Tuesday, January 27, 2015

String Quilts for Des Moines MQG

Marny here…
The Des Moines MQG sent out a request for members to make blocks for a donation quilt. We are using Blooming Poppie's tutorial.  The given parameters were to start with a 14'' muslin base, to stick to a particular color scheme, and to cut strips between 1'' and 2 ½''. Making a string quilt is lots of fun and it can look so fresh!
Hopefully a cohesive but interesting pile of aquas.

First strip centered corner to corner on the square.

Second strip placed right sides together. Sew ¼'' seam along right edge.

Adding one strip at a time. Pressing after each seam.

Muslin base is completely covered with strips.

Back side

Trim off the excess on all sides

Getting pretty!

Low volume neutral square, marked corner to corner (more accurately than appears in this photo), placed right sides together. Sew on ¼'' on either side of correctly drawn line. Then cut along drawn line.

And there you have it! Two squares already done for the quilt. These will be trimmed once all the squares are gathered together. When multiple sewers are submitting blocks it is often smart to save the final trim for one person to do.

Till Tuesday…

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Taffy Twist Again

jill here...reminds of a song from my adolescence!

I stopped by Sioux City at Heart and Hand Dry Goods last week.  Ann has a wonderful quilt shop filled with great fabric and a good selection of our patterns.  I offered  to make a new sample for her shop and spied this cute collection.  Taffy Twists is a great pattern for graphic prints or solids  in various combinations; could even be easily adapted for just two twist fabrics and a background.

This rendition utilizes four prints and a staple background from Moda's "basicgrey"(it's cream colored with  a slight white overlay to add a sparkle).

The collection is "Walkabout" by Beth Studley for Makower.  I love the different scales of prints and the grey with the orange.

The intersections are a bit more challenging to piece but really fun to see how they come together with the strip sets.  You like a little challenge, don't you? All the negative space gives the twists lots of focus so in no time, the quilt top is satisfying and complete.

The oranges give the graphic read an exciting contrast!

Quilting will add a level of depth and texture.  Check back later !

"Till next Tuesday...

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Looking ahead for Modern Quilt Relish

Marny here…
January signifies both completion and potential to me.
Where have I been? Where am I going?
The same is true for Modern Quilt Relish.
Jill and I have some exciting ideas for our business in 2015. 

We're examining the breadth of possibilities seen all around us.

We have to learn a few new skills and invest some time to bring about positive change for our business.
I wish it was as simple as learning to snowshoe!

We will plan to enjoy the scenery along the way; gathering input from our readers and a few of our mentors.

2015 will be an exciting year! Not only will we have our book released by Stash, C&T Publishing in September, we're also planning more speaking engagements, teaching sessions and unique opportunities for our customers! 

Share our journey with us…
till Tuesday…

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Taffy Twist Pattern revisited

Pillow top featuring a single twist block from the Taffy Twists pattern
 with just a taste of something different added!

Marny here…to answer a customer's question I made a single block from our Taffy Twists pattern this week. I'd forgotten how fast and fun it is to sew up the twist block!! The pattern relies on using a scant ¼'' seam and pressing the seam allowances open, it is not difficult but consistency is important. A practice block might be in order.
our Taffy Twists pattern

Taffy Twists block under construction

Aligning the diagonal

Sewn, just needs a bit of trimming.

What to do with a single block? Make a pillow. I explored two ideas. At first I thought of extending the diagonals out into the bordering fabrics. But in the end I settled on changing the shape of the single twist block from a rectangle to a lozenge.

I want to share a little hint with you all.
The math for the triangles/squares for completing flying geese units using the triangles I already had hurt my head! So I just added strips, leaving extra. This photo shows the points trimmed evenly with the triangle. They started out as oversized rectangles. So the hint boils down to consider adding oversized pieces and trimming to solve some construction dilemmas. 

The unit is seamed to one end of the twist block, matching the triangle seams.

The extended flaps are trimmed even with the twist block.

The lozenge is trimmed ¼'' above the corner for a seam allowance.

Using different widths of dark to either side of the block creates a pleasing asymmetry. I really like it! Now to quilt or not before making it into a pillow?
Till Tuesday!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Rif on Brioche and Baguette

jill here...My oldest granddaughter just turned 2 and she needed a "big girl" quilt for her "big girl" bed!  We painted her bedroom a wonderful shade of gray (I say that because it was exactly the color we had envisioned and it covered in one coat!).  Living amongst the trees triggered a that would hopefully fulfill her decorative desires for more than just a few years (sorry Elsa and Anna).  I chose Lotta Jansdotter's "Bella" print from Windham Fabrics. It's a modern combination of fanciful organic shapes/patterns in white, gray, and aqua.  The little gray check was the perfect nondirectional pattern for the background.

The tree print was the theme with the grey check as background.  Four additional prints in the collection supplied the accoutrements.

The drawn plan is based on our Brioche and Baguette pattern.  The proportions work well, they just had to be adjusted for a double bed sized quilt.  I wanted the larger focus print to run both vertically and horizontally for more action while the squares are pops of smaller scaled prints.

The large scaled print portions were cut from adjacent sections so that the print reads succinctly.

The backing provides another quilt opportunity: Two for One!  Leftovers plus some additional yardage created a second option.

Half square triangles mingle with contrasting stripes to create a horizontal chevron.  Fun and easy! 

A viney leaf print quilted the layers together.  Amy Messenbrink added her special touch with the "Leaves" quilting pantograph!

An appliqued monogram (with essential documentation written in permanent pen) makes the gift complete. No more worries of a hand sewn quilt label.  Once the binding was finished, it was delivered to the birthday girl!

We're hoping  the new year brings you lots of quilting time...with many happy memories!  

'till 2015....

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

A Fine Family Holiday Tradition

Family traditions are wonderful! Participating, anticipating, and sharing the event/work are key to family traditions. One of our traditions is making six batches of sugary spice nuts and bagging them up in sacks I've sewn from the cutest Christmas fabric I can find each year and sharing them with family, co-workers and friends.
Spiced Nut Bags ready to share

Luckily it looks so much cuter filled with tasty nuts.

Gathering the supplies.

Three of six batches

Apportioning the tasty treats.

Time to send the bags near and far!
They resemble miniature Santa bags in more ways than one!

May your holidays be filled with your own traditions
 shared with family and friends.

Till Tuesday!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

School of Sewing Provides Holiday Instruction

jill here...What a pleasure to sew a holiday gift from a quilter friend's new book School of Sewing.  Shea Henderson has authored a great resource of 12 beginner projects: "Learn It, Teach It, Sew Together".  Not only projects, the book is filled with sewing instructions for those who are beginners to the sewing world. And a good review for those who have sewn a long time!  It's skill builder lessons with the final project sewing a half square triangle quilt.  I will be gifting a couple of the books for a grandmother/granddaughter team and one for my daughter-in-law.

The rufflled wristlet key fob, designed by Alex Ledgerwood, had just the right attributes of challenge and panche for our annual get together. This little key ring is bright enough to be spied inside the purse... without settling to the bottom!

Here's a visual of the  book displayed with all the different fabric versions  Each guest chose their own combinations.

Marianne was our chef, serving another wonderful meal.

Marny and Jane created laughter while they gathered.

Laura proudly displayed her finished key ring.

Sue and Gale had time for conversation while they sewed.

Seven little rings all in a row.

Life gets busy so it's really fun to share an annual holiday project.  We made a space to gather and celebrate friendship.

'till next Tuesday...