It’s a rainy and cool July Monday in NC. The relief from the heat is truly welcome. And the block this week is called Sailboats and is perfect for a wet day. It is an abstracted version of the sailboat blocks that we usually see.
You can find Block 9 here in our 10th installment of this QAL.
Good morning! It’s Monday again and time for some new blocks. These blocks were fun to design. (you know my Dad and my husband have both always said, “if you’re not having fun, do something else”) But these blocks are fun. This design started with the chisel. And the block for the Mix & Match Corners Qube is all Chisels except for the center Square on Point subunit. And the Mix & Match Angles Qube uses the Kite shape which is just perfect for that block. And finally, we get to use Shape 8 which is the rectangle for the Mix & Match Qube. This is a link to the page with the new blocks.
Elsa came through this week on her way to the Northeast with a little wind and a lot of rain. I decided to bind a couple of quilts that were waiting. The first one was for my granddaughter. She’s worked on it off and on for a couple of years. She’s a good stitcher, but prefers working with animals and playing softball. It’s a beautiful quilt and I used a pantograph called Batiks to quilt it. I also volunteered to bind it for her.
The second quilt is one that I made with a charm pack. It’s just a split nine patch and is lap sized. It’s a Riley Blake fabric. It is a pretty quilt and the fabrics are beautiful. Sometimes it feels good just to do something quick and easy and finish.
Sherry and I had lunch on Friday. It’s so nice to go out to lunch again for good food and good company. It was a great way to finish the week. Many of our favorite restaurants in Chapel Hill are no longer open, and we miss them. Fortunately one of our favorite places in Graham is still open and it was nice to eat there.
This week is going to be fun. We’re taking the Blocks from last week’s Sampler and doing a color challenge. Sometimes when drawing these blocks, I look at the uncolored diagrams, and without color, a completely different block appears in my mind. That happened with last week’s blocks when I was creating them and thus, we got this week’s blocks from that. It was so much fun that I almost couldn’t keep it a secret. But here they are. I hope you love them as much as I do. You will find instructions here.
This week’s block is based on the Dutchman’s puzzle and is made of half square and quarter square triangles with a shape from the Angles and the Corners thrown in for a couple of variations. In terms of piecing, this block is a less complicated than the last few blocks; however, the challenge on this one is getting the colors balanced. The examples given show some darker colors which may or may not be a good idea. Let your own sense of color guide you and have fun with your color choices. Don’t let yourself be influenced by the generic pictures in the instructions.
You will find instructions for this week’s block here.
New blocks have been posted on the QAL page. This block is called Vortex because, again, it rotates around a Square on Point or Economy Block subunit. There are three versions – one for the Mix & Match Qube, one for the Angles Companion Qube, and one for the Corners Companion Qube.
This has been an interesting week. I thought that when school was out last Tuesday that it would be smooth sailing, but one of the days was spent getting Ezri’s covid vaccination. It took over half an hour on the phone to register her for the vaccination and then when we got there, they had no record of it. However, we had been given a registration number over the phone and also via text message so there was no problem with her getting the shot. Except that we were the only ones there and they wanted to wait to open a vial until more people came. After waiting quite a while and no one else came, they opened the vial and gave her the shot. Everyone was very pleasant and when Ezri came over the next day she seemed to suffer no side effects from the vaccination.
Ezri also came over every day last week because she wanted to sew. It is wonderful to see her stitching away and finally using the iron and pressing her own piecing. She still lets that right arm hang at her side instead of using two hands for things, but she’s getting the job done.
Block 4 is here. For this design I started with a simple friendship star for the Mix & Match Qube and worked into some additional stars for the Angles and Corners Companion Qubes. While the friendship star design is fairly traditional, the piecing of it is not. Usually one sees this done with all half square triangles. This block presents a challenge because some of the seams can be eliminated to give a smoother, more cohesive block using shapes like the quarter square triangle and the parallelogram.
In the Angles Companion block, the trapezoid is repeated for a double trapezoid block. Color placement will dictate unique designs in this block. And in the Corners Companion, a simpler design is used that looks similar to a variable star, but because it is a six-patch, one gets more points and accents of the center points of the star with the bowtie units.
In other news, we went to my nephew’s wedding this weekend. It was so much fun and fairly non-traditional. They wanted simple and chose to have the wedding venue as a tent in a pasture on the bride’s grandfather’s farm. The bride has her own animals there, so it was truly “home” for her. It was delightful and we feasted on BBQ prepared by the groom with beverages served from a bar made of stacked hay bales while cattle and a few donkeys and horses grazed nearby. Here’s a picture of the bride and groom.
Someone suggested this tip for cutting triangles, and I am posting it here. It’s a lifesaver for me as my hands really get a workout when stitching lots of triangles. This tip works not only for cutting triangles but also other shapes that are the same shape and will be stitched. You can layer the fabric before fanfolding it onto your die and the shapes will be ready to stitch when they are fresh off the die. Here are a couple of photos to illustrate what I mean.
School’s out – yay! Last night we had a big celebration with Kes’s 13th birthday and Ezri’s graduation from Middle School. It was the best meal I’ve cooked in years thanks to Stouffer’s five cheese lasagne and macaroni and cheese. We added broccoli and rolls and Mrs. Smith’s Dutch apple pies and all I had to do was set the table. I’m not much of a cook but I did season the broccoli as my six-year old grandson instructed and everything was a hit.
Our puppy spent the day with the grandchildren, and she was exhausted when she got home. She weighs 28 pounds now. We got her at 8 pounds five weeks ago so she is tracking quite well at 3-4 pounds a week. Just look at those big feet. It’s going to take a lot more growing to fit into them.
The block posted today is based on a block called Rolling Stone. That block was not very exciting so I jazzed it up a bit with a pinwheel in the middle and added a little more motion using the Corners and the Angles Companion Qubes and came up with what I call Rock n Roll. Instructions are posted here.
I am so excited to post the new blocks tomorrow for the new QAL. And even more so, it’s exciting to tell you that the blocks will be completely different from the AccuQuilt block sets. For me, this week has been one of much thought and deliberation into the design of this quilt. I loved the last QAL because of the beautiful quilts every one made and am excited for a new QAL. However, I want it to be something unique and exciting and for each of you to have a quilt like no other. It’s the same idea as that I never buy a dress off the rack because I always want to wear something no one else has.
The original sketch I posted was for 24 blocks of the usual AccuQuilt block sets, and no matter how I tried, it just didn’t make me happy. In addition, 24 weeks is a long time to do a QAL and I wondered how many would drop out along the way.
So I thought and thought about all the quilts I’ve seen and made over the last 40 years. And I decided to go back and look at some antique blocks and redesign them to fit the AccuQuilt GO! Mix & Match and Companion dies. And the blocks are wonderful! They are different! They are six-patch, not four-patch! And every quilter will have a unique set of blocks that she can call her own! I am so sew very excited that I want to make all of these blocks in many different colors and ways. It will be such fun to do this vicariously through all the participants in the QAL.
This quilt will be twelve blocks and will last about 12-15 weeks including making the blocks and adding the sashing and borders. The yardage will be the same as what has been posted. The quilt dimensions will vary slightly because the block sizes are different due to the change from four patch to six patch. An updated chart that includes the original yardage and with additional information about block sizes and sashing and border widths can be found here.