jelly roll. Thanks, Pati, for your help in deciding on a name for this pattern!

I'm off to San Diego next week to meet my returning Sailor -- and two 52 Quilts followers!

Come back tomorrow for the October UFO Parade.

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

A Quilt Block a Day for Autumn

Or Spring, for my friends Down Under!

Did you miss doing A Quilt Block a Day this Summer? I didn't receive any requests for a BaD, so I decided to take a rest for the 90 days of Summer. But I have a fun design for Fall.

It's a scrappy foundation pieced block. I don't have a name for it yet -- maybe when I get some more made, a name will come to me! Here's what the half-block segment looks like:

I'm using "That Green," aka "Poison Green" or "30s Green" for the center of each segment. The print sides are 30s strip scraps in various widths. It's a great way to use up scraps!

Here's the tutorial for foundation piecing each segment. You'll need:

-- foundation paper or the lightest weight copy paper you can find. Some people use old telephone book pages for foundations -- whatever you have at hand!

-- washable glue stick. I use this kind:

but Elmer's school glue stick works also. Just be sure it's water soluble!

-- add-a-quarter ruler or acrylic quilting ruler and rotary cutter

Here are the instructions for making the paper foundations.

Start with an 8½" X 11" sheet of foundation paper. Draw a line across the page at 8½" -- or use your 8½" ruler if you have one.

Draw a line from corner to corner of the 8½" square.

Cut off the narrow rectangle. Then make marks at the folling points on the square:

3½" from two outside corners.
5½ in from the outside corner at the diagonal line.

Connect the dots do your foundation piece looks like this:

Next, cut the foundation piece in half on the diagonal line. Repeat to make as many foundations as you need. If you like, you can copy your original foundation in the copy machine before cutting off the small rectangle and cutting the squares in half on the diagonal line.

Apply glue stick to the center area of the unmarked side of the foundation piece.

Cut a piece of whatever fabric you're using for the center at approximately 5½" X 7" and stick to the unmarked side of the foundation.

On the marked side of the foundation, insert two pins at one of the lines. Poke the pin IN at the line, then bring it UP at 1/4" toward the narrow point, through both the paper and the center fabric.

Flip the foundation and the fabric over.

The pins indicate where you will line up the first strip. Place the strip of printed fabric on top of the center (green) fabric, line up with where the pins show closest to the narrow point of the foundation.

 Before stitching, I drop my stitch length down two "clicks" -- to about 1.5. I also use a larger than normal size needle -- size 14. This will make tearing off the foundations easier when stitching is complete.

Stitch along the line on the marked side of the foundation. Be sure to extend your stitching three or four stitches beyond the edge of the paper.

Fold the paper back toward the marked side, and using the Add-a-Quarter ruler, or the 1/4" line on your regular quilting ruler, cut off the excess fabric. Pay attention! Be sure you're cutting off the excess, not the center of the block!

Pin two more pins on the other line and repeat to stitch the printed fabric on the opposite side of the center fabric.

Press strips one and two away from the center fabric. Add additional strips until all the paper foundation is covered. The width of the strips can vary.

When the paper foundation is completely covered, trim off the excess fabric at the edges of the paper foundation.

And there is your finished segment!

If you decide to make "A Quilt Block a Day" this Fall, I'd love to see your blocks! Send an email with photo attached to Aunt Marti at 52 Quilts dot com.

From the desk of your auntmartisignature