So I just completed my first ever Economy block! I was a little nervous with this one as it involved triangles and I wasn’t really sure how things would go when sewing along points. As you can see, things did work out pretty well in the end.
The large majority of my triangle points did line up, but I have to say there were quite a few instances of seam ripping and trying again. About 10 minutes in, I realized that my 1/4″ piecing foot requires me to move the sewing needle of my machine over to the right to the 4.5 mark for a scant 1/4″, and to the 4.0 mark for a proper 1/4″. I wish I’d realized this before, but I didn’t even know I could move the needle over! Have any of you ever had to do this?
Another sewing machine question I have that I still don’t know the answer to is: “is it common to have to hold the threads when you start sewing”? If I don’t, my machine sucks one of the thread ends into the first dozen or so stitches and it becomes all jumbled in the back. It doesn’t stop the stitches from looking nice on the top, but it seems odd all the same. Is this normal???
So I’ve completed my next set of blocks. It was my first strip set block and I definitely made an error of not properly measuring my seams/ironing properly as I was creating it – and thus my overall strip set was a little short, by about 1/4″… I’m soo annoyed about it, but I’d already cut all my pieces before I realized and so couldn’t simply redo them. So again, everything is a little off, but another lesson learned. Hopefully (again) it won’t matter in the final quilt.
Overall, my blocks simply aren’t quite square. I don’t want to cut them down or square them off until I know exactly how they’ll fit into the final quilt. I will say, however, I had no problems with the partial seams, so yay for that! I do like the way they turned out though, very cheery with all the pink! Would you have chosen to mix up different colours or stick to one like me?
So I may have bought myself a new iron… Lol, I mentioned here that my old iron was a super cheap one that just honestly didn’t work very well. JS and I really don’t iron much, so we never really had need of anything better. So after much research (and advice from my mom), I decided on a Rowenta Eco Intelligent Iron from Amazon.ca. I have to say, it works wonders compare to the old one, and it looks awesome too! I’m loving the colour and design, but best of all, it means I’m ready to tackle my next set of blocks!
I apologize for the clarity of my photos. Everything current is simply coming from my smart phone, which obviously doesn’t take the best photos :S One of these days I’ll have a better camera, it’s on my Christmas list! What about you? What’s on your Xmas list?
So I have to say I am soo mad at myself at the moment. I totally forgot to photograph my first attempt at quilting… Needless to say I am not impressed with myself. The first couple steps went very well, I was able to cut some nice strips and squares. I still can’t believe I just found out about the rotary cutter, SOO much easier to use trying to cut many pieces with scissors. All my lines were straight, and my corners right angles!
I do have to say I had one major mishap… I was chain piecing on my last strips and it wasn’t until I was ironing my seams that I realized that I had forgotten to place the right sides together. That’s what I get when I start trying to watch TV while sewing… Clearly I can’t handle distractions :S So needless to say, the seam-ripper came out, I undid each of the final rows and then re-stitched them together – properly this time!
As you can see, my end product isn’t all that bad, although some of the sides don’t quite seem to be long enough… I’m off by about 1/8″. I was trying to figure out why they weren’t quite right (I was using my 1/4″ piecing foot so I knew my seam size was right), and I realized it’s my iron. It’s such a crappy one that it really doesn’t flatten everything properly, so I’m losing some length because of it. Do you think it’ll affect me in the end? I’m hoping it’s a small enough error that I’ll be able to correct it when it’s time to attach all the blocks together. Fingers crossed!!!
When I received my sewing machine, it came with a little quilting kit. I can’t say I ever opened it up because at the time, I wasn’t particularly interested in the activity. But today it feels like a whole other present 🙂
Now, I must confess that I really don’t know what a darning foot or a walking foot is used for, but I’m really excited about the 1/4″ seam foot. I definitely think it will be very useful in helping me ensure that I have the correct seam allowances once I start to quilt! Also included in the kit is a craft foot and cloth guide as well as a quilt guide. Time to do some research as to what the rest are used for, unless you can tell me? Getting more and more excited to get started!
So as you may or may not be aware, I live in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and at this time of year the whole city shuts down for the Calgary Stampede. This year it is an especially remarkable time as just over two weeks ago, the city was hit with some major (MAJOR) flooding. To even be able to hold the Stampede shows the true spirit of Calgarians, Albertans and Canadians alike. Help came from everywhere and much of the city has been restored. There are still some hard-hit areas that will be recovering for quite some time, and my heart goes out to everyone who are dealing with loss. Luckily for me and my hubby, we live up on a hill and so were mostly unaffected.
The Stampede is a 10-day event with rodeos, concerts, and all sorts of other exciting events. Everyday, multiple free Pancake Breakfasts can be found throughout the city. JS and I went to one for some pancakes, sausages and coffee Saturday morning before running all our weekly errands – I seriously love this time of year.
Here’s a pic of my new quilting set up. You probably can’t tell, but it is currently in the middle our our living room, and thus very temporary… I will likely move everything over to the second bedroom, but at least I now have everything I need to get started! Do you see anything missing? I have a tiny iron and ironing board set up next to the couch, which I would love to replace one day. Do you know of any good irons? What do you use?
Did you notice the can on the floor next to the table? That’s my current obsession – V8 Juice. For some reason I am LOVING this stuff… I know, I know, lol, you likely think it’s gross, JS definitely does.
Have a wonderful end of weekend 🙂
Since I decided to get into quilting, I’ve been creating a list of things that I will need that I don’t already have. I am an absolute list person, I have them for everything: packing, shopping, to do’s, things we’re running low on, wish lists, everything! And now it also includes quilting! Thanks goodness for my iPhone app “Awesome Note” which has allowed me to easily manage my life (and my lists!). Do you have an app you absolutely couldn’t do without??
So back to the point, the main items I need include:
- Quilting rulers (which explains how to get around my early frustrations mentioned here!)
- Rotary cutter
- Flat-headed pins
I decided a few weeks ago my first quilt would be a sampler quilt from the Craftsy Block of the Month 2013 with Laura Nownes. I’ve ordered my fabric from the class kit, mainly because I really found it a little overwhelming to pick out fabrics for my own first project. I figured it would be easier to focus on the quilting if I wasn’t worried about the fabric choices… And happy news, it arrived yesterday!!!! Here is a look at what I received in the mail.
Now I just need to go to a Quilting Shop (a.k.a. Fabricland) and grab the few remaining items.
Can’t wait to get started! Have a wonderful weekend 🙂