Category Archives: block pattern

Square in a Square – Comfort Quilt

A tutorial for a different way to do a square in a square block popped up while browsing Pinterest one day and I thought I’d give it a try. Place two squares of equal size on top of each other, right sides together. Then sew all four edges using a 1/4″ seam. Mark from corner to opposite corner then the next corner to corner. Carefully cut the “x” being sure to not cut into the seam. Fold out each cut section, press, and voila! there’s your block! It’s not a true square in a square as the points are lost, but it is a quick and easy method and I’m okay with the look.

I put them all together for a comfort quilt which will go to Hospice when completed. The blocks seemed awfully plain, so I appliqued a circle in the center of each block. This was quickly done in a day and now it’s (I bet you guessed it) hanging with the other flimsies waiting to be quilted. The inspiration will hit me one day, hopefully soon, to get them quilted and bound.

Scrappy Batik

There are seven bins full of batiks in my studio, one of which is scraps. From the book “Scrap=Basket Bounty”, I chose the Snippets pattern to make use of the scraps. The cuts are 1 1/2″ squares and 1 1/2″ by varying lengths. There are 80 blocks with 16 pieces in each – in all 1,280 pieces! Here is the first round of piecing:

Then another. Chain sewing makes for quick work, but I’ll admit to getting bored part way through and switched to another project.

Finally, there were blocks to put on the design wall:

Finally, a flimsy complete with border! Now, hanging in a closet, it’s waiting its turn to head off to the long arm quilter. And that scrap bin? Yup, it’s still full!

This past spring, this is where I’ve spent most of my time. Lack of rain has been challenging, but it definitely remains my happy place. I have learned to embrace the shade and make the most of what sun the garden does get.

Another Group Effort

At the April retreat, participants put together this simple block.

One of the retreaters suggested I put the blocks together this way so as to not have to match seams. Great idea!

I found this layout boring, so I decided to have some fun with slashing the blocks.

Four of the slashed blocks made this cool design:

Here are all the blocks put together. Note that there is a secondary design.

It now needed something more and it wasn’t wide enough. Back into my bin of donated fabrics to add two side borders.

A Hospice flimsy – yeah! It is now hanging in my “flimsy” closet waiting in line behind the others to be quilted. My goal is to have them all done by the end of summer. Bonus: there are enough blocks left to make a second quilt from these blocks!

One for Spring

Melee the quilt is finished! I have, however, changed the name to “Vibrance” which is much more positive. This was made from blocks I had put away for some time. The blocks were cut up in varying shapes and sizes and put on the design wall with a minimal plan.

The center of this quilt was definitely planned.
The two ends of the quilt had the full triangles as a border.

It was back from the long arm quilter last week and I couldn’t wait to add the binding. Yes, there were extra “corners,” but they were easy. This quilt definitely has the colors and vibrance of spring. And I have been SO craving spring!

After auditioning several solid fabrics, I chose this bright blue for binding- it accentuates some of the colors of the quilt. The few extras of the blocks are on the back so no leftovers. A real win! The polka dot backing fabric adds to the fun of the quilt.

This quilt is going to live in my living room for a while. It will be a bright spot until the real Spring arrives. Do you have a favorite season? Do you display quilts that reflect that season?

A Bigger Memory Quilt

At Christmas I gifted several memory creations to a family. There was a lot of shirting left that they did not want back. It is my son’s girlfriend’s family, and he asked if I would please take the leftovers and make a quilt. Did I say “no” to my son? Of course not! I got on it very soon after!

There were a lot of pockets that I wanted to use. There was also a nice variety of shirt fabrics. Without a full plan, I appliqued the pockets onto gray and dappled gray non-shirt fabrics. I then set them onto my design wall with spacing between them and got my “ah hah” moment. Stars!

There was a lot of cutting, sewing, and a couple of redos. Finally, an almost what I wanted on the design wall. Sashing was clearly needed so with hubby’s help, we calculated what was needed for a pieced sashing. Lots more sewing.

I don’t always use an outside border, but this quilt clearly needed one to “hold it together.” Of course, there wasn’t anything to be had in my stash. I knew I wanted to use the burgundy color, but couldn’t find a match. The mottled blend really worked.

All the larger leftover pieces went onto the backing. I really hated to discard any of them.

I really do love this quilt and can’t wait to present it.

Linking with: NTT

Prepping for Retreats

This April I’ll be heading to two quilt retreats. Not having any works in progress to take with me, I got busy prepping for the first retreat. Two charity quilts were prepped – baby quilts, 36 inches by 36 inches using 3″ finished squares. I even have the backings and bindings ready to travel. It would be a hoot to come home with two completely finished projects!

My next endeavor is for the quilt pattern “Snipits.” I raided my batik bins – oh so many, many batiks. I don’t usually prewash my quilt fabrics, but I do with batiks. It softens them and it’s amazing to see the color catchers at the end of the wash.

There were 1280 pieces to cut for this quilt, varying lengths, 1 1/2″ wide. Not as bad as it sounds – I pulled out my studio cutter and went to work cutting strips, then subcutting by hand.

I like using these clear zip envelopes. The pieces are kept separated and tidy and then all in a project box.

I’m really excited about these projects and am fighting the temptation to begin while still at home. April seems forever away! Next I’ll prep a long awaited kit for the second retreat. The cutting is a bit more complex for that one, so it will probably take me a couple of days.

I’m sure I’ll find plenty more to do to keep me busy in the studio after that. Also, we’re expecting some glorious weather so maybe I’ll get to some long awaited and much needed yard work!

Ready to Go!!

Pretty in Pink

Hand sewing and knitting has been mostly consuming my time lately. Enough! I needed machine time and some easy sewing. When I went to my bin of 3 1/2″ scrap squares, I noticed that there was a fair amount of pink. I pulled out enough pink squares to make a 36″ square quilt and put them on the design wall..

Sewing them together, and then the rows, was fast, easy and fun! Diagonal curvy lines for the quilting and here’s the quilt:

I was recently given some pink fleece that I wanted to use for charity quilt backings and it was so perfect for this little gem.

After I get a couple more small quilts like this done, they’ll be headed to the local Community Pregnancy Center. If I were to name this quilt, I think it would be “Pink Joy.”

This One’s for ME!

It’s been a while and am glad to be back. I was out of town for several weeks and blogging was just not on the list.

Blue batiks, green batiks and a few white thrown in and what do you get? A string quilt! The blocks were positioned to make diamond shapes. This was a LOT of sewing but so worth it! I have found that fleece is a wonderfully warm backing for quilts, and batting is not necessary. So, I went with a dark blue backing and straight line stitching.

I’m really happy with this design and decided I’m keeping this one for me. Kitty and I will probably have to fight for it this winter, although I will give her a corner to snuggle in. The quilt is on the back of my living room sofa and I got one of the best compliments ever. Sitting across from it, out of the blue, hubby said “I love that quilt.” How awesome is that!

A name? Well, the diamonds are big so I was reminded of the very old method of cutting diamonds – mine cut diamonds. So, this beauty is “Mine Diamond.” So good to finally have another finish!

One Person Sweat Shop

Or maybe a serial sewer? Add generosity to that and you get eleven (11) Hospice quilts!!

Laurie moved to another town some time ago, but we do have fun keeping in touch with texts. There was a week or two that she was maniacally sewing – in a good way! She finished a few of her own projects, made quilts for teens aging out of the foster care system, made quilts for the Community Pregnancy Center, and made quilts for Hospice. Eleven of them! I never tire of hanging them all out on the clothes line and taking a pic. Pretty and inspiring!

Sewn together, quilted and bound, the Hospice quilts are ready to be donated. Here is a collage so they can be seen better. There are even a few wheelchair quilts.

Oh all that color! Can’t wait to pass these on to the Hospice person that comes to pick them up! Thank you Laurie!

Sewing Therapy and More

I found myself floundering the past week as I was working through emotions on the loss of my sister. She had been sick for a while and although her passing was imminent, it somehow doesn’t seem real when it actually happens. To help clear my mind, I went to my 2 1/2″ strip box and began to sew. Mindless sewing can be so very therapeutic!

A few hours of sewing resulted in this scrappy Hospice quilt. I cut a backing from a pretty printed fleece and hung both in my flimsy closet to be quilted another time. Of course, there’s many more strips to sew together for many more quilts!

Cooking is also therapeutic for me. After sewing, I made a batch of dough for a pizza. We are spoiled with homemade pizza and no longer order out for it. It was yummy and some is in the freezer for a quick fix dinner another night! That is always a win.

In the garden the red spider lilies were popping up in several places – so pretty and such joy!

I’ll be retreating this coming week in Blowing Rock and am so looking forward to it. Those coming are always such a joy. We sew, laugh, share and laugh some more. Lucky me.

Note: The 2021 retreats are full. You may put your name on a wait list.