Quiltmaker Magazine

Once Around the Block

QM100-WIENS

“Starshine” by Anne Wiens – 2017

Welcome to my stop on the Road Rally celebrating the latest issue of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks! My contribution to volume 16 is “Starshine”.

If you wander through some of my previous blog posts, you’ll see that I am a big fan of scrap quilts. One reason is that I have a very low tolerance for tedium, and I find making the same block in the same colors over and over very tedious. Even when it’s my block, and even when I know the quilt would be fabulous. Given my druthers, I’ll make it a scrap quilt almost every time.

I built the color scheme for “Starshine”on the colors in the center square. As much as I love the original block, I couldn’t resist moving the colors around. If my math serves, there should be 720 possible combinations of the six colors in this block. Here are six, starting with the color placement in the sample block and simply rotating them through the positions:

Color Rotation

The rotation is top row, left to right, then bottom row, right to left.

When I show someone a new block design, the inevitable question is, “Now, what are you going to do with it?” Well, to stay with the Road Rally theme, that puts me at a crossroad. I decided on making placemats, and came up with three designs:

Crossroad

If you see one (or more) you like, follow the instructions in the magazine to construct the block. The instructions below are for two 3″ wide borders to turn the 12″ (finished) block into a 12″ x 18″ placemat.

OPTION 1

Pmat 1

OPTION 2

Pmat 2

OPTION 3

Pmat 3

Vol16-Cover-200pxNow, who wants a free copy of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, vol. 16? Leave a comment below, and you’ll be entered into a random drawing, which will take place Sunday evening, Nov. 19.

If you enjoy scrap quilts, click the FOLLOW button at the bottom of this blog, and you’ll be notified anytime there’s a new post. It doesn’t happen as often as I’d like, but there is usually a block pattern involved.

You can also “Like” Sweetgrass Creative Designs on Facebook!

Return to Quilty Pleasures to continue the Road Rally.

Advertisements
Categories: 100 Blocks, Other Blocks & Patterns, Placemats, Quiltmaker Magazine, Uncategorized | 84 Comments

Plays Well With Others

Quiltmaker Magazine has released it’s latest 100 Blocks special edition!

My contribution to Volume 15 is #1498 – “Showcase”.

QM100-WIENS

“Showcase” by Anne Wiens – 2016

I designed this simple-looking block to show off those medium and large-scale prints that you just hate to cut into little bits. I think the secret to this block’s success is to make sure the background – the dark red in the sample – is a quiet, non-directional tone-on-tone print, because there are some little seams that you want to camouflage.

In the magazine, the editors show a mock-up of a small square quilt, with thirteen Showcase blocks, set on point, three blocks across and three blocks down. When I saw that, I thought this block is not a contender for the title of “Best Block in a Leading Role.” I actually felt a little sad and sorry for the poor block.

Then I began to play around with my QuiltPro software, combining “Showcase” with other blocks from the issue, and WOW- it’s a shoe-in for “Best Supporting Block!”

Here are a few examples:

QM100-JOHNSON

#1469 “Coronation” by Deborah Johnson

# 1469

This is the same 13-block on-point layout shown in the magazine. I replaced the eight outside “Showcase” with “Coronation” blocks (#1469). Four of the “Showcase” blocks now have a light background, while the center block keeps its dark pink background. If I started playing with colors, I think this would become a real Southwestern-style wallhanging!

                                     ***********************************************

QM100-MARTIN

#1477 “Boxed Star” by Debbie Martin

# 1477 - Boxed Star

This traditional alternating blocks layout features block #1477. I did change the colors in “Boxed Star”. Neither block is that intricate on its own, but as co-stars, they have a certain “chemistry”, don’t you think? I loved that secondary design where the corners come together, so I pulled that element out into the black border for emphasis.

**********************************************

QM100-BAILEY

#1450 “Star Power” by Emily Bailey

Star Power 1

Oh, did I have fun with block  “Star Power”! This is a scrap block in the magazine, but when you’re making the quilt, you get to pick the colors. Again, this is a traditional alternating block setting. I love the Irish Chain vibe!

Star Power 2

I just couldn’t leave this pairing of “Showcase” and “Star Power” alone, and came up with these possibilities.

*********************************************

QM100-WEBER

 #1444 “Two Lips” by Ann Weber

Victory Lane

You’re probably wondering where “Two Lips” went. I wanted to do a layout that would tie into this week’s “Road Rally” blog tour theme. I imagine this quilt starring a race car print in the center of the “Showcase” blocks, with a theme coordinate in the light gray strips between the blocks.  Let’s say the “Two Lips” block makes a cameo appearance here. It gave me the border idea for this layout!

It’s a good thing I had a deadline for posting this blog, because honestly, I’d still be playing with possibilities!

But now, it’s time to give away a copy of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, Vol. 15.

Vol15-Cover-200px

Leave a comment below and tell me:

How far do you have to drive to visit your favorite local quilt shop?

(Give them a shout-out if you’d like!)

One winner will be chosen at random on Saturday (May 6, 2017)

Thanks for stopping by “Seams Like a Plan”. Click the “follow” button at the top of the page, and you’ll be notified when there is a new post.

Click HERE to return to the “Quilty Pleasures” blog and continue today’s blog tour.

Categories: 100 Blocks, Other Blocks & Patterns, Quiltmaker Magazine | 111 Comments

Spring is Busting Out All Over

qm100-wien

“Star Route” by Anne Wiens – 2016

The Spring 2017 issue of Quiltmaker’s Quilts from 100 Blocks should be on your newsstand today, and one of the fourteen patterns is mine! You can read about the new issue by clicking on the link.

Remember my “Star Route” block from last fall’s Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, Vol. 14?

26144_pattern_img

“Budding Blossoms” by Anne Wiens 60″x60″ (Photo: Quiltmaker)

Well, it’s grown into “Budding Blossoms”, a 60″ x 60″ wallhanging/lap quilt!

This project was a bit of a Scrap Squad ’13 reunion. I designed it and sewed the top, it was quilted by Nicole Brouillette, and we used a flange binding technique we learned from Marti Dyer-Allison. The magazine includes a quick photo tutorial on how to make the binding. Marti did a video tutorial, which you can watch HERE.

I loved working with Kathy Deggendorfer’s “Wild by Nature” collection from Maywood Studio. I even had enough fabric leftover to make a second lap quilt, which I’d like to share with you. The design for this quilt was driven by the fabrics I had on hand, with the addition of a black tone-on-tone for the block background.

The first thing I did was to deconstruct the Star Route block. I took the “Hole in the Barn Door” block from the center, and the “Sawtooth Star” that surrounded it. I had enough pink, green, orange and yellow fabrics to make 12 “Hole in the Barn Door” and a dozen “Sawtooth Star” blocks. These blocks are 9″ finished.

I also had just over 1/2 yard each of three of the floral prints. Not enough to make alternating 9″ squares, so I had to get a little clever. I sewed the pieced blocks into pairs, and eked out four 9.5″ x 18.5″ rectangles of each of the three florals.  Each pair of blocks was sewn to the long side of a floral rectangle. Knowing that it would not be fun to unsew 18″ seams on a black fabric, I decided to draw and label the layout. (I still wound up unsewing one seam.)

And here she is….”Country Girl” is 54″ x 72″ as is, which would be a nice lap-size quilt.

img_1199

“Country Girl” 2017 by Anne Wiens

It’s finished, according to the pattern. But I just may add a 3″ black border to it, which would make it 60″ x 78″. I haven’t decided yet. The binding will be that green from the center of the “Hole in the Barn Door” blocks.We’ll see.

Meanwhile, I’m on to my next project…a “guy quilt” for Quiltmaker Magazine.

qf100-cover-500If you don’t find a copy of the new Quilts from 100 Blocks issue, click HERE to order it directly from Quiltmaker in print or digital format.

Categories: 100 Blocks, Quiltmaker Magazine, Quilts from 100 Blocks, Uncategorized, Wallhangings | Leave a comment

Another “Special Delivery” from Quiltmaker!

Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Vol. 14 debuts today, and not quite smack dab in the center of the cover is my block, “Star Route”.

vol14-cover-200px_69246

Here’s a better photo:

qm100-wien

“Star Route” by Anne Wiens 2016

This block is a combination and slight adaptation of two of my favorite traditional quilt blocks. A “Hole in the Barn Door”block, surrounded by a Sawtooth Star. I live in farming and ranching country in north-central Montana. Many rural residents get their mail by “star route” carriers.

I wondered where the term “star route” originated, so I consulted the USPS website. Long story short, instead of writing out “celerity, certainty and security” on the bid paperwork, postal clerks took to using three asterisks (***), and the contracts came to be called “star routes.” Follow the link for the long version of the story.

There are a lot of pieces in this block, but it isn’t difficult to make. It’s mostly half-square triangles with stitch-and-flip tips. It is a little time-consuming.

Here’s what the block might look like in a quilt:

crib-lap

Left: Crib size quilt is 42″ x 54″ and uses 12 blocks, with pieced border units.                Right: Lap-size quilt is 54″ x 66″ and uses 20 blocks with pieced border units.

You may notice that I added an orange triangle to the pink triangles of the original block. That’s because when I started setting the blocks together, I found that I had large pink diamonds forming, and they distracted the eye from the block centers. Those orange pieces are cut the same size as the blue pieces in the block.

border-units

Border Square 1         Border Square 2

These are actually square units, though they may not look like it on your screen.

Square #1 – The “green” square is the same as the star-point units in the block, substituting black for white in the half-square triangle.

Square #2 – The “pink square starts with a 3.5” black square. The stitch and flip pink corner is the same size as the one in the corner square of the block. The orange stitch and flip corner is the same size square as the blue square in Square #1.

border-unit-construction

You need two of Square #1 and two of Square #2 for each border unit.

blocks-borders

You will need one border unit each block in the top and bottom row of your quilt, one for each block along the sides of your quilt, and two border units plus one more Square #2 for each corner block.

So that’s one way to use the Star Route block.

My Quilt Pro design software and I had a lot of fun playing with this block, and you will be amazed at when I came up with for the next Quiltmaker special issue Quilts from 100 Blocks. However, you’ll have to wait until the magazine comes out next spring.

******

 

I have a copy of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Vol. 14 to give away. To be entered in the random drawing, just leave a comment on this blog, and tell me what town would we be sending your prize to?

*********

Click HERE to check out my Facebook page

Click HERE to return to the Quilty Pleasures blog tour.

Categories: 100 Blocks, Other Blocks & Patterns, Quiltmaker Magazine, Quilts | 160 Comments

Quiltmaker Magazine Rolls out “100 Blocks, Vol 13”

Vol13-COVER-200px

…and my block, “Wheel Around” is right there on the cover:

 

"Wheel Around" by Anne Wiens - 2016

“Wheel Around” by Anne Wiens – 2016

People who know me well will be surprised that I designed a paper-pieced block, because I have never been a fan of paper piecing. In fact, I used to flat-out hate it.

Then I took a class with Carolyn McCormick, who invented the Add-a-Quarter® tool. I had the original ruler in my toolbox for years, but come to find out, I had been using it incorrectly! So I don’t hate paper-piecing anymore. It’s still not my favorite piecing technique, but I don’t shy away from it when it’s the best option.

Last spring, Carolyn introduced a new Add-a-Quarter Plus®. The “Plus” is a beveled edge that eliminates the need to use a separate straight-edge to fold the paper before trimming. Follow the links for more information.

The Wheel Around block I submitted to Quiltmaker is made in four colors, but it can also be made in two-color and eight-color variations (I’m not counting the color in the center of the “wheel”.)

You will need four copies of the pattern page for each block.

GE DIGITAL CAMERA

Make one copy and measure for accuracy. The top and side seam lines (not the outside trim lines) should be 6″ long.

Note: The patterns in the magazine make a block that “spins” clockwise. If you prefer a block that spins counter-clockwise, use the mirror-image feature on your copier to flip the pattern before printing.

"Two color" Wheel layout.

“Two color” Wheel layout.

For the two-color wheel, I chose three shades of teal green. The lightest will go in the center. I made one copy of my pattern page and left it intact, then noted which pieces would be Dark, Medium, or Light teal. The unmarked pieces will be white. I made each of the four quarter units in the same colors.

2-color "Wheel Around" block

2-color “Wheel Around” block

The eight-color block is more complicated:

IMG_0081

For the 8-color block, I arranged the colors, then laid out four copies of the pattern and wrote the colors for each piece right on the pattern I used for piecing.

8-color "Wheel Around" block

8-color “Wheel Around” block

So there are three options for the block itself. I’d love to see what you do with it.You can email me at sweetgrassdesigns@yahoo.com or “Like” my page on Facebook to share your photos.

I have one project in the works, and a couple more on the drawing board.

I can’t show them to you now, but be watching for the Fall 2016 issue of Quilts from 100 Blocks!

Before you head back to the Quilty Pleasures blog to continue today’s tour, please leave a comment below. One lucky visitor will receive a free copy of 100 Blocks, Vol 13 from Quiltmaker Magazine, and I will throw in an Add-a-Quarter Plus® combo pack, containing the 6″ and 12″ tools!

Categories: 100 Blocks, Paper-Pieced Blocks, Quiltmaker Magazine | 145 Comments

The Sun Rises on Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, Vol. 12

And guess who’s block is right there on the cover. 🙂

QM1550-COVER-200px

That’s “Rising Sun”, front and slightly left of center!

"Rising Sun" block by Anne Wiens

“Rising Sun” block by Anne Wiens

This block was named for one of my favorite spots in Glacier National Park. It’s just a few miles up Going-to-the-Sun Road from the St. Mary’s entrance to the park.

The “Sun” isn’t in the center of this block. It “rises” when you put four blocks together, as I did in this 32″ x 32″ wallhanging:

Rising Sun Wallhanging © 2015 by Anne Wiens

Rising Sun Wallhanging © 2015 by Anne Wiens

In making this piece, I made one change to the block as shown in 100 Blocks.

1

1

In each of the four blocks, I substituted a 2.5″ white square for one of the 2.5″ medium green squares.

2

2

This made a twelve-point white star surrounding my “sun” in the center of the piece. Sew the four blocks together.

The border is made in sections.

Border unit pieces

Border unit pieces

There are eight 4.5″ x 12.5″ border sections- two per block.

For each border section you need two 2.5″ dark blue squares and two 2.5″ light blue squares, plus two 4.4″ x 6.5″ white rectangles.

You will also need four 4.5″ white squares for the corners.

 

3

3

Use the Stitch-and-Flip method to put blue corners on the white rectangles. Eight units should have light blue on the left and dark blue on the right (upper unit shown above), and eight should have dark blue on the left and light blue on the right (lower unit shown above.)

4

4

Sew the units into four pairs, matching the dark blue corners. You should have eight pairs. Sew two pairs together to make a border strip…you will have four.

Sew a border strip to two opposite sides of the blocks.

Sew 4.5″ white squares to the each end of the two remaining border strips and sew to the other two sides of the blocks.

Layer your batting, backing and top and quilt as desired. I quilted around my center “sun” and then concentric diamonds following the lines of my piecing.

I used my gold fabric for the binding.

Rising Sun Wallhanging  © 2015 by Anne Wiens

Rising Sun Wallhanging © 2015 by Anne Wiens

Since I was a member of the 2013 Quiltmaker Scrap Squad, I have been hooked on “scrapping” patterns, including my own. I will be giving this block a good scrapping soon, so bookmark this blog and check back often!

—————

Time to give away a copy of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, Vol 12.

QM1550-COVER-200px

Leave a comment below and tell me…what colors will you use for your Rising Sun block? The winner will be chosen at random on Sunday morning, Nov 22, 2015.

—————

PS: Did you see the Bitty Block I designed for the Quiltmaker blog today?

Check it out HERE!

Click HERE to continue the 100 Blocks Vol 12 Blog Tour.

Categories: 100 Blocks, 12" TQ Blocks, Quiltmaker Magazine, Wallhangings | 111 Comments

3…2…1…Launching Another “Quiltmaker 100 Blocks”

We’re Up to Volume 11, and my contribution to this collection is “Telstar”.

“Telstar” block by Anne Wiens – 2015

In 100 Blocks the editors gave you templates for paper-piecing this block. I pieced mine, using two of my favorite rotary cutting tools – the Tucker Trimmer® and Center Beam® tools from Studio 180 Design.

If I had named the block before I made it, I probably would have used a space-themed fabric in the center square. The truth is, I have an awful time coming up with titles for my designs. It just happened that I was reading an article about the early days of the US-USSR space race the day before I absolutely had to get this block in the mail.  There was a photo of the Soviets’ Sputnik satellite and the American satellite Telstar. Honestly, the block looks more like Sputnik, but I liked the Telstar name, so it stuck.

So, off Telstar went to Quiltmaker, and I began playing with projects built around the block. I did make a cute little quilt with an astronaut print, which I will save for another blog post next week.

For now, here are a couple of tablerunners made with the Telstar block:

Telstar Tablerunners by Anne Wiens - 2015

Telstar Tablerunners by Anne Wiens – 2015

Both tablerunners have 3 Telstar blocks set on point, with pieced triangle units.

I made a little change in the block in the “pink” tablerunner. More about that later.

The tablerunners measure about 18″ x 52″.

Telstar Tablerunner #1 - fabrics

Telstar Tablerunner #1 – fabrics

1/4 yard Floral Print

1/2 yard red

1/2 yard green

1/8 yard light blue (not shown)

1-1/8 yards dark blue (Not shown)

1 yard white

1/4 yard gold

Pieces for setting triangles.

Pieces for setting triangles.

You will need to make three Telstar blocks, according to the instructions in the magazine. For the setting triangles you will also need to make twenty of the corner (red & gold) units, and eight 3.5″ blue/white half-square triangles. Cut eight 5.5″ white squares, and cut each diagonally twice for 32 quarter-square triangles. You also need four 3.5″ squares of your main print. You may notice my green squares are missing one corner. I was determined to use this print in my tablerunner and I was down to my very last bits of it. I was not at all sure I was going to make it!

Pieced setting triangles

Pieced setting triangles

Make 4 setting triangles.

Corner units

Corner units

Sew white triangles to the remaining red and gold units and sew into 4 pairs.

End units

End units

Sew corner units to two of the Telstar blocks…

End units 2

End units 2

Sew a setting triangle to the right side of each of the end units.

Center unit & finishing

Center unit & finishing

Sew the other two setting triangles to opposite sides of the remaining Telstar block. Lay the center and end units out as shown and sew together to complete your Telstar top.

Use the dark blue fabric for backing and binding. Cut five 2.25″ (2.5″ if you prefer) x Width of Fabric strips, sew end-to-end and press in half lengthwise for your binding. Set aside. Cut the remaining 3/4 yard piece in half along the center fold and sew the two halves together end-to end. Your backing piece should measure approx 21″ x 56″.

Layer the top, batting and backing, quilt as desired and bind.

——————

Because I wasn’t certain I had enough of the green main print to make my first tablerunner, I bought fabric for a second. When I was sure I was “safe” with the first one, I tweaked the pattern a little for the second one.

Telstar Tablerunner #2- fabrics

Telstar Tablerunner #2- fabrics

In the second tablerunner, I substituted a medium pink for the light blue HSTs, and used the green from the “point” units in the block for the binding and backing as well.

Optional Points

Optional Points

I also put a light pink in place of some of the white pieces in the point units. In half the pink was on the left side of the green and in half it was on the right side.

Telstar Block - Option 2

Telstar Block – Option 2

It’s amazing what a difference the one little change makes in the finished block!

————

Thank you for visiting “Seams Like a Plan”.

“Like” my Facebook Page or click the “Follow” button above to be notified whenever a new post appears here.

———–

Giveaway time!

Click on the magazine to return to Quiltmaker's  blog and continue the tour.

Click on the magazine to return to Quiltmaker’s blog and continue the tour.

Leave a comment below to be entered in a drawing for a free copy of Quiltmaker 100 Blocks, Vol 11. It’s a random drawing, so gushing flattery won’t get you extra points…but it will make me smile.

Categories: 100 Blocks, Other Blocks & Patterns, Other Projects, Quiltmaker Magazine, Tablerunners | 103 Comments

It’s Spring!

I’ve yet to see a robin, but the grass is greening up and while they haven’t bloomed, my tulips have broken ground. My rancher friends are up at all hours dealing with newborn calves and lambs. Best of all, the days are warm enough that you don’t mind being outside for more than a few minutes. It’s SPRING in northern Montana!

To celebrate, I have a fun little crocus block for you.

To make this 8″ block, you will need the following Thrifty Quilter pieces:

Pieces for one crocus block

Pieces for one crocus block

Green: two 2.5″ x 4.5″ rectangles

Light Purple: two 2.5″ squares and two 2.5″ x 4.5″ rectangles

White: six 2.5″ squares and four 2.5″ x 4.5″ rectangles

To construct this block, we need to make 2.5″ x 4.5″ “split rectangles”. Because we are starting with our pre-cut 2.5″ x 4.5″ rectangles, this is going to be a little tricky, and you will find that the diagonal seam line will not go into the corner of the finished piece. If you’re compulsive about accuracy, this may drive you a little crazy, but it’s okay. Trust me.

Step 1a

Step 1a

Layer your two print rectangles wrong sides together, so you will be cutting mirror-image pieces. Lay your ruler diagonally on the fabric so that the 1/4″ line is on the upper left and lower right corners as shown.

Step 1b

Step 1b

Make your cut. Discard the cutaway triangle. Repeat with the green and white rectangles.

Step 1c

Step 1c

Pair a white piece with each print piece and place them right sides together as shown. matching the original corners and aligning the bias edges. Your seam line should run from corner to corner.

Step 1d

Step 1d

Press open and you should have 2.5″ x 4.5″ rectangles again.

Step 2a

Step 2a

Make a 4-patch with one 2.5″ print square and three 2.5″ white squares.

Now you can lay out all of the pieces for the crocus “blossom” as shown and sew them together.

Step 2b

Step 2b

Once the blossom portion is finished, it’s time to add the leaves. Lay out the green split rectangles and the three remaining white 2.5″ squares as shown.

Sew a white square to the narrow green end of one leaf and sew that unit to the side of the blossom unit.

Then sew white squares to both ends of the other leaf and sew that unit on to complete your crocus block.

finished Crocus block

finished Crocus block

Perhaps you can see in the photo that the diagonal purple seam lines wind up about 1/4″ away from the corner of that rectangle. Also, the tips of the green triangles that touch the purple blossom unit are just a bit “flat”. Because it doesn’t affect the outline of the flower, and because it happens consistently in this block, it doesn’t bother me like I was sure it would. If you’re uncomfortable with it, I have another way to make those split rectangles that will solve the problem. Meet me here next week, when we’ll “plant” some morning glories!

joinforblogtour11_200

Oh, and mark your calendar for Tuesday, May 5th when “Seams Like a Plan” will be a stop on Quiltmaker magazine’s 100 Blocks, Vol. 11 blog tour.

Categories: 100 Blocks, 8" TQ Blocks, Quiltmaker Magazine, The Thrifty Quilter System, Thrifty Quilter Blocks & Patterns | Leave a comment

900 and Counting – Quiltmaker Rolls Out A New Issue

QMMS-140044-cover_200

Welcome to “Seams Like a Plan”!

If you’re reading this, you are no doubt looking for sneak peeks at the blocks included in Quiltmaker Magazine’s new special issue, 100 Blocks, Volumn 9.

Well, here’s mine:

"Common Thread" by Anne Wiens

“Common Thread” by Anne Wiens

It’s called “Common Thread” and is block #900, the last block in this issue, which should be on your newsstand next Tuesday. Of course, if you leave a comment at the end of this post, you could win a copy!

The prototype block is made from all scraps.

I kept a scrappy theme, but changed up the coloring just a bit for three quilt ideas.

The first quilt is pictured in the 100 Blocks designers’ gallery section. A friend gave me a yard of a print featuring cats “helping” in the sewing room. “I saw this and knew you had to have some.” she said. I have the best quilty friends in the world!

"Spools & Bobbins 1" features a center panel of cats "helping" in the sewing room...just like my three do! (2013 Anne Wiens)

“Spools & Bobbins 1” features a center panel of cats “helping” in the sewing room…just like my three do! (2013 Anne Wiens)

You should see the quilting on this piece. I gave it to Tiffany Barcus at Unique Quilting. I told her it had a Victorian vibe to me, and I only had one request…that she quilt a spiderweb in one corner. It’s a common theme in crazy quilts popular in that era. She had carte blanche with the rest of the quilt. She obviously had a lot of fun!

You’ll notice that while the blocks in “Spools & Bobbins 1” have various pinks, the corner diamonds have the same blue and green fabrics.

"Spools & Bobbins 2" by Anne Wiens (2014)

“Spools & Bobbins 2” by Anne Wiens (2014)

I have to be honest. I don’t love this top as much as I had hoped I would. They say a little yellow goes a long way, and in this quilt, it goes a little too far. If I were doing it over, (I’m not – it doesn’t bother me that much) I’d use the purple diamonds in pace of the gold ones. Then again, I might go back to the original idea of all scraps in those diamonds.

Which brings me to “Spools & Bobbins 3”, which isn’t finished yet, but here’s a block:

Common Thread by Anne Wiens 2014

Common Thread by Anne Wiens 2014

This block goes back to the scrap diamonds, but instead of an off-white border, uses the same white-on-white for all of the background. All of the blocks in “Spools & Bobbins 3” will have the same teal blue “thread”, and there will be more diamonds in the borders.

This one will be the most contemporary of the three quilts. I’ve toyed with taking it Amish or Modern, using all solid colors and either a black or white background.

Now…for the 100 Blocks, Volume 9 give-away.

Leave a comment below and tell me, how many spools of thread would you guess (you don’t have to count them) do you have in your collection, and what is the most common color?

One winner will be chosen at random at the end of the week.

Thanks for stopping by “Seams Like a Plan.” If you click on the blue “Follow Seams Like a Plan” button at the top of the page, you’ll be notified whenever I publish a new post. It doesn’t happen as often as it should, but there’s usually a block or quilt pattern involved.

Categories: 100 Blocks, Other Blocks & Patterns, Quiltmaker Magazine, Quilts, Scrap Quilts | 293 Comments

It’s Only Math…

Raise your hand if you’re reading this blog post because of Diane’s nice review of The Thrifty Quilter on Quiltmaker magazine’s “Quilty Pleasures” blog.  Thank you for tuning in” as we say in radio… a.k.a. “my day job” (K96fm.com). Diane’s review gives me an opportunity to explain how truly versatile this simple little scrap system can be.

The origin of the Thrifty Quilter (TQ) system is explained in the first post I wrote for this blog. Click HERE to read it.

In the book, I worked with two “sets” of scraps to build my blocks and quilts. The small set is a 2.5″ square, 4.5″ square and a 2.5″ x 4.5″ rectangle. The large set is a 3.5″ square, a 6.5″ square and a 3.5″ x 6.5″ rectangle. The block instructions call for “small squares”, “large squares” and “rectangles”.  If I’m using the small set for a particular block, the small square is always 2.5″, the large square is always 4.5″ and the rectangle is always 2.5″ x 4.5″.  If I want to make the same block with the large set, the small square is always 3.5″, the large square is 6.5″ and the rectangle is always 3.5″ x 6.5″.

TQ- Misc Set Illustration

These three pieces can be combined to make half-square triangles, flying geese and other parts and pieces that in turn can be combined to make quilt blocks.

There are a total of 80 blocks in the book, divided into three groups, which I labeled “Base 3”, “Base 4” and “Base 6”.  If you drew them on a grid, a Base 3 block is three squares by 3 squares. Base 4 blocks are 4 squares by 4 squares, and Base 6 blocks are 6 by 6. There are no Base 5 blocks in the book, but I am publishing those from time to time here on “Seams Like a Plan.”

Misc- Base IllustrationIf you use small set pieces, Base 3 blocks finish 6″ square, Base 4 blocks are 8″ and Base 6 blocks will be 12″. If you use the large set pieces, Base 3 blocks will be 9″ finished, Base 4 blocks will be 12″ and Base 6 blocks will be 18″.

Now, you could use just those six pieces, mix and match them using the settings in the book, or your own, and happily make TQ quilts for the rest of your life without ever repeating  yourself. Trust me. For every TQ quilt I complete, I add two or three to my sketchbook!

And it needn’t stop there. You can adapt the TQ system to your own needs. If you like miniature quilts, you can make tiny blocks just by changing the size of the squares and rectangles. If you’d rather make really big blocks, just save and use larger squares and rectangles. As long as you maintain the 2:1 ratio, you can use pieces of any size. The chart below will take what little math there is out of it for you.

———– PIECE SIZE (CUT SIZE) ——–     —-FINISHED BLOCK SIZE—–

TQ- Misc Size ChartThank you again for checking out the Thrifty Quilter System. If you check the blue “follow” button at the top of the left column on this page, you will be notified whenever I post a new block or quilt. In the meanwhile, start cutting up those leftover fabrics and you’ll be ready to sew!

Categories: Quiltmaker Magazine, The Thrifty Quilter System | 15 Comments

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: