Thursday, October 27, 2011

Taking a Break

Excuse me while I unplug for a while.  I'm feeling a bit oversaturated at the moment.  I think I need to take a break from blogging, Reader, and Pinterest and focus on a few other things right now.  I will still check my email regularly.  Please let me know if you have any comments or questions, especially regarding the argyle quilt tutorials or the charm swap.  See you in a few weeks.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Winner! 12 Gifts of Christmas Blog Hop

12 Gifts of Christmas Blog Hop

Thanks so much for all your kind comments and great ideas.  It was fun to read through everything, even if I didn't get a chance to respond to every comment.

The winner of the $25 gift certificate from Fat Quarter Shop is:

212
Jodi said...
Thanks so much for a great tutorial. I love this tablerunner. Just a little green pinwheel and the binding is perfect! I love to make tablerunners and give them as gifts. They are not too labor intensive and you can make them around the different holidays so you always have the perfect decoration. Of course they are great to decorate any room as well. Thanks for the giveaway and a chance to win.

Congrats!  I'll be sending you an email.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Color Wheel Swap Round 2--Lights and Darks


I'm starting up Round 2 of the Color Wheel Charm Swap.  The color assignments for this round will again be from the color wheel, but each participant will buy one dark fabric and one light fabric in their assigned color.

I learned a lot with my first swap.  I'm changing some things up to make it run a bit smoother on my end.  Please note the changes before signing up.
  • This round will be for light and dark charms of one color.  We will be swapping 2 yards of fabric again.  As before all color assignments will be based on the color wheel.  Although, you will be assigned only one color this time around, and will need to purchase 1 yard of a light colored print fabric and 1 yard of a dark colored print fabric in that color.  For example, if your assignment was blue-green, you might choose a dark teal and a light aqua. If you are assigned red, choose a darker shade of red and a pink.
  • Post your fabric choices to the same flickr group as soon as you pick them to avoid duplication.  Please list as much information about the fabric as possible in the description.
  • Cut each yard into 56 charms.  There is only 1" of waste.  Cut very carefully.
  • When choosing colors please keep in mind that many participants will be cutting these charms even smaller.  The fabric color should be obvious even in a small 2.5" section of the square.  Please choose fabrics that are as close as possible to your specific color.  Large scale prints generally are not a good choice unless it's a tone on tone or white on tone design. Additional colors in the design are fine as long as they aren't too large as to detract from the target color.
  • Quilt shop quality fabric only.
  • You must pre-sort or pair your charms in stacks of two.  This will cut my sorting time in half.  
  • Ship to me no later than November 19th (although the sooner the better).  If you are shipping internationally, please ship by November 12th. 
  • For US participants there will be a $7 charge to participate this time.  This covers a bit for my time in running the swap as well as priority shipping with delivery confirmation. DO NOT send a self-addressed stamped envelope. 
  • For Canadian participants the fee is $14.  The fee for participants from all other countries is $16. (USD)  This includes priority shipping, although delivery confirmation is not available.  The option is still available for international participants to have fabric shipped to me directly from a US vendor, and I will cut it.  It will be an additional $1.50 for me to cut the charms for you.
  • All fees can be paid through PayPal.
This is a continuation of Round 1, and I offered those who were in the initial round the opportunity to sign up first.  Sign-ups for the remaining slots will begin Monday morning at 8:00 a.m. (Mountain Time).  Check back here Monday morning for the link to sign up.    I anticipate there will only be about 20 slots available so make sure you check in right at 8 am if you're interested.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Argyle Quilt Along: Finishing the Quilt

It's time to finish this guy up.

Piece all seven sections together as shown:

Unfortunately, I forgot to take any pictures of the actual quilt process, but here are a few pointers:

  • I didn't trim any diamond points until after the quilting was complete.
  • You absolutely need a walking foot to quilt this.
  • Spray basting makes quilting this guy so much easier.  This is my third diamond quilt, but the first I've spray basted.  I had much greater success quilting this one evenly.  I had no puckers, and the quilting went much faster than on my other diamond quilts.  I am much happier this time around with the results. 
  • I first quilted lines approximately 1/8" from either side of the seams with a thread matching the main background color.
  • The center argyle quilting is done with a dark brown, heavy topstitching thread.  I used a topstitching needle.  My machine did have tension issues with the topstitching thread.  No matter how I adjusted it I couldn't remedy this.  I do have some small loops and knots on the back due to this.  Despite this I'm still happy I chose the heavier thread.  It gives a nice texture to the front of the quilt.  To quilt these center lines, I used the guide on my walking foot to keep me right in the center of the diamonds.  If you don't have a guide get creative.  Tape a popsicle stick or something else to the back of your walking foot to help guide you.  

 

Once the quilting is complete, trim the quilt. 

It was more important to me to keep my points than to have a perfectly straight edge.  My points were not exactly inline.  Had I just cut straight along the ruler, my design would have looked uneven.  Instead, I worked from one set of diamonds to the next, trimming 1/4" seam allowance for the binding from the diamond point. 


Bind edges using your desired technique.

Finished!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Pinwheel Table Runner with Candy Cane Binding (GIVEAWAY CLOSED)


 Don't miss the giveaway at the end of the post!

I love making holiday-related projects to give to family and friends. We often give family their presents at Thanksgiving anyway since we don't always see them at Christmas.  This way they have the whole month to use it.

This table runner can be definitely be made in any colors/fabrics for everyday or any holiday.  My favorite part is actually the binding.  I came up with the binding idea one night when I couldn't fall asleep.  I loved the idea of the candy cane binding and actually designed the table runner around the binding. It's simple and a great beginner project.  I left a lot of white space in the design leaving the option open for hand stitching and embroidery if that is your thing.


You'll need:
For the pinwheels:
  • (22) white squares 3.5"
  • (10) pairs of red pattern squares 3.5"
  • (1) pair of green squares 3.5"
  • (10) 5 1/2" white squares

For the white and red borders:
  • (2) white strips 1.5" x 35.5"
  • (2) white strips 1.5" x 17.5"
  • (2) red pattern strips 2.5" x 37.5"
  • (2) red pattern strips 2.5" x 21.5"
For the binding:
  • (6) 1.5" white strips WOF (Width of Fabric)
  • (6) 1.5" red strips WOF (the picture shows these as a solid red, although right before sewing it, I changed to various pattern strips)

Step 1: Make the pinwheel units.
  1. Pair each 3.5" pattern square with a white square.  
  2. Mark a faint line between the diagonal corners and stitch a seam 1/4" from either side of the line.  
  3. Slice the fabric down the line.
  4. Press seams (I prefer to press open).
  5. Trim each unit to a 3" square.
  6. Pair the matching sets of half square triangle units and piece into a pinwheel.  Make sure all pinwheels are oriented the same direction.
  7. Sew the pinwheels with the 5.5" white squares in the arrangement shown.  


Step 2: Add the borders.  
  1. First sew the long sides of the white border then the short sides. 
  2. Repeat with the red border.  


Step 3:  Make the candy cane binding.
  1. Trim one edge of each strip to a 45 degree angle.  
  2. Sew strips together, alternating white and red.  Offset slightly as shown in second picture.  Use a slightly smaller stitch length.  Press all seams open.  
  3. Trim edge of pieced section ensuring it remains at a 45 degree angle.
  4. Cut all pieced strips to your desired widths.  A standard binding is 2.5".  I chose to cut mine slightly wider at 2.75".  
  5. Stitch strips end to and and press binding in half.

Step 4: Baste the table runner and quilt as desired.  
I chose to quilt my lines at a 60 degree angle from each direction.  I marked the initial line using masking tape.  I then spaced my quilting using wide painters tape to mark my lines.



Step 5:  Bind
I added the binding using a about a 3/8" seam allowance to give a wider binding.  Stitch onto table runner using a walking foot. 

When you get to the end, it's unlikely the colored stripes will match perfectly.  Mine ended almost exactly at a seam.  I could choose to match two red sections or two white sections.  I choose to match up two red sections to finish.  Cut ends of the binding strips at a 45 degree angle and stitch closed.  Finish stitching binding to the front of the table runner and attach by hand or machine to the back. 

Done!


Don't forget to check out all the other great tutorials going on this week!

Friday, October 14- Jennifer @ Ellison Lane Quilts
Saturday, October 15- Ayumi/Pink Penguin
Sunday, October 16- Amy/ Lots of Pink Here
Monday, October 17- Faith/Fresh Lemons Quilts
Tuesday, October 18- Penny/Sew Take a Hike
Wednesday, October 19- Kati/From the Blue Chair
Thursday, October 20- Lee/Freshly Pieced
Friday, October 21- Elizabeth/Don't Call Me Betsy
Saturday, October 22- Melanie/Texas Freckles
Sunday, October 23- Lindsay/Craft Buds
Monday, October 24- Amanda/A Crafty Fox
Tuesday, October 25-Vanessa/Little Big Girl Studio

Now for the Giveaway!

Win a $25 gift certificate to Fat Quarter Shop.  I'll announce the winner, picked by Mr. Random, on October 26th.
  • Leave a comment telling us your favorite thing to give as a homemade gift.  We can always use more great gift ideas.  Please make sure I have a way to contact you.  


Don't forget Jennifer's giveaway as well.  Head on on over to  Ellison Lane Quilts to enter to win a $250 gift certificate to Fabricworm! And just for stopping by, you can take advantage of a generous 15% off discount at Fabricworm with the coupon code fw12days through the end of the blog hop.


Monday, October 17, 2011

Autumn Argyle Quilt--Finished!

I finished this up a couple weeks ago and am finally getting around to posting the pictures.

The finished size is about 64" x 84".  The fabrics are all from Kona.  I used gold, papaya, olive, tangerine, and Caribbean for the top, and tomato for the binding.

I quilted along the seams using a matching thread.  The center stitching was done with a dark brown heavy topstitching thread.  

For the back I used an assortment of autumn fat quarters I've been saving.  I did a large block pattern that used every last bit of the fat quarters.  



This is my favorite print in the whole bunch.  I pulled the colors for the front from this particular print.

I've decided these are my "new" colors.  I didn't even realize while I was making this quilt that it matches perfectly with the pillow covers I recently made for our living room.

Friday, October 14, 2011

12 Gifts of Christmas Blog Hop


You may have already heard, but there is a great blog hop starting today.  Jennifer from Ellison Lane Quilts pulled together 12 bloggers for 12 fun days of tutorials.   Each tutorial has great gift ideas for Christmas.  Check back here on the 19th for mine. 

Friday, October 14- Jennifer @ Ellison Lane Quilts
Saturday, October 15- Ayumi/Pink Penguin
Sunday, October 16- Amy/ Lots of Pink Here
Monday, October 17- Faith/Fresh Lemons Quilts
Tuesday, October 18- Penny/Sew Take a Hike
Wednesday, October 19- Kati/From the Blue Chair
Thursday, October 20- Lee/Freshly Pieced
Friday, October 21- Elizabeth/Don't Call Me Betsy
Saturday, October 22- Melanie/Texas Freckles
Sunday, October 23- Lindsay/Craft Buds
Monday, October 24- Amanda/A Crafty Fox
Tuesday, October 25-Vanessa/Little Big Girl Studio

Best of all there are Giveaways!  Lots of them.  You can enter to win a gift certificate to Fat Quarter Shop here on the 19th when my tutorial posts!


Also, Jennifer has an amazing giveaway on her blog going the full blog hop.  Visit Ellison Lane Quilts to enter to win a $250 gift certificate to Fabricworm!





And just for stopping by, you can take advantage of a generous 15% off discount at Fabricworm with the coupon code fw12days through the end of the blog hop.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Argyle Quilt Along: Piecing Sections 1 & 7

 
This quilt is pieced in sections.  The sections should be pieced in the following order 4; 3 & 5; 2 & 6; 1 & 7.  Begin with the piecing directions for section 4.  Read through piecing directions for all sections before beginning.

Section 1:  

These smaller sections are completed almost entirely of scraps from the other sections.  This section only includes full A strips in rows 5 & 6. 



Section 7:

This section doesn't include any full strips.  Piece with partial strips as shown.

Argyle Quilt Along: Piecing Sections 2 & 6

This quilt is pieced in sections.  The sections should be pieced in the following order 4; 3 & 5; 2 & 6; 1 & 7.  Begin with the piecing directions for section 4.  Read through piecing directions for all sections before beginning.

Section 2:

When piecing these smaller sections, check through leftover pieces unpicked from other strips to use for the partial strips listed in the instructions.

Row 1:  Full A strip; Partial A strip (M, A, M, B, M)
Row 2:  Full A strip; Partial A strip (M, A, M, B, M, C, M)
Row 3:  Full A strip; Full A strip, one extra M diamond
Row 4:  Full A strip; Full A strip, Partial A strip (M, A, M)




Section 6:  


Row 1:  Full B strip; Partial B strip (M, B, M, C, M, D, M)
Row 2:  Full C strip; Partial C strip (M, C, M, D, M)
Row 3:  Full D strip; Partial D strip (M, D, M)
Row 4: Full A strip; one M diamond


Argyle Quilt Along: Piecing Sections 3 & 5

This quilt is pieced in sections.  The sections should be pieced in the following order 4; 3 & 5; 2 & 6; 1 & 7.  Begin with the piecing directions for section 4.  Read through piecing directions for all sections before beginning.

Section 3:


 In Section 3 we'll need to start unpicking some strips as we only need partial strips to complete each row.  Set aside all the extra pieces as these will be used in later sections.

Row 1:  Full A strip; Full A strip, Partial A strip (M, A, M, B, M)
Row 2: Full A strip; Full A strip, Partial A strip (M, A, M, B, M, C, M)
Row 3:  Full A strip; Full A strip, Full A strip; one extra M diamond



Section 5:


Row 1: Full B strip; Full B strip; Partial B strip (M, B, M, C, M, D, M)
Row 2: Full C strip; Full C strip; Partial C strip (M, C, M, D, M)
Row 3:  Full D strip; Full D strip, Partial D strip (M, D, M)
Row 4: Full A strip, Full A strip, one extra M diamond