Cotton&Color BoM 2016: April

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April’s block for the Cotton & Colors BoM depicts the most fundamental element in the sewing room. I think that, in fact, the sewing room is where the sewing machine is located. It doesn’t matter that the sewing projects are scattered around the house depending on what is being worked on, the sewing room is always where the sewing machine stays.

Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the shop, they offer curated bundles for the occasion from Lecien, that match this BoM in its two versions (I’m sewing the soft palette one). And my sewing machine has yellow on it. It’s not entirely yellow (fortunately!), but it’s the pop of colour the manufacturer decided to include in this particular model (why?!). So my block must have yellow on it. It couldn’t be otherwise. This yellow print included in the bundle was just perfect: yellow for my sewing machine, the name of the traditional patchwork blocks to remind what my sewing machine is mostly used for. Win-win.

This block is also pieced with paper-foundation. I’m still not comfortable with it, being now the problem the moment when to different sections are to be sewn together. Working on it, though. This is really a good way to learn! At least this time I didn’t run out of background fabric…

Again, just in time to finish it within the month it belongs. Still wondering if there would be a seam-ripper…

The Splendid Sampler™: Block 20 -a work in progress!-

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Block 20 for The Splendid Sampler has a huge workload of embroidery; I was planning to do it in two or three afternoons, but it has turned a bit of a challenge. I was committed to do the blocks “as it is”, but in this case I have to make an exception: if I am to stick to the instructions it will result totally outside the colour scheme I’m keeping for the sampler. So I still have to decide my own colour scheme for this one, meanwhile, I’m sewing the parts I’m sure what colour to use.

Furthermore, it’s a wonderful block to just sit, relax, and enjoy the process just for what it is. So I’m keeping this block as a work-in-progress, enjoy stitching it slowly, and move towards block 21.

The Splendid Sampler™: Block 19

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The 19th block of The Splendid Sampler is called Measure twice, cut once”, and is the third block by Jane Davidson (Quilt Jane – Want it, Need it, Quilt) for this sampler. I should, however, rename it “Check twice, sew once”, because even I was careful and used a design board… there is a mistake! And I noticed it once everything was sewn together, so I found it rather funny that in a block with this name there was, indeed, an error due to not checking things twice.

For the measuring tape depicted in the block I thought immediately in using the Moda ribbon. Not only is a cute measuring tape, there is also something in using the ribbon that held together the fabric I’m actually using.

And here comes the mistake, as I cut the ribbon carefully so the numbers will follow the order indicated in the pattern… and appliquéd them to the corresponding piece of fabric… and then realised that each one should have been in the other piece of grey fabric! So, check twice with the pattern, check while on the design board, then sew.

The embroidery was pretty straightforward with backstitch and a colonial knot for the dot in the “i”; I used DMC floss n. 309.

The pattern and link party can be found here.

Stars-quilt update

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Lots of things are running in the backstage: The Splendid Sampler™ blocks, the projects from last week class, the Cotton&Color BoM… The Stars-quilt is also one of them, making progress at a pretty good pace.

Stars basted: 84/84 (504/504 templates)
Stars sewn: 84 /84
Background pieces basted:
186/504
Stars completed: 0

 

A class with Me and My Sister Designs!

The blog has been really quiet this week, and for a good reason: I participated in a class with Me and My Sister Designs! This incredible experience included a two-day class and a trunk show, both filled with laughs, surprises, lots of little details and, of course, fabric (tons of fabric!). The whole event was held in Cotton&Color, and included the trunk show, one two-day class with jelly-rolls, and a second one with charm packs (which I couldn’t attend).

And I must say Barb and Mary are so amazing! The class was based on working with their “Wild Jelly Rolls 3 & 4” patterns; in my case, the n.3, but there was more on it that one could have expected! Little and not so little projects pop-up, and now it’s time to recap all of what was done in just two days and that now needs to be finished:

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– The main project, Wild Jelly Rolls n.3, needs some seam ripper to get to finish a quarter of it, but it’s all already cut for the main blocks and ready to go! I’m using their newest collection, Grow! I may use it as a leader-and-ender project when not working directly on it.

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– You can not say “no” when you’re being offered a charm pack of Dot.Dot.Dash-! and the pattern “Buttons & Thread” that matches it perfectly. These little jars come together in no time, so I’m planing to have some of them cut beforehand so I can piece them in spare time between other projects or as a secondary bonus project…

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– I have to finish the second mitten from the “Makin’it Cute” templates. A kit with all the necessary to made a pair of them was gifted to the class participants (the fabrics are from Sweetwater’s “Holy’s Tree farm” collection, for Moda). There are so many possibilities with these templates that my brain is already burning thinking in Christmas gifts (and we are not yet in Summer!).

– I have already finished another side project that it’s on the washing stage… and that was amazingly easy for the high-looking end result! To be shared in short time with its proper entry.

I did not only learn tons of new things and surely improved my piecing, but I had so much fun and got the opportunity to get to know really talented and wonderful people, including some other quilters working in The Splendid Sampler too!

The Splendid Sampler™: Block 18

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The 18th block of The Splendid Sampler™ is called “Lina’s Gift” and is the third block by Pat Sloan. Also, another pretty straightforward block to play with fabric.

I took the chance to use one of the “big” prints from the coloured fabrics; also it seemed nice that the basket was filled with flowers… (I couldn’t resist to put some on the photo, too; Spring is just all around!). I must admit this is the first basket block I’ve ever sewn, although it’s pretty common in samplers. No wonder there was one in The Splendid Sampler too. I also played with one of the directional prints for the background. I don’t like to work with directional prints; they are difficult to align and involve (normally) lots of fabric waste. However, I’m glad I gave this particular print a try in this block (I only needed to remake the HSTs once to get the text in the right direction -good!).

The block’s info and link party are here.

The Splendid Sampler™: Block 17

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The 17th block of The Splendid Sampler is called “Family Starsand is designed by Kimberly Jolly. I worked with one of The Fat Quarter Shop patterns before, so I didn’t foresee so many complications in this block, although the amount of pieces it has. I proved wrong.

The block shown is really the second block I made, after the first attempt resulted in a total disaster. The instructions are really easy to follow, and somehow quick, but the final block was a ¼ inch shorter all around, and really wonky. I didn’t try to understand what happened and re-tried again.

And I found out that some of my flying geese and all the central squares units weren’t the size they were supposed to be. I checked every one of them and there’s was no way I could piece them right away, so I traced templates and put the block together matching points and sewing lines with pins. Not the best way, but the resulting block is far better that the first attempt and it’s the right size.

Perhaps I shouldn’t have sewn on the line when making the corners for the squares, and a little inside of it instead? Do I press to much? Should I’ve starched more the fabric? I’ll find the answers in the next blocks…

Meanwhile, the information and link party for this 17th block are here.

A little gift

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One of the benefits of knowing to sew (anything for that matter) is to be able to put together personal, caring gifts when need arises.

When planning this one, this japanese-style fabric came to my mind immediately: I have stored it for years (I really mean, years) and it’s just perfect for the intended recipient. And it is like it was made to pair this Quilter’s Linen in red, which I had conveniently stashed.

This is a pretty simple pattern if you are confident working with zippers, which I am not. Anyway, it turns out a nice, useful detail to give.

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Project: Pencils pouch
Date: April 2016
Pattern: (in Spanish) Estuche rectangular
Exterior fabric: Japanese style print, unknown producer
Lining fabric: Quilter’s Linen Red, Robert Kaufman Fabric
Batting: Medium fusible interfacing, unknown producer

The Splendid Sampler™: Block 16

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The 16th block of The Splendid Sampler is called “Pieces of friendship”, by Lindsay Mayland. It’s one of those straightforward blocks that allows for lots of possibilities; there’s also a bonus project available which can work as table runner or a whole sized quilt… another to the list of future projects to consider!

The only thing to watch out with this block is that all the piecing is on the bias. So, don’t play hero and pin, pin, and pin; otherwise, the seam ripper is pretty happy to come to rescue.

The information and link party can be found here.