Tuesday, April 6, 2021

My Favorite Color is Moda Sew Along - Blocks 4 & 5

 I'm thinking I may need to find another sew along to join because making one block a month is driving me crazy.

Block 4 & 5 are simple half square triangle blocks.

Disclaimer: Sometimes I will change the pattern instructions a little bit because a different way works better for me. This does not mean that the pattern won't work exactly as written. If you follow the pattern, your blocks will still turn out fine.

What will make this block lay much flatter is paying attention to your pressing direction.

Tips/Instructions:
1. Pin. I'm not a big pinner but it really helps for larger HSTs.

2. What will make this block lay much flatter is paying attention to your pressing direction.
Press your HSTs as follows:

Block 4:
Fabric 3&5: All toward fabric 5
Fabric 2&5: 2 toward fabric 2 and 2 toward fabric 5
Fabric 7&5: 4 toward fabric 7 and 4 toward fabric 5

Block 5:       
Fabric 3&10: All toward fabric 3
Fabric 3&9: 2 toward fabric 3 and 2 toward fabric 9
Fabric 2&3: 4 toward fabric 2 and 4 toward fabric 3            

3. "Fanning" the seams whenever possible will help too. (I have a tutorial on YouTube over here: https://youtu.be/hsWG44hXLy8)

A little diagram for assembly. The arrows indicate the seam direction:                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                             

Here are the two blocks on the quilt top:

Moda's blog post is also up now. It talks about high and low contrast.
Look at the Tropical Getaway colorway actually made up. I love it!!

NOTE: As of the writing of this post, I still have a couple of kits left in each colorway.  I also have patterns for sale individually if you'd like to make your own version.

I'd love it if you join the Facebook Group and/or post pictures on Instagram and mention the blog (and tag @twiddletails) if you find this post helpful.

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

My Favorite Color is Moda Sew Along - Blocks 2 & 3

Time to make Block 2 (and 3). This one is a little smaller but I do think Moda is having us make the bigger blocks first so we can get our feet wet, so to speak.

This is my block.  A confession: I took the photo from this angle because my block is just a teenie bit wonky.
And I didn't notice that this month we're making two blocks, so I suppose I'll be doing a bit of sewing later today. Maybe the 2nd one will be straighter.
Disclaimer: Sometimes I will change the pattern instructions a little bit because a different way works better for me. This does not mean that the pattern won't work exactly as written. If you follow the pattern, your blocks will still turn out fine.

Tips/Instructions:
1. Start by attaching the squares to the applicable strips.  Be sure to use the correct colors or they won't fit.

2. I pressed the seams away from the squares. That allows all the seams to nest better, resulting in a flatter block.

3. When assembling, press all seams toward the outside of the block, away from the center. The picture below shows the sequence for attaching the strips to the center square.



Moda's blog post, with very good tips for getting an accurate block size, is up too.




Remember when I said I was considering a scrappy version? Well, I printed the color sheet and experimented with colors that I have in my stash.

This was the first draft. I pulled some stash & scrap prints and laid them out and it looked AWFUL!
Back to square one.

I'd love it if you join the Facebook Group and/or post pictures on Instagram and mention the blog (and tag @twiddletails) if you find this post helpful.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Temperature Quilt - a question answered

As in a big part of the country, it's been REALLY cold the last week or so. Yesterday was the coldest day in Des Moines, IA and will probably be the coldest day of the year.


low -18F high -3F
 
Here are a couple of blocks to give you a picture of how c-c-c-o-l-d it's been.
 

This morning I was reminded of something that has bothered me in the past.

I know for a fact that the coldest temperature for "yesterday" happened after midnight on the 16th (today).
So just to complicate things a little more,  I did some research this morning and found this on a local station's page:

 "On this weather page... daily high and low temperatures appear in chronological order. ...the high that appears here is our forecast for the maximum temperature expected that... afternoon; the low is for the lowest reading during in the evening or the next morning.
Similarly for all other days. National Weather Service forecasts follow an identical format.

However, for climatological purposes, daily highs and lows are defined (by international convention) as the maximum and minimum temperatures that occur during the midnight-to-midnight period, local standard time, regardless of the time of day those extremes might occur." 

This means that now we have to decide whether to use National Weather Service data or climatological data.

I think the best thing is to be consistent.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

My Favorite Color is Moda Sew Along - Block 1

Today is the day! We're making the first block of our My Favorite Color is Moda (MFCIM) quilt!

It is huge - 36" x 36"!


Moda's first blog post is up too. I wasn't sure what blog posts would look like, and didn't want to post a bunch of tips that Moda may have already published. It seems to be more of a photo post though, so thankfully I did write down a couple of tings as I was making the block.

Before I start however, a prep tip. I made myself a little cheat sheet.  If you're making any other colorway than "Primrose Garden", it will be a little challenging to figure out the colors. I just glued little fabric swatches to a piece of card stock.

Tips:

1. Don't be overwhelmed by the block. See it as 9 separate smaller blocks. If you do this, you'll see that there are only 3 "different" blocks, two of which are repeated four times.

2. On the HSTs, I pressed half of each color combo to one side and the other half to the other side on all but the corner blocks' HSTs.  This way you can "nest" your seams when you sew the block, making it much easier to line them up.

3. When assembling the block, I pressed the seams in opposite directions for the same reason.

4. It is very important to double check which fabric is "up" and which fabric is "down" on each half square triangle.  There are images in Moda's blog post that will REALLY help with this (or save the image below).
If you're making a scrappy quilt or using your own colorway, I recommend using the coloring sheet to color or mark the fabrics. (There is a copy in the Facebook Group under "Files" or you can download it from this Moda blog post.)

5. Last but not least, be careful when pressing your block.  Solid fabrics have a tendency to develop a shine if you press "bumpy" intersections too much.  I have a piece of fabric I put over the top of the block when pressing the bumps.

I hope these tips help a little.

NOTE: As of the writing of this post, I still have a couple of kits left in each colorway.  I also have patterns for sale individually if you'd like to make your own version.
I'm REALLY considering a scrappy version but should NOT be making two quilts!

(I'd love it if you join the Facebook Group and/or post pictures on Instagram and mention the blog (and tag @twiddletails) if you find this post helpful.)





Saturday, January 23, 2021

My Favorite Color is Moda Sew Along - Cutting Tips


Ready to cut your fabric?

To get started, find a bin or tub to store everything in and put a new blade in your rotary cutter.

Here are a couple of helpful things I learned during the cutting process:

1. Baggies are a must. Get 20 baggies and mark each with a block number (1-20). I marked mine with a Sharpie and, even though this was completely coincidental, it made it easier to see numbers through the bags than a label would have done.

3. Use the biggest bags you have - within reason. If they're too small, you'll have to fold your pieces and have to re-press them before you can sew. At least 8" square would be ideal.

4. Rearrange your baggies in numerical order after cutting each color or they'll get so mixed up that you'll have a hard time finding the one you need.

5. Save your scraps.  You never know what mistake you may make when you start making blocks. I'm pretty sure I will need to cut at least one or two replacement pieces in this process.

6. PLEASE NOTE: The cutting instructions for some colors flow over 2 pages. Pay close attention.

7. To avoid cutting the wrong fabric, cover the side of the pattern you're not using with a piece of paper.


8. When you're done cutting, arrange your baggies from largest to smallest in your bin so you can just grab the next one each month. I'm ready to sew!





My Favorite Color is Moda Sew Along - Introduction

An introduction:

Moda is hosting a sew-along in 2021 using Bella Solids - the "My Favorite Color is Moda" quilt.

Kits are available in 6 colorways or you can purchase a pattern and use your own fabrics.  This would be so pretty as a scrappy quilt!







Aren't they beautiful?

I'm a little late in posting, but right now we are cutting our fabric and sewing hasn't started yet.  We start sewing on February 2nd. Moda will have a blog post with tips for each block every month and I will also post over here with tips and the link to the Moda blog posts.

Moda's Intro post is over here: https://my.modafabrics.com/inspiration-resources/my-favorite-color-moda-1

The quilt is 81" x 99" finished.

I have kits for all the colorways as well as individual patterns available on the website.

I will be posting regularly on Instagram as well as the Twiddletails Quilt Alongs Facebook group.

Friday, January 1, 2021

Temperature Quilt - Calculating Fabric Quantities

 Calculating the amount of fabric needed to make a temperature quilt is very hard.

It depends on the size & design of your quilt and blocks.

The easiest way is to buy a fabric bundle, but you will definitely have some fabrics that get very little use. In my experience no quilter has ever complained about having too much fabric though.

You will therefore just have to determine how much you need of the color/s you will be using the most.

Because I'm making an applique quilt again this year, albeit raw edge not needle turn, I'm hoping to do a little homework before I start.  This way, hopefully, the block making process will be a little shorter.

Historical data is very helpful here. See this post about how to get hold of historical data.

I requested just the 2020 data for my purposes. In order to determine how many days fell in each of my temperature ranges, I first sorted by minimum temperature and counted those, then sorted by maximum temperature and counted those.

Here's what I found:

I had 55 occurrences of the the 66 to 70 degree range which means this is the color I will need the most of.

If you know how much fabric each block requires, you can do the math from there.

My plan is to pre-cut a bunch of background squares and maybe even make a couple of blocks ahead of time.

I also used the data to see how many occurrences of specific temperature combinations there were.  Now I know I can pre-make at least 5 of quite a few. (The pictures are a little fuzzy, so hopefully you get the idea.)

If you're on Facebook be sure to join the Twiddletails Temperature Quilt Along group where a whole lot of sharing and advice can be found.  It's grown into such a fun group in the last year.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Temperature Quilt 2021!

Things are heating up on the Temperature Quilt Along Facebook Group! This means the New Year is almost here (and aren't we all glad for that this year?).

If you're new to this, I have a bunch of posts from last year to the right

 ------>>>

I did change the fabric planning sheet for 2021. You can sign up to get it over here.

I also updated the calendar where you can record your temperatures. You can find it under "files" in the Facebook Group and I'll send it in an email to subscribers in the next couple of days if you're not on Facebook.

My design for 2021 is appliqued hearts. It'll be much like my 2019 quilt but I am NOT hand appliqueing these.  They will definitely be fused and raw edge.


The planning sheet document includes templates for the little hearts should you decide to use this design.

Be sure to join the Facebook Group and/or follow Twiddletails on Instagram. I post over there more frequently.

Here's a pic of my 2019 quilt:

Happy New Year!!!!