Monday, March 2, 2015

RSC15 Sampler March - Air Castles

The Air Castle block is very similar to the Card Trick block from January, but with a solid center that feels more "star-like" to me.  
Both 2.5 and 1.5 inch strips are used in this block.  The 1.5 in strips will be used for the quarter square units, while everything else will come from 2.5 inch strips.  
I chose a third yellow for the center, but it could also be made of background fabric or a repeated color.  Whatever yellows you choose, try to get a variety of shades, from pale or buttery to darker or brighter golds.  
Start with the 2.5 inch strips.
Pair light yellow with background fabric and use the easy angle ruler to cut 4 HST units.
While you still have the easy angle ruler handy, also cut 4 HST units out of the darker yellow.
Now layer 1.5 inch strips of background fabric and light yellow together.  I used the same light yellow for the bigger and smaller triangles, but it could be different yellows as well.  Now use the companion angle ruler to cut 4 QST(quarter square triangle) units.
Here are all of the pieces together:
From 2.5 inch strips -
4 HST units in dark yellow
4 HST pairs of background and light yellow
1 square of accent yellow
From 1.5 inch strips -
4 QST units of background and light yellow
Start with the QST units.  They get sewn together on a short side and NOT on the hypotenuse like the HST units.  Just make sure they all get sewn on the same short side.  Press carefully toward the yellow fabric, being careful not to stretch out the long side which is on the bias.
Next, sew the HST units together along the hypotenuse.  These are symmetrical, so you don't have to worry about the orientation.
Next, pair the QST subunits you just sewed together with the dark yellow HST pieces.  Sew these along the hypotenuse and press toward the dark fabric.
All the subunits are now ready to go.  They should all be 2.5 inches unfinished.
From this point, all you have to do is arrange your blocks into a nine patch.  The solid square forms the center, the HST units form the corners, and the QST units are the edges.  Check the photo to make sure everything is facing the right way.
Here is your block.  It should be 6.5 inches unfinished.
To finish, just place the block into the center of a sawtooth star block using the tutorial found here.  

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Slowdown on Sunday

 In celebration of the end of the pink month, I finished off these pink strings.  I am REALLY liking the way this quilt is starting to come together.  I might need to do some math though and think about how many blocks it might need, because I don't seem to be running out of strings yet.
 Kurt took Sydney to Lacrosse yesterday.  It was a cold and rainy double header.  Poor Kurt, he got the short straw on that pick.  Sydney was horribly insulted that the uniform has a skirt.  She doesn't think skirts are the right choice for sports.
 I got to take Ryan to mathcounts.  It was inside.  He finished third in the district and is headed on to state right before spring break.
I got to watch them all do math while stitching away on my orange peels.  The last of the pinks are done, and so I started in on the yellow.  So bright and sunny for spring.
Then last night I took Anna to see the school play, her boyfriend was in the band.  Then afterwards we all went out for a very late dinner.  It was midnight by the time we were ready to drive home.  I was sure I would be able to sleep in this morning, but I was up by 6:30 and ready to get in some sewing time.  Today should be a nice home day, I'm supposed to help Anna with a paper for school and take both girls out to buy some shorts for spring.  Other than that though,  I will be spending some nice relaxing time with needle and thread.  If you are feeling like a nice relaxing Sunday, be sure to head over to Kathy's Quilts to look at slow stitching Sunday.
Don't forget to check out my last post if you would like to enter the drawing for the March yellow fabric giveawy.  

March Color Announcment

The color for March will be yellow.  Yellow is one of those colors that can be a bit overwhelming in very large quantities.  As an accent though, it adds brightness and contrast that can be really lovely.  Try to work in the entire range of yellows.  Remember that you can go from delicate and buttery yellow all the way to deep golds.  Notice how the hand dyed fabrics from Vicki Welsh cover an fabulous array of shades?  If you would like to win this fabric collection, simply leave a comment on this post with the one thing you are most looking forward to about spring.   Mine is spring break.  

Saturday, February 28, 2015

ScrapHappy Saturday - Last Pink Day

Today is the last official day of finishing up pink.  I hope you have lots of great blocks to share.
 I got some nine patches framed, a few postage stamp stars, and a couple of little twinklers on pink backgrounds.  I also sorted through all the pink, and trimmed it into useable sizes.

Last on my list are some string blocks.  These little skinny strips are leftover after all the rest and will make great blocks with black centers in half dark and half light.  There are already a few in the mix, but looks like a few more are on list for today.  Now that Kurt is home again, he will do Lacrosse with Sydney while I do Mathcounts with Ryan and the school play with Anna.  Tomorrow is completely open though, and sewing up these last pink strings will be a great project before pulling out the yellow for March.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Cleaning up Pink

I found some time this evening to finally start to clean up the pink.  Part of that, was cutting the squares for alternate blocks in the sampler quilt.  With whatever pink scraps you have left, you will need to cut 24 squares.  They should each be 2.5 inches.  You will also need 16 squares of background fabric.
 Combine 16 pink squares with 16 background squares and sew them into two patches.  Press toward the pink.  Combine the other 8 pinks together into four 2 patches.
The 16 light and dark two patches should be combined into eight 4 patches while the pink and pink two patches will remain alone for now.  

Monday, February 23, 2015

Design Wall Monday February 23, 2015

The blues on January are slowly evolving into the pinks of February.  I was finally lucky enough to have both time and energy enough to settle in for some quality sewing on Sunday.  It was wonderful to just play with fabric again!  The postage stamp centers were recycled from the leftovers of this quilt with 12 by 12 blocks:
And also from the extras from this quilt with 6 by 6 blocks:
I wonder what will happen to the extras from the postage stamp stars?  Nine patches maybe?  I also had enough 2.5 inch squares to make a couple more twinkle stars on pink, one light and one dark.  I'm not out of pink though, so I had better come up with a few more blocks to make before March brings a new color.  I wonder what it will be?

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Slowdown on Sunday - Pink

 It is a sure sign that things are ready to slow down as my design wall begins to shift slowly from blue to pink.  I had a chance this morning to finish up just a few postage stamp stars and pull out some framed nine patches.  We had company over for dinner last night and so yesterday was spent on cleaning and cooking.  It was very nice though, to wake up this morning to a nice tidy house and plenty of leftovers.   There was nothing to keep me from heading straight to the machine for some much needed "ME" time.
I have managed to sneak in just a bit of slow stitching time thanks to the prep work that got done over winter break.  These nine orange peels will add nicely to the blues that I did last month for the begining of a beautiful slow stitched quilt.  Having a little ready bag packed at all times makes it easy to grab and go when waiting is on the agenda.  Be sure to go visit Kathy this morning to see what slow stitching is going on in blogland.  

Saturday, February 21, 2015

ScrapHappy Saturday Playing with Pink

It is the 21st of February already and my pink scraps are woefully neglected.  Hopefully soon I will be able to dig in and play.  The only serious sewing I have done so far is 60 bags for the new PVC science fair boards.  Not quite as much fun as quilt blocks.  I have enjoyed seeing all of your pink projects though.  So many pretty projects in progress.  Use misterlinky below to share with us all.


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Anne's Quilts

Anne from Ontario doesn't have a blog, but she sent some pictures of the quilts that she finished for the 2014 Rainbow Scrap Challenge.
 I love the up and down setting squares on these boat blocks, it really gives a great feeling of movement.
I'm not sure of the name of this block, but it makes a nice secondary pattern where the blocks meet in the corners.
I'm so glad that Anne is joining in, even though she isn't able to blog about, I'm glad to be able to share her lovely rainbow quilts with you all.  

Monday, February 16, 2015

Weekend Wrap-Up

 Fair weekend has come and gone.  Many ribbons were awarded, along with scholarships and cash and assorted goodies.
 The best of show winners will be moving on to international in Pittsburg while the first place winners will move on to the state competition in Lakeland.  
 Anna's project won second in her category.  The first place winner went on to best of show, though, so she felt good about her red ribbon.

Here she is at her board.  She continued on with her project from last year about water quality, but added brine shrimp to her oyster shells.  Despite missing out on a state bid, she has been invited to compete in 4 other follow up contests.  She is most excited about one called I-SWEEEP which takes place Houston in May.  It is an international environmental science fair and she has already started chatting with some other participants from Sweden.
Here are Anna and River after the awards.  They have been spending quite a bit of time together since Science Olympiad last month.
So, as you can see, there hasn't been much sewing time as of late.  I keep thinking that things will slow down soon, but I am constantly surprised as new things pop up.