21 June 2013

A (previous) Friday Finish

The baby quilt from last week's post is finished!  It was actually finished last Friday, but we've been traveling the past week and had spotty internet access.  Anyway, we attended a lovely baby shower for my cousin, and the quilt is now in the hands of an eager mama-to-be.  Here are obligatory pics of the finished quilt:


The blocks were orphans from an abandoned project, the binding and backing are prints I've been holding on to for a while.  It feels good to have found the perfect project for them.

This marks the first time I've actually given a quilt before the event for which it was intended.  Now I can start that graduation quilt that's three years overdue!

Linking to Finish it Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.

05 June 2013

Are we there yet?

As the school year marches inexorably on, I find myself asking my kids "When did you say is the last day of school?"  I'm wilting in the heat and am looking forward to being able to take a family trip to the coast, if even only for the day. 

Luckily, I've got a few things to keep me busy.  The garden, for one.  I won't go into details, but anyone who's curious can read about it here.  Also, the fabric for Kieran's quilt is cut and just needs piecing.  But first, a gift from a stack of orphan blocks: 

These were part of an "A-Z" quilt-along my local quilt guild hosted, in which we made blocks with names that begin with each letter of the alphabet.   I abandoned this for other projects.  It's so nice to be able to put the blocks to use, as they really are sweet.  And, though I didn't quite make it through the alphabet, I have the perfect amount for a baby quilt, with three to spare for the back.

That's what I'm working on this WIP Wednesday.  What's on your sewing table?

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

03 June 2013

Goose Creek Block Tutorial

It's June!  The school year is winding down, summer trips and activities are being planned, spring plantings will bear vegetables soon (hopefully), and it's my month to coordinate the next quilt for the Love Circle of do. Good Stitches.

I recently attempted to teach my three-year old one of my favorite parlor games.  Those were the most maddening 15 minutes of my life, but the silver lining is I found my color palette for the d.GS quilt:

 As I was scouring the web for a block design, Goose Creek (found at Quilter's Cache) caught my eye.  The block is made up of four units- two Nine Patches and two Square in a Square blocks.  The instructions assume a certain level of quilting experience, so I thought I'd offer up a tutorial that's a little more fleshed out for anyone who may need it.

Goose Creek Block

All seams are a scant 1/4".  Block measures 12.5" unfinished.

For each block you will need:
  • (2) 43/4" squares- cream solid or low volume prints
  • (4) 37/8" squares- two squares each of two different color prints (errata: pic below shows four different prints rather than two)
  • (10) 21/2" squares- various color prints
  • (8) 21/2" squares- either solid cream or low volume prints with a cream background

Nine Patch
Lay 21/2" squares out so that the color prints are in a plus pattern, and the low volume prints are at the four outer corners:

Lay the squares from the middle column of each block right sides together over the squares of the first column, stitch together, then press open:

I'm a press to the side kind of quilter, because that's how I learned.  If you also press to the side, be sure to press the top and bottom pairs to the same side and the middle pair to the opposite side (this will allow you to "nest the seams" between the rows).

Lay the remaining squares of each block right sides together over the squares from the middle column.  Stitch together, then press open.  The seams of each row should be pressed in the same direction, but the seams between the rows should be pressed opposite of each other:

Sew rows together, making sure to nest seams, as below:

Press seams, trim blocks to 61/2".

Square in a Square
Cut the four 3 7/8" squares from corner to corner.  As noted above, the photo shows four different prints, but you should actually have two different prints (see below).  After cutting, you will have eight triangles, four of each print.

Place the long edges of two matching triangles right sides together on opposite sides of a 43/4" low volume square.  Note: An easy way to center them perfectly- fold the square in half and finger press along the crease.  Do the same for the triangle (on the long edge).  Match up the center creases.

Since the triangles are cut on the bias and are prone to stretching, I like to pin along the edges.  Sew together, then press towards the triangles.

Repeat the step above with the remaining triangles.  Trim blocks to 61/2".

You're almost there!  The next step is to sew the Nine Patches and Square in a Square blocks together in the following layout:

Again, if you press the seam of the top row in the opposite direction of the bottom row (as below), you can nest the the seams when you sew the rows together for a neater finish.

Trim block to 121/2".  You're done!