Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Wild Nature Update

Several years ago I started doing a variety of fused applique blocks. I had taken a class from June Jaeger and designed my own quilt using some of her blocks, McKenna Ryan's and now I wanted to add a Toni Whitney design!

I decided it would take teaching a class to get me going again. So, today was the first of a two session class. Beautiful Toni Whitney designs are being created. I do have more patterns in the studio for several of her designs. Stop by to select your favorite!

I did this Backdoor Bear. The photo seems washed out, but the colors are quite vibrant.The inside image is only 8"x10" so I actually got it done today! It was quite exciting to see it come together so easily. Lots of small pieces, but her construction techniques make it simple enough. Now I can add it to my pile of blocks that at some point I'll have enough to make a quilt, "Oddie's Wild Nature."

Maybe some day I'll figure out how to make one of these from my own photo. There has to be a way in Photoshop that one can easily do this, no? If you've seen a tutorial online, please share the link!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Continuous Stitching on a Star of the Orient

I've been very busy trying to stay healthy (a bit under the weather for the last couple of weeks) and getting the manuscript and projects done for our We Can Do It! Skill Builder Sampler book that AQS will be publishing soon. The first class has now completed the series. So proud of them! Here are several who showed up for the bonus class. We had fun laying out some of their blocks, filling the entire table and we still had lots more blocks.

This week I had a fun client quilt so wanted to take a minute and show you this quilting path that I developed. This quilt was very scrappy with this beautiful star block framed in a traditional pineapple design, it is called Star of the Orient.

I developed a continuous stitching line for an entire row of blocks in the center of the quilt that I think is pretty clever, so thought I'd share it with you. I hope my drawings will allow you to see how it works.

The key with something like this is to find a point that you can be symmetrical and move along to the next block and all the way across and then come back the other direction to finish the bottom side of the block.

I broke the block down into 4 parts.
1. the frame
2. the spiral into the star center
3. star points
4. star background fill

Then there is the on point square!

1. THIN RED: STARTing at the lower left side of the block, do a candy ribbon up the frame, adjusting the size and spacing of the candy ribbon when the pineapple goes from 2 to 3 layers at the corner. Continue the ribbon candy until you choose a star point where the candy ribbon hits it and is preferably a 'lighter' colored fabric. Marked A.

2. THIN GREEN: Spiral into the center of the star and back out again almost to the spike end and then begin part 3.

3. THIN BLUE: Do long swags into the star and back out almost to each star point all the way around the star coming back to where you started #2.

4. THIN PURPLE: Go around the star making a loop into the background between each spike, all the way around the star until you're back to where you started #2.

5. THICK GREEN: Continue back around the frame doing the ribbon candy until you get to the lower right side of the block and can hit the outer edge of the block, (MARK B) then pivot and start the next block. THICK BROWN: This leaves the lower section of the block unfinished, but you'll do that when you come back across the quilt.

Repeat steps 1-5 until you are at the very last block.

6. Continue around the block until you come to the top of the onpoint background square. Stop at the top of it (MARKed Ca) and THICK DARK BROWN: do the orange peels, returning to the starting point of the square.

7. THICK RED: Finish up the pineapple frame, connecting with the pivot between squares and pivot again coming left into the next block.

Repeat 6 and 7 until you're back to the very beginning of the row.

Now if you ever get a quilt that has this block...you'll have some ideas on how to break it down and get it quilted quickly!