Friday, September 19, 2014

Off Kilter - A Quilt Finish and Tutorial

I am so excited to get to share my newest quilt and tutorial.  So let me just get right to it because I can't wait.   I am calling this quilt, Off Kilter and I am so loving it!!!

Back at Spring Quilt Market I had the wonderful opportunity to chat with some of the ladies at Free Spirit Fabrics about doing some tutorials using their lovely fabrics.  Thank you  to Free Spirit Fabrics for providing the fabrics for this tutorial!!  I was instantly drawn to their new Denyse Schmidt Modern Solids.  I mean, who wouldn't be when you see this box of yummy solid goodness.   I really wanted to design something that highlighted the beautiful array of colors.  

And that is how Off Kilter came to be.   So, do you want to make your own Off Kilter quilt??  Let's get to that.   The tutorial is written with the option of 2 sizes.  A Lap that measures 59" x 70" or a Twin that measures 72" x 86".   This quilt is so much fun to make and goes together so easy.  You are going to have so much fun!!!  So pick a size and let's get to it ;)


For both the Lap and Twin sized quilts you will  need 40 Fat Quarters.
           You will need to choose 8 colors with 5 shades of each color.   Sort them from darkest to lightest in each of the 8 colors.   Below is an image of the 40 shades I choose from the Denyse Schmidt Modern Solids collection.

Additional, to the 40 Fat Quarters you will need:

                      LAP                                                                           TWIN
1 1/3 Yard of White Solid for Sashing                       1 3/4 Yard of White Solid for Sashing
1/2 Yard of Black Solid for Binding                          2/3 Yard of Black Solid for Binding
4 Yards for Backing                                                 5 1/4 Yards for Backing


So let's get to cutting.  For the sake of clarity, I will be giving cutting for the quilt color layout I made.  But feel free to switch the color layout around as you desire.

Stack up the 5 shades of one colors Fat Quarters.  Trim the bottom and right hand side to give you a straight edge.   You will be cutting anywhere from 3 to 5 rectangles depending on what color you have stacked up.   If you are doing a LAP size, cut your rectangles 2 1/2" x 11 1/2".  If you are doing a TWIN size, cut your rectangles 3" x 14".

From the Purple and Blue stacks, you need to cut 5 Rectangle Sets each.   From the Red and Green stacks, you need to cut 4 Rectangle Sets each.  From the Orange, Brown, Yellow, and Grey sets, you need to cut 3 Rectangle Sets each.

And a last bit of cutting.   From your White Solid cut the following depending on your size quilt.

                      LAP                                                                           TWIN
(11) 2" x WOF Strips                                                              (13) 2" x WOF Strips
(36) 2" x 10 1/2" Rectangles                                                   (36) 2" x 10 1/2" Rectangles
(36) 1 1/2" x 3 1/2" Rectangles                                               (36) 1 3/4" x 4 1/2" Rectangles


Now, with the cutting all done we are ready to move on to making our blocks.   We are aiming to make 30 total blocks that are 5 rectangles long arranged from darkest to lightest.   Now if you are experience in chain stitching, go right ahead and chain stitch your blocks together skipping the next few steps.  If you are new to chain stitching, I will explain it now ;)

I find it easiest to chain stitch 2 color sets at a time.  This way I have room to lay each set out.   Lay the sets out individually with the stack from darkest to lightest.   Grab the first 2 Rectangles off the first pile.

Align and sew a 1/4" seam along the long edge.  Now when you get to the end of it, don't clip your threads, just grab the first 2 rectangles off the next pile and stitch a 1/4" seam along the long edge.

Continue on in this fashion until you have stitched the first 2 rectangles in all of the sets.   Now, clip your threads and stack your stitched sets in a pile.

Now I like to have the stack of stitched units next to my machine for ease.   Grab the next strip from the first set (which will be the third one) and align it with the first unit in your stack.   Take care to align it on the lighter side.   Stitch a 1/4" seam along the edge.

And once again, you are going to chain stitch the third rectangle to all of the sets.  Then clip your threads and stack up your units again.   Keep repeating this process for the 4 and 5 rectangles until you have your blocks complete for all of the sets.

I found it easiest to chain stitch the Green and Red blocks together and then I did the Grey, Brown, Orange, and Yellow blocks together.  In the end, you will have 30 blocks with the designated number of blocks listed below.   Press your seam allowances towards the dark side :)


And now, we are ready to make these blocks a little Off Kilter.  Once again, I find a little assembly line process here really speeds things up.  So do all of your subcutting for all your blocks first, then you can chain stitch on your white rectangle and then chain stitch the row sewing;)

So for the first Sub-Cut, will be cutting the block into 3 rows.

 For the LAP quilt, measure down 2 1/2" from the top of the block and cut a horizontal line.  Then measure down 3 1/2" from the cut line (or if you didn't move your top row, 6" from the top) and cut a second horizontal line to make 3 rows.

 For the TWIN quilt, measure down 3" from the top of the block and cut a horizontal line.  Then measure down 4 1/2" from the cut line (or if you didn't move your top row, 7 1/2" from the top) and cut a second horizontal line to make 3 rows.

And now, we are going to cut a little more off just the center row.

 For the LAP quilt, measure in 1" from the dark end of the block and cut a vertical line, making the center row just shorter than the top and bottom rows.

 For the LAP quilt, measure in 1 1/4" from the dark end of the block and cut a vertical line, making the center row just shorter than the top and bottom rows.

And now, time to make everything the same length again.  Place a small White Rectangle along the light end of the center row with right sides together.  Stitch a 1/4" seam along the edge.   Once again, press towards the darker side. Chain stitching here will save a lot of time ;)

And now, it just needs to be a block again.  So place the first row onto the second with right sides together.  Align as you go stitching a 1/4" seam along the edge.   Then place the third row onto the now stitched together first and second row.  Align as you go stitching a 1/4" seam along the edge.  Once again, chain stitching ;)

Press the 2 seam allowances open and Wha La.   You have  Off Kilter blocks!!!   You should have a total of 30 blocks.


And now, you get to see it all come together.  I love this part!!!  Layout your 30 blocks as shown below taking care to match the block orientation.  (but you can always change it up if you like ;)

Now, take your 2" White Rectangles and place them between and and at the beginning and end of each row as shown to create sashing strips.

And now we are going to sew the sashing strips to the blocks.  Place the strips along the end of the blocks with right sides together.  Align and sew a 1/4" seam along the edge of each strip.  I like to chain piece one row at a time so I don't get confused ;)  Press the seam allowance towards the sashing strip.

And now, we can sew the sashed blocks into rows.  Place the second block onto the first with right sides together.  Align and sew a 1/4" seam along the edge.   Now place your third block onto the end of your now sewn together first and second block.  Align and sew a 1/4" seam along the edge.   Continue in this fashion for the fourth and fifth blocks.   I don't chain stitch here, I just sew one row at a time ;)  Press the seam allowances towards the sashing.

And now you should have 6 lovely rows that look something like this ;)

Almost there ;)   Grab your White WOF strips and sew them end to end to make one long strip.  Now subcut that long strip into 7 strips.  You can either use the exact measurements which would be for the the LAP size you want to sub-cut (7) 59 1/2" long strips.   For the TWIN size, you want to sub-cut (7) 72 1/2" long strips.  OR, I like to lay out my sashing strips between my blocks and cut based on the length of my block row.

And now, it is just like making the rows, only on a really long scale.    Place the sashing strips onto the pieced rows with right sides together.  Align and sew a 1/4" seam along the edge.

Press the seam allowance towards the sashing strips.

And now you can sew the rows together.   Place the second row onto the first.   And this is where you are going to want to use some pins ;)   Align and pin the rows together. **See next picture.  Sew a 1/4" seam along the pinned edge.   Then repeat the process adding one row at a time.

When pinning, lift up the top row and ensure that your vertical sashing strips are aligned, otherwise it will look Off Kilter in a way you don't want it to ;)

Press the seam allowances towards the sashing and then sit back and enjoy your beautiful Off Kilter quilt top!!!  Wasn't that fun!!!


And now, it is time to Baste It, Quilt It, and Bind It.  I know, I just packed a lot of work in one sentence.   If you are new to quilting, you can see my Finishing Video's here that will walk you through each the steps for finishing up your quilt ;)

When it came time to quilt mine, I decided for some simply wavy lines running vertically down the quilt.  I love how this simple design really adds to the overall movement of the quilt ;)

The thread color is Pearl 402 in So Fine by Superior Threads.  I choose this color because it blended best with the lighter shades.  Of course, you are not going to find a color that blends well with every color in the quilt, but a nice neutral tone will be your best bet ;)  

And then, it's time to bind.  Cut your Black yardage into 2 1/2" strips to create your binding strip.  I machine attached my binding strip, because I just don't like hand stitching all that much ;)

Ad you are done.   Now the only questions is, which way to hang it.   Do you like Dark to Light or Light to Dark??   Seriously, I can't decide :)

I hope you liked this tutorial and this quilt.  If you decide to make your own Off Kilter quilt, I would lvoe to see it!!!!  You can add it to my Happy Quilting Flickr group here ;)  

And that just about wraps things up ;)

Have a Happy Quilting Weekend!!!

Linding this finish up to Sarah's ;)

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Day - Coming Soon and What I Learned :)

I want to thank all of you for your wonderful comments on my query about weekly giveaways.   I read every single comment, and learned a lot from you.  Thank You!!!  I have decided to go forward with the Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Day starting in October!!!!    Here is  how things will work thanks to the info I gained from you along with a few other tidbits listed in no particular order :)

1 - First off, I want to assure everyone that this will not diminish the amount of regular creative projects, fabric, and general quilting goodness shown here ;)  I try to post each day Monday thru Friday.  Sometimes I miss a day, sometimes I post on Saturdays, it is not a hard fast rule.  But as I have looked back over the blog, I almost always have a day in the week where I can't share anything simply because I didn't have time to sew the day before ;)  So this will take the place of me rambling on those days ;)   And if you are wondering why weekly, and not bi-weekly or monthly, well I currently have 12 sponsors.  Weekly is once a quarter for them, that works out nice ;)

2 -  There was a good comment about giveaways taking a lot of posts because you have to first, get people excited about it, then have it, then announce the winner, a total of 3 posts.   I have decided to keep Terrific Tuesday Giveaway day just on Tuesday.  This means that the winner of the previous weeks giveaway will be announced at the beginning of each Giveaway Day post.   So only one post per week ;)

3 - And with the above plan, I should always remember to post a winner on the day I said I would, as I can't really post the new giveaway without choosing a winner ;)  And I will always email the winner, so you don't have to worry if you can't check back :)

4 - And speaking of emailing winners - I can't email you if you are a No-Reply Blogger :(   I can't tell you how many times I read "I never win anything" and then I went to respond to the person and couldn't.  So if you are one of those gals    that feels like they never win, it could be you have been winning, they just can get ahold of you to tell let you know you won!!!   There is a great little tutorial here on how to check if you are and change it if you are ;)  (and I responded to every comment so if you didn't get a response from me, you are one of them ;)  OR you can always just leave your email address at the end of your comment ;)

5 - We are going to keep these giveaways day posts short and sweet.  Since it is a giveaway day, I will try to keep it easy.  I am going to invite my sponsors to share a coupon code along with their giveaway if they so choose as that seemed to be a big hit in your comments.  But mostly it will be who is sponsoring, if there is a current sale or coupon code you should be aware of, and the giveaway ;)    You can always see what is going on with all of the shops in the Sponsor Spotlight Section on the right hand side of the blog.

6 - Along with keeping the posts simple, we are going to keep the entries simple.  The first entry  will always be just leaving a comment.  The second entry  will always  be optional and it will be a myriad of choices and you only have to pick one to enter.  It will include following social media sites, signing up for a newsletter, or picking a favorite item at the shop for those that don't use social media and don't want to clog up their email ;)  Hopefully that works for everyone ;)

7 - I will do my very, very, best to keep all of these giveaways open to international guests ;)  I know there were a lot of concerns there.   But truly, I only ever have a few giveaways that don't include international guests and those are ones that I don't get to set the guidelines on (normally they are book ones where the publisher is heading it up ;)  So Everyone is welcome on Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Day!!!

8 - There will be no Rafflecopter.  Frankly, I don't know how to use it and don't want to take the time to learn because comments seem to have always worked just great ;)

And I think that just about sums it up!!!  Sorry, that was a lot ;)  But I really do appreciate everyone taking the time to chime in on their feelings about giveaways.  It really helped me lay the ground work for this new feature on the blog.  I am looking forward to it and hope it will be a big hit!!

And with that, let me leave you with a little sneak peek.   I am so excited to share this one!!!  Full reveal and tutorial will be on the blog tomorrow ;)

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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Winner and Wavy

This morning I have been quilting up a storm.  I put a quilt on at 8:30 this morning and I took it off right before lunch!!!  Yippee!!!  I quilted wavy lines so ya, not to hard but I love they way they look!!!   And, they do give you the added bonus of getting lots of exercise because you walk back and forth across the long arm so many times ;)    I am using 402 Pearl again, It really is becoming my all time favorite So Fine color ;)

Now I just need to get this bound today, and then take some pictures followed by some computer time and hopefully I will have a tutorial all ready for Friday!!!!  I can't wait to share this one, I am over the moon with how it turned out ;)

And before I sign off, I owe you a winner of the Superior Threads $30.00 Gift Certificate Giveaway!!!

And the lucky Happy Quilting Reader is . . .

Congrats Sylvia!!!!!  I will send you an email ;)

I am off to do some binding ;)  Have a Happy Quilting Day!!!

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Playful Petals - Daisy Fields

Today is my stop on the Playful Petals Blog Tour and I am super excited to share with you some of my thoughts and my project from Corey's amazing book!!!  Corey was part of my first online bee and has become a wonderful friend.  We even got to meet in person at the last market, where we got shushed during a schoolhouse for chatting to much ;)  Corey has always impressed me with her beautiful applique skills and I was so excited to see that her book focuses on petal applique.

No it is no secret that I love applique, but no worries, if you are new to applique and the thought of it makes you want to run for the hills, well slow down.   Corey has an entire section in the book dedicated to the basics of applique.  It walks you through step by step how to do fusible applique.  And it is so fun!!!

This book is filled with so many amazing projects.   There are 9 gorgeous quilt designs and then 9 matching pillow designs to go along with the quilt.  So fun!!!    Corey has such an amazing sense of design and color it made it super hard to pick a project.   Since the theme of this hop is Make It Mini, I decided I wanted to make one of the coordinating pillows, because nothing says Mini Project like a pillow ;)  After a lot of back and forth debating, I finally decided on the Daisy Fields pillow.  Here they are from the book.  So pretty!!!

 And here is my Daisy Fields Pillow ;)

This little mini project was so much fun to put together!!!  I love the instant gratification of seeing a project from start to finish in an afternoon.   I was a little nervous when it came time to turn it from a quilted top to a pillow, because honestly, I haven't done that in a little while.

But there was no need to worry, because Corey has a wonderful Pillow Finishing guide, that reminded me the steps for finishing up my project.  Thanks Corey!!!

 I used fabrics from Art Gallery's Poetica line and then some solid Pure Elements.  I love these beautiful bold prints, they really just make this pillow pop!!

And for the back, I had a favorite fat quarter of Tula Pink's Birds and the Bees stashed away that was just perfect for finishing this project.  I added the binding strip on the cover for that extra little finishing touch ;)  Love it!!

And I choose these prints and colors, because they play so nicely with the Joel Dewberry's Heirloom prints that make up my daughter's Stars Bedspread that I did as my second Quilt-A-Long ;)   Aren't they just so happy together ;)

And this is where this pillow will live :)  She picked out this fun plush reading chair a few days ago and it just needed an extra little pop, quite serendipitous don't you think ;)

So there is just one fun project from Corey's amazing book!!!  Be sure to follow along with the hop to see more Playful Petals inspiration!!  There are just so many great projects I know you are going to love them!!!  This book has certainly made my "to make" list longer ;)  Oh, and a final note, there just happens to be a pretty great giveaway at the end of the hop, just sayin :)

Have a Happy Quilting Day!!!

Linking up to Quilt Story :)

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