Books on Monday – Amazingly Simple Triangle Stars

Today we are looking at Amazingly Simple Triangle Stars: Deceptively Easy Quilts from One Block by Barbara H. Cline. What follows is indeed an Amazon Associate link. (Yes, I might gain a little cash from your purchase if you use that link. I did just have to renew the domain name for this blog. So thank you for helping!)

We all know that I’m a sucker for stars. (Did you see yesterday’s post?) I love stars. All stars. The stars in this book are certainly no exception. And all of the quilts are made using the same block (which is really a triangle shape which is not what I usually think of when I hear the word block). I love the quilts in this book, but I do have one problem (not with the book exactly). Here’s my problem: If you’re going to publish a book of quilt patterns that use the same block and,therefore, the same five templates, I think you should be marketing acrylic templates to go along with the book. I would buy those in a heartbeat. I searched the internet. As far as I can tell, they don’t exist. I really don’t want to make my own. Sigh. Back to the real book review.

Like Ms. Cline’s other books (all of which I own), this one begins with an explanation of the basics of this method of quilt construction. This includes directions for making the templates and using them to make the blocks. Then she moves into the projects – there are nine. And.. wait, let me just list the sections in the Table of Contents.

  • Introduction
  • Triangle Block Basics
  • Projects (as I mentioned, there are 9)
  • Other Design Ideas (includes a “grid page” which is basically a coloring sheet that you can copy and use to design your own quilts)
  • Patterns (the template patterns)
  • Quiltmaking Basics (you know what these are)
  • About the Author

Obviously, if you are using the exact same block to make all the quilts, color and value changes are going to be big. I really like the project that looks like a Tumbling Blocks quilt with stars. Actually, I like all the quilts. They have stars!

Quilt on!

Sunday Sewing Update

Here is the rest of the update for the weekend.

After church, I attended a birthday party for which I had made a gift yesterday. I made my first ever bowl cozy. No one at the party had ever heard of them before, so they were quite interested. Here’s a picture:


At the party we did some pallet stencil painting. Note that the real color of my background is more of an aqua or light teal than a green.


Once I got home it was time for some piecing. Look at the lovely warning my machine gave me.


I finished the last four blocks for my nephew’s wedding quilt. I’m pretty sure my niece-to-be is more excited than he is. I’m sorry that we won’t make it out to Arizona for the wedding though.IMG_3384

Here is a picture of all nine blocks:IMG_3385

The next step is to make all of the blocks 30″ (unfinished) by adding white around the blocks, like this:


One down, eight to go. I’m hoping to get the top together and the backing pressed in time to get this to the quilt shop by Tuesday pick up by the longarmer.

And now you’re caught up on all my weekend quilting!

Quilt on!

Saturday Sewing Update

Look, I’m posting this early! (Well, at least earlier than the last couple of weeks.) Yay me!

During Football Sewing today, I did not complete Block 10 of the 2011 Designer Mystery BOM, but I did get most of the units done. All I’ll need to do next time I’m hand piecing is join the units into rows and the rows into the block.

First I fixed the mistake I found in last week’s sewing. This was the first mistake I made:


Then I made it even worse by sewing it into this unit:


So I did some unsewing and then made this (it looks quite a bit brighter than the other version):


Then I put the unit back together so it looks like this:


And this is the center unit:IMG_3380

There are still some units that I finished last Sunday, but I never took a picture of them.

I also made a quick birthday gift which I’ll show later. Then I got to spend some time working on the wedding quilt for my nephew and his lovely bride-to-be. I’m still working on the last four blocks, but my next sewing time should finish those, so you can expect pictures after my next sewing time (hopefully tomorrow evening). In the meantime,

Quilt on!


Not Again!

Once again I did not yet post last weekend’s progress! I am apparently an incredible slacker lately.

Last Saturday during the football game, I made some progress, but also a major mistake that I’ll have to fix during tomorrow’s game. Sigh.

This is the unit that is wrong. I used the wrong center fabric. (I wondered why I had to cut those 2 1/2 inch squares when I had been so careful with my cutting.)


That, of course, makes these units wrong. I will fix them during the game also.


And this is the total of what I completed last Saturday. Not so very much. It was a great game and I kept forgetting to stitch.


I also had some extra hand stitching time on Sunday evening when I played chauffeur for my husband, but I have no pictures of those units. The good news is that it leaves me set up to complete this block tomorrow even with the re-doing of the first units. So watch for pictures of the completed block this weekend.

In case you were wondering how many pieces are in this block, here’s the cutting chart. (I’ll let you do the addition!)


In nephew’s wedding quilt news (although maybe I should quit calling it that, since his bride is the one who is most excited about it), I am plugging along on the last four blocks. I need to cut and make some more flying geese, and then assemble the outer parts of those blocks. Then I will get to the part where I add lots of negative space to make the quilt 90″ square. I’m looking forward to that part! I hope to get the top completed this weekend and get it off to the quilter by Tuesday.

What are you up to this weekend?

Quilt on!

Books on Monday – 300 Paper-Pieced Quilt Blocks

Yes, I am just barely making it on Monday here in the Eastern time zone! It’s been a busy day. Plus, I had to look at some of my older books because apparently I have no new quilt books to review. Sigh. Okay, let’s get to it.

Today’s book is 300 Paper-Pieced Quilt Blocks by Carol Doak (of course). (Yep, that’s an Amazon Affiliate or Associate or whatever they’re called these days link below.)

If you think you might ever want to design paper-pieced quilts, this book is a necessity. Yes, it is. The book is mostly pages and pages of blocks and their foundations. And so many different kinds of blocks! And a CD so you can print them from your computer. Yes, I am very happy I own this book.

I must confess that I never expected to like paper-piecing. I thought it would be too fussy and irritating for me. But I have become a fan. I like the precision and that it looks so perfect. And, of course, people who plan to do paper-piecing need to own at least one book by Carol Doak. And her Craftsy class.

But on to the book details. Obviously a very large percentage of this book is the blocks and foundations, but there is a bit of other stuff too.

  • Introduction
  • Tools and Supplies
  • Paper Foundations (includes a chart telling with the percentage of enlargement or reduction to print the foundations and enlarge or reduce their size)
  • Fabric
  • Cutting Lists
  • Paper-Piecing Techniques
  • Embellishments
  • About the Blocks
  • Three-Inch Alphabet and Number Blocks (yep, this is where the actual blocks and foundations start)
  • Gallery of Four-Inch Blocks (color pictures of the blocks)
  • Four-Inch Blocks (the actual foundations are here)
  • Resources
  • About the Author

So, whether you are paper-piecing or not

Quilt on!

My Version of a CSA


Yes, that does say “Community Supported Chocolate.” Yep, it is run as a CSA. I paid my money back in the spring, and I’m receiving four boxes starting this month. Yes, I received the first box this week.


Yes, this really exists. Honest. And it is delicious. At least the parts that I’ve already tried.


This is the box when I opened it. There are three regular chocolate bars and a coffee toffee bar, some truffles and a chocolate spoon for my coffee (I’m just waiting for the perfect day to use that!) and chocolate drink (AKA hot chocolate, only really classy) which will probably also end up in coffee since I don’t usually drink hot chocolate.


The chocolate bars were (I’ve eaten two of them already) 67% pure, 77% pure and 87% pure chocolate. (I’ve been eating my way down the percentages and have completed the 87% pure and 77% pure bars. 87% was a bit more bitter than I really like.) I will eat the coffee toffee bar last.


And this is the packaging for the Hot Cocoa Stick. Maybe tomorrow morning it will end up in my coffee.

Tonight I ate the Pumpkin Spice truffle. I kind of thought it sounded awful, but NOOOOOOO! It was amazing. I need to try and chase down some more. I could not believe how incredibly delicious it was!

Fortify yourself with some chocolate and

Quilt on!



My Progress in Quilting

Doesn’t that sound official? I think it sounds like way more progress than I have actually made.

So, last Saturday during the football game (and a little after because I really wanted to finish it) I completed Block 9 of the 2012 FQS Designer Mystery BOM. Isn’t it pretty?IMG_3364

Then on Sunday, I got to sew for about 4 or 5 hours. I made some blocks following the directions in the pattern I’m sort of using for my nephew’s wedding quilt. I sewed to the point where I had three rows of block sections to finish to finish my four blocks and realized I just couldn’t do it. Here’s why.


Yes, it is a bit blurry and it doesn’t look too bad, but here’s the problem. The designer of this pattern used two flying geese units to make an hourglass block. It is almost impossible to match those bulky flying geese points. And, yes, this one doesn’t look awful, but some of the others didn’t look quite so good. Luckily, I know another way to make hourglass blocks. They came out much better the second time around but it meant that I spent Monday evening unsewing and Tuesday evening recutting and resewing. And the next few pictures show you Tuesday’s results.




In the actual quilt, the blocks will be much farther apart than this. I’m picturing lots of white space.

If I had thought more carefully before making this second round of blocks, I would have probably saved myself quite a bit of time because I would have realized those flying geese would not be the best choice for making hourglass blocks.

Next up in the wedding quilt, the last four blocks (I hope).

Do you look at patterns more carefully than I did?

Quilt on!

Craftsy’s Love of Learning Sale

Social Quilting

Yes, this is an advertisement, but for such a worthwhile sale!

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And, yes, I did just go and purchase three classes. I’m a hopeless addict. Sigh.

Quilt on!

Books on Monday – Learn to Quilt-As-You-Go

Today we are looking at Learn to Quilt-as-you-go: 14 Projects You Can Finish Fast by Gudrun Erla. Both of the links below are Amazon Associate links, one for the paperback version and one for the Kindle version. Just warning you.

(Yes, there is quite a price difference!)

For some reason, I keep picking up quilt-as-you-go books. I think I’m looking for the magic technique that will make machine quilting really big quilts. This is not the book for that, but it looks promising for smaller items.

The book starts with the specific projects designed for this book using Gudrun Erla’s method. There are 14 of them, and they are all small. They are mostly table quilts, coasters, place mats, table toppers and table runners. Most of them are patterns I would enjoy trying.

But before starting any of the projects, it is necessary to read the directions for the quilt-as-you-go method. These come after the patterns and are quite a bit different than most of the other quilt-as-you-go methods I’ve seen. (Basically the backing and batting are used like the foundations for foundation piecing.) As I mentioned before, I will be trying this one sometime, but it isn’t something that I will be able to use for my large quilts.

Here’s what is listed in the table of contents:

  • Introduction
  • Projects – divided into sections by skills covered (Beginner, Triangles, Strips, Prairie Points, Curves)
  • The Quilt As You Go Method
  • Binding
  • Acknowledgments
  • About the Author

I do recommend this book for someone who is interested in doing many of these smaller types of projects.

Quilt on!

Good Grief!

Here it is Saturday, and I’ve never shown you last weekend’s football sewing results! Shame on me!

In case you are new or you don’t remember or I haven’t mentioned it before, I like to hand piece sometimes. And this time of year most of the hand piecing happens during football games. Football games are great for hand piecing, because most of the time you can listen while piecing and then look up for the actual plays and go back to piecing while you listen between plays. So I get more hand piecing done during college football season than most of the other times of the year.

So here is the result of last weekend’s hand piecing.

I finished the Block 9 of the 2011 Designer Mystery BOM. Here are the before and after pressing pictures.

IMG_3344 IMG_3348

Then I started Block 9 of the 2012 Designer Mystery BOM:




Next up are some flying geese.

Then on Wednesday night I finished the first block (the largest one that will be in the center) of my nephew’s (and niece to be’s) wedding quilt. The pattern is Starfield by Sew Scattered but I need to come up with a way to make it queen-sized. Current thoughts are more white space, more of the green (but in my version it will be blue) stars or a flying geese border (or some combination of those).  Anyway, here is the finished block:


When I posted this on Facebook, the very first person to comment on it was the bride and she loves it. So far so good. (All of you who commented and liked this, thank you so much!)

Tonight I worked on making the HSTs for four more stars for this quilt. Next will be the flying geese for those same blocks. I’ve been using Kimberley Einmo’s EZ Flying Geese ruler for the HSTs and the flying geese. I am finding that it goes pretty quickly. Of course, it means I don’t get to use the laser on my sewing machine like I would if I were sewing squares to the rectangle, but there’s less waste this way.

Okay, I’ll try to do this weekend’s update earlier in the week!

Quilt on!