Thursday, January 23, 2014

BLOCK OF THE MONTH: CELEBRATING THE ALPHABET

I am celebrating today.  With the completion of the Monkey Wrench block I have reached the halfway point of this extended BOM.  We have completed 13 blocks.  I will pat myself on the back.  I have managed to stay on track, albeit the last two months I had a delay.
 
I present to you the results of staying on the trip:
If you have been following my blogs you know I am working with fabrics I wanted to cleanse from my stash.  First, they are paisleys; second, they are old fabrics; and third, they are all different weights of fabrics.  The constants are a heavier weight similar to a broad cloth. 
I did deviate from using all paisleys, the red was the absolutely perfect match for the reds in the constants.   Seeing my blocks all together would I change anything, have I learned anything?  Yes, The major thing I notice, the fabrics I added with my "constants"  are too dark.  I think they should be more medium.  Remember though, I am trying to eliminate a certain style of fabric from my stash.  I am using what's on  hand.
 
I have a large amount of the white background paisley so I took the liberty of fussy cutting some of the units in the blocks.  The only thing is I have to watch when I join the fussy cut blocks to other blocks.  If the fussy cut detail is on the outside of the block it probably has a bias edge. 
 
In one of the first blogs I stated I didn't care to do BOMs.  I think the reason I didn't like BOMs was the ones I was familiar with, came in kits.  They were the color choices of the designer.  This one appealed to me because the colors were my own to choose. I had chosen to use my stash and not invest any money in it, thus if I decided to chuck it, I wouldn't feel bad.  If I didn't like it, the plus would be, the blocks I made would make a great quilt to donate.
 
There is a big plus, I am doing blocks which I might have never tried. 
 They are giving me mental inspiration for quilts I might eventually make. 
Another plus, it guarantees me at least 2 hours sewing time each month,
no matter how hectic my life becomes
 
If you are new to quilting I encourage you to try a BOM. 
If you have trouble choosing colors, a BOM at your local Quilt store
will help you become comfortable with fabric choices. 
 
Dorothy Young, owner, of the yahoo group "A Pocketful of Mysteries"
 is the hostess and designer of this BOM. 
This Block of the Month quilt series began in January 2013,
and will continue for the next two years.
  The yahoo site for this trip is:
It is not too late to join in. So far I have found the construction of the blocks simple. 
I do recommend you start with the first block if you are a beginner. 
There are simple techniques you will pick up on the journey.


Join us in this 2 year journey. There are several hundred friends taking the trip
The following, are the blogs written each month on my journey through the alphabet.
 
I 'm hosting a mystery quilt for my guild. 
This is the link for instructions for the  mystery:
 
Other blog sites by me:
 
Where I have stories of my cats and other pets
a blog about my courtship with my husband,
and a blog about my most embarrassing moment.
A "Soap box" blog where I do air my opinions.
 
blogs about the wildflowers on our farm
Organic methods we use, some cooking and some poetry,
blogs about Seed sprouting, insects, and garden pictures
Blog about an endangered beneficial beetle
New Blog:
 
All recipes, pictures, and writings are my own.
I give credit for items which belong to other people in my blogs .
Please do not copy without permission


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

BLOCK OF THE MONTH: M IS FOR MONKEY WRENCH

I've finished monkeying around with Lady of the lake.  Making 3 color ways of each block sometimes gets my knickers in a knot. In Lady of the Lake I had 20 tiny 1/2 square triangles in each block to fidget with.   I was Half-Squared out because it is a Unit in the mystery quilt I host.
http://gloriouscreations.blogspot.com/2013/07/a-mystery-in-making.html
 
Looking forward to this block and what do I see? 
There are four more half squares looking at me. 
  It is the standard nine patch variation. 
Works well with my fabrics, to my elation.

My paisley rendition.
 
 
 
 
 
The picture on the left is my alternate color way. I am trying hard to render my stash paisley less.  They seem to procreate in the stash closet.  I found one between the fat quarters this week.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
To relieve the bulk on the back of the block I pressed the seam so they formed little four patches at each intersection like in this example.
 
 
The picture below is my friend's.  To see her constant fabrics look at the blog for Block "A".  I'm hoping I don't run out of her constants before the trip is over.


 
 
With the finishing of this block I am still on track "THROUGH THE ALPHABET". 

This block is also the half way point in the 26 month trip.




 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
A twenty-six month Trip with
Dorothy Young, owner, of the yahoo group "A Pocketful of Mysteries".
This Block of the Month quilt series began in January 2013, and will continue for the next two years.
The yahoo site for this trip is:
It is not too late to join in. So far I have found the construction of the blocks simple. 
I do recommend you start with the first block if you are a beginner. 
There are simple techniques you will pick up on the journey.

Join us in this 2 year journey. There are several hundred friends taking the trip
The following, are the blogs written each month on my journey through the alphabet.
 
I 'm hosting a mystery quilt for my guild. 
This is the link for instructions for the  mystery:
 
Other blog sites by me:
 
Where I have stories of my cats and other pets
a blog about my courtship with my husband,
and a blog about my most embarrassing moment.
A "Soap box" blog where I do air my opinions.
 
blogs about the wildflowers on our farm
Organic methods we use, some cooking and some poetry,
blogs about Seed sprouting, insects, and garden pictures
Blog about an endangered beneficial beetle
New Blog:
 
All recipes, pictures, and writings are my own.
I give credit for items which belong to other people in my blogs .
Please do not copy without permission


Sunday, January 19, 2014

BLOCK OF THE MONTH: L IS FOR LADY OF THE LAKE







For those of you who have been following my progress on this BOM, I apologize for not posting the December block on time.  I was traveling in December and so far this month I have been involved with working on the clues for the mystery quilt I have been hosting.  This is the link for the mystery:



I finished the work on the mystery this past Wednesday and can now devote my time to other quilty endeavors.  Today I cut out my three "L" blocks and constructed the above block.

                                               With this block on its way I am headed
                          "THROUGH THE ALPHABET"     A twenty-six month Journey with

Dorothy Young, owner, of the yahoo group "A Pocketful of Mysteries" .This Block of the Month quilt series began in January 2013, and will continue for the next two years.
 The yahoo site for this trip is:
It is not too late to join in. The other eleven are at the beginners level. 
So far I have found the construction of the blocks very simple.  I do recommend you start with the first block if you are a beginner.  There are simple techniques you will pick up on the journey.

This Block requires a thorough reading of the directions.  They are very explicit but me being me, did it my way.  I saw what she wanted us to do and didn't look at the direction the seams were to be pressed.  You see, I just spent a week making half square triangles for my mystery and all the fabrics were pressed to the dark....  I don't know whether my transgressions made a difference are not.  On the block I make for my friend I will re press all the triangles the way Dorothy states and let you know. 
 
The fabrics I am using [My focus fabric and my background fabric] are at least forty years old.  They are a heavier cotton, more like the weight of a broadcloth.  This makes for very heavy seams at intersections.
 
I do have a suggestion.  When you make the 1/2 Square she tells you.  Before you cut it off the rest of the square.  Make your self a "Bonus" unit by stitching a 1/2 inch away from your stitched line on the seam side of the square.  You will inherit another Half square triangle about 6 1/4 inches square. 
 
If you are unsure what I am saying there is an example in clue #1 of my mystery:
Doing this prevents 2 fabric triangles from ending in the scrap bag.  Now they are a usable Unit.  The Unit might possibly fit in a later block in the BOM series.

The block below is the one I made for my internet friend.  I didn't re press the other direction.  I didn't have the heavy intersections I did with my fabrics.   I wanted to post this before I edited it.  (Today I am without my computer and using Hunny's computer.  I don't know what program to use.)  One more block to construct.  BTW, I found a big help for me to square up the little 1/2 squares.  I glued a two inch paper square on the ruler.  It will wash off when I am done. 

The construction of this block requires a little more than beginners level, but if you have begun at the
 beginning of this journey you will get through it just fine if you take it slow and remember,
 when you are joining each of your units together use an accurate 1/4 inch.

Doing a BOM like this helps you try blocks you wouldn't think of doing.  It helps you to find piecing methods you enjoy or don't enjoy.  This is a very lovely block,
but I will not, ever, be using the pattern to make a whole quilt with. 
 
 



The block on the right is my alternate paisley color way.





 







Join us in this 2 year journey. There are several hundred friends taking the trip
The following, are the blogs written each month on my journey through the alphabet.
 
Other blog sites by me:
 
Where I have stories of my cats and other pets
a blog about my courtship with my husband,
and a blog about my most embarrassing moment.
A "Soap box" blog where I do air my opinions.
 
blogs about the wildflowers on our farm
Organic methods we use, some cooking and some poetry,
blogs about Seed sprouting, insects, and garden pictures
Blog about an endangered beneficial beetle
New Blog:
 
All recipes, pictures, and writings are my own.
I give credit for items which belong to other people in my blogs .
Please do not copy without permission

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

A MYSTERY IN THE MAKING: CLUE #3

A MYSTERY IN THE MAKING”
PIECEMAKERS GUILD 2013/2014 MYSTERY QUILT
A mystery quilt in 5-6 installments (6 if you do the larger quilt)
Finished small Quilt 57” sq. with borders
Small quilt without borders 45 ½” sq.
Larger quilt, 64 ½” sq. without borders)
 
Thank you for participating in this mystery. I hope it will be fun, easy, and educational.  Beginners should be comfortable working on it.  Quilting Newbie’s may need a little help.  If you understand how to sew a quarter inch, and a scant quarter inch you should do fine. 
If you have just found this clue and need the introduction to this mystery you can find it here:
Introduction:  http://gloriouscreations.blogspot.com/2013/07/a-mystery-in-making.html

Clue 1:  http://gloriouscreations.blogspot.com/2013/10/a-mystery-in-making-clue-1.html

Clue 2: http://gloriouscreations.blogspot.com/2013/11/a-mystery-in-making-clue-2.html
 
I hope during Holiday vacation we haven't lost anyone.  I thought I would enjoy having the month away.  Nope, I missed having the deadline.  Even with the chaos of the season I felt something was missing.  I hope your New year has been exemplary.
Without further ado here is your third clue.   

CLUE #3
 CONSTRUCTING FAST HALF SQUARE UNITS
 
From Focus Fabric “F” cut:
                  (2) 5.5” X WOF strips; cut into (12) 5.5” squares
                  (2) 10” squares; cut squares in half, diagonally
(making 4 triangles.)    Label and save for Clue # 4
 

1.  On the wrong side of (12) Fabric “E”, 5.5” squares, draw a line diagonally with pencil.  If your fabric is very dark use a light colored, colored pencil.
 (Use twelve of the 5.5 inch “E” squares you cut in Clue 2). 
2.  Layer a 5.5” marked Fabric “E” square,  Right Sides Together, with a 5.5” Fabric F square.  Sew a scant 1/4” on either side of the Diagonal line.  Cut apart on pencil line. HINT: Before cutting, press the seam, setting the stitches.
 
 

 FAST HALF SQUARE TRIANGLES
(2 FOR ONE SPECIAL)

3.  You  now have 24 half square units.  Press them open to the dark side.  Remember to press with the straight of the grain.  (Not the direction of the seam.  The seam is on the bias and you can distort your unit.)
 
Left is the trimmed and squared "Half Square" Unit
 
4.  Square up your units if needed to 5”.
 
 
 
 
 

 
 


  These next steps require an accurate 1/4 inch seam .
  
5. Using 3 of the “Half Square” units and one 5“ Fabric ”A” squares (the ones you cut in clue #1).  Yes, they were labeled 2 and 4.  It should have been 3 and 4].   Construct the 4 patch unit on the right.
 
Use Accurate 1/4 inch seams when joining these units.
 

 

 
  
6.  When you join your half squares press the seam to the left. 
 
IMPORTANT: Be aware of the direction of the “Half Square” Units in relationship to each other.  
 
7.  When you join the half square with the focus fabric watch the direction you place the 1/2 square.  Press your seam to the right. 
 
Pressing the seams these directions allows the seams to nest when you join the two sections together and you  will have a perfect intersection.

When you join the above two units to form your four patch unit, before you press the seams on the back  of the 4 patch, clip two  stitches at the intersection.  When you press  it open It should look like the example on the left.  This relieves the bulk in the middle of the block which results from  seams pressed one direction.
 
 You will have [8] 4 patch units. Label, Clue three, and save for later.

 
Check back for Clue #4
February 19, 2014

The following public yahoo group is set up for the discussion
and displaying your mysterious journey. 
 
Other blog sites by me:
Where I have stories of my cats and other pets
a blog about my courtship with my husband,
and a blog about my most embarrassing moment.
A "Soap box" blog where I do air my opinions.
 
http://organicinstlouis.blogspot.com/
blogs about the wildflowers on our farm
Organic methods we use, some cooking and some poetry,
blogs about Seed sprouting, insects, and garden pictures
Blog about an endangered beneficial beetle
All recipes, pictures, and writings are my own.

I give credit for items which belong to other people in my blogs.


Please do not copy without permission