Good Dogs

While putting the rows together for the quilt I’m working on I snapped a few pictures of my “good dogs”. Even the puppy knows to stay off the quilt.

Good Daisy

Here is a picture of Daisy tip-toeing around the quilt. She was about 7 months old when I took this picture. What a good puppy!

And here is the old guy, Laddie, laying beside the quilt. Good boy!

Good Dog

While clearing floor space to lay out the quilt, I tossed one of Daisy’s toys behind me. Here is where it landed.

Good Laddie

Poor guy! He just laid there with that ratty toy on him. I guess he thought I put it there for a reason.

Dogs…you gotta love ’em!

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All the Blocks Are In

The 2011 Amish Quilt Shop Hop quilt is almost done. After I had sewn the rows of blocks together to the half-way point…

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I started on the opposite corner.

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That way I don’t have to keep sewing rows onto a big and bulky quilt top.

After sewing the final rows on the bottom corner…

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I sewed the 2 halves together and voilĂ ! All the blocks are in.

almost done

Next and final step is sewing on the borders.

Making Plans for My Favorite Fall Shop Hop

I just got on the Amish Quilt Shop Hop website to see what the theme is for this year. It is, “Creating Traditions”.

Amish Quilt Shop Hop

What a great theme. I wonder how the shop owners will translate that theme into their quilt block layouts. There are 10 quilt shops participating this year.

The dates for the shop hop are October 30-31, November 1-2, 2013. Mark your calendars now. I can’t wait to see the fabric collection chosen for this year.

For more information click on the Amish Quilt Shop Hop logo above.

Putting it All Together

The quilt top from the 2011 Amish Quilt Shop Hop is coming together.

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I really like it! The colors look so vibrant. I’m really taking my time with pinning and sewing so that I get sharp points and corners.

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I use a lot of pins, I mean a lot of pins!

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That is how you keep the fabric from moving when you get those corners and points lined up.

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Sharp corners make this quilter happy.

Flying Geese Ruler

Here’s my confession…I’m not one of those gadget loving quilters. I’m usually pretty basic when it comes to my quilting tools. But the finishing kit for this Amish Quilt Shop Hop quilt that I’ve been working on came with a Flying Geese Ruler from Marti Mitchell. I really like this ruler!

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First of all, the pink tag holder that came on the ruler is brilliant! When I’m done using the ruler I can re-attach the directions so that they will always be on the ruler. Such a simple thing but so helpful. I won’t have to go searching thru drawers and stacks of paper looking for the directions the next time I use the ruler. Good thinking, Marti!

To use the ruler for my project I used the 3 1/2″ strip line. The top of the ruler has a flat edge that lines up on the top of the fabric strip. The picture below shows the cutting of the next triangle.

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Then you flip the ruler around to cut another triangle, without wasting fabric.

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After you cut the triangles you then trim the corners as shown in the picture below. This step is surprisingly helpful as I will show you.

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Here are the cute little triangles that you trim away. You could save these for you next project…! Please don’t, don’t do that to yourself! Throw them away!

Okay, next step.

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I did the same for the turquoise fabric triangles. I’m making border strips, not flying geese even though I’m using the Flying Geese Ruler. The corners for the turquoise triangles are trimmed also.

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Here is where those trimmed corners really matter. Lining up the triangles is so much more accurate with these trimmed corners.

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I pin to hold the triangles in alignment while I sew.

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Here are the finished border strips. I am greatly impressed with this ruler and look forward to using it to make flying geese, but it’s nice to know that this little ruler pulls double duty making triangle borders as well.

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Purposing to Perfect the 9-Patch

The next items to piece were 9 patch blocks and setting triangle units.

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They went together really well. Here is how I pieced the 9-patch blocks.

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I made strip sets like the ones in my Straight Strip Set post. Then subcut them into 2″x5″ rectangles.

Here is my pinning technique…

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I sandwich the units together making sure the seams lock together. As you pinch them together you can feel the seams locked next to each other. Then I place a pin on either side of the seam.

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I like these long pins that are easy to grab as I’m sewing. I take just a small “bite” of fabric with the pins.

Here is how I pin each unit before sewing.

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As I said in my earlier post, proper pressing is very important also. I press after each piece I sew together.

Straight Strip Sets

The first thing to piece in the finishing kit that I’ve been working on were bar strip sets. I don’t know if that is their official name, but that’s what I’m calling them.

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I’m really pleased by how they turned out. They are nice and straight, without any bending. Here is how I did it.

When I sewed the brown and cream strips together I made sure to turn every other strip. Here’s a picture to show what I’m talking about.

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I flipped the cream strip around. The printed selvage edge of the cream fabric is at the other end. This seemed to really help avoid that bend in strip sets that all quilters despise.

The other thing I did to insure straight strips involves proper pressing. Here is how I did that…

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I always press the seam first, commonly called “setting the seam”. Then I ran the iron along the right side of the seam. Pressing to the dark or in this case the brown fabric.

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I have found that running the iron along the seam like this helps avoid that small crease that sometimes happens along the seam if you’re not careful how you press. I want a nice tight seam without stretching. Then I gently pull back the fabric and press the seam.

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Here it is…a nice straight strip.

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It doesn’t take a lot of extra effort to get a straight strip set. Just a couple of things to keep in mind. Hope it helps your next project.

Ready for the Finishing Kit

Now that all the blocks for the 2011 Amish Shop Hop quilt are completed it’s time to start on the finishing kit.

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I keep completed blocks for each project in unused pizza boxes.

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Everything is cut out and ready to go. It took awhile. I had a slight problem cutting out the large setting triangles.

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I didn’t have a ruler long enough. So I carefully and accurately used 2 rulers and the grid on my cutting mat to cut out these triangles. I won’t know how accurately I cut them until I piece them into the quilt. I’ll keep you updated.

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I keep a tally to make sure that I’ve cut out the correct number of strips and squares. Now it’s time to start piecing.

2011 Amish Quilt Shop Hop Blocks, Part 3

Here are the rest of the blocks. Notice that all the blocks have border strips. This will be such a help when I square them up to 12 1/2″. I won’t have to worry about cutting off any points when I trim them.

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So, the blocks are all done. Now it’s time to start on the finishing kit. I can’t wait, I love putting the quilt blocks together and see how the quilt is going to look. It’s always better than the picture on the pattern or the picture I had in my mind.

Here is the finishing kit.

2011 Flying Hopscotch kit

It came with a Flying Geese Ruler…a new tool! Love it!