Tuesday, October 25, 2016

What's on My Table, Tuesday?

Two main tasks today as I work on the 2nd pattern quilt for Quilt Market in Houston.

I cut the 'holes' in the leaves with my art knife

Now all the leaves are ready fuse onto the quilt background


I also cut the borders from this amazing Orchid print (upcoming Northcott fabric will be in stores in February 2017).

And then I tested where I would mitre the corner for the Orchid border.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Workshop: Ripless Paper Piecing in Lethbridge

The 2nd workshop I taught in Lethbridge is one of my most popular topics - Ripless Paper Piecing. You get the accuracy of paper piecing, even for very sharp points, and you don't have to rip out all that paper. In fact, your 'foundation' can be used again and again.

I converted a few Paper Piecing skeptics at this class!

Here are the great results:


Barb G.





Mary - at class

Mary sent me this picture a few days after the class - just needs to quilt it.
Definitely a stunning quilt!
Pat G.


Pat - the other one....
Great job everyone!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Product Review - Bloc_Loc Ruler

Here is a 'sneak peak' of an in-progress quilt on my design wall. 

I want to make a 'scrap' quilt with Island Batik fabrics and solid white. I am working diagonally through the colour wheel.  

I just started making a few yellow blocks and liked how they looked. I have sorted my fabrics and continued making blocks and arranging them on my design wall.

Then it hit me! I will need 800 Half Square Triangles for this quilt! The quilt will be 10 blocks x 10 blocks = 100 blocks; and there are 8 Half Square Triangles in each block.

I don't think I would have started if I had done that math at the beginning but I'm moving along well with the Bloc_Loc ruler!

The helpful assistant at one my local quilt shops told me the Bloc_Loc ruler was great for squaring up half square triangles.

I always make these by using squares that are cut slightly larger than the size I need and I 'square them up' so they are perfect every time. I usually use my 6" square ruler to trim them square.

The Bloc_Loc has a diagonal groove on the underside, designed to 'lock' into place along the seam line. When I first put the ruler on my half square triangle I knew something was wrong. 

If I had trimmed with the ruler in that spot I would definitely be trimming too much!

I had to turn the ruler around, be sure that it was 'locked' and that the block size I wanted was inside the fabric edges.

I trimmed the right side and the top,

then I turned the block around and lined up the cut edges with the measurements on the ruler and made my final two cuts. These are perfectly trimmed.

The only drawback I see with this ruler is that there are no instructions with the tool. If you go to their website (www.blocloc.com) you can see exactly how to trim the blocks. 

The key part that I didn't know until I watched the video is that the Bloc_Loc logo on the ruler should always be placed on the lower side. That is the one that does not have the seam allowances underneath. Once I knew that it was very easy to position the ruler and trim my blocks. 

The video also shows how to trim quarter-square triangles accurately. This is definitely my new 'go to ruler' for trimming half square triangles. I used the 6-1/2" ruler but they even have a 12-1/2" BlocLoc ruler for larger blocks.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

What's on My Table, Tuesday?

Today's job was trimming one of my new pattern quilts in preparation for the binding. This is Galaxy Stars and it will be displayed in the Northcott booth at International Quilt Market at the end of the month.

Pattern will be available in March 2017.  HINT:  It uses PANELS!!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Workshop: Improvisational Curves in Lethbridge

Thank you to the Lethbridge Centennial Quilt Guild for inviting me to visit your guild. Here are some pictures from the Improvisational Curves Workshop.

Our classroom was amazing! Lots of room for everyone and plenty of light.

Improv Curves 'parts'  - great fabrics, great curves!

Student pictures taken at the end of our day:

Bonnie & Barb

Another Bonnie


Val L.

Sorry, didn't get this student's name - great design!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

New Series: What's on My Table, Tuesday?

I'm starting a new photo series this week.  I'm calling it What's on My Table, Tuesday?

Every Tuesday I will post a photo showing what's on my main cutting table. Some weeks there may be lots of ACTION (i.e. mess) and some weeks there may be NONE (still the same mess).

How about you - What's on YOUR table?

Here are the first couple of pictures...........

 This is what my table looked like when I returned from my teaching trip to
 Lethbridge a couple of weeks ago....
YES, I'll post pictures from that trip SOON.

The buckets contain 'in progress projects' that are on hold since priority projects 
have come to the top of the list.

I couldn't stand it any more (and I had 2 quilts to make for Quilt Market in Houston
at the end of the month) so I did a MAJOR TIDY!

Come back next Tuesday for a sneak peek at the new projects!

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Fun with Paintstiks - at the Academy of Quilting

Registration is open for my Fun with Paintstiks class at the Academy of Quilting

Class begins this FRIDAY, October 7th

Whenever I offer this class, many of the students said they had bought Paintstiks but just didn't know what to do with them. Is that YOU too? Why not join me and discover what you can do with your Paintstiks! 
I will show you how to use Shiva Paintstiks to add color, pattern and texture to your fabrics. You will learn several ways to apply the paint, how to put it just where you want it and how to blend paint to create a rainbow of rich colours.

You will fill a sketchbook for future reference as part of each exercise. The final lesson includes using the paint to highlight and color quilted projects and appliqué designs.

You will have plenty of time to learn in this class since the classroom remains open until November 14.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Show 'n' Share - Chic Flowers

Sue J. sent me a picture of the runner she made in class with me.

Sue says: "I enjoyed your course at Kaleidoscope Quilt Company awhile ago and have completed the table runner using the curved ruler. Now I'm looking forward to using the ruler on another project."

We used the Quick Curve Ruler for this project. Have you tried it yet?  There so many wonderful quilts you can make with this ruler!

I'll be teaching Chic Flowers again this fall.

 Join me at Serge & Sew in Nanaimo on Friday, November 18th for this 1-day workshop.

Class is #578 - 10:30 am - 4:00 pm

Contact the store to sign up.


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Product Review - Perfect Rectangle Ruler and more

I love it when I can combine testing a new product with a small project. I had a cute flannel panel fabric (Northcott's Flirty Birdies) in my stash and decided to make a cot cover quilt for my new granddaughter, Brooklyn. Two textured solids and a wavy stripe coordinated well.
I thought 'tipsy blocks' would be fun to make with the bird blocks so I decided to give the Creative Grids Perfect Rectangle Ruler a test run. The ruler's main function is to cut perfect rectangles that can be assembled to make half-rectangle blocks when the width is one half of the height. But these half rectangles can also be used to 'tip' square blocks.

I cut four 8" squares from the panel, followed the instructions with the tool to cut triangles from 8-1/2" wide strips and then sewed them to the square. The instructions that come with the tool are well written and illustrated.
The final step was to square up my blocks to measure 11" square.

I joined the blocks with sashing and prepared my quilt sandwich. I tried Pinmoors for basting. These are drum shaped rubber pieces that allow you to baste your quilt with straight pins. You push the sharp end of the pin into the Pinmoor. Since I have some arthritis in my right hand it was easier to use the Pinmoors than safety pins (my usual basting method). The pins stayed in place and were easy to remove as I quilted my small quilt.

And here is Brooklyn's first quilt - the first of many I'll make for her!