Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

We are so happy to announce another fabulous 4-part Mystery pattern by Debbie Caffrey. Debbie has been a long-time friend of Quiltmaker, and we’re so glad to have her back!

Debbie Caffrey headshot1 Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Debbie Caffrey

Part 1 of Walk in the Park Mystery appears in our March/April 2015 issue.

QMMP 150200 cover 200 Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Quiltmaker March/April ’15

Walk in the Park Mystery uses four fabrics. The most important thing is that there is good contrast between the fabrics. I know that picking fabrics for a mystery quilt can be tricky, and downright nerve-wracking, but we’ve limited the number of fabrics in this pattern to four, and that makes the fabric decisions a little easier.

We’ve also put together three fabulous kits that you will love, love, love!

Blue Lagoon features Ashton Road by Valorie Wells and Kona Cotton Solids from Robert Kaufman.

Blue Lagoon colorway2 Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Blue Lagoon colorway

 

Holiday Magic features Mistletoe Lane by Moda Fabrics.

Christmas colorway Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Holiday Magic colorway

 

Gemstones features Artisan Spirit Good Vibrations Mysteria and Toscana by Northcott.

gemstones colorway1 Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Gemstones colorway

Aren’t they all just yummy? All three of these kits are available on our shop site.

Part 1, in the March/April ’15 issue, gives instructions for sections 1–3. We’ll show you how the sections are put together here, but please refer to the issue for patch sizes and the number of sections to make.

Section 1 consists of joining 2 B triangles to an A square. It’s easiest to press the seam allowances toward the B’s. As always, be gentle when sewing and pressing triangles.

section1 Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Section 1

 

Section 2 consists of sewing 6 patches together. Notice that the section is first sewn into rows, and that the seam allowances are pressed toward the triangles. If you press your seams like this, they will nest nicely when you sew the rows together. Be very gentle when handling the triangles and check to make sure your patches are coming out to the right size. Adjust your seam allowance if necessary. The center C patch should be 2″ when sewn into a section 2. This section should measure 3-3/8″ across when it is sewn together.

section2a Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Section 2

Section 3 is exactly like section 2, but it uses different fabrics. Section 3 should also measure 3-3/8″ across when it is sewn together.

section3a Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Section 3

 

When they’re in the finished quilt, the photos below are what the sections will look like. These photos below do not show the seam allowances; your sections at this point will have seam allowances.

Mystery1Units Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Part 1, Sections 1-3, Blue Lagoon fabrics

Mystery2Units Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Part 1, Sections 1-3, Holiday Magic fabrics

Mystery3Units Walk in the Park Mystery Quilt, Part 1

Part 1, Sections 1-3, Gemstones fabrics

Again, please note that sections 2 and 3 should measure 3-3/8″ across, including seam allowances.

Here’s a video showing Part 1 of Walk in the Park Mystery.

We’d love to have you quilt along with us on this mystery journey! Follow along here on our blog, or follow along on our YouTube channel. Gather your quilty friends and have a mystery party!

The mystery begins with Quiltmaker March/April ’15. Find the kits on our shop site.

 

Posted in QM Issues | 5 Comments

QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

#qmbittyblocks

We’re having a lot of fun with Bitty Blocks around here, and last week I started making Bitty Baskets. Paula did a nice job on last week’s tutorial, and her enthusiasm is contagious.

bittybaskets4 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Bitty Baskets from Quiltmaker

A number of people have commented about the smallness of the half-square triangles (also called triangle-squares; the two terms mean exactly the same thing). I wanted to share some options with you, and perhaps you’ll find they make the triangles easier to handle.

BBtrionaroll QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Triangles on a Roll

For the first few baskets I made, I used triangle paper called Triangles on a Roll. In fact I use paper to make triangle-squares of any size, all the time. It’s the most accurate method for me. I also use and like Thangles, paper, shown below.

8787 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Thangles triangle papers come in many sizes.

But in case you don’t want to use paper, I have another little trick that I absolutely love. You can use this any time you need half-square triangles for quilts. First I’m going to explain how it’s done, and then I’ll explain the math for those who are interested.

hsttrick1 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Start with 2 squares.

Begin with 2 squares. For 1″ finished triangle-squares, cut them 3-3/4″ x 3-3/4″ (that’s 3.75″). Please note: These photos use larger squares but the process is exactly the same.

hsttrick2 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Mark one of the squares 1/4″ out from the diagonal center in both directions.

On its wrong side, mark one square 1/4″ out from the diagonal center in both directions. I do this with a Quarter-Inch Seam Marker, but you can use any quilting ruler that’s long enough to cover the diagonal.

hsttrick3 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

The square is marked in both directions, 1/4″ out from each side of the diagonal center.

Place the squares right sides together.

hsttrick4 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Sew on all of the marked lines.

Sew on all of the marked lines.

hsttrick5 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Cut on the vertical and horizontal centers of the squares by lining up the ruler as shown.

Cut on the vertical and horizontal centers of the squares (in other words, cut down the middle, both ways) by lining up the ruler as shown. On 3-3/4″ squares (for 1″ finished triangle-squares), halfway across is 1-7/8″.

hsttrick6 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Make a second set of cuts between the lines of stitching as shown.

Make a second set of cuts between the lines of stitching as shown.

hsttrick7 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

This method yields 8 half-square triangles.

You’ll get 8 half-square triangles using this method.

hsttrick8 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Eight pretty little triangle-squares

Open up each one and press gently so as not to stretch.

hsttrick9 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

Trim off the little dog ears.

Trim off the tiny triangular “dog ears” and the triangle-squares are ready to use in your Bitty Blocks or any other project you choose.

How to Figure the Square Sizes: Understanding the Math

For those who are interested, it’s not difficult to determine what size to cut the squares for any half-square triangles you wish to make.

HSTs copy QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

You may already know the rule of 7/8″, i.e. in order to make two half-square triangles from two squares, you take the finished size and add 7/8″. If you’re making two HSTs to finish at 4″ as shown above, you cut two squares 4-7/8″, put them right sides together and sew 1/4″ out from both sides of the diagonal center. Cut between the lines of stitching and you have two HSTs that are now 4-1/2″, to finish at 4″ square. This method is shown above.

hsttrick6 300x251 QM Bitty Baskets: You Have Options

You’re just grouping more squares together!

What you’re doing with the trick I showed in photos further above is putting 4 of these squares together, 2 across and 2 down. So you have the size of the finished unit, times 2. And you must add the 7/8″ twice , which is 1-3/4″ (1.75″).

So if you’re making 1″ finished triangle-squares for Bitty Blocks, the math goes like this:

1″ + 1″ + 1.75″ = 3.75″

If you’re making 2″ finished triangle-squares, the math would be this:

2″ + 2″ + 1.75 = 5.75″

If you’re making 4″ finished triangle-squares, the math would be this:

4″ + 4″ + 1.75″ + 9.75″

In other words, multiply the finished size by 2 and add 1.75″.

Here’s a little chart with often-used sizes.

Finished size of HST     Size to cut the squares
1″                                               3.75″
1.5″                                            4.75″
2″                                               5.75″
2.5″                                           6.75″
3″                                              7.75″
4″                                              9.75″

Give it a try and see how it goes. I love this method for small patches especially, and I think you will, too. Send your questions and photos to editor@quiltmaker.com, or ask questions in the comments. Happy Stitching!

*** Printer-friendly version coming soon ***

Posted in Quilting 101, Scrap Squad | Tagged , , , , | 16 Comments

Book Review: Unconventional & Unexpected

A variety of new quilt-related books have recently come my way. One of the most interesting titles in a long while, and one of my favorites ever, is Unconventional & Unexpected: American Quilts Below the Radar 1950–2000 by Roderick Kiracofe.

roderick1 Book Review: Unconventional & Unexpected

I’ve had it for several months already because each time I start to write about it, I don’t know where to begin.

I love everything about it.

These quilts are unexpected. They’re what you might think of as a little “off.” Some of them are wonky and wild.

 Book Review: Unconventional & Unexpected

Circles, c. 1950–1970, Found in Alabama. Cotton, quilted with purple thread. 71″ x 62″. From Unconventional & Unexpected by Roderick Kiracofe.


But they’re quilts made by real people who seemed to be concerned only with making a quilt. They weren’t thinking “Does this purple go with this green?” or “Are these borders too narrow?” They were just making a quilt with the materials they had.

 Book Review: Unconventional & Unexpected

Sunburst, variation, c. 1950–2000. Found in Hartford, Connecticut. Satin, appliqued crochet rose in center, tied. 84″ x 75″.


In Kiracofe’s own words, “The book includes 150 extraordinary, eccentric, and soulful quilts from my personal collection that feel refreshingly modern. In a much freer, more casual and utilitarian aesthetic than their traditionally patterned counterparts, these quilts still demonstrate their place in modern and contemporary art in America.”

 Book Review: Unconventional & Unexpected

String quilt from Unconventional & Unexpected by Roderick Kiracofe


In addition to dozens of large color photos of the quilts, the book includes essays by many well-known experts including curators, historians and artists. Some of the essays are academic and some are written from the heart—there’s a nice variety.

 Book Review: Unconventional & Unexpected

Schoolhouse/House, c. 1940–1960, Possibly made in the Appalachian area of Virginia. Cotton, 81″ x 64″. Ex. coll. Ardis and Robert James.

I especially love the idea that these were quilts “below the radar.” That’s how I hope my quilts will be viewed some day. They aren’t going to win any prizes, but hopefully they’ll win somebody’s heart.

*     *     *     *     *

From the book jacket:

Roderick Kiracofe is the author of a variety of books on quilts, including The American Quilt, originally published in 1993 and now considered a classic. In 1983, he co-founded The Quilt Digest, an annual publication that brought together the antique and contemporary quilt worlds for the first time. He has been actively involved in the creation of some of this country’s most important private and corporate quilt collections, including those of Bank of America and Levi Strauss & Co. As a curator and art collector, Kiracofe has mounted exhibitions in the U.S. and abroad, lectured, and consulted with museums. He was also instrumental in the creation of the renowned Oakland (CA) Arts District and serves on the board of Oakland Art Murmur. Visit his website at roderickkiracofe.com.

Posted in Scrapbag | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

QM’s 2015 Scrap Squad Announced

Quiltmaker is pleased to announce the 2015 QM Scrap Squad. We’ve chosen a team of six dynamic readers who will make scrappy versions of our quilt patterns in order to inspire you to use your quilting fabric collections.

QM scrap squadB3 QMs 2015 Scrap Squad Announced

I know you’ll enjoy meeting these very special quilters.

emilycropped 224x300 QMs 2015 Scrap Squad Announced

Emily Klaczak

Emily Klaczak is a third generation quilter from Pittsburgh who worked as a government employee and is semi-retired. She remembers sleeping under her grandmother’s Sunbonnet Sue and Dresden Plate quilts as a child, and had the unique privilege of teaching her own mother to quilt! Emily is active in Three Rivers Quilt Guild, and says she usually has several quilts going at once. She is happiest when she’s making fabrics play nicely together. Emily is making Quiltmaker’s New Year’s Mystery quilt, Auld Lang Stitches. She also teaches knitting and crochet classes.

 

 

pamcropped 224x300 QMs 2015 Scrap Squad Announced

Pam Snow

Pam Snow traces her quilting roots to her great-grandmother Flora, after whom she named her longarm when she got it last year. She’s a retired Consumer and Family Sciences teacher who makes her home in Mesa, Arizona but also spends time in Kentucky, where she grew up. She’s been quilting since the 1970s, moving from her first project of hexagons by hand into art quilts, machine embroidery, and now longarm quilting. Pam was part of QM’s 2014 Back to School sewing team. She’s active in several quilt groups in two different states, including a fiber arts guild. Find Pam’s blog at Treasures-n-Textures.

 

 

kericropped2 224x300 QMs 2015 Scrap Squad Announced

Keri Blankenship

Also hailing from Arizona is Keri Blankenship from Cornville, where she lives on her family’s original homestead. She learned to sew from her mom and her grandmothers and through a 4-H sewing club. Her grandmothers used whatever fabric they had to make quilts, including portions of old garments. “The first time I bought yardage to make a quilt they both thought I was crazy and wasteful. I think they would appreciate my stash now,” she says. Keri has been a nurse, a quality manager, a data analyst, a project manager, and a corporate trainer. She is currently testing patterns for designers.

 

 

Juliecropped QMs 2015 Scrap Squad Announced

Julie Huffman

Who lives on a working farm that raises wheat and lentils in Idaho? That’s Julie Huffman, a quilter for 28 years. When she was “forced” to attend her mother-in-law’s hand quilting group, she caught the bug and never looked back. Julie is active in her local guild and has made about 400 quilts from miniature to king size. She machine quilts on a PFAFF Grand Quilter. Julie also teaches kindergarten and first grade in a one-room schoolhouse! She blogs at Idaho Quilter’s Adventures.

 

 

 

donnacropped QMs 2015 Scrap Squad Announced

Donna Hanna

Donna Hanna makes quilts in Bangor, Pennsylvania and learned to sew from her mom. Her grandmothers were also quilters, who would probably appreciate her love for vintage sewing machines! She pieces on a vintage Singer 301 and quilts on a Babylock Jewel. Donna works as an accounting manager for a non-profit daycare center. Her favorite fabrics are reproductions, but bright, happy colors come in a close second. Donna says she has more scraps and fabric than she will be able to use in a lifetime.

 

 

 

kathycropped QMs 2015 Scrap Squad Announced

Kathy Wagner

We’re very happy to have Canadian Kathy Wagner from Cambridge, Ontario on the Scrap Squad. Kathy learned to quilt from a co-worker more than 20 years ago. She loves to sew with scraps and says no piece is too small to save! She collects vintage sewing machines, machine quilts on a Brother 1500 domestic, and also enjoys hand quilting and embroidery. By day, Kathy is a social worker on the sexual assault domestic violence response team at a local hospital. Kathy says, “It is stressful work—and quilting has been my main coping strategy for dealing with it over the years.” She blogs at Kathy’s Quilts.

 

 

This is a tremendous group of women and we are thrilled to welcome them to the Scrap Squad experience. I know they’ll bring you inspiration in the coming months. See slideshows of past Scrap Squad quilts.

Posted in Scrap Squad | Tagged | 3 Comments

New Year’s Mystery: Part 6

Welcome back to the New Year’s Mystery quilt! Today we have Part 6 and photos from the actual quilt-in-progress.

NewYearsMystery 300 New Years Mystery: Part 6

I hope you’re having a good time with this. There’s a lot of piecing in this quilt, but it will be worth it. It really is a lovely design!

Auld Lang Stitches, Part 6

Printer-friendly pdf for Part 6

Cutting

Red Tone-on-Tone
96 rectangles (D) 2″ x 5″

Blue Tone-on-Tone
96 squares (E) 3 1/2″ x 3 1/2″

White Tone-on-Tone
96 squares (E) 3 1/2″ x 3 1/2″

Sewing

Sew a unit 7 and red D together as shown to make a section 2. Make 96 section 2’s.

Section2 212x300 New Years Mystery: Part 6*     *     *     *     *

General instructions for the “Stitch-and-Flip” technique: Align a patch (* in this example) on the corner of a unit right sides together.

stitchandflipart New Years Mystery: Part 6

Mark a diagonal line on the patch from corner to corner and sew on the marked line. Trim the seam allowance to 1/4″. Flip the patch open and press.

*     *     *     *     *

Retrieve your section 1′s from Part 5. Add a blue E to the corner of a section 1 using Stitch-and-Flip as shown below to complete section 1. Complete 96 section 1’s.

Section1 SF1 109x300 New Years Mystery: Part 6

Important note: To make bonus half-square triangles, sew again 1/2″ away from the line of stitching across E, towards the corner you’ll be trimming off. The photo below shows this on a red section 2.

bonusHSTsphoto New Years Mystery: Part 6

For bonus half-square triangles: Sew again 1/2″ away from the first line of stitching on E, and then cut between the lines of stitching.

Cut between the lines of stitching and you’ll have a “bonus” half-square triangle you can use in another project.

bonusHSTsphoto2 New Years Mystery: Part 6

Cut between the lines of stitching and you get a bonus half-square triangle to use in another project.

 

Last step for Part 6: Using Stitch-and-Flip, add a white E to the corner of a section 2 as shown to complete section 2. Complete 96 section 2’s.

 

Section2 SF 109x300 New Years Mystery: Part 6

I haven’t always been successful with Stitch-and-Flip, but I have coping strategies. You can read about how I make it work in Confessions of a Stitch & Flip Flunkie. Reading this post may help if Stitch-and-Flip gives you fits!

Our sewer for Auld Lang Stitches was Margaret Kennedy, a member of the 2014 QM Scrap Squad. She made step-outs of every part of the mystery and I wanted to share them with you today.

Part6photo New Years Mystery: Part 6

Margaret Kennedy made step-outs for our mystery quilt.

Keep on piecing and I promise you it will be worth it! Part 7 goes up Thursday, 2/12.

If you missed earlier parts, find them:
Intro post with yardage
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

Part 5

*     *     *     *     *

Thanks for reading Quilty Pleasures.

If you’re a subscriber, thank you.

If you follow us on Facebook, we appreciate it.

If you’ve ever made one of our quilts, we’re so grateful!

If you’re a customer on our shop site, YAY!

Posted in Freebies, Quilty Lifestyle, Scrapbag | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!

Many of you are familiar with our friend and columnist Bonnie Hunter of quiltville.com.

bonnie 263x300 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!

Bonnie Hunter

Bonnie has taught at QM’s Block Party, designed a Lazy Sunday mystery quilt for us, submitted many designs to Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, and more.

LazySunday Bonnie Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!

Lazy Sunday by Bonnie Hunter

She’s in every issue of Quiltmaker with a new scrappy block and a column called Addicted to Scraps. We’ve picked up a number of subscribers because of this column—people love Bonnie’s enthusiasm and her dogged determination to use up fabric she already owns.

162ATS 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!    QMMP ADD2SCRP MAY 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!    QMMP ADD2SCRP SEPT 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!   QMMP 120200 SCRAP 125 11527 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!

Bonnie takes ho-hum and sometimes even ugly fabrics and somehow sprinkles them with fairy dust, and they become showstoppers. It’s a beautiful thing.

QMMP 120200 SCRAP 125 11729 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!    QMMP SCRAP JAN 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!    QMMP ADD SCR 2014 MJ 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!    156addictedtoscraps 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!

Not long ago we were brainstorming for new ideas, and we realized that we could do more with the Addicted to Scraps block designs. When we asked for new Scrap Squad applications, we had many more than we could use in the six coveted Scrap Squad spots.

QMMP 131200 SCRAPS 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!    QMMP 130400 addicted 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!    QMMP 120200 SCRAP 125 11269 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!   QMMP 120200 SCRAP 125 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!

That’s when an idea was born: Could we form a whole new team of readers who would take Bonnie’s Addicted to Scraps block designs and make scrappy quilts from them?

Why yes! We could! And we did!

I’m pleased to present you with this new team called QM Scrap Addicts. They are bursting with excitement about this new project. They’re starting to sew already, and soon we’ll have quilts to share with you. The inspiration around here is going to ROCK! 

Please welcome to QM Scrap Addicts:

• Jacquie Campbell from Enid, Oklahoma
• Barbara Johnson from Verona, Pennsylvania
• Melva Nolan from Trinidad, Colorado
• Doris Rice from Brownwood, Texas
• June Sinfield from Port Elgin, Ontario
• Sheri Wonderling from Brookville, Pennsylvania
• Debbie Yarbrough from Sugar Hill, Georgia
• Donna Cook from Plainville, Connecticut

Now let’s celebrate this new project with a giveaway.

LA6046 Introducing QM Scrap Addicts; Giveaway!

Quiltmaker’s Devoted to Scraps is full of amazing scrappy quilt patterns.

I’ll sort through my own personal scrap bin and send a nice pile of usable scraps plus a copy of Quiltmaker’s Devoted to Scraps book to a lucky winner who leaves a comment before midnight on Sunday, Feb. 8. We’ll choose a winner randomly and announce it here next week.

Arlanna is the winner of the Scrap Addicts giveaway! Arlanna has been notified by email.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1,240 Comments

Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Quiltmaker has a brand new issue I’d like to share with you.

QMMP 150200 cover 200 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Quiltmaker March/April ’15

Fourteen fresh designs for spring pop off the pages of QM’s March/April issue. It’s on its way to subscribers and is also on newsstands now. I hope you’ll pick up a copy, because here’s what is inside.

QMMP 150400 SUMMER 506 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Summer Joy by Ann Weber in Summer Cottage fabrics by Gerri Robinson for Red Rooster Fabrics

Ann Weber regularly treats us to her whimsical designs in Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks. Now Summer Joy graces our cover, and I love it. The colors are fresh and the applique would be just right for a confident beginner. Repeating the same shapes over a dozen blocks would be great practice. This quilt is like a bridge between modern and traditional—so much fun.

QMMP 150400 HAUTE 506 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Haute Ziggity by Sandra Clemons in fabrics from Andover Fabrics

Haute Ziggity by Sandra Clemons kicks off our “Chev-Rondezvous,” which is the focus for this issue. We rounded up three amazing chevron quilts so you’d have several choices for getting on the chevron bandwagon. I love this quilt, too, but it would be great in any scrappy quilting fabrics you have. Just be certain that they all show up clearly against your background. Get a digital pattern for Haute Ziggity.

QMMP 150400 PRISMS 506 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Pointed Prisms designed by Kari Ramsay, in Bali Batiks from Hoffman California Fabrics

Kari Ramsay took chevron quilts to a new level with Pointed Prisms, above. And does a color scheme get any better than this? High contrast, low contrast, a shot of yellow—it’s a resounding success. And guess what? It’s rated “easy.” Time-saving kits are available, as well as a digital pattern.

QMMP 150400 LIGHT 506 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Light Waves designed by Elizabeth Dackson, in American Made Brand cotton solids for Clothworks

Elizabeth Dackson’s Light Waves is another easy-to-make quilt featuring solid colors. You can almost imagine the light bouncing forward as the colors ebb and flow. Notice how the binding adds an extra last-minute accent. It’s a nice way to draw the eye around the quilt’s edge. Get a kit or a digital pattern.

QMMP 150400 FRAGMENTS 506 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Fragments by Janice Averill in Forest Frolic from Timeless Treasures

Fragments is full of movement. Janice Averill’s design couldn’t be more exciting! This one is rated easy, too. Kit and digital pattern available. We used Fragments to create our “mini” for this issue, Make Mine a Mini, below.

QMMP 150400 MINI 506 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Make Mine a Mini in fabrics from Windham Fabrics

This 28″ x 36″ wall features tiny patches, and they are adorable in these small-scale prints from Windham. We’re creating a mini in each 2015 issue, and boy are they sweet.

QMMP 150400 BOWTIE 506 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Bow Tie Tumblers by Kay Gentry in fabrics from Moda Fabrics

Bow Tie Tumblers by Kay Gentry is one of the happiest quilts in this issue. Look at those curvy edges—fabulous! The easy color combo is by Vanessa Christenson for Moda. This is a large quilt, 69″ x 90″, and the tumblers are big—the Bow Ties are 12″ across! This quilt is die-friendly, and sponsored by AccuQuilt. The dies used for the patches are the 6.5″ Tumbler (55020) and the 3.5″ strip cutter (55032). The binding can be cut with the 2.25″ strip cutter (55053).

See the Bow Tie Tumblers kit and digital pattern.

Four more quilts from the issue are below.

QMMP 150400 EMERALD 506 300x300 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Emerald City by Denise Russart in fabrics from Northcott

QMMP 150400 TULIPS 506 300x300 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Tulips in the Cabin by Kate Colleran in fabrics from Quilting Treasures

Kit and digital pattern for Tulips in the Cabin

QMMP 150400 BLAST 506 240x300 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Blast Off! by Margie Ullery

QMMP 150400 STREAMERS 506 206x300 Fresh Quilt Designs from Quiltmaker

Streamers by Cindy LeBaron

There’s also a new block from Bonnie Hunter, ideas for using decorative stitches, and a great step-by-step tutorial on string piecing.

Pick up this issue today because you’re going to love it. Happy Quilting!

 

Posted in QM Issues, Scrapbag | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

#qmbittyblocks

Hi, my name is Paula, and I’m obsessed with Bitty Blocks.

Oh my GOSH. Have you heard? QM has embarked on a Bitty Block adventure and I, for one, am ridiculously obsessed. We are so excited about this new free quilt blocks project!

BittyBlockLogo 506px1 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

In case you haven’t heard, here’s how it will work. On the first Monday of each month during 2015, we’ll present you with a Bitty Block. Most will be 3″ or 4″ square and all will be easy to make. They’ll be hashtagged as #qmbittyblocks. You can read more about it here.

baskets1 e1422632444174 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

QM Bitty Blocks: Free quilt block patterns monthly during 2015

Now let’s get to our second QM Bitty Block. February’s block is a little 4″ Basket. (Printer-friendly version here.)

basket3 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

bitty basket

For one basket you will need:

Background fabric: (4) 1-7/8″ squares, (1) 2-7/8″ square and (2) rectangles 1-1/2″ x 2-1/2″  (light gray dot)
Basket fabric #1: (3) 1-7/8″ squares (teal)

Basket fabric #2: (1) 1-7/8″ square and (1) 2-7/8″ square  (red)

basket41 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

Each basket uses these patches.

 

Pair 3 gray squares with the teal squares, and the red square with the remaining gray square.

basket5 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

Pair the squares.

 

Referring to the photos at the end of this post for our basic Triangle-Squares Technique, make 6 teal triangle-squares. Make 2 red triangle-squares.

basket6 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

Make the small triangle-squares.

 

Now, cut the large gray square and the large red square in half diagonally to make the basket base.* Sew one of each color triangle together. (Save the leftover triangles for other blocks).

*If you prefer, you can use the Basic Triangle-Squares Technique for this pair as well.

basket7 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

Make the large triangle square for the basket base.

Lay out the triangle squares and the 2 gray rectangles to form the basket.

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Lay out the parts of the basket.

Sew the top 3 teal triangle-squares together, the next row of 2 teal triangle-squares and 1 red triangle square together, and sew the bottom teal and bottom red triangle-squares together.

Here’s a tip: Press the seam allowances of each row going opposite directions so that when you sew the rows together, the seams will nest with each other. Here, I flipped over the rows so that you can see how I press the seam allowances in opposite directions.

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Press the seam allowances going opposite directions.

 

Sew the triangle-squares and rectangles together to make the top half and the bottom half of the block.

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Sew the block parts together.

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Here again, I flipped over the block parts so you can see the seams pressed opposite directions. There are so many little seams in the this block, nesting them really helps to keep the block flat and smooth.

baskets11 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

Seams pressed opposite directions.

Finish sewing the block together! Woohoo!

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bitty basket

For that last final seam, I found it best to press the seam open.

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I pressed the final seam open.

So, did I mention I am obsessed? OBSESSED. Every day I can hardly wait to bolt to my sewing room to make these silly little blocks. I keep adding scraps and fabric to my Bitty Block stash. I probably have enough stash now to make oh, about a million Bitty Blocks.

For a throw size quilt, make around 14–18 Basket blocks. Soon we will be sharing a few different layouts so you can decide how big you want your quilt to be and how many blocks you will need for the rows.

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bitty block fabric stash

And I’m saving every little square and rectangle since they can all be re-used in other blocks. (In case you haven’t caught on, I’m obsessed.)

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scraps

 

I’m pretty sure my husband is starting to think I’m crazy. These bring me so much joy and make me laugh out loud. I’ve even hung them up at work so I can look at them every day.

hangingbaskets QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

Printer-friendly version of February’s Basket Block here.

I can’t wait for you to see what’s next!! I’m working about 3 months ahead (these Bitty Blocks are hanging on the other side of my bulletin board!), and it’s killing me to not spill the beans and show you what’s coming. What fun!

Please help us spread the word about #qmbittyblocks. Use the hashtag, share this post on social media and tell your friends. Maybe your small group would like to make Bitty Blocks together. Whatever you do, we’d love to hear about it: editor@quiltmaker.com.

March’s Bitty Block goes up Monday, March 2. Ready, set, sew!

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Basic Triangle-Squares Technique:

With right sides together and the lighter fabric on top, pair one square of each color that makes the unit. On the lighter patch, draw a diagonal line from corner to corner. Stitch 1/4″ out from both sides of the line. Cut apart on the marked line.

  hst42 150x150 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets  hst2 150x150 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

Open out the patches and press the units. Trim off the little dog-ear triangles. A pair of squares will yield 2 units. These units will finish at the correct size for each pattern. No trimming is needed.

hst3 QM Bitty Blocks: Bitty Baskets

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New Year’s Mystery: Part 5

Welcome back to Quiltmaker’s New Year’s Mystery Quilt. We’ve named it Auld Lang Stitches, and by this time, you should be well on your way.

NewYearsMystery 300 New Years Mystery: Part 5
Today I have Part 5 for you. At this point you’ll be starting to see things come together. It’s always exciting when the design begins to emerge.

Auld Lang Stitches, Part 5

Get a printer-friendly pdf for Part 5

Cutting

White Tone-on-Tone
96 rectangles (C) 2″ x 3 1/2″
96 rectangles (D) 2″ x 5″

Sewing

Sew a unit 2, unit 5 and white C together as shown. Add a white D to the side as shown to make a section 1. Make 96 section 1’s. Be sure that everything is oriented just as shown below.

Section1 New Years Mystery: Part 5

We’d enjoy seeing photos of your progress! Email them to editor@quiltmaker.com, to the attention of Diane.

If you missed earlier parts, find them at these links.
Intro post with yardage
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3Part 4

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Expand your quilting skills with these popular how-to posts:

How to join the ends of binding

ends1 New Years Mystery: Part 5

How to make an easy quilt label

labeltitle New Years Mystery: Part 5

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Electric Quilt Revs Up Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks

The staff at Electric Quilt Company decided to have a little fun with Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Volume 5.

QMMS 120022 COVER shadow 500 43120 Electric Quilt Revs Up Quiltmakers 100 Blocks

Of course they used EQ’s digital version of this issue, which gives you so many options. If you like having your blocks electronically, follow the link to learn more.

volume5 Electric Quilt Revs Up Quiltmakers 100 Blocks

Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Volume 5 on CD from Electric Quilt Company

 

Four different designers came up with ideas. It looks like they had a lot of fun.

SMYS Heidi Quilt Electric Quilt Revs Up Quiltmakers 100 Blocks

Scoot on over to see it all. Enjoy!

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See Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Volume 1–5 on CD from Electric Quilt Company.

Get Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks issues in print (limited) or digital.

IssueSet 300x177 Electric Quilt Revs Up Quiltmakers 100 Blocks

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