Sunday, January 16, 2011

My Quilting History and a Few Tips

Since I began quilting almost 20 years ago I put all my small scraps into a box until one day my box exploded and I had to do something about it. I started cutting up my scraps into 2" squares and then 3 years ago started sewing them into 9 patch blocks. I had no idea what I was going to do with them. This is how it all started...

Recently I figured it out!

I was happily sewing along and looked at my first finished block and oops! Those sashings weren't quite lining up. I am not concerned with being too perfect with this quilt but I did want it a little better than that.

I thought I would share a few tips to get sashings lined up a little better.

Here is my block laid out and ready to sew the long sashings on.

I match the center of the long sashing with the center of the block and pin in place. If I am sewing a long sashing that goes the width of a whole quilt I divide into quarters and pin at each quarter. That way you know your sashing is evenly distributed across. Pin the rest of the sashing and sew.

Now for the second side- I normally would press before starting this, but in this case my sashing was cut 1" wide and I was pressing towards the sashing, so that would create sewing problems.

Line up the sashing to the block, but instead of matching the centers I match the sashings between the blocks and pin. Then sew and press.

Much better!

This quilt has produced a lot of stray threads, probably because of all the handling over the last few years. I had a head smacking light bulb moment- to use my lint brush to pick up those threads off the finished quilt blocks! Why in the world did I never think if that before now?

And my last tip...another duh moment ( 2 in one day...did my brain just start working?)

I have a couple of rulers with a 1/2" added to them and I am always forgetting that and cutting wrong. I am so used to 6", not 6 1/2". In my notions drawer I had some of the ruler highlighter tape and I just put that down at my cutting line and ta-da! No more cutting wrong! You could also use any low tack tape such as painters tape.

I've been thinking about my miniature double wedding ring I want to make and have been looking through my fabrics. A couple of years ago I had bought a fat eighth pack of 'japanese' type taupes and greys. I needed something to add to those for the background. What do you think? It will be very non-traditional but I am liking it.

Back to my sewing room...Happy Stitching!


  1. I love your idea...guess i now know what I will be doing with my scraps! can't wait to get started!!!

  2. Ann...You never cease to amaze me.....I am going to be going thru my scraps. what a great idea....thanks for all your ideas.