Tuesday, May 26, 2020

~ Where did I get this? ~

Hi-diddly-o! Quilting Friends!  Do you ever find fabric in your stash that you don't remember buying?   Sounds crazy right?  Well I found this cute little bundle of Sugar Sack 2 by Whistlers Studio hiding deep in my stash early this morning.  I don't know when or where it was purchased but I'm so glad I found it.  Now what will I make?  That's another mystery!

The plan to have these Hunkering Down blocks on the wall by bedtime last night didn't happen.  I was close to my goal.  About another 30-60 minutes sewing should do the trick. 

I'm speed piecing these blocks using the webbing technique.  If you don't know how to web piece a block you can read more about it here.  It's a great way to save time and match up the seams without pinning.  

Before finishing the blocks this morning I decided to take a little walk outside while it's still cool.  And look what's blooming...Peonies!  Such a beautiful flower.  It's too bad that these can't be cut and brought inside.  I made that mistake in my youth.  Little did I know they are full of ants!  This flower can not bloom without them.  The little ants help pull open the petals and keep the flower clean.  You can't see them in the picture below but trust me they are there.

In the same flower bed is this Iris.  I call it "Toilet Water Iris" because it is the ugliest color of flower I've ever seen.  The picture makes it look better than it is in real life.  It has a muddy water color to the petals and the yellow isn't quite that yellow.  Maybe I should add something to the soil to make them change colors like with Hydrangeas.  Do any of you know if an Iris's color can be altered?

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Monday, May 25, 2020

~ Spice Up The Hunker Down ~

Howdy!  Quilting Friends!  Today in Podunk will be spent piecing my Hunkering Down quilt blocks.  The Hunkering Down quilt block is a FREE tutorial available here on my blog.  It's a FREE to download and print.  You can find it by clicking here.

This is where I stopped last night around midnight. The plan is to find a good Netflix series and then let the stitching begin.  I hoping to have them finished and on the design wall by bedtime.  There's a few other things like laundry and feeding Mr. Podunk that I'll be working into piece-athon.

As I make these blocks I need to decide the layout for the finished quilt.  Putting them on point has already been decided.  In my opinion on point quilts have a little more eye appeal.  The quilt below is very tradition.  Some would even say modern.  But since I'm older and have seen this style for YEARS I'll call it traditional.  It's beautiful and would look lovely added to the stacked quilt decor in the spare bedroom.

As a quilt pattern designer my mind is always in design mode.  I rarely know how a quilt will finish until it's done.  So the decision needs to be made.  Do I go super simple and traditional?  Or do I kick it up a notch with applique?  The applique below is still very traditional but adds a little WOW factor to the overall design.  I also thought the yellow inner border added a little more to the traditional look.

The next question would be, IF I decide to do the applique should I add gingham to the center of the flower or stay with the theme of  a two fabric quilt?  Y'all know me and you know I love me some gingham, but maybe it would be better without?  It really all boils down to how much time I want to spend on the this quilt.    

A pop of color is also another idea being tossed around in my brain.  The spare bedroom in the spring is yellow and blue.  How cute would this be on the bed with my lacy white pillow shams and yellow gingham shams?  Then remind myself this is only meant to be a folded and stacked decor quilt.  But it will be big enough for the bed.  Sigh...it's a real battle inside my brain!  HAHA!

Only time will tell what will be.  And it will never be if I don't get my rear in gear and back in the Studio.  Feel free to leave me a comment below letting me know what you think about my design options.

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Saturday, May 23, 2020

~ Home Again Blocks ~

Hello Quilting Friends!  Its been a while since my last blog post but I've been busy working on several different projects.  Before I share my current project I want to let you know that I post almost daily on Instagram and Facebook because it's quick and easy.  
So back to what has been keeping me busy and excited.  Erin Russek has once again designed the cutest FREE BOM called Home Again.   She gives you 16 blocks free in two different sizes.  There will be several options for finishing the quilt.  The block below is the large center medallion that must be purchased at a reasonable price.  You can get all the details about the free blocks and where to purchase the center block on her website HERE.

The fabric in my blocks is mostly discontinued Lakehouse Drygoods fabrics.  But there are a few others prints from various manufacturers.  The background fabric is from the Sugarhouse Park collection by Amy Smart for Riley Blake.

To keep things quick and easy the applique is done using raw edge fusible applique method.  Heat N Bond Lite is my go to for this method.  It's the only product I've found that does what it claims it can do.

A technique called "windowing" helps to reduce the stiffness of fusible applique.  You can see and example of this technique I used on another quilt HERE.  

Cutting out applique shapes can sometimes be tricky so I shared a few tips in a video.  Click here to watch the video.

The green Rapidesign circle template is what I use to trace the circle shapes to the Heat N Bond Lite.  I purchased mine at Office Depot but they can be found at any craft store such as Joann's or Hobby Lobby.

And the reason why I keep showing scissors in almost every picture is because a good pair of scissors makes all the difference when cutting raw edge applique.  I love my Kay Buckley scissors.  I have them in several sizes.  And cutting paper with them does not dull them like other scissors.  You can purchased them HERE.

You might also notice I've made a slight change to the stems in some of the blocks.  The pattern calls for embroidery stitching.  UGG...As you know I'm not a big fan of handwork.  So in true Lea Anne style I changed things up a bit.  Later next week I'll share how I made my stems.

These little birds is what really sold me on this pattern.  I'm a sucker for birds, especially bluebirds.  They are so cute!

All of my blocks still need to be stitch into place.  I'm leaning towards using Superior Thread MicroQuilter 100 wt. 7002.  But this isn't set in stone. I'm also considering matching the thread color to the applique.  Only time will tell.

Well that's all of them so far.  Hopefully I can find time this weekend to make block 13 that was released yesterday.  Another cutie!  The image below is Erin's Block.

Oh! I forgot to mention the BOM is now a block of the week due to our stay at home orders.  Erin decided to speed things up since so many of us are hunkering down at home.  

See you soon!

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Monday, April 27, 2020

~ Hunkering Down Quilt Block PDF Tutorial ~

Over the last few weeks we've all been doing our best to social distance.  Many quilter have taken this time to make masks or catch up on UFO's.  I've watched the social media change in ways I never even imagined.  Some changes have been good and others not so good.  Of course the not so good is always opinion oriented.  I tend to ignore and block those who cause too much fluff.

The post I like the best are of course pretty pictures of quilts.  Second on the like list is quilters looking for patterns.  For one I like the challenge of searching for the pattern on the internet.  Every once in awhile the internet search disappoints.  Such was the case this weekend.  While scrolling through Facebook I saw this picture of a vintage quilt with a request for the block pattern.
After a hour of searching high and low I came to the conclusion that this block does not exist.  So it was off to my encyclopedia's of quilt blocks.  And again it was total failure.  Well what's a quilt designer to do but draft the quilt block.  It seemed like the right thing to do.  I've been wanting a yellow and white quilt for my bedroom anyway.  This block would be perfect.  And since I couldn't find the name of the block I had to name it myself.  Hunkering Down seemed perfect not only because we're all doing it but because the center block is  called the Economy block.  Our economy is taking a big hit right now.  I also thought the center white square was a little trapped....quarantined.   Now I want everyone to know I don't feel trapped.  My life has changed very little other than wearing a mask when I do go to town.  It's business as usual in Podunk, we hunker down all the time because it cost to much to drive to town everyday unless your going to work.

Okay back the quilt.  It's classic and not too complicated so it will look great in just about any color or fabric as long as the print is not to big.  

In no time at all I had whipped up the design in EQ8 and was stitching up the test block.

If you would like to make this block you can download the printable PDF here.  This is basic instructions and you must have basic quilting knowledge.  No pressing directions or yardage requirements are given.  THIS PDF TUTORIAL IS FOR ONE BLOCK ONLY. 

 If your friends see your block and wants the pattern, please send them to my blog where they can download their own copy.  DO NOT SHARE THE PDF.  The internet is a world where popularity matters.  Clicks, comments, Likes, and shares help me to work my way up the popularity list for my little business.  Thank you for understanding.

Don't forget to share your quilt blocks and quilts with the hashtag

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