|My already completed blocks from the first set.|
Our Quiltalong officially begins today!
I've already sent a few group emails to the participants listed below as I've started creating blocks to stay ahead of the group. I want to be sure that, if there are problems, I encounter them first and help the rest of the group avoid making the same mistakes. Likewise, I welcome input and pointers from each and every member of the group. This is OUR quiltalong - not MY quiltalong - and I want to make it fun for every quilter, both novice and experienced alike.
Some of us will be using Marti Mitchell's acrylic templates to cut out most of our quilt blocks. Others will cut out paper templates from the Farmer's Wife book. Most of us will be using our trusty sewing machines, but I know of at least one seamstress who will be creating all of her blocks by hand sewing each stitch.
Our February set includes the following blocks:
- #9 - Box
- #16 - Calico Puzzle
- #21 - Contrary Wife
- #23 - Country Farm
- #41 - Friendship Star
- #69 - Practical Orchard
- #70 - Prairie Queen
- #72 - Railroad
- #81 - Snowball
- #84 - Spool
|Box - renamed "Music Box" for my quilt|
I'll assume that you don't know how to do this and share the process with you. Here's what you do: Cut three 1 1/2" strips of fabric about 4 inches long. Now, using your usual method to sew a 1/4" seam, sew two pieces right-sides together and press open. Now, add the third strip using the same method and press open. Measure the width of the assembled strips. Do they equal 3 1/2"? If not, you'll need to move your needle (one click at a time), either left or right until you get that exact 1/4". (Right if the piece measures more than 3 1/2" and to the right if it measures less than 3 1/2".) My seams were actually more than 1/4" using a 1/4" sewing foot, so I moved my needle to the right two clicks until my test strips measured 3 1/2". ***If you're using a 1/4" foot, make sure that your needle is still able to pass through the opening in the foot. Too far and you'll break your needle up against it! Refer to your owner's manual for your machine to see how to move the needle. On mine, the machine has to be in straight stitch mode and then all I had to do was adjust the width indicator (as you usually would for a zigzag stitch), but your machine may work differently, so check to be sure.
Also...I suggest that you only cut out the pieces for one block at a time. You'll then be concentrating on that block through the whole process and you're more likely to get the arrangement and seam allowances right it you do it this way.
When I write the post for our February set, I'll be sharing a story from you from my own QAL journal with you. As I'm creating these blocks, I'm explaining my choices for fabric but more importantly, I'm writing down my thoughts about the meaning behind the blocks I'm choosing.
click here to go to the group and you can post photos anytime.) Also...Let me know what size quilt you're planning to make. I think we're going to have a whole assortment of sizes!
This is the list of the participants. If they have a blog, you can click on their name to visit their blogs:
- Karen of Karen's Needlework
- Sunny of Quilting Dreams
- Toni (Sewing in CT)
- Kris of Lavender Quilts and Other Fineries
- Marrianne from New Zealand
- Lucy of The Farmer's Attic
- Raewyn of lovetostitch (New Zealand)
- Mary of JMP Pastimes
- Jennifer M of Crafty Imaginings by Jen
- Sue of Simply Pieceful Quilting
- Mary of Miss Mary's
- Renee of Wren's Nest
- Janet from Tennessee
- Sherry of Createology
- Jacque from Texas
- Wendy from New Zealand
- Elizabeth (need more information, please)
- Pat from Illinois
To all who are "official"...time to start your blocks (if you haven't already). I'm looking forward to seeing your completed blocks as we work toward our finished quilt projects. Remember, the most important thing is "Have Fun"!