Monday, April 8, 2013

Did you ever have one of those days? Or Weeks?

This week I've had little success in quilting.  Here's my slow progress on Barbara Brackman's block of the week (Link here).  They are working on block #32, and I'm stuck on block #29.  It's a star with seven points, and the first one I machine pieced was like a little bowl.  :(  I discovered that the star points had a different angle on each end, and it mattered which ends you used as the center of the star.....o.k.  progress made - won't make that mistake again.  So Mr. Seamripper and I took it apart, and re-machine sewed it.  Now the star does lay flat, but the center where all the star point seams meet is a hot mess, with a hole, and it's in the wastebasket.  Here's the wastebasket, with the poor fallen star in it.

This is my third attempt at it.  I've machine basted around each star section, and am going to hand piece the center of the star together, forcing those points to meet and greet each other.  If successful, I'll applique the outer points to the background.

The quilt that I kitted up into thirty plastic bags, has a little progress too.  Again, it was slow and painful, but it's progress.  I made one block, and it didn't measure 13.5 inches when completed, as it should have.  I made another one, and watched my seam allowances carefully.  Better results, but not satisfactory yet.  I then taped together four pieces of graph paper, and made a big pattern of the block - with all the seams right where they should be....but in pencil on paper.  I took it to the copy store, and made five copies, intending to paper piece my way through five blocks.   I made one more attempt without resorting to paper piecing, and measured each round against the paper pattern.  It worked, and I found that correctly cutting off the ends of each round at the correct angle was the key.  One block finished, and it measured 13.5 inches!  

I didn't want to paper piece mainly because the copies were $0.50 each, and I didn't want to pay for 30 of them, plus do all that paper ripping.  So next, I measured the first two blocks, Mr. Seamripper and I did some adjustments, and now there are three blocks on the design wall.  Here's my design wall picture, and I'm linking with Judy Laquidara's Design Wall Mondays, for show and tell.  I love to see what others are working on each week.  (link here)

I have binding on one of the small quilts, and intend to take all three little quilts with me to finish at Shipshewana, IN.  This week is the Dear Jane quilt retreat! I am so ready to spend three days with all the other quilters there.  I always leave Shipshe with so much inspiration and so many new ideas, and as you can read, I'm very ready for some of that this week!


  1. Lucky you! Well not lucky, you deserve a special Judy time! Please tell Val hello for me if she is there, and tell her I'm using all her beautiful selvedges this week. I think I have about 25 blocks finished

  2. LOL I have weeks like that too! Only difference is I would never have done that star because I KNOW it would never lie flat!!

    Perseverance!!! Love your blocks and envy your flat star!

  3. I, too, would probably not have attempted that star. I know my limits. But what satisfaction if you can work it out!
    Good job getting the pineapples the right size. Though I don't love doing it, I would probably have to paper piece that.

  4. I'll tell you what, Judy--a lot of my days are like that. My (supposedly) easy block for RSC13 this month turned out to be a bear! Only two of my eight points on the cactus flower didn't get cut off!! AND, I used Mister SR a lot, too--so much, that I had to re-cut some pieces--Aaaargh!! So I decided to make that one block a small medallion--not a whole quilt with 144 blocks --are you kidding me??? If it helps, you are not alone in this...hugs Julierose

  5. DON'T put that star block in the trash! I could easily be salvaged by appliquing a circle over the center and turn it into something else. OR you could sew a button there too - lots of options for you. I admire your sustained efforts to get the block right - and it will be great!

  6. Funny, I thought of a large button in the center of the "trashed" block, just like Gayle! You could easily turn the star into a small pillow, or a pincushion, or ??? Love the fabrics you used for the star... so worth repeating, even if it's more work! Love the pineapple blocks... I'm with Janet O... paper piecing would be the direction I would go, but then I'd be cursing that decision when it comes to tearing all the paper off! Have a wonderful retreat!

  7. I am well involved with Mr. Ripper...LOL
    Hang in there because things will somehow suddenly work out.

  8. Have fun at your retreat!!
    It looks like you've had a bit of frustration. When it finally works it feels great huh?! Terrific looking blocks!!

  9. I'm really impressed at how you've made adjustments to get your star right--mine probably would have been relegated to the UFO pile after a couple of attempts.

  10. Glad you got that 7 point star figured out. It looked fabulous, as did all of your cheddar and black blocks. The days went by too quickly in Shipshewana, as usual. Time to start the countdown for November. Loved your clothesline of quilts at Show and Tell, too.


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