Tuesday, 15 October 2013

What’s On Your Workdesk Wedne{Tue}sday

It would seem I am ahead of the game. Not something you’ll hear very often from me.


I taught a class in Mere this morning and after lunch I settled down to make some boxes. All the supplies were together so it made sense to use them before putting away again.


You can’t see from the angle I chose to photograph, but it’s a two part box. The inner ‘drawer’ is made from kraft cardstock and it’s sized to hold three tea lights.

I’m going rogue this week and posting early. It’s OK, Julia said I could.

Hoping I have broken my bloggers block now and aiming to be back real soon.

Monday, 7 October 2013

A Friendship Quilt ~ The Nine Patch Block

I found that there were a lot of tutorials out there for making nine patch blocks using a rotary cutter and ruler, but not much in the way of alternatives. Here’s my attempt at putting one together for anyone who doesn’t have those tools on hand.


Pick your fabrics and iron them. Make yourself a 2.5” square template. I made mine from a cereal packet. Draw around it onto the back of your fabric. I used a Frixion pen, because when you iron it the marks disappear. Pretty cool huh? Cut along the lines as accurately as you can. You’ll need nine squares, but you knew that. Right?


Lay the squares out in your chosen design.


Take the 3 squares in the left hand column and lay them right side down on top of the squares in the middle column.


Sew each pair together with a scant 1/4” seam.


Open out and press, being careful not to stretch the fabric out of shape. I pressed the seam towards the darker half of the block, you can press it open if you prefer.


Now take a square from the remaining right hand column and place right side down on the middle square.


Sew together with the same scant 1/4” seam. I’ve marked a line on the bed of my sewing machine, with masking tape, so that it stays the same throughout.


You should now have 3 rows of 3 joined squares. Press the seams.


At this point I’m hoping that the seams line up pretty well, which they do. Phew!


Now take the top row and place it right side down on the middle row.


Match the raw edges along the top and line up seams. Sew together.


Take the final row of joined squares and place face down on the middle row. Matching the bottom edge and lining up the seams. Sew together.


Open out and press. There you have a nine patch block. It’s not perfect, but I’m OK with that. It’s also not quite as crooked as it looks at the bottom right corner! You can see that the left hand edge is not level all the way down, but it’s more important to me to have the seams lined up in the middle of the block.

Any questions ask away and I’ll do my best to help. I have a Sizzix die that cuts 2.5” squares. If anyone taking part in the Friendship Quilt project, would like some cardboard templates, I’d be happy to send you some. The die also cuts nice neat squares from fabric, if you have a Big Shot. Just sayin’.

If you are planning to make a simpler Four Patch Block, then you would need to cut the fabric into 3.5” squares and join two pairs together using the scant 1/4” seam.

That’s it from me for now. I’m so looking forward to seeing what arrives with Abi over the course of this month.

Friday, 4 October 2013

A Friendship Quilt ~ The Colours

Thirty days hath September….allegedly….and I’d love to know where they went! We’ve been laid low by a nasty virus and it’s taken a while to get back on our feet. Today I’m going to share the colour schemes that everyone has chosen for their patchwork blocks. It’s a lovely selection.

Abi ~ Creating paper Dreams ~ Neutral with pops of colour

Alexa ~ Trimming the Sails ~ Peachy shades

Alison ~ Life in the Slow Lane ~ Teal/turquoise/cream

Amy ~ Over at Our Place ~ Seaside colours, washed and worn: cream, kraft, pale blue, muted denim  Plain fabrics, stripes or spots

Beverly ~ BE Glorious ~ Blues, greens (think Caribbean shades) and orange

Deb ~ Paper Turtle ~ Bright colours

Deb ~ Debs World ~ Spring time colours: pinks, blues and greens

Fiona (me!) ~ Staring at the Sea ~ Anything goes

Jacky ~ Scrappy Jacky ~ Rust/terracotta and greens, but not lime green

Jo ~ Buckingham’s Palace ~ Blue and Yellow with white/cream

Jo ~ Sugar and Scrap ~ Pinks and turquoise

Sian ~ From High in the Sky ~ Creams, whites, tans and linens

As I said in the email, we’ll keep the posting order alphabetical, exactly as it appears here. Abi will be the recipient for this month and Alexa in November. We’ll take a break in December, I’m sure we’ll all have enough going on then. Resuming in January with Alison and Amy will be Miss February.

There are quite a few useful links and tutorials in these two posts from last year. I’ll be back on Monday with tutorials for a basic nine patch and four patch. Those I have found online all involve rotary cutting, which I’m assuming beginner quilters will not have the equipment for. Don’t worry they can be made using scissors instead.

If you’ve already started, just remember your finished block must measure 6.5” no matter what design you’ve chosen to make. Have fun with it.