Wednesday, 3 July 2013

UFO digging, mystery night - and tutorials x 2

This month is my turn to be queen bee on Bee Europa. Of course, there are lots of projects on my wish list but I also have a large and growing collection of UFOs. So under the same spell which made me pick up my Farmer's Wife project, I digged very deep in my UFO basket to unearth a few projects which needed stone love again and decided to ask my fellow bee to help me get them restarted. So I did dig very deep in my UFOs box and unearthed 2 projects which could soon be called vintage! One was from 2004 and one for 2005.

Both projects were starting at the Bramble Patch Mystery Night. I don’t if any of you are familiar with it/have been to it before. The Mystery Night was held for 10 years at the Bramble Patch and run by Barbara Chainey. on the last Friday of November. We would gather to the Bramble Patch at about 9 pm, start working on the warm-up project until midnight. And then we would start our main project at midnight and then sew like mad until 7 am before going for a full English breakfast. Great fun, lots of chocolate and lots of sewing! I attended for 4 years. I finished the 4 warm-up projects reasonably quickly but the 4 main projects are still UFOs to this day. I got them out last week-end and decided it was time to get them progressed and maybe even finished one day!

The first project from 2004 is made of 20 stars - 10 in one colour scheme (which are completed) and 10 in a second colour scheme that I am asking 9 of my fellow bees to make for me. i am using Zenko by Moda and Crackled Ice fabric in cream, medium blue and dark blue for this quilt.

To make this star (12.5' unfinished), you start with this:

4 strips of fabric 2.5' (2 cream, 1 dark blue, one light blue) for the 4-patch in the corners
8 2.5' squares in medium blue and 8 2.5' square in light blue for the flying geese blocks
4 rectangles 4.5 ' x 2.5' in cream and 4 in medium blue for the flying geese
1 square 4.5' in dark blue for the centre of the star

First pair the 2.5' strips and sew them together as below
Slice them off into 2.5' units
and pair the units together to make the 4 corner sub-units (4-patch)
Then make the flying geese by using one rectangle and 2 squares (cream rectangle with medium blue squares, medium rectangle with light blue squares). Draw a diagonal line on the back of the square, place the square on the rectangle lining up 2 sides of the square with the rectangle and sew along the diagonal line. Cut the corner triangles away 1/4' from the seam and press open. Using the second square lined up with the other short side of the rectangle, sew along the diagonal and cut away the corner triangles, press open, et voila! one flying geese unit.
If my explanations are not very clear! you can check the Speed Piecing method A here
Pair 2 flying geese to make the units attached to the central square, taking care when placing the flying geese to have a medium blue "V"
Now that all the sub-units are done, you can finish the block like a 9-patch block by sewing the sub-units into 3 strips

and then the strips into a lovely star and you are done!

Now there are 12 of us in the block and I *only* needed 9 blocks for this quilt, So I unearthed a second UFO, The one I started the following year at the 2005 Mystery Night. This one is made of 48 blocks 8.5' finished and I actually managed to finished 36 on the night. They were much simpler blocks Sawtooth (2 x 12) and Square in a Square (24) blocks. I *only* need to finish 12 Sawtooth blocks in one colour way to have all the blocks I need to finish this quilt! I tried 2 at the week-end and there are fast to make, so I have been cheeky and sent enough fabric for 2 blocks for the ladies who are getting this block! I am using batiks for this quilt: sky blue, medium blue and sapphire by Hoffman and a turtle printed batik.

For one block you need a square 4.5' for the centre
4 sky blue rectangles 4.5' x 2.5' and 8 medium blue square 2.5' for the flying geese unit.
4 sky squares 2.5' for the corners
The flying geese are constructed exactly the same way as above. Trace a line on the diagonal, sew on the line, cut the corner triangles off, press open and do the same on the other side.
And then the block is finished like a 9-patch by making 3 strips 

and sewing the strips together into a Sawtooth block or two! Et voila!
So I don't write tutorial very often so if anything is unclear or incorrect, please let me know! Hope you find this useful! 
I should hopefully soon have all the blocks I need to finish the first quilt that I had planned to make to my DH nearly 10 years ago. Maybe I could try and finish it for him in the next year or so? Wish me luck! 
As for the second quilt, I won't get all the blocks done this round but they shouldn't be many missing and I have cut all the fabric so hopefully I can squeeze one block now and then. Or else they will fall back in the deep deep UFO basket for another 10 years or so!
Linking to Sew Cute Tuesday

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