Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Guest Blocker today is Amanda....with this Diagonal Delight

Hello all of you quilting enthusiasts!

I was so excited when Madame Samm asked me to guest blog again for her Block Party. Thanks, Madame Samm. This theme is so fun!

I've really enjoyed seeing everyone else's ideas. By way of introduction, my name is Amanda Murphy. I design fabric for Robert Kaufman and also have an independent pattern line. Something that I have been experimenting with recently is quilts made from blocks that "feed in" to each other, so you can't tell the division from one to the next at first. My patterns Garden Paths, Bedazzled and Beribboned are good examples of this. (Incidentally, if you would like to win any of these interlocking pattern come on over because I'm having a giveaway in honor of this post!)

I decided to design a block for the Block Party just like that - a simple one that has several layout possibilities. Here she is: She looks pretty simple, right? I'm calling her "Diagonal Delight", mainly because I can't think of another name. Any suggestions?

On her own, she isn't a showstopper, but the exciting thing is that, when multiplied, she can morph into this...

or this...

or this...
or this.

You get the idea.

To make this (10 1/2'' or 10'' finished) block you will need:
  • Assorted Feature fabrics: 4 (2-1/2'') squares
  • Diagonal Motif fabric: 4 (1-1/2'') squares and 1 (2-1/2'') square
  • Background fabric: 2 (4-1/2'' x 6-1/2'') rectangles, 2 (1-1/2'') squares, 2 ( 1-1/2'' x 5-1/2'') rectangles, 2 (1-1/2'' x 4-1/2'') rectangles, and 2 (2-1/2'') squares.
To make Diagonal Delight:
1.  Join 2 (2-1/2'') Feature fabric squares together. Join remaining 2 Feature fabric squares together. Join these units together to produce 1 4-Square unit.

2.  Join 4-Square unit to a (4-1/2'' x 6-1/2'') Background rectangle, pressing seams toward 4-Square unit. Set aside.

3.  Join 1 (1-1/2'') Diagonal Motif square to a (1-1/2'' x 5-1/2'') Background rectangle. Press seams toward Diagonal Motif square. Repeat to make 2 units.

4.  Join 1 (1-1/2'') Diagonal Motif square to 1 (1-1/2'') Background square and 1 (1-1/2'' x 4-1/2'') Background rectangle. Press seams toward Diagonal Motif square. Repeat to make 2 units.

5.  Join 1 (2-1/2'') Diagonal Motif square to 2 (2-1/2'') Background squares. Press seams toward Diagonal Motif square.

6.  Join the units you made in Steps 3-5 together to form 1 Diagonal Motif.

7.  Join Diagonal Motif to a (4-1/2'' x 6-1/2'') Background rectangle, pressing seams toward Diagonal Motif Unit.

8.  Join the units from step 2 and 7 together. You are done!

I hope you enjoy this block. If you make something with it please send me pictures, or add them to my much-neglected Flickr group that I always forget to mention. (Well, not this time at least.)

Thanks again to Madame Samm for having me!
Happy sewing!

Monday, November 28, 2011

HOW sweet are YOU? Want to be sweeter...?

IT is the end of the month....and look at 
what GODIVA chocolates wants to give to
one of YOU...just to sweeten you even more...

These special edition ULTIMATE Dessert
Truffles..and can we say OUT OF THIS WORLD...
and I don't even love chocolate, but there were a couple
creme brulee I went gaga over...

24 total truffles..here are some of the sweet morsels...

Their Chef Chocolatiers have added some Red Velvet Truffles, some luscious chocolate eclairs, some chocolate lava cakes, the creme brule my fav, how about some Caramel Apple Torte,Carrot Cake, Cheesecake, Chocolate Souffle, Vanilla Moose, Strawberry Creme and did I forget to tell you some TIRAMISU...

LET us know what would be your FAVORITE GODIVA Chocolates,
cookies.....what is it...
( mine are the cookies...lovvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvve the cookies)

But this is not about me, is it? lol

Giveaway on DEC 1st....

thank you Godiva...

And the Winner is JANE..
she has been contacted and goodness
me is she excited...
thanks to Godiva and all those
who participated, I  had no idea
how many of you really LOVE
chocolate. lol

Guest Blocker today is Wendy with Leaves of Fall

When Madame Samm mentioned this really neat block party, I thought cool! perfect time of year for a leaf block ... it being Fall and all.  Well ... that was then... before the snow fell, the winds blew all the leaves away and the countdown to Christmas came upon us.

Well, I still like this block, and I think you will too. 

Oops, introductions would be in order ... I'm Wendy of Why-Knot-Kwilt!! 

Thank you so much, Madame Samm, for inviting me to your Block Party!!
I promise to rake up after I'm through :)
 So, without further adieu ...

I made this leaf block with 5" pre-cut squares,
just becuase I had them available ...
I'm sure it would work with any material.

You will need:

5 background squares (my pictures mistakenly show four)
3 leaf body squares
2 leaf tip squares
1 stem square

Begin by placing one background square with
one leaf-tip square, right sides together:
Make two sets of these.
Draw a line diagonally from tip to tip across square:
Of course, if your house is like mine ...
you need to find a pencil with lead in it first!!

You will use this drawn line as a guide to
sew 1/4 inch on both sides of the line:

 Now, use the line you just drew as a cutting line to separate
your newly formed two colored blocks:

You should now have four half square triangles...
Open and press flat:

You will want to be sure to trim these squares down to 4 1/2 inches:
Next, if you're feeling brave, you can cut all of these squares
down to 4 1/2 inches at one time, as I did,
otherwise, you can individually cut your three leaf body squares,
one background square and your stem square each to 4 1/2 inches:
Except for your stem square, set these now cut to size squares aside for future use ...

Take your two remaining background squares and cut them to four inches square:

As you did in the first step, draw a line diagonally
across both background squares, from tip to tip:

Lay the background square right side down on top of the stem square, lining up the top and side edges, as pictured above.  At this time, you will now stitch  on the line you drew on the back of the square.

Once you've stitched on the line, measure 1/4 inch
away from the stitching line and trim off excess.

Repeat with remaining 4 inch background square.
After you repeat the steps of stitching and cutting off excess,
 open and press stem square flat.

Once your stem square is complete, you can now
lay out your leaf block and you are ready
to start stitching your block together!
I don't often use pins in my work and so use the method of
chain stitching my blocks together so as they are
stitched together, the stitching virtually holds
everything in place just as pins would do ... see:
This is accomplished by simply laying out your
blocks in the order they need to be stitched:
And then take the second row and place it
face down on top of the first row, vertically:

Once you chain these blocks together, you can then open them up and add on the third row of blocks. Now that the third row is stitched on, pick up your block, the squares are all attached togehter if you've chained your piecs and all you need do is flip over the row, stitch and and press.

I do believe you will enjoy the ease of this marvelous leaf block:

It was so very easy, that tonight I made two ....
(and yet another ...) 

While I haven't decided exactly what I'm going to do with these blocks quite yet,
I think I may have a small lap rug in mind ... I've got four packs of charm squares that
go with this line and as simple as these were, I'm thinking Christmas present!!!

Come visit me over at Why Knot Kwilt? if you get a chance
 to see if I keep up with my goal of a Christmas gift,
or if I FALL behind with this awesome Leaf block!

Thank you once again to Madame Samm and
 all of your amazing readers for having me here today!!

Happy hugs and warmest heart wishes to
each of you and until next time, 
 Happy Stitching!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Guest Blocker Cara with her Friendpatch Block

Hi everyone! I'm Cara from CaraQuilts and host of Talkin Tuesday, a twitter chat dedicated to sewing and quilting.

Many months ago the incredibly organized Mme Samm sent an email out asking for block tutorials for a Block Party on Sew We Quilt. 

Seeing as I love a party, I came up with Friendpatch!

Merging two blocks I'm really liking right now, Friendship Star and a Nine-Patch Four Patches (I'm sure there's actually a name to this one but not sure what it is)

I made the block as a 6" block but it is easily changed to 9 or 12. If you need help changing the size email or comment and I'll be glad to help!

(2) 1 ½”x 6” strip - light fabric
(2) 1 ½”x 6” strip - 1 each of the darker fabrics
(2) 1½” x 3” - 1 each of the darker fabrics
(2) 3” squares - 1 each of the darker fabrics
(2) 3” squares - light fabrics

Half Square Triangles (HSTs)

Mark a line diagonally, from corner to corner, on the wrong side of the lighter fabrics.
Layer right sides together with a darker fabric. Stitch 1/4" on either side of the drawn line. Press too sink in the stitches. Cut in half along the drawn line and press to the darker fabric.
Trim to 2 1/2". You should now have 4 HSTs, two of each of the darker fabrics.

Four Patches

Light/Dark Four patches
Stitch light  1 ½”x 6” strips to the dark  1 ½”x 6” strip right sides together. Press the stitches while still right sides together. This will help with any waving in your seam. Press open.
Cut across both fabrics into 1 ½”x 2 1/2" strips.

Lay the newly cut 11/2" x 2 1/2" strips together with light over dark, and one of each dark fabrics. Stitch together. Press. Yield 4.

Dark/Dark Four Patches
Stitch 1 ½”x 3” strips right sides together. Press open. Cut across both fabrics into 1 ½”x 2 1/2" strips. Lay the strips right sides together so opposing fabrics are meeting and the seam abutts. Stitch. Press open.

 Lay the block out and stitch into rows.

Rows 1 and 3's four patches have dark fabric in the corner closest to the middle.

Row one: four patch, HST (dark fabric down and right), four patch.
Row two: HST (dark fabric up and right) dark four patch, HST ( dark fabric down and left)
Row three: Four Patch, HST (dark fabric up and left) four patch.

Press rows in opposing directions. Stitch together and press well!

I hope you like the block!

Want to see what it would look like with multiple blocks?
Change the light to dark....

And if you reverse half the blocks, so the direction of the HSTs, you get this!

Neat, eh?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Guest Blocker.....Jennie with a Pinwheel Toss ( Clover & Violet)

First, I'd like to thank Madame Samm for inviting me to share a tutorial for the November Block Party.  I'm Jennie and I blog over at Clover & Violet about all sorts of quilty and sewing things and the little pattern shop I have with my mom.  I'm excited to share a quilt block with all of you, I'm calling this one Pinwheel Toss because it's a combination of pinwheels {one of my favorites!} and a Disappearing Nine Patch.

This is a fun and easy block that measures 13" {finished} and has lots of options to mix and match prints and solids.  I made mine out of leftover charm squares, but the size could easily be adjusted by using different size squares.  You'll need:

I made my pinwheels first.  Pair one printed square with one white square, right sides together, and sew 1/4" from the edge all the way around the square {1}, cut the square diagonally into four half-square-triangles {2}, press the half-square-triangles open and trim to 3" square {3}, sew all four together to make a pinwheel and trim to 5" square {4}.  Repeat for a second pinwheel.

Arrange the two 5" pinwheels and the seven remaining printed squares into a nine patch with the pinwheels in opposite corners.

Sew the nine squares together {I sewed three rows of three, then sewed the rows together}.

Then, cut your large nine patch down the center both vertically and horizontally, into four equal squares.

Leave the pinwheel squares in place, but swap and rotate the remaining squares so that the small center square is pointing to the outside corner,

Then simply sew the four squares back together and your block is complete!

And, just in case you wanted to see a plain version, here is the outline for the block:

And a diagram of a 3 x 3 quilt:

Happy sewing and quilting!