Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Books bring on a math refresher course.

** Note - If you are looking for the ChristaQuilts Kona Solids Giveaway you will find it here :)

Yesterday afternoon I spent 3 1/2 making this little book block.  Crazy, I know.  I mean seriously, you look at this and think, 10 maybe 15 minutes right.  We'll here's the story.


When I first designed this little angled block I figured easy, just take a large square, slice it diagonal and add a piece to each side, then just add a strip to the top and bottom and square it up.  Easy, pretty, very little waste, and no need for paper piecing knowledge,  Right!!!  Wrong.  It could be right for improv. quilting, but . . .


This little guy is going in a designed quilt and needed specific measurements.  That is what I figured out in attempt 1.  Just adding to the sides and not worrying about the size of the square made for way to much of an angle and trimming it would have cut off the book.

So, I start trying to remember my geometry and angles, (I am sure there are easier ways of doing this but my mind was set and I was going to figure it out!!)  Attempt 2 found me closer to the right angle so I was getting excited but then I realized a new thing to worry about.  My book corners needed to be 1/4" away from the edges or I would be having a floating book.  Grrr!!  I start trying to figure out how to make this work, try and remember more math, and set to it again.  (Honestly, I am sure I could have walked away and come back with a better plan, but sometimes you just get that tunnel vision ;)

Once again, I tweak a bit here and a bit there, and get pretty excited because Attempt 3 is oh so close, I mean seriously, it was off by like 1/2".  I start to wonder why I ever doubted.  (Although 2 1/2 hours have been lost with nothing to show. )  Once last trial run and attempt 4 gets all trimmed up and I smile and resist the urge to start pumping my fist and shouting "I am smarter than a 5th grader!"


Time to try it out on the real thing!!    Yup, perfectly trimmed to my designated size and each corner floating a perfect 1/4" away from the edge.  Yippee Skippee!!


Add it into it's block and you have an adorable little book shelf.


Oh, and I think the biggest motivation to get this figured out was that this will be part of a tutorial!!  I am so excited to share the rest of what I have envisioned. (Especially now that the math class is over.)

Have a Happy Quilting Day!!




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19 comments:

  1. Such a great block!! I am so terrible at maths I would have given up before I started ;)

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  2. Sewing is a great reminder of why I should have paid more attention at maths! Well done on getting there in the end - can't wait to see the tutorial.

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  3. Yes! I made a bookshelf quilt once and didn't even realize until the whole thing was completely finished that I had floating books. I'm so excited you are going to write a tutorial for this. Your hard work will be much appreciated. :)

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  4. Here's a link to a bookcase quilt, in case you need more inspiration http://www.fandominstitches.com/2011/05/harry-potter.html. It is a free paper pieced project, and a couple of books are leaning in this one.

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  5. Oh I have been this person in a bee block last year that was for precisely this, a book shelf with one on an angle, it was a total nightmare, and I have a maths degree lol

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  6. there's a BOOK out where it's a bunch of books on shelves like yours and some books are tilted, I have it on my to-do list for our local literacy center.
    I think the book is called modern quilts, I saw it at our library, your block looks great though

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  7. I look very much forward to your tutorial! I've been wanting to do a bookshelf quilt, but it intimidates me like nothing else. :)

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  8. Congratulations on the Math and the Block. I didn't do well in math, just getting the basics for Nursing. Now they have machines that figure things all out. Much better than human error for an IV. I love this block. I would love a tutorial and you are a prize for figuring it all out. Wow, how will be able to thank you!

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  9. While I think you are an angel, yes I do, I think your book is at an angle. But it looks great. I'm so impressed, I would never, never even try.

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  10. Looks terrific!! Way to stick to it and figure it out! We must never give up!!

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  11. Funny how these things come back to us... I did a little fabric basket and needed to figure out how big the bottom circle needed to be. The formula for finding the diameter of a circle came to me in the middle of the night, and I had to calculate it immediately on my phone. LOL. But in the morning, I cut my circle and it was perfect. So way to go on your angle block. It looks very cool.

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  12. i love this idea. My daughters 2nd grade teacher passed from Breast Cancer last week and she was a huge book lover. It would be neat to make this and put some of her favorite titles on the spines. I think i just created myself a project!

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  13. What a fantastic block! It was worth the time and effort :-)

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  14. Yikes! That shows patience and perseverance!

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  15. very nice...It all turned out for the best :)
    vickie.vanathotmail.com

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  16. I can't wait to see your tutorial, Melissa. Thanks for doing the hard work for us.

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Thank you so much for your sweet comments. I just love hearing from you!!
Have a Happy Quilting Day :)

Melissa