#htmlcaption1 #htmlcaption2 #htmlcaption3 #htmlcaption4 #htmlcaption5
Work In Progress Wednesday + April Calendar Page

Happy Wednesday and happy April :o)  To kick you off for the month, feel free to download this month's calendar page.


On to the WIP part of the post, I was working on Saturday, as well as a couple of evenings last week so I wasn't as productive as I'd hoped, but on the plus side, I got tomorrow off as compensation, so I have an extra long weekend.  I did get some quilting done on my UK Mini Swap mini - I haven't FMQ'ed in ages, in fact the last project I remember doing it on was on my gran's birthday mini nearly 18 months ago!  It was fun coming up with the pattern, but my forearms do not like the vibrations from the machine bed when I'm FMQ'ing, so I don't think I'll be embarking on using it for any king sized quilts...  I also got a secret wee thing done with some Bonnie & Camille scraps, and made the lining for the easter basket for the calendar photo shoot above, so not entirely unproductive I suppose.

Finishes This Week:

Bunny basket lining for the calendar shoot above

Secret wee B&C thingy

In Progress This Week:

You may or may not recall from a few weeks ago that these 4 blocks were for my UK Mini Swap mini:


Now they're sewn together, and this is the quilting I've done in all the circle and part circle bits.  Clearly I've not buried the threads yet ;o):


I'm working on circles in the rings around the flower centres, and then the rings in the pattern are going to be done in a diagonal grid.

To Be Worked On This Week:

Finish the mini
Paint and partially tile the kitchen
Maybe start on my next Quilt Now project if the fabric arrives

Hope you all have a great week!  Linking up with Lee and the gang:

Quilt Making Basics - Quarter Square Triangles

We've done the Half Square Triangles and the Flying Geese, so now it's time to look at Quarter Square Triangles, the remaining commonly used block made using right angled triangles to make a square unit.


There are a couple of different techniques which I use depending on how many units I need and whether I need a particular arrangement of colours.

The traditional method involves cutting the individual triangles, either cutting the triangles individually or by cutting a square into 4 triangles:


Although you are sewing on the bias, this is most useful when you need to control the colour order of the unit, or you only need one unit, such as in a Card Trick block.  They are assembled as follows:

Sew 2 of the triangles right sides together with a 1/4" seam allowance:


Open out and press:


Repeat with 2 other triangles, then join the two half square triangles you created together:


Open out and press:


If you need a number of units there are 2 method where you can start with half square triangle units.

The first method gives 2 two-tone QST units.

Start with 2 HST units which you arrange as below:
Place right sides together by flipping the left unit on top of the right unit, aligning the 2 units at the corners.  Draw a line on the diagonal going joining the opposite corners to the original seam, then stitch 1/4"on either side of the line.


Cut up the drawn line, open out and press.  You will get two identical units as below:


The second method involves starting with 2 different two-tone HST units.

Start with 2 HST units which you arrange as below:
Place right sides together by flipping the left unit on top of the right unit, aligning the 2 units at the corners.  Draw a line on the diagonal going joining the opposite corners to the original seam, then stitch 1/4"on either side of the line.


Cut up the drawn line, open out and press.  You will get two units as below:
 You can see that even if you rotate the second one, it doesn't come out with the same colour arrangement as the first.  This may or may not be a deal breaker for this method for you:
One of the arrangements that you often see combined are a hybrid of the QST and the HST, such as in pinwheel blocks:


You can create these using either of the methods above, except that in the case of the last two methods you would substitute a square for one of the HST units you start with.

And now to the maths, which is what I know you're all here for!  In both cases you need to add 1 1/4" to the finished QST unit size to get your starting square, but I've split the columns out just so that you can see at a glance for your chosen method.

Finished QST Unit Size
Traditional Method  Starting Square Size
2 HST Method Starting Square Size
2”
3 ¼”
3 ¼”
2 ½”
¾”
¾”
3”
4 ¼”
4 ¼”
3 ½”
¾”
¾”
4”
5 ¼”
5 ¼”
4 ½”
¾”
¾”
5”
6 ¼”
6 ¼”
5 ½”
¾”
¾”
6”
7 ¼”
7 ¼”
6 ½”
¾”
¾”
7”
8 ¼”
8 ¼”
7 ½”
¾”
¾”
8”
9 ¼”
9 ¼”

Fat Quarter Shop's Charm Box Quilt Blog Hop

Hi everyone, welcome to my stop on the Charm Box Quilt Blog Hop with the Fat Quarter Shop.  If you haven’t been here before, it’s nice to meet you, feel free to have a poke around in other pages while you’re here.

The Charm Box Quilt is a new free pattern from the Fat Quarter Shop for a 36 1/2" x 45 1/2" quilt which is perfect for beginners, and requires only 2 charm packs and 3 yards of solids to complete the entire thing, that’s front, back and binding!

For my version I went with 1 pack of Doe from Carolyn Friedlander, and 1 pack of the co-ordinating Kona solids, then added in yardage of 3 of the co-ordinating solids (Shadow, Niagara and Prussian) to give my sashing, backing and binding respectively (sorry about the rather crinkly look on the left, it got folded a bit awkwardly in the car):


It was amazingly fast to put together, in fact I don’t think I’ve ever done a quilt in a day before, so this is perfect for those last minute baby gifts.  For beginners, there’s a video that the girls at the Fat Quarter Shop have put together to walk you through the entire process, which you can find here


The free pattern can be picked up here, and for any of you that might be struggling with working out the perfect fabric combo, there’s even a kit available which contains fabrics from Aloha Girl, which was the line used in the pattern diagrams and video, and is available here.

A couple of nights ago I handed this over to a friend of mine who just had a baby – funnily enough, I’d always thought baby quilts were small, until I actually saw this one next to the baby!  Suffice to say I think it will cover her for a while :oD
Work In Progress Wednesday

Whew, the last week seems to have flown by!  Saturday during the day I was rather sidetracked by the rugby - 221 points and 27 tries in 3 games, what a day in the 6 Nations!  Plus the best team won in the end ;o)  I was also out to dinner with a bunch of quilty ladies on Saturday night - Karen Lewis was 'on tour' teaching at Jo Avery's shop in Edinburgh, and Fiona, Robin, Clare and Sheila and I went out to Cafe Andaluz for fabulous tapas.  The train back to Glasgow was 'interesting' given the state of the fans returning from Murrayfield at that time o.O  Yesterday afternoon also saw me back at uni giving 3rd years careers advice about how to become me when they grow up (heaven help them!)

Anyway, in between socialising and jollity, I managed to finish my rainbow IG mini swap, and also got all the photos for my Rainy Days And Mondays bag for the upcoming pattern.  Plus there was a secret block, but, well, it was a secret ;o)

Finishes This Week:

My rainbow IG mini swap was highly inspired by Nicole of Modern Handcraft who I follow on IG having met her at Market last year.  I did it my way (and with rather more glue than the original!), but I discovered when I went to link to it here that she has a tute on her blog if you'd like to see how to make one yourself.  I used a mini charm pack of Kona Solids from their 'extension' a couple of years ago that had been searching for the perfect project.  I paired it with Sketch prints for both the background and the binding.


Here's the latest Rainy Days & Mondays bag, in a French advertisement laden laminate:


In Progress This Week:

Nothing else - wasn't the above quite enough?!

To Be Worked On This Week

Do you know, I haven't quite decided yet :o)

Linking up with Lee and the gang:

Camera Challenge 3 - Triangle Of Light – Understanding Shutter Speed

Last month we enthusiastically embraced the first side of the Triangle Of Light, Aperture, and this month we’re going to move round to Shutter Speed.  The main purpose of this month is to see the effect that different shutter speeds can have on different elements within your photos.

Your challenge is this:

Find a willing moving subject that you can get reasonably close to.  It needs to be quite fast moving, such as a dog chasing a stick, a sports team running around or perhaps some moving cars (although if your neighbours call the police because you’ve started loitering at the end of the road with your camera, don’t blame me!)

Switch your camera into Shutter Priority mode – in this mode the camera will find the aperture best suited for your shutter speed to give you a well exposed image.  You should also be able to adjust the ISO in this setting.  Ideally you want your ISO number to be as low as possible, as the higher the number, the grainier the photo, so aim for a maximum of about 800 if you can, but preferably around 100-200.

For the best focussing results, now is the time to investigate in your manual whether or not your camera has a continuous auto-focus setting – AI Servo on Canon or Continuous Servo on Nikons (other brands are available, it’s just that I don’t know what they call them, sorry!).  This setting effectively allows you to track the movement of your subject from the point that you half press the shutter button until the time you take the photo, so you can start focussing on your moving object as they come into the shot, and press the button when you like the composition.

With shutter speed I suggest you start fast and work your way down.  Now the challenge with how shutter speed is displayed, is that the numbers seem to go from large to small and then large again, so here’s how to interpret them:

If you see a whole number on its own, eg 250, that means your shutter speed is 1/250 th of a second.  When you start to see a “ after the number, then it is being measured in whole seconds, with fractions in 10ths afterwards, so 1” is 1 second, and 0”3 is 3/10 of a second.

To work through your shutter speeds, start with a very large number (around 1000 for cars or 500 for moving people/animals) and work your way down.  As with the aperture you don’t want to be hitting every number on the way down, but every 3-5 should suffice.

For your next challenge, try leaving your shutter speed at a fixed amount (around 125 for cars, 30 for cyclists and 15 for runners/animals), then instead of letting the subject move past you, try following the movement of your subject and pressing the shutter as you move.

Finally see if you can locate some running water where you can actually see the movement, eg a waterfall (and a waterfall can be inches high, it doesn’t need to be huge numbers of feet high!), or a running tap.  Take your camera off servo mode and focus on a rock or something within your waterfall or on your tap if you’re going the indoor route, then try going from around 300 down.  If you’re using a tap, you may need some additional light to help you along, so a couple of desk lamps either side would help.

I look forward to seeing your results in a couple of weeks!
Would You Like To Learn To Quilt?

Are you in the Glasgow area and would like to learn to quilt?  Well from the 30th April I'm teaching a beginners class at The Stitchery in Sandyford Place.

The class will cover how to use your sewing machine for quilt making, making quilt blocks, assembling them into a quilt top, then basting, quilting and binding.

For this first class we will be making a giant star lap quilt:



For more information, or to book, head over to The Stitchery to see the class page.  I look forward to seeing some of you there :o)
Work In Progress Wednesday

Despite my fervent hopes to the contrary, my main WIP this week has been finishing the bathroom, which I finally did last night.  Or so I thought.  Then I found when I was scrubbing off all the decorating debris, that there was a crack in the bath.  I could have cried!  So on the phone to the suppliers and fitters to sort it out...

In the non paint-filled times, I finished my Quilt Now Issue 11 project, and have been playing jigsaw puzzles with hexies for my rainbow IG mini swap.  That part was the more enjoyable part of the week...

Finishes This Week:

Quilt Now Issue 11 project, which will be available in May.

Last but one round of the Brit Bee medallions, which I hope we'll be able to reveal soon.

The bathroom (round 1), sorry, I don't have photos of the former horror!  I can tell you it was green with greenish cream fittings and a dead electric shower (and the replacement attached to taps one scalded you if you stood up due to differing hot/cold water pressures)

From the door towards the sink:


Moving round to the left:


And the last corner, the shower above the offending bath

In Progress This Week:

Rainbow mini swap mini.  My partner has been deathly silent on IG, and after a vote on IG by my followers didn't tell me a decisive direction to head in, I just went with what fabrics I wanted in the end, because, you know, it's all about me ;o)  I've been having a bit of a hexie placement crisis though, any thoughts?

To Be Worked On This Week:

Rainbow mini swap - I need to finish this very soon, so it's my first priority.
Writing up my Rainy Days And Mondays bag - painting pushed this off the list last week unfortunately

Linking up with Lee and the gang: