Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Linky Party almost here!!!

Today is Tuesday.. I haven't been chatting much about my monthly linky but it is still gonna be here for you THIS WEEKEND!  So get your post ready.. think about where you have been and where you are going with your quilting or other stuff too... write about it in a blog post and link it up!

And yes, for my faithful followers... I changed the icon and the name..

I really want this linky to reflect all goals.. not just quilty ones :)  But don't fret as there will still be a PRIZE for the lucky linker!!!  That won't stop for sure... and prizes right now come from my quilting stash & deals I find with all of you goal setters in mind!!!!

So ponder it a bit as you go through your week... write a fun post about what you have done... what you hope to get accomplished in the next month.. and link up here anytime this weekend!


Meanwhile.. I did get a bit of slow stitching in.. doing embroidery on my current project I am piecing...
 Hope your week is fabulous.. and hope you make time for yourself to write some goals!  And share them with us :) 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Fun Flying Geese :)

Today I want to share something I worked on yesterday and finished this morning!
Check out all the cool prints.. and I just used 6... let's rewind a bit and I can show you :)

Here are 5 stacks of 4 each of finished flying geese.. waiting to be "strung" lol!

I used the easy angle ruler and companion angle ruler I had in my stash.. never had used them before but knew flying geese would be in my future :)

I had several methods of making them I researched but finally decided on staying tried and true and minimize unsecured bias by going the easy angle way and use Bonnie Hunter's vid here.

So with rotary cutter carefully in hand I cut ONE flying goose...

It turned out good I think... so then I just cut out all the pieces!!! Now to put them together keeping the pairs I cut matched during the sewing process!  This is how the process went for me...
Lay them all out as they will go .. pairs are left together from when they were cut together :)

Chain piece the left "sky" to the "goose"... mine are cute snails :)

After all left skies are in place put them back in order as you free them from the chain... only do about 4 at a time :)
Get your right sky ready now... time to add it... First finger press the let sky back though.. VERY IMPORTANT!

When putting the right sky on make sure your overlap is there.  I will show you why to watch this below!

Tahdah!  A flying goose!!! Finger press before ironing and make sure they measure up though :)

Now press all those 4 flying geese.  I prefer no steam when piecing.

When I add this flying goose to my other geese... look what I got!

Notice in this pic above my sting of geese is leaning a bit to the right.. I fixed that issue.  Check the pic at the top again... those are all perfect geese!  Showing this so you will be careful when sewing your sting of geese together too!

Another pitfall I found with this block is that careful cutting and figuring is required as well as very careful sewing... I resewed quite a bit to get the results I did.  Piecing just doesn't come naturally for me yet..but I am working on it.

A huge shout out to my friend Wendy!  She helped me perfect my goose making skills :)

Here was my problem area.. The top center did not overlap well on all of my initial flying geese... I had to go back and resew many... so don't cut those pesky dog ears off until your goose is cooked! lol  Other words... make sure it is right first.. you can't take back cut fabric.

 Here is with the right sky resewn... Much better and...
 It measures up!  Now iron and remove your dog ears..
Joining the flying geese was really easy... so I did not take pics of that.. but you may not have a 1/4" seam to get the points to show... some of my seams are 1/8" on the geese to get a nice point otherwise.

Now it is your turn.. what method do you use for making flying geese.  Do you like this unit or is it one you would pass on ?  I have several quilting friends that love them and several that avoid them... lol!

I also enjoyed spending the day with my honey for his BIRTHDAY!  We celebrated properly when Connie was here... and he got a new woodworking tool he wanted.. but his fave gift was all the well wishes he got and this cute truck we found on eBay and we got for him...
He repairs featherweights basically exclusively now.. and loves it.. so this went immediately to a treasured home I will share another day.. as this post is long enough! lol

Hope to hear back from you on what you think of flying geese!  Love em or hate em I think mine turned out cute as can be!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Learning about 4 patches...

The last 2 days have been filled with strip piecing 4 patches and cutting them into their pairs.. have you made 4 patches before?

I had not I guess because I learned there is a special way to iron a 4 patch to get it to lay nice and flat!  Yippee :)

Once I figured there was a secret I searched more vids... and found THIS great vid by Billie Lauder on how to lay out my strips for quick cutting.
pressing to the dark...

Then I watched this follow up vid also by Billie Lauder where she explains the way to press them HERE!
4 patch anatomy ~ before finger pressing...

Finger pressed open now

Ironed flat now...

Tahdah!  The finished 4 patch :)
Both vids are only 5 minutes total but worth a watch.. or 2 .. or 3 times as it goes FAST! lol :)  ha!

I also managed to do some reading yesterday... I was so happy that the mood struck...  I decided to open Jinny Beyer's book ~ Quiltmaking by Hand ~ randomly but toward the beginning of the book...  the topics were quilting notions and prewashing stash! lol  I loved reading about the history of chatelaines and such... but hearing more preaching about prewashing all fabrics was getting a bit over heard for me lately.  GOAL MET!

I have totally been absorbed in designing and now making this quilt.. I am very excited with all of the process thus far!

Did you already know how to do the 4 patch twist or was this new to you?  This is my 13th quilt.. how come I never made a proper 4 patch before now ??  None of my quilts had 4 patches .. until now! lol  And I have no idea why either... as I am truly enjoying the process of placing them around the spot the center panel I showed you yesterday will go...
Come back to see what else is new.. as I am learning something all the time and love to share what I learn.. plus it gives me an easy reference if I need to review the info later :)

My honey is even being quilty today... in a way... he is preparing some new featherweights for sale!  Isn't this a cool shot I got as he was using the morning light to do his work! :)

Have a blessed weekend!  I will be sewing together 4 patches and such.. what about you?

Friday, July 18, 2014

Whooping a new beginning!

Today I want to share a quilt I started planning about a year ago when I found this panel...
You see I had asked my brother (married to Nikki, and has 4 wonderful kids.. Jared, Madison, Haley & Delaney.. and Jared has a dog named Winston!)
if they would use a "family quilt".  My vision is that this quilt will be snuggled under.. used when sick.. part of a great tent or castle or hideout.. just an all around useful quilt for a large family... thus it needs to be a larger quilt.. I was thinking king sized then.. but as life happens have scaled it to a more manageable 95 x 95 in designing it :)

I am calling this quilt "The Byrum Family Quilt" and will label it so.. they will have a great nickname for it I am sure.. even if it is "the quilt" Ha!

So here are some borders.. and notice the fabric painted hearts each child added down the tree trunk on the panel...
 I had the panel when they visited this spring... while on vaca.. each of my nieces and nephew chose a color of fabric paint I found at Michael's and painted a heart in descending order.. Jared, then Madison, they Haley and finally Delaney :)

They are a very strong Christian family and because their faith is center to their lives wanted to make them a special quilt designed from fabrics up just for them.. using all my quilting skills thus far.

My initial plan was to play with the designing while Connie was visiting...
So we organized it in an open crate I had... and look at the cute handwork piece my friend Wendy sent to go into this quilt!  I was so honored she would give up something she made. 

Connie is holding it up... I will make this into a 12 x 12 finished block!  Due to too many other things going on we didn't get to work on this project though... so the next week I decided to dig in myself and who would come to volunteer to help but my friend Wendy again! 

So far she has helped me with the complete quilt design and is helping me (only on facebook and from Australia) become a more precise piecer too!!!  I have seen a big improvement in my skills in making them right the first time! ha! Who would have thought we would make friends and help each other too! 

Do you have any friends you can thank for improving your skill base?  Someone maybe who challenges you to do YOUR best?  Would love to hear a shout out to your fave quilty helper today!  Whoop it up for THEM!

While I am Whooping... head over to where I am linking this post as Sarah is having a QUILT GIVEAWAY.  It is a fundraiser with quilts as prizes as she is helping her daughter and SIL adopt a baby :)  Check it out here!  Leave a comment for a chance to win.. donate money for more chances to win... blog about it like I am doing for more chances to win! AWESOME :)  Come home Nathaneal!