Friday, February 6, 2015

Modern Building Blocks - Back to Nature Edition

Yippee!!!  I am so excited to share this finish this morning.  My Modern Building Blocks, Back to Nature Edition quilt is finished!!!!

Now, when I first started this quilt the idea was to have a quilt that I could make a few blocks a month.  No deadline, no assembly line sewing, just making each little block one at a time.   And then I started putting them together ;)

They were so much fun to put together I couldn't stop!!!!   I started with all of the little 6" blocks and worked my way up to these super large blocks!!!  And I can honestly say that I had fun sewing each and every block.  It was such a blast to put together and an excellent technique workshop as well ;)  I just love all of those happy points!!!

I love the beautiful tones in this quilt.  It just blows me away that you can have so many wonderful different blocks but yet because of the colors it is still calm.  I used mostly Denyse Schmidt Fat Quarter Solids and then some Kona Solids and Bella Solids for the bigger pieces :)

When it came time to quilt it, I decided to go with a wavy cross hatch ;)  I love the added dimension it gives to the quilt ;)  And, I wore my pedometer and got in a mile of walking back and forth across the long arm ;)  I have always wanted to see how far I walk when I do this kind of stitching ;)

I know it will probably be asked, but I think this is my favorite bock in the quilt.   It took me forever to decide :)

And in case you are wondering, I changed the layout from the original pattern as I wanted the quilt to be square :)  Luckily, everything was divisible by 6 so it wasn't to hard to rearrange ;)  And all I had to do was make one additional 6" block and it all worked out ;)

And that's my Modern Building Blocks : Back to Nature Edition ;)   And can I just sum up by saying I Love This Quilt!!!!!!!!

Thanks for stopping in today ;)
And I always want to say a quick Thank You for all of your sweet comments on my new Irish Chain Twist Quilt-A-Long.  I am so excited for this!!!   If you want to join up, we are just starting cutting this week ;)

Have a Happy Quilting Weekend!!!

Linking this finish up to Sarah's and Amandas  and Quilt Story ;)

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Thursday, February 5, 2015

Irish Chain Twist Quilt-A-Long - Cutting

**  NOTE  - This post is part of a series of posts for the Irish Chain Twist Quilt-A-Long.  If you would like to join (and have a chance to win $100.00 or $75.00 Gift Certificate grand prizes sponsored by The Intrepid Thread and Fat Quarter Shop ) you can find a list of the post links here :)  Here is the schedule

Cutting - Feb 5th
Improvisational Piecing Units - Feb 12th
Improvisational Piecing Block - Feb 19th
Twists on Tradition Units - Feb 26th
Modern Patchwork Block - Mar 5th
Appliqued Chains Block - Assembling - Mar 12th
Appliqued Chains Block - Stitching - Mar 19
Piecing Top and Grand Prize Linky - Mar 26th
Parade and Grand Prizes - April 23rd

So here we are at February 5th , so let's get right to it :)  


All of the cutting will be done using the same type of charts that we have been using so far.  Simply find the project that you are making and that will tell you the cutting you need to do.   Here is the finished sizing chart, just in case you need a reminder of what project you are doing :)


We will start but cutting out all of the "print" fabrics. - And before you start any cutting, be sure to read through to the end of the post.  I added some helpful hints after the charts to aid in your cutting ;)

The cutting has been broken down into the different blocks.  That means, if you are doing the 4 Fabric Layout or the Multi 4 Color Layout you will want to make sure you match the fabric you selected for each block with the cutting for that block.  If you are doing a scrappy layout just cut it up random ;)  If you aren't quite sure what layout you are doing or what fabrics go to what block just check back here for the Fabric Requirements ;)  

 Cut your Print Fabrics according to the chart below.


And now, we can move onto the background fabric :)

I have kept the background cutting grouped by the three kinds of blocks.  I thought it might be helpful to group your background pieces with your print pieces once they are cut so that it makes it easy to begin each set of blocks ;)

Cut your Background Fabrics according to the chart below.


Here are a few helpful tips and some tidbits I found for this specific quilt-a-long.  This is the way I like to cut, it is not the only way to cut, so if you do it different, great :)  Do what you are comfortable with.  There just might be some tidbits that might help save you some time and eliminate waste.  But be sure to see #6 as it is important ;)

1 - Always press your fabrics first, it takes a second more but will help in keeping your pieces accurate.  I like to keep my iron at a super hot setting and use a little extra water from a spay bottle if I have any creases or folds that don't want to come out with a simple pass of the iron.

2 - Check the sharpness of your blade before starting to cut so you can layer your fabrics.  You can cut 2-3 fabrics at a time to speed things up so be sure your blade is sharp.   Just don't get overzealous with your layering.  3 fabrics is 6 layers and any more than that and they will want to shift on you ;)

3 - Whenever cutting yardage, I always like to cut with the fold in my fabric lined up along the 0 horizontal line on my cutting mat.  I always start by cutting a straight edge along the left hand side of my fabric and then (as long as my yardage is short enough) trim the selvages from the top of my fabric.

4 - I like to cut my fabrics in strips and use the lines on my mat as cutting guides rather than my rulers.  Once I cut all of the strips I need, I slightly separate the different size strips, still keeping them aligned along the 0 horizontal line and the nearest vertical line, and then sub-cut the strip using the horizontal lines on my mat. When sub-cutting, I always start at the top of my strip and work my way down, thus allowing the scrap to be on the fold and creating 1 large scrap instead of 2 small scraps.  Any extra of that strip can normally be sub-cut  into smaller pieces needed thus eliminating waste. (see #6)  This allows me to cut a lot of pieces quickly.  (and in this picture, I wouldn't normally separate all of these 2" strips, I just did that so you could see them ;)


5 - If you are doing the Mulit-4 Color Layout or even the Scrappy Layout try to get an even mix of your fabrics in the project.   To do this, I like to cut my largest strips first.  Because my fabrics are stacked up, this allows me to trim down any extra strips.  So for example, I needed (10) 3" x WOF Strips and (8) 2 1/2" x WOF strips.  So I cut my 4 stacks of 3" strips and 3 Stacks of 2 1/2" strips.  Then I trimmed down 2 individual 3" strips to 2 1/2" strips and I have exactly the strips I need with just about the same amount of fabric from each print ;)    So when cutting my strips, I always like to start with the largest piece first.  So I cut a strip the width of my largest piece.  I needed  and then sub-cut that strip as needed.  When sub-cutting, I always start at the top of my strip and work my way down, thus allowing the scrap to be on the fold and creating 1 large scrap instead of 2 small scraps.  Any extra of that strip can normally be sub-cut  into smaller pieces needed thus eliminating waste.

6 - When submitting on the diagonal, I like to cut my squares first and then without moving them on my mat, align my ruler diagonally, using the corners as my squares for guides, and sub-cut them all at once.  This saves a lot of time.  And these are for the improv block so if you don't get them pefectly right on, don't stress, it's no big deal.   And a  big time cutting note - on the Background X Improv cutting of 6" x 6" squares, you will need to cut 7 per strip!!  (the fabric requirements are based on this)   Meaning, you have to use one piece on the fold.   So this is how I like to do it . . . when you layout your fabric on your board, cut across the 21" line, the 15" line, the 9" line, and the 3" line and you will have 6 layed out 6" x 6" squares and 1 folded 6" x 6" square that you will want to press and then cut in half diagonally.  (the ones in the top left corner ;)

7 - A few of you had asked about using fat quarters instead of 1/4 yard cuts.  You can still use them.  Just make this little change . . . where it says the WOF strips just cut (2) 21" strips instead of  1 WOF strip  :)

And I think that just about covers it!!!


I hope these cutting tips help :)  I know that with the different sizes and layouts it can easily be confusing, so if you have any questions at all please don't hesitate to ask in a comment or email me at  :)   Here's my fabrics all cut up!!! It's not to much cutting, so sharpen your blade and go to it . . . and once you are done you get to the fun part, you can enter to win the weekly prize :)

The Weekly Prizes is being sponsored by the Green Fairy Quilts and a huge thanks goes to them for their support of the Irish Chain Twist Quilt-A-Long.

This weeks  prize is a $15.00 Gift Certificate to Green Fairy Quilts!!!

So what do you have to do for a chance to win this Gift Certificate?  Simple . . . Just link up your fabrics all cut up at the end of this post :)  You can link to a blog post, flickr picture, Instagram, Facebook . . .  or whatever.  Just make sure to link up by next Thursday morning as I will be announcing a winner at the beginning of next weeks post :)

If you don't get your cutting done by next week you can still link it up :) (just not in time for the prize :)    The linky will remain open until the end of the Quilt-A-Long.  So if your out of town, or just had a busy week, no worries!!!  Just link up when you can :)

And Don't forget to add your beautiful cut up fabric to the Happy Quilting Quilt-A-Long Flickr group and to post it on social media with using #irishchaintwistqal.    I am so excited to see all of your beautiful fabrics all cut up ;)

So let's get cutting!!!  And if you have questions, don't hesitate to email me at  Have a Happy Quilting Day!!

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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

It's still January, right ;)

Because I am just finishing up my January Bee Blocks ;)   Oops, that retreat in the last week of January set me back a bit.  But anyhow . . . I had a lot of fun with this months blocks!!!

Erica from the Beejeebers bee has us make the Great Granny Blocks.  I have had these on my "to do" list for so long so it was so fun to finally whip some up.  And yes, they are so much fun to make!!!  Must make an entire quilt someday ;)  

And for the Bees Knees, April had us make a new block that she has designed.  She will be sharing more about this in the coming months ;)  It was a fun and fast block to put together and I just love the way it works.  Might have to make a whole quilt of these too ;)  So may quilts, so little time ;)

And, I found that Bee Blocks are a great Leader and Ender project as well.  I got so many more 2 patches sewn together for the while making these 3 blocks.   My pile is growing for the Lets Go For It Quilt-A-Long and I am just loving the Leader Ender concept.  I think I will always have to have little 2 1/2" squares next to my computer going forward.  Love It!!!

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Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Day!!!

It's Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Day . . . let's have some fun :)

First, we need to announce the winner from last weeks Terrific Tuesday Giveaway!!   The winner of the $25.00 Gift Certificate from Discover Fabric  is . . .   Number 103. . . Congrats Beth!!   I have emailed you :)


And on to today's

Today's Terrific Tuesday Giveaway is being sponsored by Southern Fabric!!   Southern Fabric has an amazing selection of fabrics and deals, including their Deal of the Day!!!  Just check out under Sales and Specials for each day's Deal.  They are awesome!!!   

And the Terrific Tuesday Giveaway is for a $25.00 Gift Certificate to Southern Fabric!!!   One lucky reader is going to get a fun filled shopping spree!!!  

You have two entry chances, the second being optional, 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 what the weather is like where you are ;)  

 ENTRY 2 - Show your Southern Fabric love. You can follow them on FacebookTwitter PinterestBloglovin, or You Tube.  You can Sign up for the Southern Fabric Newsletter (middle on the right of the page) ,  Follow Their Blog, or you can Visit the Shop and then share a favorite item ;)   Just be sure to leave a comment of how you showed your Southern Fabric Love!!!

And that's it ;)  The giveaway will be open until next Tuesday, February 10th when I will announce a winner at the beginning of next weeks Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Post :)

Good Luck and Have a Happy Quilting Day!!!

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Monday, February 2, 2015

Cedar Quilt Retreat

Starting Wednesday night and running through Saturday of this last week was the Cedar Chest Quilter's Guild 9th Annual Retreat!!  It was oh so much fun.  First up on Wednesday night was a Meet The Teacher and Show and Tell night.   This is where the teachers show the quilts that they will be teaching at the retreat and retreat participants can bring quilts that they took classes from in previous years and show them off.

I taught Summer Breeze and Starburst last year and these 2 ladies got theirs all finished up and they were just gorgeous!!!  So pretty!!

 And I taught Braided Irish Chain 2 years ago and this was one of the finishes from then.  Of course, not everyone can bring their quilts with limited packing space, but it sure is fun to get to see those little class beginnings turn into beautiful finished quilts!!!

Thursday Morning I had my first class.   This was a Petal Pop class.  (pattern coming to the blog soon) .   These ladies were so amazing!!!  They all worked so hard and just about everyone went home with a complete finished block, some even 2 ;)  Isn't it so fun to see how much a quilt changes up just by using different fabric ;)

Thursday Night I taught my Wonky Irish Chain class.  And as always, we had such a great time ;)  This is such a fun quilt to put together and everyone did fantastic!!!  There were lots and lots of block 1 finishes all around.  And they are just showing 1 but they made multiple Block 1's :)  Great job ladies!!!

Friday Morning was my last class and it was another Petal Pop class.  It was so popular it filled up in just 2 weeks, so they added a second class of it ;)    I just love teaching, everyone in my classes were so great.  It is just so fun to share time with people who are enthusiastic about quilting as you are ;)  And everyone did just amazing work!!!

I didn't know it, but Barbara snapped a few shots of me teaching when I wasn't paying attention ;)  Yup, I am just as goofy happy teaching as I am here on the blog ;)

Friday night was the All Night Sew and sadly, I forgot to take my Camera.   Nothing like sewing into the wee hours of the morning with 200 other women.  Oh, so much fun.   I did however take a picture of what I was doing majority of the time during all night sew.  Oh ya, just trimming away ;)

And Saturday morning it all came to a close and I spent the afternoon with the kids catching up on some Mom time ;)   All in all, an absolutely amazing weekend!!!  I know I say it every time, but I just love to teach quilting!!!!   If you are in the California Area, I will be teaching at the Glendale 
Quilt Retreat on March 13th.  I would love to see you there :)  I already am looking forward to it ;)

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