Double Take Quilt-Along

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Ok, I admit it, I'm a quilt-a-long addict. I guess I can add that to my blog header next to chai addict! What I really like about the quilt-a-long format is the discipline. Just ask my husband, I work best with deadlines. So when the quilt-a-long format came along, the engineer in me really responded to it. It's just like a project plan - a clear objective, resource allocation, weekly milestones. It was a match made in heaven. I've gotten so many quilt tops done with this format, I can hardly believe how productive I've become.

So when I finished my last quilt-a-long, I decided I wanted to try one of my own. So here we are.

The design for this quilt top was inspired by a Quilt Mockup Tutorial on Fresh Lemons. The tutorial talks about how to design a quilt using Photoshop Elements. I had previously been using another graphics program, but the software company decided to stop making it for the Mac and the VERY old version I owned couldn't keep up with my computer's operating system anymore. So I was very excited to learn how to use Photoshop Elements for quilt design. As I took the tutorial, I quickly realized there was a great quilt design in the blocks I was building, twisting, and turning. With permission from Faith at Fresh Lemons, I decided to use the quilt that came out of that tutorial for a quilt-a-long. Check-out the Fresh Lemons website for more inspiration and to take the Quilt Mockup Tutorial. Thanks, Faith!

I'm calling this design Double Take - amazingly, it is made out of only two quilt blocks! Quilt-a-long with me! Since this quilt is only made up of two blocks, it will take no time at all.

July 6: Fabric Selection
July 13: Cutting and Block Piecing
July 20: Assembly
July 27: Quilting

Feel free to post your progress on the Flickr site!

Artful Home - Piecing

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The piecing instructions fror the main blocks were pretty straight forward.  Here is a recap:

1) Mark the diagonal of the half square triangles.
2) Sew the HST to the center block.
3) Cut the excess from the HST.
4&5) Attach the first round of strips.
6) Attach the second set of HSTs (cut the excess here as well).
7&8) Attach the second round of strips.
9) Finished blocks.

One thing the instructions did not discuss...if you are OCD about corners like me, you will want the HST from the second round to line up with the corner of the HST from the first round:

To do this is pretty easy:

1) After marking your HST block (for the second round), fold the HST block in half perpendicular to the marking in order to find the dead center point.
2) Here you have the center crease crossing the marked diagonal.  The intersection is the center point
3) Stick a pin in the wrong side of the HST through the center point.
4) Stick the pin in the exact corner of the first round HST.
5) Set the HST block in place.
6) Sew all the HSTs to the block.

Here are the pieced blocks so far:

Artful Home Quilt - Cutting

Friday, June 17, 2011

First order of business....cutting.  Though the instructions on what sizes to cut each fat quarter were pretty straight forward, the diagram provided was not quite to scale.  I found it much easier to do the following:

1) Square left and lower edges of the fat quarter.
2) Cut both 'A' pieces as the diagram indicates.
3) Then, cut a 9" strip straight across the remaining width of the fat quarter. 
4) Cut the 'B' and 'C' pieces from the 9" strip.
5) Now cut a piece 2 1/4" wide the 9" length.  Then cut this strip into the four 'F' pieces, since 2 1/4 * 4  = 9"!
 6) Proceed to cutting the remaining pieces from the fat quarters as shown in the instructions.  

Once I had all the fat quarters cut, the rest of the cuts were a piece of cake!

While getting ready for my first round of piecing, I laid the cut pieces out in the order they would be sewn into the quilt top and found that I liked the look of the square-on-squares.  Hum, maybe I need to pick up some more of this fabric from Valli and Kim to make another top! :)

Artful Home Quilt from Valli and Kim

Saturday, June 11, 2011

I recently discovered a new addition to the quilt store scene in the Austin Area: Valli and Kim down in Dripping Springs.  If you haven't been yet, it's a must visit.  The store is stocked with the latest trends in modern quilting fabrics, from Kate Spain, Joel Dewberry, Basic Gray and much, much more.  I just picked up this gorgeous Henry Glass fabric from there and am eager to get quilting with it.  The Henry Glass website even has a free design download specifically for these fabrics.  I'll be going over the instructions on how to piece the top over the next few weeks, so feel free to join in.  Valli and Kim stocks the entire line, called the Artful Home from Henry Glass.  Download the instructions for the pattern here.  

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