Happy Valentine's Day Runner Featuring Moda Blockheads Block 5 - LOVE

February 14, 2020

 Happy Valentine's Day, Friends! It's not really a big thing at The QP, but I love red, white and pink quilts. So I will take that excuse any day for more red, white and pink quilts! However, I did score a beautiful card and chocolates (all nut varieties...none of those pink or orange cremes aka yuck-a-saurus)  from Scott and cute messages from the girls.
This week's MB3  "LOVE' block is brought to us by Brigitte Heitland of Zen Chic available here. This is a Foundation Paper Pieced or FPP block. If you are new to this technique or have never tried OR maybe it is not your favorite, again I encourgage you to give it a try. It is a fun block and Brigitte's instructions are great. Also, here is a YouTube video with wonderful step-by-step instructions. I opted to make my block into a Valentine's runner vs. including it in my quilt. That is what is so fun about this sew along, you can do whatever you want!! But I encourage you to print the blocks off and save them for something else if they are not singing to you for your quilt. The instructions are well written and the designers have come up with some awesome FREE blocks that you can make something else with.
So details on my runner, if you would like to make one too! I made 12" finished blocks. My runner finishes at approximately 84" x 15". Perfect for my table! I used a variety of scraps, a handful of fat quarters and about 1 yard...give or take of background. I pretty much winged it.
I made 4 blocks plus a center "candy block" that measures about 22.5" finished. The reason for the candy block is that I typically have a centerpiece or something in the middle of my table that would cover my runner. This kind of "pushes" blocks out so you can see them better. I used 2" finished sashing pieces between the blocks and 1.5" finished on the sides. I worried I was running out of background, so I made that a smidge narrower.
So the candy center has 3 pieces that finish at about 7.5" x12"  each.
The heart block is 12" finished so my squares and half-square triangles finish at 3", 3.5" unfinished.
I have mixture of Valentine novelty prints and reproductions.
 I will refer you to Bridgitte's block for the FPP. But it is not hard at all. You just have to wrap your brain around it. I just used regular old copy paper for mine and shortened my stitch length to ease tearing the paper off.
 You can use one of those Add-A-Quarter nifty rulers, but I just used my regular old ruler to trim up the 1/4" seam and my block.
 Looks a little crazy until it is trimmed up.
My first block Love block was not without errors, but I was cool with it.
As you can see my E is not how it is supposed to be. I clearly was not paying close attention to the pattern.
Supposed to look like this. :-)
 I quilted it on my Innova with the digital quilt pattern Hopscotch by Leisha at Quilting It, edge to edge quilting available here. I thought the pattern was perfect with an Xs and Os looks. I love using Leisha's designs! I used Hobbs 80/20 Bleached Batting and Innovatch tread on top and Magnaglide magnetic bobbins.
My dough bowl sits perfect on the candy center without obstructing the blocks. :-)
My studio tree has become a holiday tree. Kind of by accident. It did not get taken down with the rest of the Chrismas decorations, so I made it a Valentine's Day tree for the month of February. I have really enjoyed it too. I will change it out in March or if I am sick of it by then, it will go join the rest. I hope you'll make the Love block or a runner like mine...or pillow. :-) Happy Valentine's Day!

Red and White Quilts - Memories of A Masterpiece

February 10, 2020

I love red and white quilts, especially in February! Or every month really. :-)  I think I have always admired a two color quilt, but I definitely have a preference for red and white ones.  This one is no exception! Memories of a Masterpiece (actual name of the quilt pattern) made by my dear friend Thelma at Cupcakes 'n Daisies. I was honored and had the pleasure to quilt this gorgeous quilt. Eye candy ahead!!
I really had a hard time narrowing down which photos to post. It is not a bad problem to have. Quilt is designed by Lisa Bongean of Primitive Gatherings from the Martingale Book, Red and White Quilts.
Like many quilts that are not mine to keep, I sure wish it was!! Sigh, it will go on my long quilt to-do wish list. As always, Thelma did an amazing job on the piecing.
I quilted this using the computerized pattern, Abundant Feathers.
It is one of my favorites! Although free motion quilting is my heart, I love being able to offer computerized edge-to-edge designs at a very affordable price to clients available here. I do not have all the patterns available listed on my website, so if you do not see one that sings to you, I can help and am happy to make suggestions.
 Abundant Feathers is a wonderful complement to this quilt!
I used bleached white Hobbs 80/20 batting. Innovatech thread on top and Magnaglide magnetic bobbins.
The backing looked like another gorgeous quilt. Are any of you working on a red and white quilt?

Moda Blockheads 3 - Week 3 and Week 4

February 6, 2020

Surprisingly, I am keeping up with the Moda BH3. I am not saying it is a miracle (I kind of am), I will say it is a miracle when I have pieced them all. :-)  Not only am I keeping up with my blocks, I am loving sewing along. I was away on a little quilt retreat...much needed except for that I became awful sick while there. Thankfully, it was pretty short lived. Anyways, I forgot to post my latest block because I was busy overpacking for my retreat. "I never bring enough projects to work on while on retreat" said no quilter EVER. lol So by overpacking, I was not referring to my suitcase.

Week 3's block is brought to us by Betsy Chutchian. Her block, tips and instructions are available here. I loved making this block. Yes, it was a tiny bit more challenging than the previous week, but very fun and doable. I always find these blocks help me become a better piecer.
Again, starch is my BFF. I always starch my fabric liberally. Typically, I spray them down in the bath tub/shower and hang dry on a drying rack. I allow the fabric to air dry completely and then press with steam. I always have something to do while the fabric is drying. You would be ironing it forever if you pressed while it was soaking wet with starch. I like how the fabric has a stiffness to it after using starch. Makes it easy to handle and starch and steam helps the fabric keep it's shape while piecing. Accuracy is spot on.  This seems to be a hot button topic every time it is brought up on the BH facebook group. As controversial a topic as to whether to prewash or not.  For reals. Number one concern: Starch may attract insects. I believe this was more common with some older formulas of starch. I have not had this issue as there is no corn or sugar based ingredients in the 99 cent starch I buy at Wal-Mart. If you have not tried starching, I encourage you to. You may like it. Never hurts to try. It is a real game changer, I swear.
 I found this block easiest to piece in sections. And I believe the instruction said to do that. I used my Flying Geese Bloc-Loc ruler as well as the Bloc-Loc ruler for half-square triangles. I do not mind the extra step of trimming my pieces down to the correct size. I chose to press most of my seams to one side so they nested. BUT I am piecing the 12" block. If I was going with one of the smaller sizes, I would press seams open to reduce bulk.

Week 4's block is a darling appliqué block brought to us by Jan Patek here. I love to appliqué and prefer to machine appliqué or hand stitch wool appliqué. When I decided to participate with BH3,  I decided to make my quilt without the appliqué blocks...if there were any. I have made several sampler quilts with a combination of both pieced and appliqué blocks, but no samplers with just pieced blocks. So I am going with only pieced blocks. The new blocks always post on Wednesdays and on Fridays, some of the designers may post alternative blocks. I opted to not wait until Friday and made another of week 2's block, but use different fabrics and change the layout.
I love how it turned out! It looks more like a LeMoyne Star with this layout. I also opted to make Flying Geese instead of HSTs around the center pinwheel. In hindsight, I did not pay attention to the directional fabric placement, but that does not bother me at all. I like the just go with it look. Just changing fabrics and placement gives it a completely different look than my original block!
Still loving my fabric choices as well. I like the soothing color combination. Looking forward to next week's block!