My Sewful Retirement

A Quilting Journey

Archive for the month “February, 2019”

Stringalong 2019

Lori, with Humble Quilts is having a string-along this year. I didn’t discover the string-along until February 1 so I missed the January link up.

String piecing or string quilts are named for the strips (strings) of fabric sewn to a foundation such as muslin or paper. As with all other quilt blocks there are numerous layouts for string quilts.

Creating string blocks is one of my favorite ways to relax and sew. I can make a block while I wait for my embroidery machine to stitch out a design. String piecing is stress free because accuracy and perfection aren’t required. The only drawback is removing the paper foundation — I usually remove the paper during TV time so it doesn’t bother me that much.

My February string projects are below.

The African Print string quilt measuring 46 x 56 inches was a UFO from 2015. The fabrics were gifts from my mother in law. I am happy to finally have it finished.

string quilt – african print finished

I used my blue and neutral fabric scrap bags to create the star baby quilt. I am quite happy with this layout.

string quilt – blue star wip

I made this 22 x 22 inch string heart quilt for my sewing room. I used the last bit of my Kona scraps to make the mini quilt. I LOVE the scrappy binding ♥♥

Love Yourself Mini Quilt

For the star and African print string blocks I used the Missouri Star 10 inch foundation papers. 250 sheets come in one pack – the paper tears away super easily and quick. For the heart string mini I used 8.5 x 11 inch newspaper print. I cut the sheets into 3.5 inch squares for the foundation. I purchased the newsprint paper from Amazon — 500 sheets for $10.

You can find the February String along link up here. If you get a chance stop by to see other amazing string quilt ideas.

Happy Sewing!

My Introduction to Paper Piecing

Happy Tuesday!

I’ve had Paper Piecing on my “to do” list for a few years now. The technique both intrigued and scared me. Stitching on a line seemed easy, but sewing in reverse seemed odd.

Cherie, from one of the blogs I follow Cherie’s Quilting Journey finished piecing a beautiful quilt in January that had some paper pieced components to it. You can see Cherie’s quilt here.

Granted I’m not ready to tackle something so big..I did some research and decided I would start with a triangle in a square quilt block as my sample. This block only has 3 pieces and no severe angles.

I watched lots of You Tube videos demonstrating paper piecing techniques. My favorite was by Amanda Rolfe and you can watch the video here if you are wanting to learn how to paper piece.

I made a mini quilt, measuring 16 x 21 inches. Below is a picture of my focus fabric. I used it as the backing for the mini quilt.

PP-Triangle In Square Back

My triangle in a square units measure 4.5 x 4.5 inches unfinished. I decided to go with a diamond layout. The points are perfect — I was extremely pleased.

PP – Diamonds Mini Quilt

I didn’t tear off the paper until the entire mini quilt top was finished. Sewing on the lines kept everything aligned. Below is how it looked before removing the paper.

paper piecing TIS B

I moved on to another paper piecing project “Blooming Tulips” a pattern I found in one of my quilt magazines. The tulip pattern has 7 pieces, a little more challenging but the results were great.

PP – Blooming Tulips

Now that I’m feeling a little more confident there are several really cool patterns I hope to try someday!

Linking with Connie at Free Motion by the River.

Happy Sewing!

My Dresden Plate Obsession

Happy Friday!

I spent a lot time sewing this week, mainly working on a baby shower custom order for twins!

I did get a couple of quick projects for myself finished 🙂

I had a drop everything and make it moment when I read this post from Michelle. Hubby and I had just had a conversation about not using plastic bags. Since retiring we shop more frequently to buy fresh veggies and fruit and I have shameful amount of plastic bags underneath my sink!

Using Michelle’s tutorial as inspiration I make this market bag. I added a pocket and zipper inside. I used duck canvas fabric and pulled out my serger to finish the seams.

Dresden market bag

I’m loving how it turned out! Probably will make another soon, to keep one in both cars.

I’m also remodeling one of our guest bathrooms. Found a shower curtain on clearance at Target . I’m using the shower curtain as the focal point for decorating.

shower curtain inspiration

I used a charm pack I purchased from Bluprint to make the Dresden wall hanging and the patchwork rug. For this Dresden plate I used a 30 degree ruler, only 12 blades needed to make a circle. I wanted a chunkier blade So I started at the 2 inch marking on the ruler. I added a little motivational embroidery to the center ♥♥

Linking with Connie at Free Motion by the River.

Happy Stitching!

Friday Finishes

Happy Friday!

I have three small finishes to share today just in time for February – the month of Love!

Curvy Log Cabin Heart Wall Hanging — measures 23 x 30 inches – made with batik fabrics from my stash.

Curvy Log Cabin Heart WH Finished

Batik Heart Table Runner – measures 14 x 40 inches – made with batik fabrics from my stash

Batik Hearts TR finished

Swirly Heart Quilt – measures 50 x 60 inches – made with prints from Mama Said Sew I and II by Sweetwater for Moda.

Swirly Heart Finished

I pulled out an old UFO, a string quilt I started many years ago and as you can tell I hadn’t learned the secret for getting the center strips to match!

String Quilt WIP

The fabrics were given to me from my mother-in-law before she passed. I was looking at a picture of her last night and decided it was time to finish the quilt.

Happy Stitching!

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