Category: Quilting

Blindly Following Instructions

I purchased a table runner kit after the holidays. I’ve never done paper piecing, but I like the Mariner’s Compass patterns. It’s a technique I wanted to learn; and I wanted a clean, modern table runner for our dining room. I didn’t see a whole lot of modern-looking quilted table runners.

I’ve watched a couple of online videos showing the paper piecing process, and thought I was ready to give it a try. Traced the A variant of the block four times, cut all of the fabric pieces, and got ready to sew. I was halfway done the first block when I realized that the instructions have a point made of a blue piece and a yellow piece. Not a darker and lighter blue or a darker and lighter yellow. Checked the B variant of the block – same thing.

Well, that’s not right! I can see the intended result and it’s clearly got points that have a shadow effect created by using a darker and lighter shade of the same color. And if you combine two of the block units, you’ll have nothing but yellow/blue points.

I ended up re-writing the fabric to be used – and realized that there isn’t actually a B variant of the block anywhere in the thing. It is 8 identical blocks. A dark blue, light yellow/dark yellow, then a light blue. That light blue connects to the dark blue on the next block.

One of the challenges of working on something new … I don’t know enough about what I’m doing to question the instructions. Until it becomes obvious (and I have to cut new pieces to re-do an entire block!)

Fabric Panels

Since I started sewing, I have seen “fabric panels” which are basically a large picture printed on fabric. Never ‘got’ it … for what purpose does one get a picture on a piece of fabric? After Christmas, I was shopping clearance sales and found a quilt kit that used the fabric panel. Oooooh! That is how you use a fabric panel.

I’ve now got two new blanket projects for Anya (tied quilts) — one with construction trucks that I know she is going to love with a minky yellow fabric for the back. And gravel print fabric for the binding

The second is a Northcott print with woodland animals looking up at a star. I’ve got a minky ice blue backing for this one.

I made Anya’s sleeping bag with two layers of Quilter’s Dream Puff batting – that’s almost too warm (but good for sleeping outdoors). I’m thinking a single layer of the Dream Puff batting should give us a couple of cozy blankets.

Anya Quilt – Part 1

I have been working on an Ohio Star quilt for Anya’s bed (figure anyone who lives in Ohio should have an Ohio Star quilt or two in their house!). Constructing a quilt is a great visual example of exponential progression. Piecing the four tiny triangles into fairly small squares … you’ve still got a whole lot of tiny pieces. Strips of three squares put together were still a lot of small pieces. But, the quilt builds up rather quickly from there – strips turn into 3×3 blocks, then these blocks form three really large strips with a border fabric between them. Then border strips go in between the star strips to form the entire quilt top.

I had the final top pinned together and took a quick picture to share. Something didn’t look right. Took the picture, folded up the project for the night, and went on to other things. Right before bed, I pulled the picture up again to send to my mom:


Something REALLY didn’t look right … stared at it for a few minutes before I realized that two of my block-triangleblock-block strips were attached upside down! Instead of having a pink triangle along the center block, I have a white triangle. Looking back at the previous step, I do not know how I missed it:


Evidently there is no historical basis for a humility block (an “intentional” mistake put into a quilt – sort of like small dead end roads used to copyright protect maps) … and, honestly, it always sounded like a defensive “I meant to do that!” kind of thing rather than a real “only God is perfect, so my quilt should have a flaw to avoid angering God” thing 🙂

My task for today is to rip out the two backwards blocks and get them stitched back into the quilt. Ugh! Very important lesson learnt — but all in all, not bad for my first quilt.