QM Scrap Squad: Marti’s Spicy Waltz

QMMP 131000 cover 500 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz

The Scrap Squad is a small, select group of Quiltmaker readers who make scrappy versions of one quilt from each regular issue. They’re a talented bunch. For the brand new Sept/Oct issue, we chose a design called Western Waltz for their project. It was designed and made by Donna Benham from Omaha, Nebraska. Here is the original quilt seen on page 62.

QMMP 131000 BENHAM 400 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz

Western Waltz was designed and made by Donna Benham from Omaha, Nebraska.

mommachine 214x300 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz

Today’s featured quilt is by Scrap Squad member Marti Dyer-Allison from Colorado Springs, Colorado. Marti blogs at 52 Quilts in 52 Weeks. You’ll hear from Marti in her own words below.

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Do you ever make an excuse for postponing work by creating work? That is, you know you should be working on that deadline project, but you just can’t resist re-organizing your fabric stash?

For me, procrastinating worked out well! I was having a hard time deciding on colors for my Western Waltz Scrap Squad quilt. I’d been collecting scraps of batiks in “Tequila Sunrise” colors, but I just couldn’t get excited about starting to piece the quilt.

Then, while I was emptying the fabric cupboards, I found a bag of scraps leftover from a 2005 (!) quilt, “Harvest Spice.” The fabric was designed by Nancy Davis Murty for Andover Fabrics.

SS 1 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz

Inspiration! There were lots of scraps from that project – and I already knew I loved the colors!

Of course, I had to try a method for the split rectangles other than paper piecing. I recently bought the newest tool from Bloc_Loc, the Half-Rectangle Triangle (HRT) ruler set. Julia Ziegler of Room to Learn demonstrated this tool at quilt retreat in Idaho in May, but I hadn’t tried it on my own project yet.

Wow, another terrific tool from Bloc_Loc! Here’s a little tute to show how to use the HRT Ruler Set. The rulers come with much more detailed instructions.

SS3 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy WaltzThe HRT Ruler Set includes two rulers, to make mirror image HRTs. Just what we need for Western Waltz.

The hardest part about using the tool was deciding what size to cut the rectangles that would make the HRTs. I needed 2″ x 3 1/2″, and the closest size the directions incude is 2 1/4″ x 4 ½”. After several tries, I determined the right size to cut my rectangles to get the correct angle to make the HRTs.

1. Cut the rectangles and layer them right sides up.

SS4 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz


2. Cut diagonally for whichever HRT you want to make (remember, the pattern requires mirror image pieces, so you’ll need four of each for each block.)

SS5 225x300 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz

3. Arrange the triangles right sides together and stitch the diagonal seam – fabric “points” will extend beyond the ends, this is correct! Press toward the darker fabric.

SS7 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz

4. Place the Bloc_Loc HRT ruler on top of the sewn rectangle with the channel locked over the seam and trim.

SS8 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz

Perfect! Exactly the right size and no foundation paper to tear off!

I shared a mistake I made in piecing on Facebook, and one friend commented, “It’s so good to see that you make mistakes, too!” Oh, yeah! I piece 52 quilts a year, I make more mistakes than anyone!

Just to show you, here is my first pieced block:

rats 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy WaltzSee something wrong? I was being so careful to make all the points perfect, I didn’t notice I had the two right-hand sides reversed!

Because I had used up all the light gold on the four outer blocks, I had to use a lighter background for the center block. No problem, how about using some of the other colors from the collection?

FSS 1 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy WaltzEeew! Too light! Too—lavender! Maybe another green? I tried unsewing just the lavender pieces, but…no.

FSS 2 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz
That’s better. But wait, the red isn’t making a complete circle. What’s wrong? As my old mother always said, “When all else fails, read the directions!”

FSS 3 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz
There! Now I’m happy! I really like the way Donna pieced the borders, but I had enough of the pre-printed Harvest Spice border to miter the corners. So I did! Here’s a shot of the finished quilt:

FSS 4 296x300 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz
And a close-up of the quilting:

FSS 5 300x225 QM Scrap Squad: Martis Spicy Waltz
I think it needs more quilting, but . . . deadline calls!

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Didn’t Marti do a great job with her idea of “spicy”? So far we’ve had beachy, patriotic and now spicy. What will be next? My crystal ball tells me we’ll have Christmas and baby before it’s over! Thanks for joining us here on Quilty Pleasures for all the Scrap Squad inspiration.

See all the Scrap Squad quilts in one place in our convenient slideshows.

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5 Responses to QM Scrap Squad: Marti’s Spicy Waltz

  1. Maria says:

    Love your color combination. Striking. I saw this pattern and was inspired. I think I shall attempt it in a spring palette. Still thinking…. but inspired.

  2. jean says:

    Great job! Love the colors and that she showed us a different way to do this other than paperpiecing!

  3. Christa says:

    Love it! I think those rulers would have come in really handy!!

  4. Melissa R. says:

    Marti-Absolutely in love with this!! The border really ties it all together and is a very fun alternative. Thanks for a great job!

  5. Becky Ball says:

    That turned out great, Marti. I really love your colors! A mitered border print is just the greatest border.

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