Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Final Week of Sew Along - Hexagon Table Runner

This week we are sewing all of our "Hexagon Squares" together to make a table runner. (or table square)
First we need to discuss the layout of your blocks - if you are sewing the:
16" x 36" runner you will arrange your blocks 4 across by 8 down.
27" x 28" square arrange the blocks 6 across by 7 down.

Now you are ready to begin sewing. First sew all of your blocks across in pairs using a 1/4" seam allowance and paying attention to your block order. TIP : I press the seams of rows 1,3,5 and 7 to the LEFT and rows 2,4,6 and 8 to the RIGHT.

Now sew all of your pairs into rows of 4.
(or 6 if making the table square)

Once you've completed all of your rows, sew them together in pairs.

If you are making the Runner you should now have 4 sections.
(table square = 3 sections + 1 row)

Sew all of your sections together to finish your Table Runner (or table square)
Here is my finished Table Runner top on my design wall.
I'll share a picture of it quilted and bound in the near future.

If you are making this table runner please share a picture of your progress and finished top in the link below so that we may stop by and visit you.

every quilt tells a story...

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Quilter's Take the Bus - a Fun day on the Road

Last week was our exciting bus trip to the Virginia Quilt Museum.
Everyone had a great time - including BOB our wonderful driver!

The trip was sponsored by Kelly Ann, the friendly, fun and talented owner of Kelly Ann's Quilting here in Warrenton.

Kelly Ann provided us all with breakfast, lunch, a private museum tour, a tote bag filled with goodies and a trip to a neighboring quilt shop. As "hostess" on the bus, I provided a no-sew ornament demonstration and my DIL got to host a Quilter's Bingo game and raffle drawing.

Fairly new to northern VA, I was really looking forward to this day and the chance to meet other quilter's in my area.
All of the ladies on the bus were so sweet, talented and friendly. They made my DIL and I feel very welcome.

Here we are at the VA Quilt Museum - the 3 ladies around the sign work at Kelly Ann's Quilt shop. Like Kelly Ann - they are totally FUN to be with!

Here we are all together for a group picture

The featured exhibit was themed around Early pieced hexagon quilts. Meegan Carr, the Museum director shared a lot very interesting details with us about the history of each of the quilts and/or the families they belonged to. There were 2 amazing and NEW hexagon quilts in the exhibit as well. Meegan and my DIL are standing in front of a quilt called "I must be Hexed".

At the end of the day, I felt as though I made a lot of new friends!

I'm thrilled to have such a fun and exciting quilt shop in town and I look forward to the next bus trip scheduled for November.
It's a 2 day chauffeured quilt shop hop thru northern VA and Maryland during Quilter's Quest.

Have you visited a museum or cultural center in your area lately?

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Week 2 - Gem Collector Sew Along

Last week we covered the cutting instructions for making our Table Runner or Table Square. To create the hexagon shapes from 5" charm squares and the companion half triangle/rectangle pieces we used a 60 degree triangle ruler.
For those that asked me about this ruler - I purchased it HERE.
I purchased the 6 piece Black reproduction fabric bundle from Kelly Ann's shop found HERE.

This week we will sew our "Hexagon Squares" together.
The tutorial below is for piecing this block using rotary cut hexagon shapes. You will use a 1/4" seam allowance when sewing all your pieces together.

Let's get started.... place one of your background sections on top of the upper right side of your hexagon. Align the seam lines with the tip extending approximately 1/2" above the top edge of the hexagon. Sew 1/4" along the long side.

Press open and repeat this step on the upper left side of your hexagon.

Trim the excess fabric from the top of the block by aligning the ruler with the top of the hexagon fabric.
TIP: ALSO align the bottom edge of the hexagon along the 4-1/2" line on your ruler to keep your cuts straight and square.

Flip your block over and repeat these sewing and cutting instructions to complete the bottom half of your block.

You will need to trim up your "Hexagon Squares" to measure 5" x 4-1/2". Align the bottom of your block again along the 4-1/2" line on your ruler. Slide your ruler to the right of your block, aligning the side point of your hexagon at the 1/4" mark. Trim down the side.
Flip your block over to repeat on the left side - squaring your block up to 5" x 4-1/2".

That completes our lesson on making "Hexagon Squares"!
Your assignment this week is to sew all of your Hexagon Squares together.

If you are participating this week -add your blog link below once you've added your post - so that we may visit you.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Week One of our GEM COLLECTOR Sew along

I have to admit, I'm VERY excited to share with you - my method of creating Hexagon Squares. As mentioned before, this is a no fuss straight machine stitching technique.

Today I will be providing your cutting instructions and would just like to add a gentle reminder that the instructions I'm providing are my own personal property.
These are free for you to use for personal use, but please do not copy any of my materials to distribute.
At the end of the month if you wish to have a "hard copy"/original pattern, I will offer it for sale on my blog. we go

IF you wish to Paper Piece this pattern then you will need to set aside:
Table Runner: 32 print fabric 5" Charm squares (for your hexagons)
Table Square: 42 print fabric 5: Charm squares

If you wish to rotary cut and sew your blocks you will need to cut your hexagon fabrics to measure 5" wide x 4-1/2" high.

Fold your fabric in half to measure 5" wide x 2-1/4".

Center your 60 degree triangle ruler over the folded fabric. Align the bottom edge of the ruler against the bottom of the folded fabric along the crease line. The edges of the ruler should align with the edges of the fabric in between the 4" and 4-1/4" lines. (at 4-1/8")

Cut the corners off of your folded rectangle as shown below.

Open your folded fabric and you will have your hexagon shape. It already includes 1/4" seam allowances.

Next you will cut the 4 outside sections of your hexagon squares.
IMPORTANT Whether you choose to rotary cut OR paper piece these blocks - you will still cut your background sections out following the instructions below.

Table runner - Cut 5 strips of fabric 3-1/4" x width of fabric.
Table Square - cut 7 strips of fabric 3-1/4" x WOF.
(depending on how wide your fabric is you may need an additional strip

Align the bottom edge of your triangle ruler to the bottom edge of your fabric strip along the 4-1/4" marked line.

Look to the right and you will see that I aligned the side edge of the fabric along the SOLID CENTER LINE. This includes your 1/4" seam line on the ruler.

Rotary cut along the 60 degree slanted edge of the ruler.

Turn your ruler upside down on your fabric strip - again align the 4-1/4" line on the ruler to the edge of the fabric and cut.

Now you will have a pair of stretched out triangle sections. To cut this triangle in half properly you will align your 6" square ruler along the top (shortest side) of the fabric triangles. Measure over 3/4" from the edge of the triangle and cut down the center as shown below:


Continue cutting your triangle sections out of your fabric strips in the manner. You will need to cut out 64 pairs of these 1/2 triangle sections for the Table Runner. (128 pieces total)
or 84 pairs of 1/2 triangle sections for the Table Square. (168)

That's your assignment for the week!
If you wish to paper piece these blocks, next week I will provide a link for you to copy and print the block. The pattern will be free ONLY next week. After that, I will have it available as an instant download for $2.

Once you've chosen your fabrics for this project and have posted a discussion to your blog - please be sure to add a picture link below so we can pop over for a visit!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

My August sew-along project

Happy August Everyone!
This month during our sew along we will be making a Table runner or a Table square. (your choice)

For our previous 2 Pre-cut projects we used a Layer Cake (10" squares) and a Jelly Roll (2.5" strips x width of fabric).
I chose 5" charms for August and a much smaller project to make.
SCRAP BUSTERS are always welcome so pull out those stash bins.

The August sew along will begin the first Wednesday of the month - next week on August 7th.
Each Wednesday during August I will provide part of the instructions for making your quilt; just like I did in May & June.
However, this sew-long is going to be a little bit different.
I'm going to discuss and demonstrate a few techniques for creating this quilt pattern via Rotary cutting, templates and paper piecing. Once I've demonstrated these technique's you will choose the sewing method that works best for you.

Hexagon shapes are extremely popular right now.
I thought I'd come up with a fun and easy way to approach making a hexi quilt. The pattern I've created is called GEM COLLECTOR.
Assembly is straight forward machine sewing with NO inset (Y) seams or the need to stop and pivot your work. I would rate the skill level for this as: a confident beginner project.
I've arranged the square blocks 2 ways for you to see the pattern flow. Please note that these pieced squares have NOT been sewn together into rows yet, they are just photo cropped as a sample preview.

If you are using a charm pack you will pull out the number of 5" squares indicated below.
If you are stash busting you will cut your print fabrics into 4-1/2" x 5" rectangles for traditional piecing OR 5" squares if you choose to paper piece the blocks.

For a 16" x 36" Table Runner you will need a total of 32 charm squares + 2/3 yard of background fabric and 1/4 yard of binding fabric.

For a 27" x 28" Table Square (without optional borders) you will need 1 charm pack (a total of 42 squares)+1 yard of background fabric and 1/4 yard of binding fabric.

In addition to the standard sewing supplies I recommend the following rulers/notions - a 6" square ruler, an Add-a-Quarter ruler (optional for paper piecing) and a 60 degree triangle ruler or a cutting mat with a 60 degree line on it.

There will be a Linky tool each week for you to post pictures and add your blog link so others can pop in for a visit. Feel free to grab the Sew Along button shown above and add it to your site. (just right click and copy it) Here is the link you will add to it when you create your button:

Wishing you all a Happy & Productive August!

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