Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Day!!!

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

But first, we need to announce the winner from last weeks Terrific Tuesday Giveaway!!  
The winner of Creekside Jelly Roll from Fat Quarter Shop is . . .   Number # 48. . . Congrats cathy!!!   I have emailed you :)        


And on to today's

Today's Terrific Tuesday Giveaway is being sponsored by Warm Crochet.   Warm Crochet sent me a pair of their beautiful scissors a week ago and I just love them.  They are absolutely perfect for clipping chain stitching as they are super sharp and so comfortable in the hand.  And they are so pretty as well, double bonus!!!  Along with the giveaway, Warm Crochet is offering all Happy Quilting readers 10% off your purchase with the coupon code HQMC!!!  So fun :)  

And for today's Terrific Tuesday Giveaway, Warm Crochet is giving one luck reader a Pair of Scissors of their choice!!!     You can choose from Red Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Bronze.  Some one is going to get super lucky and add the perfect addition to their stitching goodness :)


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 if you have ever tried to Crochet??  (I haven't tried, but my SIL is amazing and I need to get a lesson from her one of these days :)  

 ENTRY 2 - Show your Warm Crochet  love.  Visit The Shop and then tell me your favorite  . . .Red Bronze, Silver, Gold or Bronze????

And that's it ;)  The giveaway will be open until next Tuesday, October 24th , when I will announce a winner at the beginning of next weeks Terrific Tuesday Giveaway Post :)

Good Luck and Have a Happy Quilting Day!!!

GIVEAWAY CLOSED - The Winner is Number #50 . . . Congrats Abbigail
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Monday, October 16, 2017

Patchwork Quilt Along - Country Road

It's  time for the tenth set of  Patchwork Quilt Along Blocks hosted by the Fat Quarter Shop!!!! And wow, only two more months to go over this, so exciting!!!!  Today's Patchwork Quilt Along blocks are the Country Road Blocks and they are just to fun!!  

This block was so fast and fun, it really went together in no time at all.  And even with the tiny patchwork, there are no seams to line up on this one so it really is a snap ;)  And doesn't it just look so cute!!!  I think this would be so fun to do in a quilt all by itself!!! 

So if you are quilting along you can download the block pattern right here and then you can pop on over to donate $5.00 to the Make a Wish Foundation for your download  ;)  The goal has been reached and now you can just donate in general to Make a Wish!!!  

And don't forget to check out the super cute  You Tube video that walks you through making the block  and you even get to listen to some super peppy tunes along the way!!!    

And be sure to share all of your Patchwork progress on social media with #patchworkquiltalong and pop over to all of the fabulous bloggers who are quilting along for some Country Road Block eye candy :)    I just love seeing everyone's blocks in happy little stacks!!!

*Bonnie of Cotton Way (@bonniecottonway)
*Camille of Thimble Blossoms (@thimbleblossoms)
Amanda from Jedi Craft Girl (@jedicraftgirl)
Amy of Diary of a Quilter (@diaryofaquilter)
Andy of A Bright Corner (@abrightcorner)
Debbie of Happy Little Cottage (@happylittlecottage1)
Greg of Grey Dogwood Studio (@greydogwoodstudio)
Heidi of Buttons and Butterflies (@buttonsandbutterflies)
Melissa of Happy Quilting (@happyquiltingmc)  (that's me :) 
Melissa of Oh How Sweet (@ohhowsweet)
Pat Sloan of PatSloan.com (@quilterpatsloan)
Sedef of Down Grapevine Lane (@downgrapevinelane)
Sherri of A Quilting Life (@aquiltinglife)
Sondra of Out of the Blue Quilts (@sondradavison)
Taunja of Carried Away Quilting (@taunjalynn)
Tina of Emily Ann's Kloset (@emilyannskloset)
Carrie Nelson/Miss Rosie of Moda Cutting Table

If you have any questions about the quilt along, you can pop on over to the Patchwork Quilting Along page and your pretty sure to find the answer there ;)  This tiny patchwork is just so much fun!!

And have you heard . . . Fat Quarter Shop has announced next year's Charity Quilt Along benefiting St. Jude Children Research Hospital and I am so excited!!!  Make room in your calendar for the Clementine Quilt Along starting January 2018.    You are not going to want to miss this :)  You can pop over to the Clementine Quilt Along page to get lots more details and get all set for some quilt along fun!!


Have a Happy Quilting Day!!
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Friday, October 13, 2017

I Love Star Blocks x 4!!!!

If you have been hanging around my blog for any time, it is no surprise that I love to piece and design Star Quilts!!!  A majority of the quilts in the annual Quilt Along's are star designs and I can't even count how many different Star Quilt tutorials there are ;)  So when the wonderful folks at Martingale asked if I wanted to contribute a design or 2 to their new I Love Star Blocks book, the newest book in their Block-Buster Quilts series,  I was all over it!!!

And can I tell you how shocked and excited I was when I heard back that not 1 or 2, but 4 of my Star Quilt Designs had been selected for this new I Love Star Blocks book!!!!!   Off to the sewing races I went and I am so super excited today to get to share each of those 4 quilts with you!!!  So let's get to it ;)

My first quilt in the book is Sunrise, Sunset which is kind of a funny name as we are talking about Stars, but I liked the play on words.  I had so much fun designing this quilt and creating an almost 3-D effect of the 2 Star Blocks.  And even though it has lots of intermixing designs, it still goes together super fast and easy with lots of strip piecing and a basic block with some fun sashing.   

I choose my favorite Grunge Fabrics by Basic Grey for Moda as I love the added texture it gives to a basic solid.   I choose the colors to add to the Sunrise, Sunset theme with beautiful gold-oranges for the sunrise, and lovely cool blues for the sunset.  And I just love how those beautiful tones just pop around those grey and white diamonds.  

When it came time to quilt, I decided to do an all over Swirl and Curl.  I love adding fun curves in the quilting to star quilts because it just perfectly compliments all the happy points in the piecing :)  And it is also super fun and fast, and since I was making 4 quilts in basically a 2 quilt deadline, fast was important ;)

Sunrise, Sunset finishes at 84" square so it is just perfect to take out on an evening picnic and then lay out and watch the stars come up :)    And it's super quick to get started on as you just need to grab some basic yardage and your ready for some strip piecing fun!!

County Fair is the next quilt.  And it uses a layered star effect to create 2 fun blocks.  The great thing is the blocks are both created the same way and just flipped , making it fun and easy to create and giving you 2 dynamic patchwork star blocks!!  And both blocks have an updated yet classic Star Block appearance, one that you might have seen entered into a County Fair, hence the name ;)

I used Fig Tree Quilts gorgeous Coney Island Fabrics for Moda which was the perfect fit for this summertime fair quilt.  It really adds to the playful nature of the happy, scrappy blocks and I just love the wonderful colors.  

And since no Fair is complete without some fireworks, I quilted an all over Fireworks design on this quilt.  It really adds wonderful texture and it just perfect for the happy feel of this quilt.   And of course, I used my favorite 402 So Fine Thread for the perfect blend in that beautiful neutral background. 

County Fair finishes at 80" square, making great on a Full size bed or perfect to take to all the summer ball games.   And it is Fat Quarter Friendly, so all you have to do is grab a bundle and get sewing!!!

Scrappy Stars is my third quilt in the book and is just like it is named, Scrappy!!!  I had so much fun playing with patchwork in different sized stars that range from 8" finished all the way up to 32" :)  And then to see them all come together in the happy composition, eeekk, I just love it!!  It really just makes me smile every time I see it's scrappy goodness. 

I used Corey Yoder's whimsical LuLu Lane fabrics for Moda and I just love the softness they add to all that scrappy patchwork goodness.  And the prints have a fun playful feeling to them as well that add to the happy feeling of the quilt, just a perfect fit!!!

I did a little custom quilting on this one and I just had to play a little more in those giant stars!!!  I love adding echoed arches to stars both in the center and points, as it just adds another dimension to the stars, so fun!!!  And then I filled the background with wonderful curly q's which are always fun to do :)

Scrappy Stars finishes at 80" square as well, again making it perfect for a full size bed.  How happy would this be in a little girls room.  Or, if you wanted to make it for your own bed, just add a border to make it a little larger.  The scrappy goodness will just make you smile every time you come into your room.   And you can bust some serious scraps making this quilt, or if you want all your fabrics from one line like I did, just grab a Fat Quarter bundle and your good to go.

And the final quilt of mine in the book is Hunter Star.  And before you get nervous, there is no crazy diamond piecing with y seams in this version of Hunter Star.   Just a little organization of your color layout is needed with some basic HST's and you can make a simple yet gorgeous Hunter Star Quilt !!

I used Desert Bloom fabrics  designed by Sherri and Chelsi for Moda and I just love how those prints pop!!!  It is important in this quilt to choose a fabric where each print really "reads" a particular color and each one is also bold enough to stand out from the background, and Desert Bloom was just perfect!!!    I love how it just really makes the Hunter Star design pop!!!

And since this is such a classic quilt, I decided to use two of the most classic quilting motifs I could think of, you know, the ones we all start learning on.  The basic stipple or meander and a little loop-d-loop.  And then I quilted dense straight lines on the Stars to really add some yummy texture and make them pop as the focal feature.   And i just love those happy stars ;)

Hunter Star finishes at 96" square so it is perfect for a Queen bed with some wonderful drape, or a King Bed to top the bed with star goodness!!!   It is really a stunner when all put together that gives you that classic look without all the stress.   And with those big blocks, you know this is Fat Quarter friendly, all you have to do is find the perfect bundle to make those stars pop and you can get going on this classic quilt made easy :)

And those are my 4 quilts that can be found in Martingale's new I Love Star Blocks and I am am just so thrilled that I got to be a part of this amazing compilation of Star quilts!!!!  It is amazing to me, no matter how many star quilts I make, there are always more Star quilts to be designed and they are always so much fun to make!!!

I Love Star Blocks is now available wherever quilts books are sold and if you are like me and truly love Star Quilts, this is a great book to add to your quilting library.  As you can see from the cover, there are 16 amazing Star Quilts made by yours and my quilty friends and each are uniquely wonderful.  You are so going to love I Love Star Blocks!!!

Thank you so much for popping in today and sharing this Secret Sewing reveal with me.  It's hard to keep secrets for over a year, but it is always so fun to get to finally share ;)  I just love these Star Quilts and hope you do as well and that maybe they will inspire you to some very Happy Quilting this weekend!!!

Linking up these 4 Star Quilt Finishes to Amanda's, Sarah's, and Myra's ;)

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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Roundabout Quilt Along - Half Square Triangles with Goosed Corners

**  NOTE  - This post is part of a series of posts for the Roundabout Quilt-Along.  If you would like to join (and have a chance to win one of three $75.00 Gift Certificates from Fat Quarter Shop ) you can find a list of the post links here :)  Here is the schedule
October 11th - Half Square Triangles with Goosed Corners - That's Today!!
October 25th - Drunkards Path
November 8th - Building Blocks
November 22nd - Piecing Top and Grand Prize Linky
December 13th - Roundabout Parade and Grand Prize Winners

Now, first off for this week, we need to pick a winner for the Flying Geese Assignment.   And great job to everyone on their gaggle of geese!!!  It is so much fun to be quilting-a-long with you all!!!

The Flying Geese assignment winner who gets a collection of Matilda Fat Quarters from Four Peaches Fabric is . . .
#3 - Christmas Geese (which is Danette)!!! - Congrats :)


And now it's on to a new weekly assignment . . .  so let's get right to it :)  If you are just finding this QAL, it's never to late to join in the fun :)


Half Square triangles are fun and fast and probably the most versatile building block in all of the piecing units you can make.  (At least in my opinion :)

Start by gathering all your squares for the HST's, print fabrics and background fabrics.    These are the squares you labeled with HST and should measure one of the following sizes.
For a 15" Block - 6" x 6" squares
For a 18" Block - 7" x 7" squares
For a 21" Block - 8" x 8" squares

So has everyone found their squares??  Excellent, let's make some Half Square Triangles!!!
Start by using a ruler to draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of all of your print fabrics.   I like to draw my lines with a Frixion Pen as the lines will disappear with heat.   Note - If you have a marked 1/4" line on your machine (like I explained in last years QAL)  lots of times you can skip the drawing step, but where these HST's are so big, I still drawn the line, just to let you know ;)

Take a print square and a background square and align them with rights sides together.  Pin both sides adjacent to that drawn line, be sure to place them far enough out to leave room for your presser foot to stitch on by.  Depending on the size of the square will determine how many pins you want to use. (if you use any at all, if you are feeling confident and your squares aren't to large, you can stitch these without pinning :)   Stitch a seam 1/4" from EITHER side of the drawn line (the black lines represent your stitching lines :)

And just like our Flying Geese, the easiest way to do this is to chain stitch in assembly line fashion ;)  So just like in the Flying Geese, Start by stitching a 1/4" seam on the left hand side of the drawn line. Chain stitched all your paired squares making a very long snake.  There will be 2 squares sets for each of your blocks. 

 Then clip the threads between the squares, stack them up, and you are ready for more stitching.  Now stitch the 1/4" seam on the other side of the drawn line.  Once they are all stitched,  clip the threads between the squares and stack them up.

Now, with the stitching done, it's time to do some more cutting.   Align your ruler along the drawn center line (or from corner to corner).   Cut along the edge of your ruler, creating two triangles that each have a 1/4" seam along the long side.

Now Pressing.  (and this is where I like to watch a good movie hence why my bedspread is in the photo :)     Press your HST units towards the print fabric.  I prefer to press them from the front rather than the back, but do what is comfortable for you :)

And now the fun part, trimming.  You will be trimming your blocks to 1/2" smaller than their original size.  So that means trim to the following sizes :

For a 15" Block - 5 1/2" x 5 1/2" squares
For a 18" Block - 6 1/2" x 6 1/2" squares
For a 21" Block - 7 1/2" x 7 1/2" squares

 I am making 21" blocks so this trimming example will have raw 8" HST's that are being trimmed to 7 1/2" square.  So lets start ;)  Begin by aligning the 45 degree line on your square ruler with the seam line on your half square triangle.  Make sure that the raw edges of the half square triangle are over the 7 1/2" line's on your ruler.  Trim the 2 sides along the edge of the ruler.  There won't be a whole lot to trim.

Now spin your half square triangle unit 180 degrees.  Once again, align the 45 degree line on your ruler with the seam line on your half square triangle.  Align the raw edges of the half square triangle under the ruler on the 7 1/2" lines on your ruler.  Trim the 2 sides along the edge of the ruler.

And you have perfectly square Half Square Triangles.  They are just so pretty!  And I know, it seems like a lot of work to just trim off a little, but having perfect HST's allows the next step where we Goose the Corners to be right on, otherwise, you blocks are not going to align right ;)

Now, when I trim, I like to do some massive assembly trimming.  (again, this saves some time ;)   So I lay out as many units as I can fit on my large cutting mat at once and I trim the first two sides on all of my HST's.  If you have the exact size ruler that you are trimming it helps as you don't have to double check measurements as much.  If you don't, you can always mark your ruler with a bit of tape or the little arrows like I used to speed up finding the measurement each time.

Then, I rotate them all of the HST Units 180 degrees, and I don't worry about all of the previous trims, they can be picked up later.  Now I trim the remaining 2 sides on all  the HST's.  I just move up and down the rows, quick as a bunny :)    Now just shake them off, and stack them up :)

And just like that, you have a whole ton of perfectly trimmed Half Square Triangle units ;)   You will have twice as many Half Square Triangle Units as you had squares to start ie 4 Half Square Triangle Units per block in your quilt :)  

And now that you have a beautiful stack of perfect Half Square Triangles, it's time to add a little Goose to the Corners!!!  And be sure you have trimmed your HST's before you add your Goosed Corners.  It won't work to trim the blocks after you have added the goose as the goose will get trimmed and won't align when it goes into the Roundabout block ;) 

So go ahead and grab your GC Print and GC Background squares.  The prints and background squares will be the same size and should measure according to this

For a 15" Block - 3" x 3" squares
For a 18" Block - 3 1/2" x 3 1/2" squares
For a 21" Block - 4" x 4" squares

Again, we will start this step by using a ruler to draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of all of your print and background GC squares.    Note - If you have a marked 1/4" line on your machine (like I explained in last years QAL)  you can skip the drawing step, but if you want to do the next optional HST it is easier to have this line drawn.

Now, I don't like to have a lot of waste in my quilts, so I add one little extra step in here to get a bonus HST.  This is optional, but think how cute it would be to make a matching HST pillow to go along with your quilt, and it means no waste ;) 

So, if you want to get the optional bonus HST,  align your ruler 1/2" over the drawn center line and draw a second line along the edge of your ruler on all your Print and Background GC squares.

Taking care that your Print Fabrics match, place a marked GC Print square and a marked GC Background square on your HST as shown below.  Make sure that your bonus line is facing outwards from the center line, and that the Print GC is aligned on the Background side of the HST and vice versa.    And with it all aligned you can choose to pin or just hold your squares in place and then you  will now be stitching directly on the drawn line.   Yes, this is a change from stitching 1/4" away from the line, so be sure you remind yourself that you are now stitching on top of the drawn line!!!  And again, we are going to Chain Stitch to save time and thread!

So once again, Start by chain stitching directly on the center drawn line on the Print GC squares.  If you haven't pinned, be sure and keep those squares perfectly centered in the corner of the HST.  Chain stitch all your GC Print squares making another very long snake.  There will be 4 square sets for each of your blocks.

Then clip the threads between the squares, stack them up, and you are ready for Optional stitching if you choose.  If you are doing the bonus HST, chain stitch directly on the outer drawn line on each of the Print GC squares.   Once they are all stitched,  clip the threads between the squares and stack them up.   If you are not doing the Bonus HST, just skip this step :)

Now rotate all of your sets and you are ready to chain stitch once again on the other side of your HST.  Chain Stitch directly on the outer drawn line on all of the Background GC squares.   Then clip your threads and stack your squares.

And if you are doing the bonus HST, you have one last set of chain stitching to do.  Chain stitch directly on the outer drawn line on each of the Background GC squares.   Once they are all stitched,  clip the threads between the squares and stack them up.   And again, if you are not doing the Bonus HST, just skip this step :)

Now, with the stitching done, it's time to do some more cutting.   Align your ruler 1/4" over the drawn center line.  If you did the optional HST, your ruler will be centered between your two stitched lines.  Cut along the edge of your ruler, creating Goosed Corners or Stitch and Flip corners on your HST triangle unit and possibly two bonus HST's. 

And last but not least, some more pressing.    Press your Goosed Corners seams outwards towards the Goosed Corner units.  Again,   I prefer to press them from the front rather than the back, but do what is comfortable for you :)  And once again, if you made the bonus HST's you can press them towards the Print fabric.  (But don't feel like you have to press them all now, they are bonus so get to them whenever :)

And just like that, you are done and will have a stack of beautiful Half Square Triangles with Goosed Corners all ready to be put into your blocks!!!   And as you can see, I didn't get to far in pressing my bonus HST's or trimming the dog ears on the ones I pressed, but all in good time ;)

Oh, and in case you don't have a square ruler you can see the end of this tutorial on how to square up your HST's using a rectangle ruler.  It takes a second longer but still works :)

And that's it!!    And now you can enter to win the weekly prize :)

The Weekly Prize is sponsored by The Scarlet Thread Quilt Co.   and a huge thanks goes out to them for their support of the Roundabout  Quilt-Along.

This weeks prize is for a super fantastic By The Sea Rollie Pollie by Dani Mogstad for Riley Blake Designs.  These happy nautical prints just make me smile and will be so cute in a quilt!!!  Someone is going to get very lucky indeed this week!!!
So what do you have to do for a chance to win this Rollie Pollie?  Simple . . . Just link up your stacks of Goosed HST's :)  You can link to a blog post or a flickr picture, or whatever.  Just make sure to link up by the morning of Wednesday October 25th when I will be announcing a winner in the next post :)

If you don't get your Goosed HST's done by October 25th 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 pictures to the Happy Quilting Quilt-A-Long Flickr group and to post it on social media with using #roundaboutquiltalong.    I am so excited to see all of your stacks of Goosed Half Square Triangles ;)

So let's get sewing and trimming and sewing some more ;)   Oh, and if you have questions, don't hesitate to email me at happyquiltingmelissa@gmail.com.  Have a Happy Quilting Day!!

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