Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Day!!!

It's Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Day!! Let's have some fun :)

First, we need to announce the winner from last Terrific Tuesday Giveaway!!  
The winner of the 2  At Home Charm Packs  from  Fat Quarter Shop is . . .   Number #727 . . . Congrats Lee Butler!!!  I have messaged you :)    


And on to today's

Today's Terrific Tuesday Giveaway is being sponsored by  Thousands of Bolts .   Thousands of Bolts has incredible prices that will have you super excited!!!  And yes they are open and working hard to get out orders during this crazy time :)    And right now, you will find incredible bargains shopping in the Thousands of Bolts Sale Section where they just added 400 fabrics!!!      Be sure to check it out :)

And for Today's Terrific Tuesday Giveaway,  Thousands of Bolts is giving one lucky winner a Sand and Sea Pack by Wilmington Prints!!!  Don't these just make you wish you were on the beach :) 

You have two entry chances here on the blog, and please leave a separate comment for each.  All Entries are welcome, including International Entries.   Please just be sure to leave an email address if you are a no-reply blogger ;)  

ENTRY 1 - Simply leave a comment that tells me your favorite thing to do at the beach?? I love the water and enjoy jumping waves with my kiddo's :) 

 ENTRY 2 - Lets show Thousands of Bolts some Love!!!!   You can follow them on   Facebook or Instagram.  Or you can visit The Shop and then share a favorite item ;)   Just be sure to leave a comment of how you showed your Thousand of Bolts Love!!!

And that's it ;)  The giveaway will be open until next Tuesday, July 7th, when I will announce a winner at the beginning of next weeks Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Post :)

You can also pop over to my Instagram and/or Facebook to enter there as well :)  

Good Luck and Have a Happy Quilting Day!!!
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Monday, June 29, 2020

Charming Baby Quilts - Last 2 Remix's Designed!!!

So first I shared these Charming Baby Quilts Remix's and then these 3 Remixes and today I am excited to share the final 2!!!!   Yup, with these 2 finished, that means I have all 10 Charming Baby Quilts redesigned in  EQ8 and all are in the process of being made!!!  So that means in the coming weeks, it will be like all new Charming Baby Quilts shares all the time!!!

So let's share those last 2 Remix's for today ;) 

To The Moon - Original

 To The Moon - Remix
The original version of Shine Bright, is all baby!!!   So I thought it would be fun to give it a more Teen Vibe.  So it needed a color makeover and I think Alexia Abegg's not yet released, Golden Hour Charm Packs has just the perfect fit for a Updated Space feel!!!  And with the Soft Blue Speckled Background, It almost looks like outer space ;)    And by making an additional 19 blocks, this quilt will be Twin Sized at 60" x 84", perfect for a bed of a teen or tween ;)     

And last but certainly not least . . .

On the Move - Original

On The Move - Remix
 I am so super excited about this Remix!!!  I knew I wanted to do one remix with Solids, and you just know how I love to do a Rainbow layout . . . So Solids Rainbow!!!!    I am using 2 of these awesome Super-Sized  Kona Rainbow Charm Pack to have a huge variety in color and I can't wait.   And I added some more blocks and rows, so it will finish at 69" x 83" making it a great throw or lap size!!!  Won't this just be so fun!!!    

So ya . . . that now makes all 10 new Charming Baby Quilts Remix's!!!  You will need a copy of Charming Baby Quilts to make the remix's but I will share the alterations needed for these new sizes when I finish the quilts :)   And I will also add them to the Charming Baby Quilts, All the Quilts, All the Details page to make it easy to find them ;)     Now just to get them all finished up and quilted so I can start sharing!!!! 

And fun side note for all my readers . . . Today and Tomorrow are the last days to use promo code EQ8MELISSA for 20% off all EQ products.  If you haven't guessed by now . . . I just love this program!!!


I hope you all have a very Happy Quilting Day!!!
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Friday, June 26, 2020

Modified Drunkards Path Units Tutorial!!

I love Curved Piecing!!!  And one of my favorite things to curve piece is the Modified Drunkards Path Unit.  It is such a great little building block!!!   It is the Unit I used in my Nordic Nights pattern, and many of my Quilt Along's.  So, just in case you are new to Curved Piecing, I have put together this Modified Drunkards Path Tutorial to help you make your own from start to finish!!!  So let's get going. 

First up . . .


  To start, you will need a Crust and Pie Modern Drunkards Path Template.  You can either purchase custom acrylic templates or you can make your own.  To make your own, print off the Drunkards Path Template or have it from a pattern.  If you print it off, double check that the 1" squares is actually 1".    Trace your templates onto a sturdy surface like thin cardboard or Extra Thick Plastic Template Sheets.  Trace your paper templates and then cut them from your template material.  Don't use your fabric scissors to cut these out.  They will ruin them.  Once your templates are cut double check them back to the pattern to make sure they do not need to be trimmed in any areas. 


Now you have your templates ready and you are all set to start cutting out your Drunkard Path units.  I cut Modified Drunkard's path units in 3 ways.     What you need to cut whether from Print or Background Fabrics will be specified in your pattern, but I will show you all three types of cuts just so you can see how I make them.   From the Largest Square (4 3/4" in this sample) you will cut 1 Crust piece and 1 Pie piece.   From the Medium Square (4 1/2" in this sample) you will cut 2 Crust  pieces.  And from the Smallest Square (4" in this sample) you will cut 1 Pie piece. 

To cut the 1 Pie Piece from the Smallest square:
Align the Pie Template so it is flush in the corner of the square and the sides are aligned.  Now, holding the template in place, gently cut along the outer curve of the template.  You'll be trimming off just a bit as the square is made to fit the template.  This is the easier of the two curves to cut, so just try to stay relaxed and let your blade follow along the outside arch.

To cut the 2 Crust Pieces from the Medium square:
 Start by placing your Crust Template onto the corner of your square so that is flush in the corner and the sides are aligned.  Holding the template in place,  gently cut along the inner curve of the template, gently is the key here.  You will need to cut a tiny bit to start and finish that has no template guide but just keep it straight and aligned with your template.   Then slide the now Pie looking piece out of the way and and then Cut along the Top and Bottom of the template to trim off the excess fabric.

Now spin that pie looking piece 180 degrees and once again place your Crust Template onto the corner of your square so that is flush in the corner and the sides and top and bottom are aligned.    Holding the template in place,  gently cut along the inner curve to give you your second Pie Crust.  This will also give you a Bonus Petal that you can use for Applique on another project, and if your not quite sure what to do with those Bonus Petal's you can see my video tutorial on Applique to get you started!!!

To cut the 1 Pie Piece and 1 Crust Piece from the Largest square:
Align the Pie Template so it is flush in the corner of the square and the sides are aligned.  Now, holding the template in place, gently cut along the outer curve of the template.  

Now spin that large crust looking piece 180 degrees and place your Crust Template onto the corner of your square so that is flush in the corner and the sides and top and bottom are aligned.    Holding the template in place, Cut along the top and bottom of the template to trim the excess squares.  Then gently cut along the inner curve to give you your Crust piece.

Once you have your pieces cut, regardless of what size square you cut them from, simply match the Background Pie pieces with the Print Crust pieces and the Print Pie pieces with the Background Crust pieces as shown.  Then you are ready to start sewing curves!!!

Cutting out curve takes a little practice to get used to  but just relax and you will get it.   The key is when you are coming out of the curve to not press to hard that you cut into your template.  Relax and just let your cutter glide along the edge.   I had to keep reminding myself to relax my hand and let the cutter do the work ;)   And if you have a small 28 mm rotary cutter it really helps in those curves.  But no worries, by the end of cutting your pieces, you will be a pro!!!    

Once you feel that you are getting the hang of cutting, you can speed things up a bit by stacking up 3-4 squares at a time.  Be sure that your blade is sharp so that it will go through all the layers, and again, practice on single squares before you jump into this.  But once you feel confident, this will save a lot of time.


So now your pieces are all cut,  let's learn how to sew them together!!! I like to use 3 pins when sewing curves and will share this method.  Some people use 1 and some people use a ton :)  If you find you want more than 3 pins, fabulous, if you find you like 1, wonderful!!  Do what works best for you :)

Okay, to start, we need to find the center of our pieces, so to do this, fold your Pie and Crust in half and finger press the crease.  It doesn't matter if you are using a Print Pie or Background Pie, just so long as the Crust is the opposite. 

Now, with right sides together, place the Crust onto the Pie aligning the two creases.  Pin the two pieces together along the crease.

Now, grab the end of your Crust and align the two sides with the two sides of your Pie.  These should align perfectly, just like if you were sewing a square together.  Pin in place.    And I like to pin pretty close to the edge so that that alignment won't shift on me.

Then repeat for the other end, again making sure that the two sides are aligned perfectly, just like a square and pin it in place.   And your block is pinned and ready to sew. 


And now you are ready to sew.   Now before we start sewing take a deep breath :)  The more relaxed you are, the easier curves are to sew.  If you get frustrated and tense, it just gets harder, so remember, this is all about having fun :)

The biggest key I have found when sewing curves is to only worry about what is directly in front of your presser foot.  The rest of the block won't line up until it gets there so don't stress about it.   Just keep focused on what is about to go under the foot.

Using a 1/4" foot on your machine, Align your pinned edge with the foot and begin a few stitches.  I like to backstitch 2 stitches once I have started.  This isn't necessary, but I just like to where I pull on this piece when sewing a little more than traditional square blocks.

Now just try to imagine that is just like sewing straight lines only a little more aligning as you go.   I like to use the finger on my right hand to keep the two edges of my fabric aligned and the fingers on my left hand to smooth or pull out any bubbles that are in the way.   Just smooth those outward, you only have to have a 1/4" of flat sewing space.  And again, just worry about smoothing out your sewing patch right before it goes under the presser foot.

Just keep aligning with the right hand and smoothing with the left hand.   The fabrics will ease into position right where they should be as long as you be sure to keep the edges aligned.   Every once and a while, you might find that you need to lift your presser foot to smooth out a stubborn crease and that is all good, just be sure your needle is in the down position.

When you get close to the edge, I find it helpful to slightly pull down on the bottom right corner, this just helps to pull out any last creases, especially when you are dealing with 1/2" width on the Crust piece.

And just like starting, I like to backstitch a few stitches on the end.  Again, it isn't necessary, I just like the idea of holding that seam in place ;)
Now, I just went through that super fast, and I know, it can be hard to tell from the pictures, but just remember, slow and steady and try to relax.   Practice, practice practice and trust me, within a few blocks you are going to be flying through these ;)  Really, it takes longer to pin them then to sew them.


Now you are ready to press your blocks.  You will always be pressing towards the Pie piece. And I know, it seems like it would be easier to press towards the Crust and that it might be the darker fabric, but we press towards the pie so that when we sew these Drunkard Path units together we don't have 4 layers of bulk right where we only have 1/4" of fabric to sew in :)

You can either press from the front, or the back, whichever you prefer.

To Press from the Back . . .
Begin by grabbing the corner of pie with one hand and gently pulling it outward and at the same time pressing the center of the crust seam inward.  Pulling gently will just ensure that we don't have any little bubbles in our seam.

Then, adjust your pulling finger to pull upward and turn your iron point towards the side.  Really be sure and use the point of your iron to press into that seam and keep it nice and flat.  Again, pulling gently will help pull out those bubbles.

And now again, change the direction of your pulling to pull outward and rotate the point of your iron into the remaining corner, being sure to use that point to help get right into the edge of that seam.   It really gets fast when you get the hang of it and you won't have to lift your iron or let go with your other hand, it is just shifting the way are pulling as you go.

Finally, I like to flip my block over and give it a nice press from the front, just as a double check that I didn't get any little bubbles in my seam allowance ;)

To Press from the Front . . . 
I like to start by first finger pressing the seam towards the pie piece.  I don't use a roller or anything, just press it enough so that it isn't trying to flip to the crust piece.

Then I simply take my iron and using the point of the iron at the seam, press the seam flat.  I find it easiest to start at the top and move to the bottom when doing this and sometimes I will run my finger right in front of the iron point to ensure I don't have any bubbles in my seam.

Then, I like to flip my block over and give it a nice press from the back, just as a double check that I didn't get any little bubbles or creases in my seam allowance ;)

And that is all you need to make a Modified Drunkards Path Unit!!!   But one last little. . . 

Helpful Hint - SPEEDING IT UP :)

So if you want to speed things up, you will want to Chain Piece lots of units at a time.  Just sit down and pin a whole bunch of units first.   This is a great time to put in a movie or listen to a great book, or have a chat with a friend on the phone.   Pin up as many as you like!!

Then you can chain stitch your blocks.  To do this, just keep feeding them through your machine one after another.   Once your blocks are all sewn. go ahead and clip the threads between blocks and remove the pins.  And yes, you will note that I don't take my pins out, but rather sew over them.  I don't like my ends shifting, so I just be sure to slow down when I get to a pin (and I only had one needle strike through my whole pile and the needle didn't even break)   With that said, I know I should never recommend sewing over pins so do what you are comfortable with ;)

Then just turn that movie, or book back on while you sit and press your pile.   And just like that . . .

And just like that DONE!!!

You have conquered curves with the Modified Drunkards Path Unit!!!!   I don't square my block up as I don't want to loose my seam allowance and I use the seam rather than the edges to align my pieces when sewing them together.  But if you want to trim your units, they should be trimmed to the size of the Smallest Square from your original cutting (4" in this sample).    When the unit is sewed into your block it will finish at 1/2" smaller than the Unfinished/Trimmed size. (3 1/2" in this sample)

And that is how it is done!!!  An easy 3 Pin method of making Modified Drunkards Path Units from Start to Finish.  I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and find just how easy it is to do Curved Piecing!!!

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to leave them in the comments  :)

Happy Curved Quilting!!!!

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Thursday, June 25, 2020

Tutorial Throwback Thursday - The Basics!!!

Can you believe it, this is the last Thursday throwback!!!  Yup, we have been celebrating throwbacks for nearly a year ;)   Next week will be my 10 Year Anniversary of writting Happy Quilting and you will want to check back in for some super fun!!!   So I figured, since today was the last Thursday throwback , it might be best to start at the beginning :)  As in the Basics!!!  Yup, today isn't one tutorial throwback, but multiple tutorials sharing some of my favorite basics tutorials!!!

So let's get started with the Half Square Triangle!!!!  This is the most basic building blocks of your quilts, and is used in oh so many quilt designs.   I have no idea how many times I have shared tutorials for HST's on my blog, but this was the first Half Square Triangle tutorial ;)   It even goes over the math of how to make multiple sizes and the trimming with both square and rectangle rulers ;)  It is so useful.   And if you are making HST's with Scraps, you can see this Scrappy HST Tutorial.

Next up, my favorite way of making Flying Geese . . .  The No Waste Flying Geese Tutorial.  I love how quick and easy it is to make flying geese this way, and the fact that you don't have to waste anything is a super bonus.   Yes, it is a bit of a pain to cut squares at 3/8" or 7/8", (and you really have to cut them at that size, they don't work if you fudge up to 1/2" or 1") but it is totally worth it.   These go together fast making 4 at a time and you are sewing them all with squares, super fun and super easy!!!  And of course, the tutorial goes over the math of how to make all your Flying Geese, regardless of size, using this method.  

And did you know that I have Video Tutorials??  This one is throwing back 8 years but it is about as basic as it gets.   Finishing your quilt is something we all do with every quilt!!!  This Finishing Your Quilt Video Tutorial Series goes over Basting, Quilting, and Binding :)   These are super helpful if you are starting out learning how to bind, and machine quilt, and there are some more Machine Quilting Tutorials on my Video Page as well, just scroll down a bit ;)  And finally, I love to do my Binding by machine, as I am a horrible hand stitcher :)  And if you want to make a Custom Scrappy Binding to match your quilt, you can see this Custom Binding tutorial.   

And while we are talking Video's, I also have an Applique Basics Video Tutorial Series!!!! (just scroll bast the beginner basics :)     I love to do applique, and wanted to share how much easier it is than we initially think it is going to be.   It is such a great way to add a pop of fun to your quilts and really is fun and fast to do.   And when you are done with the basics, you can always move up to Complex Layered Applique using this Tutorial.  Now that is a pop of fun!!! 

And finally, One of my favorite tutorials on basics is how to incorporate Leaders and Enders into you quilting.    This is such a great way to basically make free bonus quilts!!!   I always have a stack of squares next to my machine and love that I never have to worry about wasting thread or having my machine come unthreaded with this method.   And it has made some amazing Bonus Quilts like this Postage Stamp, Irish Chain, and many more!!!

And those are some of my favorite Basic Tutorials that I use all the time!!!!    I hope you have enjoyed today's Tutorial Throwback Thursday and find some helpful tools in your quilting ;)    I have so enjoyed this year of Throwback Thursday's and how you have enjoyed it as well!!!   And as I said earlier, be sure to pop back in next Thursday for my 10 Year Anniversary Celebration!!!  

Happy Quilting!!!!
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