Friday, June 23, 2017

Churn Dash

The next section that I worked on for the Long Time Gone quilt was the little Churn Dash blocks.


The quilt pattern calls for 21 churn dash blocks, divided into two groups, a group of 12 and a group of 9.

I had a lot of fun with my favorite part of quiltmaking, which is choosing the fabrics.  I  picked 21 dark/medium prints I wanted to use and then selected 21 lights to go with them. Here are the pieces ready to sew.

After sewing, there were lots and lots of little half square triangles, and a stack of strips which I  then subcut into pairs.

For accuracy, I initially cut the half square triangles a little larger than the pattern called for, and then trimmed them down to the right size after sewing them together.
The one on the left still needs to be trimmed.

Here is what was left on the cutting mat after all that trimming!


After I sewed the individual units for the blocks, I tried arranging them both ways before deciding which I liked best:

Nine small pieces that got even smaller after being sewn together:


At last I had 21 churn dash blocks all sewn up:

I divided them into Light and Darks depending on which fabric was the background fabric. Here are the lights:

And here are the darks:



I sewed them together into two groups of 9 blocks, and held off sewing the last 3 darks to give me more flexibility when I assemble the quilt. It's too early to tell if I might want to add some lightness or darkness to their section of the assembled quilt. If I need to, I can always cook up 3 more light ones to make that section the group of 12.


Number of pieces in the Churn Dash section:  357
Number of pieces in Long Time Gone so far:  784



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Saturday, June 17, 2017

Flying Geese in every direction

The next section of Long Time Gone that I tackled was the Flying Geese units.  The pattern called for three sections of Flying Geese, two of them fashioned in the Dutchman's Puzzle pattern, and the third units in a Chevron layout:

Once again, thankfully,  I had a ruler in my arsenal that would come in handy  It's the No Math Flying Geese ruler by Lazy Girl Designs.

I blogged about how to use it in this post back in 2012.  The drawback to using it for this quilt is that it is intended to make four matching Flying Geese, that is, all made with the same fabric, but I wanted a more scrappy look.   I decided to improvise.

I cut the large square as directed, but instead of cutting the small squares from the same fabric, I cut them from different fabrics.


I aligned the squares for sewing, but I only sewed on one side of the diagonal instead of two.

I cut it apart on the drawn line, and pressed the small triangles open.  Now I had one unit that I could use to make 2 Flying Geese,  and a few triangles left over.

For the next step, I added the third small block and sewed on both sides of the line this time.


When I cut them apart and pressed them open, I had 2 Flying Geese with varying background fabrics.

I sewed the Flying Geese blocks together and came up with these arrangements for my quilt.

Here is the 4-block Dutchman's Puzzle.  I chose the pink fabric for the center to give the block a focus point.


Here is the 2-block Dutchman's Puzzle.  I situated the darkest Flying Geese in the center to (hopefully) give a sense of movement.

The third set of Flying Geese are done, but I haven't settled on an arrangement for sewing them together.  I may orient them differently.

All the Flying Geese units are done!  I have lots of triangles left over, but I know I will make use of them further down the road.  There are 24 tiny churn dash blocks to make next!


Number of pieces in the Flying Geese section:  168
Number of pieces in Long Time Gone so far:     427


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Sunday, June 11, 2017

All squared up

While working on Long Time Gone, I was also making blocks for a Kathleen Tracy mystery quilt called Coming Home.  The next clue in Kathleen's mystery quilt was to make lots of scrappy little Square-in-a-square blocks.

To begin making these blocks, I sorted through all my fabrics and put together pairs that I liked, deciding later which would be the center square and which would be the surrounding triangles.

Then, I cut what I needed and sewed up these cute little square-in-a-squares units:

As it happened, the same week that I made these, I was also making "Square in a Square Stars" for  Long Time Gone.  The pattern looked like this:

So I started playing around with different fabric placements in Electric Quilt.  Here's one idea that  I came up with:

But of course, I like scrappy, and the more the better, so I also tried out this one:

It was then that I realized, that I already had nine scrappy little square-in-a-square blocks that just so happened to be the exact size I needed for this block!  In a flash, I added some Flying Geese units to the blocks I already had....

and I had my Square in a Square Stars:


It was also then that I realized that making two quilts at the same time from the same collection of fabrics was getting confusing.  I decided to back off from doing the mystery quilt and concentrate on Long Time Gone. The mystery quilt was free, after all,  so there is no $$$ loss

The beautiful House block that I spent so much time creating for the mystery quilt can easily be substituted for one of the blocks in Long Time Gone, so there will be nothing wasted there, either.

Oh, and those little 9-patches that I also  made for the mystery quilt?  They'll have a home in Long Time Gone, too.

Here's my tally so far:

Number of pieces for square-in-a-square: 85
Number of pieces in the House block:    56
Total number of pieces for Long Time Gone so far:  905





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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Peaky and Spike

I've been steadily working on Jen Kingwell's  pattern  Long Time Gone.   The next section of the pattern I chose to work on was the 60 degree triangles.

I happened to have this ruler set  from Quilt In A Day that was useful for making this style of triangle, so I was happy to find another use for it.

Unfortunately, the size I needed to make for Long Time Gone did not match the size in the pattern that came with the ruler, so I had to wing it.

I started with a strip of fabric and cut the central triangles from that using the ruler.

For the side triangles, I started with rectangles and cut them on the diagonal.

Because I was "winging it" I underestimated the size of rectangle I needed and had to re-cut them again.  Now I have a bunch of odd triangles left over, but I can use them later when I get to the pineapple blocks.

Eventually, I had all the triangles cut correctly, and I sewed them into units:

30 units ready to go!

Number of pieces in this Triangle section:  90
Number of pieces in Long Time Gone so far:  259
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