Monday 29 February 2016

Splendid Sampler Blocks 4 and 5

The Splendid Sampler blocks - Patchsmith style.

It has been a quiet time for the Farmer’s Wife 1930s sew-along as the Gnome Angel sew-along is still on spring break and the two blocks for the Very Kerry Berry group have been covered already (Block 45 ‘Jenny’ and Block 46 ‘Jewel’).
Block 46 - Jewel - my least favourite block

So instead I have been slicing and dicing fabric for the Splendid Sampler sew-along and two very lovely blocks they were.

Block 4 – ‘Happy, Happy’ by Jen Kingwell is a gorgeous 6” applique block and, as you all know, I am partial to a bit of applique. 
Do you like the little Patchsmith heart?

Block 5 was a simple patchwork block called ‘Simple Simon’.  It was designed by Celine Perkins and is a ‘disappearing nine-patch’ slice and dice. 
Block 5 - 'Simple Simon'

I didn’t intend to have a red and aqua theme for this sew-along but it seems that is where my fabric stash is taking me.  You can find all the blocks as-and-when I make them here on my Splendid Sampler Pinterest Board.

Sew until next time ................

Monday 22 February 2016

The Splendid Sampler Begins

Block 3 - Lots of Love - Patchsmith style.

Over 20,000 people are sewing along with Pat Sloan and Jane Davidson in The Splendid Sampler sew-along.  One hundred 6” blocks at the rate of two a week.  And I am joining in as part of my Block-a-Day 2016.

The first block, designed by Pat, was released on Valentine Day and mixed simple patchwork with simple applique to stunning effect.
Block 1 - Hearts Aflutter - Patchsmith style

The following Thursday block 2 ‘Wings’, designed by Jane, was released and I had fun with this one.  My ‘Farmer’s Wife’ experience looked for a pattern within the block and this is what I found:  
Block 2 - Wings - Patchsmith style

Yesterday saw the release of block 3 ‘Lots of Love’, designed by Melissa Corry and I got down-and-dirty with some itty-bitty hearts.  I loved it.  These small pieces have me taking my time - I find it impossible to rush if I want the accuracy - and this, in turn is making these blocks a relaxing experience. 
Block 3 - Lots of Love - Patchsmith style

The only deviation I’ve taken from the patterns so far, is to press my seams open on the patchwork hearts for block 3 – I find I can better see the points when I am matching seams.

You can find all three patterns on The Splendid Sampler website and I have started up a Splendid Sampler Pinterest Board (Patchsmith Style) where you can find all my blocks in one place.

Until next time .........

Sunday 21 February 2016

Farmer's Wife 1930s Quilt Blocks 41, 42, 43 and 44

Farmer's Wife 1930s Block no. 43 - Hope

VeryKerry Berry is chasing through the Farmer’s Wife 1930s sampler quilt with another four blocks:

Block 41 – Granny.  I cheated with this block and paper-pieced it in such a way that I eradicated those silly half-triangle squares.  Find out more HERE. 
Farmer's Wife 1930s Block no. 41 - Granny

Block 42 – Heather.   Another block that I’ve covered already HERE.  I loved this block – so much that I made two.  .
Farmer's Wife 1930s Block no. 42 - Heather

Then we came to a block I was looking forward to and which I like the look of....
Block 43 – Hope.  This block has a partial seam and my notes read “not sure I got the partial seam perfect but it is pretty and to size”.  It is also sashed and joined to another already!
Farmer's Wife 1930s Block no. 43 - Hope

Block 44 – Iris.   I struggled with this block.  Notes tell all .....  “Seams didn’t match up when joining two halves.  I don’t quite know why because the middle and ends match and it is to size.  Unpicked and restitched.  Better match but still unsure.  Maybe I am being too fussy.” 
Farmer's Wife 1930s Block no. 44 - Iris

GnomeAngel managed another two blocks before scheduling a break until 1st March.  Both blocks are covered briefly here as they have been blogged about before:

Block 11 – Bea.  This has been blogged about HERE.  I like how the handle looks like ribbon – it isn’t, it is the small stripe on the fabric that makes it appear so.
Farmer's Wife 1930s Block no. 11 - Bea

Block 23 – Charlotte.  This was an easy block to paper-piece and I made it in two halves.  Nothing challenging – quite straightforward.  
Farmer's Wife 1930s Block no. 23 - Charlotte

I actually only have another 7 or 8 blocks to make and you can see all the blocks I've made so far over on my Farmer’s Wife PinterestBoard or on my Farmer’s Wife tab above.

Sew until tomorrow when I shall be sharing my Splendid Sampler blocks .......

Sunday 7 February 2016

Farmer’s Wife 1930s Quilt Blocks 37, 38, and 61

Farmer's Wife 1930s block no. 61 - May

Five blocks made for the Farmer’s Wife 1930s sew-alongs this past fortnight but some of them we have seen before.  FIrst up are the four blocks for Very Kerry Berry:

Block 37 – Georgia.  This was a very easy block to make as it is made in rows.  I took the papers off before joining the rows so that I could nest the seams neatly. 
Farmer's Wife 1930s block no. 37 - Georgia

Block 38 – Golda.   Points that are at an angle can be tricky and so it proved with Golda.  It is important to make sure you have enough seam allowance where the points meet the edge so that you do not lose the points when sashing the blocks.  My notes scribble in the book simple state ‘tricky points’.
Farmer's Wife 1930s block no. 38 - Golda

Then we came to two senior blocks both of which I have covered already:

Block 39 – Grandma.  I have already blogged about this block HERE but I will say it again - it is really important to mark the templates with the colours of the fabric with this block as the pattern is not obvious when paper-piecing. More so because none of the templates that came with the book have been reversed.
Farmer's Wife 1930s block no. 39 - Grandma

Block 40 – Grandmother.   A favourite block of mine and one where I rejigged the templates to avoid an inset seam.  I have blogged about this HERE where you will also find a template for the handle.
Farmer's Wife 1930s block no. 40 - Grandmother

GnomeAngel chose one block the first week and then the usual two blocks but I have already blogged about two of those blocks – so only one new block to cover:

Block 28 – Dolly.  This is another block that is a straightforward block – lots of pieces but doable.  I covered this block HERE
Farmer's Wife 1930s block no. 28 - Dolly

Block 61 – May.  Ah – May.  What looks like a quite simple block I actually found to be annoying.  Not only did it have inset seams but it has four of those pesky diamonds which are made by sewing together the smallest of triangles.  Not a favourite and not a block I will make again.  Like Golda above, you must ensure you have enough seam allowance at the end of the points to sash the block.  My notes read “eight ‘Y’ seams and fiddly half-diamonds make this a yucky block”.  And I stand by that. 
Farmer's Wife 1930s block no. 61 - May

Block 37 – Georgia.  See above.
Farmer's Wife 1930s block no. 37 - Georgia - on point.

That brings us all up-to-date for both sew-alongs and you can see all the blocks made to date over on my Farmer’s Wife Pinterest Board or on my Farmer’s Wife blog page.

Sew until next time ......

Wednesday 3 February 2016

Hexden Flower Mug Rug

Have you tried English paper-piecing (EPP)?  It is a hand-stitching technique where you stitch around paper templates to create shapes. 

One of the best books I’ve read on how to English paper-piece is All Points Patchwork by Diane Gilleland.

This is my ‘go-to’ reference for all things EPP.  I would also recommend Craftypod’s YouTube videos ‘Basics of Basting’ for creating hexagons and ‘creating outward curves’.  Both tutorials teach you everything you need to know to make my Hexden Flower mug rug pattern.
Hexden Flower Mug Rug Pattern

This is my first English paper-piecing mug rug pattern and it includes all the templates you need to create a fun and functional mug rug for your work desk or coffee table.
Hand-stitched Hexden Flower Mug Rug

Although the Hexden Flower Mug Rug pattern doesn’t teach you the basics of English paper-piecing (Craftypod does it so much better than I ever could), it is suitable for both beginner and experienced English paper-piecers.

The pattern provides two options for creating the sidebar – you can create it using a patched piece of EPP:
Patched EPP Sidebar

....or you can applique three EPP hexagons onto a background rectangle.
Applique EPP Sidebar

Both methods are hand-stitched.  Whichever you choose, you are sure to get lots of use out of the Hexden Flower Mug Rug pattern (you could even applique the flower onto a 6” quilt block).  

So are you ready for some hand-stitching?

p.s.  If you prefer to read a tutorial on English paper-piecing this one from Buttons and Butterflies is very good.  

Until next time ......