Designer Duo 2019 – INBOUND • Block 2

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I hope this week was a good one and you had fun starting your MIX IT UP quilt blocks! It’s already Friday again and we’re introducing the second block in this unusual sampler quilt. *Check my earlier posts for information regarding the fabrics I’m using in my version.

These two blocks are literally the same block, the INBOUND block #2 in the Designers Duo 2019 – MIX IT UP pattern book. Again, fabric placement changed up these blocks to look totally different from each other as well as from both Nancy and Sarah’s versions in the book. The negative space that the white fabric creates in the light green version creates a cool center star. I’m honestly torn between which block is my favorite here. The traditional look of the dark green block with that fabulous leaf print is just so pretty and then the boldness light green version is so dang cool looking. Which one do you like best?

Until next week, Happy Making!!

Designer Duo 2019 – OUTBOUND • Block 1

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Happy Friday and welcome to the official start of the Designer Duo 2019 MIX IT UP quilt along!! Today Nancy, Sarah, and guest designers will be sharing our versions of block one “OUTBOUND”, from the MIX IT UP pattern book. Fabric placement is key in creating completely different aesthetics when it comes to this quilt. I love using fabrics like the way I used to color in coloring books when I was a kid. Shading is such a cool way to create bold looks. I used a FQ bundle of Robert Kaufman Fabric’s ON THE LIGHTER SIDE (OTLS) as well as yardage of their KONA Solids. *Visit my blog post detailing how much yardage I suggest HERE. The results are what you see below for OUTBOUND-block one. In the red block I used KONA Tomato and paired it with the Apple print from the OTLS bundle. The blue block uses Blueprint and the flying airplane print. You’ll see if you’re making the MIX IT UP quilt that we are to make two versions of this block. I love how completely different yet slightly similar these blocks appear to be.

Honestly, the only thing giving it away that these technically are the same block are the direction the flying geese are going, in an outbound flight pattern from the center square in a square. Using the solids to create striking patterns that stand out against the low volume fabrics was so fun. When you take away all the color in the original block, which you can do by tracing the block in the book and then applying your own color story to it, it makes it easy to see the block in a whole new perspective. Below you can see my digital mock up of my quilt with the block layout marked by the patch lines. I urge you to try creating a totally fresh look to the blocks and see what you come up with.

Happy Making!

Order your copy of the DD 2019 MIX IT UP pattern booklet from the following retailers. PDFs are not available.

Hancock’s of Paducah

Fabric Essentials

Homestead Hearth

Designer Duo 2019 Launch

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img_3008.jpgWelcome to the DESIGNER DUO 2019!  This year we are making Nancy Rink and Sarah Maxwell’s quilt pattern, MIX IT UP.  These ladies have crafted up a quilt sampler that is not only fun to make but offers some design options that are customizable by you.  Consisting of three block sizes, 18″, 12″ and 6″, the quilt finishes at 78″ x 90″.  This quilt is nice and big and will be a favorite make for sure.  Don’t worry!  This first week is all about gathering your fabrics, pattern booklet, and a game plan.

When it came to making my version I chose to use all the blocks in the book except for two of the 12″ block designs.  It was a personal preference but because I made two of each of the 18″ and the other 12″ blocks but made them look totally different from their pair.  In my last post here I provided the fabric requirements to make my version.  Matching Kona Solid colors to the prints in Robert Kaufman Fabric’s On the Lighter Side collection made for a super fun palette.

So next Friday, May 24th, the first block will be discussed and you will get started on your quilt.  Unless of course you are a typical quilter and you got started as soon as your kit/pattern, pattern book, and your own fabric choices were purchased.  For more information on everything be sure to visit Nancy’s blog HERE, as well the designated Facebook group HERE, if you use FB.

Here is a photo I took of my MIX IT UP quilt while Hubby and I were on vacation a couple of weeks ago in Whistler, B.C.  He’s the best quilt holder EVER and at a towering 6’4″ and a vast wingspan, he makes my quilts look good.  That should give an idea of just how grand this quilt is.  He couldn’t comfortably hold it open!

Mix It Up – Designers Duo 2019

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IMG_3009For the second year in a row I have had the honor of being named Guest Designer in my friend Nancy Rink and Sarah Maxwell‘s Designer Duo quilt pattern and quilt along.  Joining me as Guest Designers are Elisabeth Hardy of Elisabewquilts, Giuseppe Ribaudo, aka Giucy Giuce, Tiffany Hayes of Needle in a Hayes Stack, and Dolores Smith of Timeworn Toolbox. I hope you’ll keep an eye out for them too as we have all created something different.

This year Nancy and Sarah designed such a fun, interesting, and customizable pattern.  You’ll see as the QAL/quilt along kicks off this Friday, May 17th that this is a very different quilt in regards to layout.  This happens because of three different sized blocks used throughout the quilt, 18″, 12″, and 6″, making a 78″ x 90″ finished quilt including borders.

What I have so much fun doing is taking Nancy’s direction to “re-color” the original quilt with fabrics of my choice.  In this case she also asked me to redesign the layout of blocks into something new.  The pattern book talks about the idea of designing your own blocks or switching out the 12″ blocks with others of your choice.  I chose to utilize all but I think one of the blocks in the pattern and not replace anything, but I did mix up the layout to create a much different look.  As we all know, fabric placement can change everything and I enjoy doing just that. I did rearrange actual block placement but paired with fabric placement, I was able to make everything look very different from the original two layouts by Nancy and Sarah. IMG_3008

I chose to use a fat quarter bundle of ON THE LIGHTER SIDE from Robert Kaufman Fabrics for the prints in my quilt.  Using a Kona Solids color card, also from Robert Kaufman, I matched Kona fabrics to the colors in the prints.  A HUGE thank you to Robert Kaufman Fabrics for supporting this project, by the way.  I love using Kona Solids because I know I will get any and every color I could possibly need as they have created 343 colors.  Yup!  Three hundred and forty-three colors, People!

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Using the low volume prints of On the Light Side collection and Kona Solids I created bold blocks that were a joy and a fun challenge to make.  Below is the list of Kona Solids that I matched to each print in the collection shown above.

KONA Cotton Solids in yards:
1387 White – 4 ½
1071 Charcoal – 1/6
1470 Pewter – 1/6
848 Blueprint – 1/4
1072 Chartreuse – 1/3
475 Grasshopper – 5/8
865 Pimento – 1/6
496 Nectarine – ½
840 Duckling – ½
419 Azalea – 1/6
233 Celestial – 1/6
7 Tomato – 5/8
410 Kumquat – 1/3
488 Dahlia – 1/6
476 Grellow – 1/3
1383 Violet – 1/6
1541 Deep Blue – 1/3
1049 Bright Pink – 1/3
407 Chestnut – 1/6
1066 Cerise – 1/6
1218 Marine – 1/6
K040-114 Jet Black – 1/6

I hope y’all join us in the QAL this summer! It’s going to be great because not only are we making amazing quilts, but Nancy and Sarah have some fun things planned. If you want to make quilts exactly like Nancy’s or Sarah’s you can order kits from Homestead Hearth, Fabric Essentials, and book only from Hancock’s of Paducah. If you just need a pattern book then you can order them from those shops or from Nancy herself HERE. And last but not least, here’s my version of the Designer Duo 2019 MIX IT UP quilt in all its glory. (Sorry there aren’t kits for my version. That’s why I gave you fabric requirements. 😉)

#ElegantOasisQAL Tips & Tricks

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Welcome to my quilt along and some tips and tricks that hopefully will help you make these blocks a little more easily.  They aren’t challenging to make, but sometimes there’s a little tip or trick that can make things that much easier, and who doesn’t like that?!

20171101_203852088_iOSFirst I want to talk about the fabrics I am using in my quilt.  They are what inspired me to design a pattern that allowed large florals to be showcased and wouldn’t need to be cut up too much.  They’re the gorgeous Barkcloth fabrics by Gertrude Made called “Outback Wife”.  They are rich, lush, beautiful, and a bit thicker than quilting weight cottons.  I wanted to use a background fabric that had a bit more substance so it would play nicely with the barkcloth, so I chose Robert Kaufman Fabrics gorgeous Essex Linen Homespun.  The particular color I’m using is Silver, but I know for a fact that every shade these fabrics come in are wonderful for so many projects.  I have extensive experience using Essex Linens alongside quilting weight cottons in both quilts and bags, and I can honestly say they bring a special quality to every project.

I am stitching up my blocks with a Janome Skyline S5.  I love this machine, but because of the dense layers of barkcloth and Homespun Essex Linen, I discovered that the factory setting of “5” on the pressure setting for the presser foot is a bit tight.  I found that moving the knob to “3” makes stitching those two layers as smooth as stitching quilting weight cottons on level “5”.  Check your machine, as all machines are different, and do a test run with the fabrics you’re using if they are new to you and aren’t traditional quilting weight fabrics.  It will make for smoother sewing, nicer seams, minimal to no shifting of your fabrics, and a more enjoyable assembly all together.

If you’ve been following me on Instagram for even a hot minute, you know that I am an Aurifil Artisan.  I have been a lover and exclusive user of Aurifil Thread since 2012, but only an Artisan since last year.  I believe in the quality of Aurifil and I use it in every project that I stitch up.  Quilts, bags, pillows, and I never have an issue with it in my machine, in the projects when they are machine washed and dried, and used and loved.  I stitch everything with their 50 weight thread and I’m using that thread weight in this quilt and a stitch length on my machine of 1.8.  That’s generally the stitch length I use when piecing.  It makes for tight stitches that aren’t too hard to rip out if needed.  Yup!  I rip out seams!  I’m not perfect and I don’t usually mind those moments where things don’t work out perfectly.  I learn and move on.  So, there’s my little preach about Aurifil.

IMG_0317Now to the pattern tips.  I upped the size of the squares that are used to make the Half Square Triangles (HSTs).  I wanted to make sure that even the most novice of quilters could get a precise size after trimming.  I can’t emphasize pinning enough.  I’m a very experienced quilter and I still pin.  It doesn’t really take that much additional time, and when things turn out perfectly the first time, isn’t it worth it if it does? IMG_0322

 

Remember to measure twice and cut once.  I did make a HUGE mistake when making one of my blocks using that precious Outback Wife fabric.  I was not paying attention to the print on my cutting table and I cut the accent squares instead of focus fabric rectangles out of a big, beautiful floral.  Omgoodness, I was sooo mad at myself!  In the end I’ve decided to make that my center of the nine blocks in my quilt layout, because I had to use the intended accent print (a small floral) as the focus print instead.  Oh well!  That’s the way it goes sometime when you don’t have more of one particular fabric.

I’ll have some more tips and tricks for the assembly of these blocks later today.  I hope you’ll reference these throughout your #ElegantOasisQAL no matter when you make your quilt.

 

 

 

I designed a block!

Aurifil Artisans, Lady K Designs, Quilts, Uncategorized

To say I’m beyond excited about the fact that I designed a block that made it into a magazine would be an understatement.  I designed a block and the folks at Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Magazine liked it so much, they put it in Volume 16!  It’s hitting newsstands today and that is pretty dang exciting.  I had the pleasure of testing blocks for Volume 7 a few years ago, as well as making a quilt to be photographed and published in it.  Fast forward to today and other people tested my block!  You can find it on page 49 of Volume 16.  It’s called “Star Garden”.  I love a classic Churn Dash block and the idea of placing another design within the Churn Dash was a cool concept to me .  I played around with my EQ7 software drawing tool and placed a traditional Sawtooth Star design in the center.  I wanted to fussy cut a favorite fabric, so the center square easily allows for that.  *There is one typo; you only need to cut (4) Blue Solid rectangles.

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I hope you’ll go pick up your own copy of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Magazine and make your own version of my block.  If you do and you post it on social media, I hope you’ll tag me @ladykquilts on Instagram and use the #stargardenblock so I can see it too.  Here are some pics of what I’ve made with my block, as well as the original block you’ll see in the magazine.  In the original block I used fabrics from both Kim Kight of Cotton + Steel, Anna Maria Horner of Free Spirit Fabrics, and a Kona Astral.

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This second version is a mini quilt (measuring 24″ square) that I made using Robert Kaufman’s Kona Cottons Gotham Grey & Salmon & Aqua, and another Anna Maria Horner fabric.  It’s such a different look with the striking contrasts.  I love it!

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The following versions of Star Garden are mock-ups I designed in Electric Quilts’ EQ7.  I wanted to show the versatility of it using solids as well as all prints.  The prints are from my friend Maureen Cracknell’s newest collection for Art Gallery Fabrics, “Love Story“.