Saturday, March 30, 2024

Last Purple Saturday


I took the Carpenter Star Quilt out this morning to get a proper photo.   There is the purple stripe and binding in honor of March. 
The border fabric was the same as the backing.  
I have a few more purple blocks to finish off before April begins on Monday.  I have my yellow scraps all ready to go for next month though.   Nothing says spring like a bit of sunshine and brightness.  

We took a quick trip to Jamaica for spring break and managed to catch a bit of a head cold on the trip home.  I think a nice calm day at home is just what the doctor ordered. 

Saturday, March 23, 2024

ScrapHappy Saturday - Purple

The purple wall is coming along slowly.   
Most of last weekend I spent quilting up these Carpenter Star blocks from last year's RSC.  

I bought a piece of wide backing fabric and then ended up using enough up on the front that I had to add a strip to the back to make sure it would be long enough.  I used purple in honor of March.  Evenings this week were spent sewing the purple binding so this one if officially done!  I was waiting to get a nice outdoor photo shoot of the finished quilt, but it is wet and dreary outside right now.  

 There is still time to get a bit more done with purple.   Next Saturday is still part of March.  I hope your purple projects are coming along nicely.  

Saturday, March 16, 2024

ScrapHappy Saturday


Most of my quilting time last weekend was spent on this scrappy postage stamp quilt.  I loaded and quilted on Saturday and then did the binding on Sunday.   There is truly no rhyme or reason, just all the leftover 1.5 inch squares from lots of other projects.  
A few more purple blocks got added to the wall.  Tutorials for the Hens and Chicks will be finished up shortly.   We had another one of those weeks at school with things going on in the evenings.  Then yesterday was a field trip to Kennedy Space Center.   The students seemed to get a lot out of it and the weather was just glorious.  Spring has definitely started here along with the spring break travelers from everywhere.  

Hen & Chicks Prairie Queen Block 12

This one is really just a cross between a Jacob's Ladder and a Shoofly.   I had never made it before, but after making both of those blocks, this one seemed like it should be the next to try.  

Start with your HST units and strip sets.  If you don't have enough length in a single strip, feel free to use two or more shorter strips.  As long as you have enough to get eight sub cuts then you are good.   
Because I made two shorter strip sets this time, I layered them before cutting the subunits.   Then they were ready to sew into four 4 patches.  Press the four patches
Now you should have 4 four patches, 4 HST units and one purple square.  I am not sure why there is a background square hanging out in the photo.  Just ignore that please.  
Now for the layout.  The HST units and the purple square make a shoofly block with each purple corner for the HST unit pointing to the center purple square.  The four patches do a rotational sort of thing, I had to keep referring back to the photo to make sure I got those oriented correctly.  
Now sew your nine patch together I pressed toward the four patches on this one as that seemed to be the way the seams wanted to go.  


Hen & Chicks Bears Paw Block 10

Bear's Paw is another classic and simple quilt block.  The paw always looks proportionately large compared to the claws.  This is one that I would love to modify to insert sampler, string or crumb blocks into that space.  I have seen some stunning quilts made with one block in multiple sizes with the smaller blocks inserted into strategic spots in the larger blocks.  So many ideas and not enough time to try them all!  

The subunits are pretty simple this time.  One large purple square, one small background square and 4 HST units.  Use whichever method you like for these of course.  I will include sizes for the two at a time method in the cutting chart.

Each pair of claws gets sewn together first.  Side by side for the top claws and top to bottom for the side claws.   Notice the orientation of the diagonals.   The direction of pressing doesn't matter much yet, but I pressed the seams toward the purple.  
Now it is just a 4 patch.  Sew the background square to the top row and the side claws to the large square.  then sew the two rows together.  In this case I pressed the seams on the side claws toward the large square to minimize bulk which mean that the top claw seam went toward the small white square.  
Here is your final block.  Can't you just picture another block nestled in place of that solid square?


Hen & Chicks Jacob's Ladder Block 11


I seem to be on a tour of classic quilt blocks lately.  Jacob's Ladder is one that makes a great overall secondary pattern.  Those are great for scrappy quilts that need a unifying fabric.  Imagine using this for all your leader and ender 4 patches with a commonly themed fabric or color in the HST units.  The "problem" with sampler quilts is that it spawns so many ideas for new quilts.  
In addition to 4 HST units, you will also need a strip set with background and a contrasting purple.   
Sew the strip set together and press toward the purple.   
Next, sub cut the strips to get your pairs which you will sew together to make four patches.   
When pressing the four patches, I like to open up the center seam.  You can press to one side if you prefer, but I love to decrease bulk whenever possible.  
Next, in the layout, create a ladder.  The purples in the HST units all point toward the center of the block and the diagonal lines run parallel to one another.  The purple square in the four patches make a diagonal line in the opposite direction.   
When you sewn the squares together in a nine patch, you should see the strong visuals of the opposing diagonals which make this such a fun block for a one block quilt.  

Saturday, March 9, 2024

Hen & Chicks Friendship Star Block 9

Scroll down for the Saturday Linky party

This is one of the simplest blocks ever as long as you feel comfortable with making half square triangles.  There are so many ways to accomplish this blocks. Please use whichever method is most comfortable for you.  I am always a big fan of the easy angle ruler myself, but some people seriously object to having a stash of specialty rulers.   With the smaller sized blocks, there is a certain amount of safety in the making the subunits slightly larger to start and then squaring them up to make sure they are perfectly square and just the right size.  It is just too easy to add an inch to the finished block size and then trim a few slivers when you are not making a huge number of units. I used the easy angle for the larger block this time and the two at a time with a sewn line on either side of a center line method for the smaller block.  
However you decide to accomplish it, you will need 4 HST units, 4 background squares and 1 purple square.  

The trickiest part of this block is honestly getting all the star points arranged so that they rotate around the center square.  I like to have a reference photo sitting nearby. to compare.  
After the layout is confirmed, it is pretty quick to sew column 1 to 2 and then add the third column.  I learned this method from Elenor Burn on Quilt in a day and use it to web all of my quilt tops.   
Here is the finished block.  Quick and easy!
Even super simple blocks look adorable in tiny sizes.   

ScrapHappy Saturday - Plowing into Purple

Spring is always busy in schools.  Lots of competitions and evening events.  I had two nights at school this week and didn't get much done yet on purple.  Before sewing though, I have some block patterns to post.  Stay tuned!

Saturday, March 2, 2024

ScrapHappy Saturday Passionately Purple

And after leap day, we say farewell to red with its passion and fire.  
And welcome to purple in all its shades.  
The work week was a busy one with off site meetings and a big evening event.  All went beautifully, but it is nice to downshift for the weekend.  Next week has two evening events and the SAT, so it is sure to be even busier.  Until then, I have a few block tutorials to get posted and some star blocks to prepare.   I hope you have some great purple scraps to dig into as well.  

Friday, March 1, 2024

Happy March


Our new color this month will be purple! I can't wait.  Lavender, lilac, periwinkle, plum, violet.  Let the scraps start flying.