Wednesday, January 28, 2015

On the Cutting Table


Aren’t those cute fabrics?  From the new Cookie Book collection from Cotton and Steel.  I haven’t bought fabric in awhile (trying to USE what I have!) but these I needed now.

I’m finishing up a project with triangles that I’m really happy with.  When I get some sunlight outside I can’t wait to take some pictures.  I have a few good rulers that cut triangles, but I love the sturdiness of this Hex n’ More ruler.  It’s so big it doesn’t slide around as much while I’m cutting.

Using a Hex n' More ruler

A good sign of a productive sewing week is a trash bin full of pretty scraps.


We are gearing up for the Superbowl and the boys have made a list of food requests. They are all about the Seahawks…and I am all about the food.

Touchdown Quilt, Cluck Cluck Sew

Have a great week and go Hawks!  ;)

Friday, January 23, 2015

Making Heart Blocks in Multiple Sizes

Heart Blocks, Multiple sizes

I heard you!  Or read your emails at least…so here’s some info on making those heart blocks in multiple sizes.  The full heart quilt tutorial is here

To make each heart block (just the center heart portion) you need 2 print strips, 2 large background squares, and 4 small background squares.  Here’s a table with the sizes and pieces to cut:

Finished size of blocks

Print fabrics   cut 2

Background Square – cut 2

Background square – cut 4

4” square 2 1/2” x 4 1/2” 2 1/2” 1”
5” 3” x 5 1/2” 3” 1 1/8”
6” 3 1/2” x 6 1/2” 3 1/2” 1 1/4”
7” 4” x 7 1/2” 4” 1 3/8”
8” 4 1/2” x 8 1/2” 4 1/2” 1 1/2”
9” 5” x 9 1/2” 5” 1 3/4”
10” 5 1/2” X 10 1/2” 5 1/2” 2”

Heart Blocks

Draw diagonal lines on the wrong side of each of your squares, place them on the print strips, sew along the lines, trim corners and press seams out (or open for the little squares), and sew the two sides together! 

Easy as pie.

Heart Blocks in Multiple sizes

Sewing Heart Blocks

Happy heart making!   Again, if you need it the full Heart Quilt tutorial is here!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Choosing and Using Solids

Choosing Solids

I LOOOOOOOVE SOLIDS.  All Caps and lots of O’s love them.  The right combination can make the pattern stand out and the print fabrics pop.  What mascara does for your eyes…solids can do for your quilt.  ;)

They can also be overwhelming…there are 303 Kona Cotton colors to choose from and that’s just one manufacturer!  Choosing the right colors can be a pain, especially if your shopping online…so color cards can be a lifesaver.  Color cards are expensive…so if you can only buy one my favorite is the Moda Bella Solids card (purchased here).  The swatches are bigger and I find most of my top colors on it.  The Robert Kaufman Kona card has more colors, but the swatches are about an inch square and it’s hard to get a good idea of the true color…I still love it and use it often though (also purchased here).

Bella Solids Color Card

The safest bet is to choose colors based on print fabrics I love.  If I’m making a quilt, I choose my print fabrics first, and choose out a few colors from the prints to buy in solids and add into the mix.  This quilt I color matched the solids to a few prints from the quilt, so it was a safe bet, but the solids still make the pattern more visible even though they are the same colors as the prints.

Tango Quilt Pattern, Cluck Cluck Sew

Or, you can add in a slightly different shade of solids to mix it up a bit, like the Kelly green and the dark blue in this quilt.  There is no other primary green in the quilt but with so many other greens…it works, and makes it more interesting!

Pow Wow Quilt - Cluck Cluck Sew

(If I could travel back in time I would iron that quilt top before taking the picture!)

I’ve also found some of my favorite solids by trial and error, and from recommendations from others. I keep a big stash of my favorites that I use all the time and try to keep at least 1/2 a yard of each.  My background fabrics like white (the color is below) I buy by the bolt, or wait for a sale and buy a lot of it. Most solids are cheaper than print fabrics…another reason to love solids!  I usually add 2-3 solids to every quilt depending on the size, not including the background fabric.

Favorite Solids

Here are my current favorites solids…all of these are either Bella Solids, or Kona Solids:

White:  Bella 9900-97 Bleached White  (This is the perfect creamy background white!)

Beige/Tan: Bella 9900-242 Linen

Grays: Kona 1007 Ash, Bella 9900-83 Gray (more of a beige/gray), Bella 9900-184 Steel

Blues: Bella 9900-34 Aqua, Bella 9900-87 Teal, Bella 9900-137 Coastal, Bella 9900-227 Cobalt, Bella 9900-191 Seafoam 

Greens: Bella 9900-228 Grass (or Kona 317 Peridot is similar), Kona 411 Leprechaun, Kona 1141 Fern (this is a bright, true green), Bella 9900-268 Emerald

Favorite Solids, Nautical combo

Reds: Bella 9900-47 Scarlett (True red), Kona 1087 Coral (Coral-red)

Orange: Kona 1265 Orange, Bella 9900-80 Orange

Yellows: Kona 1677 Curry (this is the mustard-yellow above), Kona 23 Lemon (true yellow)

Pinks: Kona 1228 Melon (dark coral), Bella 9900-88 Bubblegum (light coral), Kona 274 Primrose, Bella 9900-62 Rose, Bella 9900-89 Tearose

Purples: Bella 9900-203 Orchid, Bella 9900-204 Plum (these are both more mauve but pretty!)

Favorite Solids, Spring Combo

You can always buy pre-cuts of solids too… it’s a great way to add to your stash without getting overwhelmed by choices.  I love buying my solids in person in a quilt shop, but I also buy a lot of my solids online.  I rarely pre-wash my fabrics, including my solids.  Since I’m buying mostly high quality fabrics I haven’t had a problem with them bleeding.  However if you buy a dark or red solid from a chain store, definitely pre-wash it.

Kona Solids fat quarter bundle

If you have a favorite solid I didn’t mention or a great resource for solids please share in the comments below.  Most of these were Kona or Bella solids because I’m familiar with them…but other companies make some amazing ones too.  Shop around and see what you like best!

Happy quilting!

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