Friday, March 31, 2017

Basic Square and Hexie Blocks in Electric Quilt

Hello everyone.

It's be a really really crazy month and I'm so glad to have had a couple days of sleep to catch up after all the madness. There was a lot of secret sewing going on here that I can't share until May and October - but until then, I've been playing in my Electric Quilt EQ7 program again and wanted to share these fun blocks with you! I've been hearing a lot of people are afraid to start paper piecing - they don't know where to start, in terms of sewing and designing. I designed some basic blocks and took some screen shots to help visualize how they work.

Last time I posted about EQ7 and learning how to paper piece - I said paper piecing was kind of like playing pick up sticks in reverse order. I mentioned that you have to go in a particular order as you place the fabric and sew it down. It would be the same as putting pieces of paper down around the outside to get the shape you want on the inside.

This simple Square block is similar to what a log cabin block would be. However, instead of cutting out all of the pieces exact in the beginning and sewing patchwork style, you are sewing the lines on the paper, with the pieces of fabric underneath. Your first block is the white center block. This allows you to fussy cut your center as you wish. You would sew both sides to your center block and then both top and bottom pieces last. While designing in the program, you may have to put lines down, but then erase them. If you extended the lines up and down from pieces 2 and 3, you would have a basic 9 patch block. By erasing the two lines in area 4, and the two lines in area 5, it becomes a log cabin type block.

This Hexie block is just as basic as the square block - just has two extra patches.

I designed this Hexie (hexagon) block a long time ago but not as a paper piecing block. I wasn't able to get my hexie in the center consistently, becoming easily frustrated, so I decided this would make a perfect foundation paper pieced block. Now my blocks are consistent and so much more fun. If you are not a fan of sewing English Paper Pieced hexies, or larger set in seam hexies, you just might love this block. You can sew it with a fussy cut center on point or with your top and bottom hexie lines straight across. When designing your blocks in EQ7, you get to decide how they will look. Although I designed the block as 6" x 6", I have included it as a 3" x 3" Hexie block (another great feature of EQ 7 is choosing the size you'd like to print the block as. I have also included three other easy hexie blocks I created in EQ7, with slightly different lines. This pattern is only available in my Etsy shop. They are great for scrap busting and just good ol' fussy cutting fun. You'll also get the bonus square block!

As you begin to sew blocks, and start designing them, it does get easier. You can check out my Land of Magic Crown and Land of Magic Star blocks too as the next levels up. More pieces and more sections.

What's more fun than that? If you haven't tried EQ7 or EQ Mini, now is your chance to win an EQ Mini from the Electric Quilt Co! It's a great beginner program to get you started on your way to designing your own blocks and quilts just the way you want! Head on over to my Kid Giddy Instagram page for more info - and to enter. Look for the blocks image above...that will be the giveway post!

Disclaimer: This blog may accept forms of compensation, including cash and product, and although I may be compensated for this post, all opinions shared are always my own. There are no affiliate links.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt Along - Nan #75

Hey everyone -

Kinda feeling sad this is my last tutorial block with Angie @GnomeAngel for the Farmer's Wife 1930's book. Although I haven't had the time to make every block during this sew along I have enjoyed the ones I made and enjoyed reading the letters that each block comes with.

Say hello to Nan - block number 75. I selected these two Cotton and Steel prints based on the really sad letter. Mrs. J.D.K lost her 16 year old son in April of 1930 after he drowned during a class picnic day. Weeks later she was feeding chickens and found pages from an old book providing words of peace and comfort. So being this is a cross pattern I decided to use the Sardinha print (representing the fish that Christ feed to the 5,000 during the Sermon on the Mount) as the Cross, surrounded by the beautiful Rifle Co. flowers. I also decided to paper piece the block because I'm not a master patchworker.

I don't normally precut my paper piecing fabrics in a specific way (I just tend to cut pieces off the corner of a fat quarter), but wanted to make sure this looked seamless. I guess if I wanted it to be exact I could have stuck with patchwork. LOL.

I've gotten better about not wasting as much fabric as I used to when I first started paper piecing but still don't measure each section with a ruler. As I cut my pieces I lay the fabric down on the pattern piece and cut it off. Some pieces are easier than others. If there are triangles - I fold the corner back and cut it as a square, then cut diagonally to separate. 

Before you begin sewing, make sure your pieces are just past the seam allowances for each section as above to avoid having pieces that are too small, and trim off any excess seam allowance.

I know this tutorial wasn't ground breaking, but it's a very simple block, maybe a level 2 for beginners. You can check out my other Farmer's Wife tutorials or paper piecing tutorials for more tips and tricks to paper piece your Farmer's Wife blocks. by clicking on the Quilt Along tag. Thanks so much to Angie for including me in this sew along. I'm looking forward to seeing your Nan blocks on social media!

Disclaimer: This blog may accept forms of compensation, including cash and product, and although I may compensated with products for this post all opinions of  are always my own. There are no affiliate links.