Wednesday, January 17, 2018

~ Making Progress using DIY Acrylic Templates ~

Hello Quilting Friends!  I'm still working on a new quilt pattern.  Many of my quilts use the stitch, clip and flip method for snowballing fabric corners.   Those cut off corners can be saved and used as half square triangles(HST's) in another quilt.  But for my new quilt pattern they'll be squared up and used in the quilt.  

Both the green HST's and the pink are clipped corners from this quilt.  I managed to work in all the pink cut offs and most of the green into the quilt pattern.  It was a fun challenge to design a quilt around one block idea and it's own leftovers.  As you know I live in a rural area (Podunk) and going into town can take a big chunk out of my day and wallet.  Planning ahead is necessary when you only go into town once every week or two.   So I try to be prepared at all times for just about anything.   Instead of running into town for just the right quilting ruler I keep Score and snap Acrylic on hand to make my own templates.  Below is two templates I've made in past year for other projects.  One is a 2.5" square and the other is 3.5" square that was used for Bonnie Hunters En Provence Mystery quilt last year.  All the lines on the 3.5" square were not needed for this project, but the middle diagonal line worked perfectly for the pink HST's.

When making your own templates there's two handy tips you should know.  

1. To make the lines permanent you need to score the acrylic with a razor knife then use a permanent marker to fill in the score line.  If you don't the lines you draw will wear off with usage. 
  BONUS  The diagonal score line for the HST's is a little bit raised.  This raised line will lock up against the diagonal line on the HST's!  Homemade block loc ruler....shhhh don't tell our secret.  It's not as raised as the real block loc rulers but it does help.
2.  Because there is no paint on the templates to help with slipping adding something to make them less slippy may be necessary.  I use a piece of tape.  If your real thrifty just scratch the Acrylic with sand paper or make a few scratch marks with the razor knife.  My 3.5" has enough scored lines that it does not slip.

This is a Bonnie Hunter tip that she uses for all her quilting rulers.  One of the best tips ever!  It's cheap and one roll of this stuff will last for a lifetime in your sewing supplies. 

Over the year I've made several different templates.  How many times have you had an odd size flying geese or Dresden blade?  Dresden's are one of my favorite quilts to make and they come in so many sizes.  Using the paper template that comes with a pattern to make an acrylic template makes the cutting process so much easier.  Sheets of Acrylic can be purchased at just about any home improvement store.  I find my best deals at Home Depot.  They have a nice variety of score and snap. That's the key...MAKE SURE IT'S SCORE AND SNAP ACRYLIC.  The thickness you can guess is about the same as any other ruler you have in your collection of rulers.  Another tip when making your template is to score the same line about 4 times, pressing hard.  This will make the perfect snap every time.  To get perfect measurements use your quilting rulers for scoring the acrylic.

Ok!  Now that all the trimming up is complete I can get this Big Ole Beauty made into a top.  See you soon for the reveal!

~ Lea Anne ~

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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

~ Blue quilt marker = BROWN marks ***Removing ~

Good Morning sweet quilting friends!  Today I'd like to share with you my recent battle of the WATER SOLUBLE BLUE MARKING PEN.  I love them so much whenever I see a new style or brand I purchase one.   Here are just the few I had on my cutting table pen holder.

I use them almost everyday to mark sewing and quilting lines.  I've never had any issues with them until now.   While doing a quick cleanup in the Studio I happen to notice a brown mark on my cute little wall hanging.  The light must have been hitting it just the right way because it looks good from here, right?

But lets take a closer look...AKKK!  WHY!  HOW!  OH NO!  See the light brown line above the green?

And more brown lines a little farther down on the flower pot area. Obviously this one was never washed only spritzed with water.   How could I forget to wash it?  Whats a gal to do but run to the computer and google how to remove this ugly brown mess.  After about an hour of research online I found nothing about removing these hideous little ghost residue lines.  Of course they all said to wash the quilt as soon as its complete.  To late for that!

If this were a new blue line the plan of action would be to wash in cool water.  Since there is a lot of red in this wall hanging I was leery of cold water.  So here's the plan.  Soaking in cool water and vinegar is supposed to help remove old blue marks.  Then I added blue Dawn Dish soap to help with the possible bleeding reds, and a couple color catcher to catch any red that might bleed off.  How much of each?...I just squeezed in some Dawn I would say about 1/4 a cup, about 2 cups of White Vinegar and 2 color catchers.

Giving it a quick swish to mix it all together.

The bottle of vinegar was set on top to submerge the entire thing.  Then it was left to set and work it's magic for about 12 hours.

Well there was no magic in this mixture,  it looked a little fainter but the marks were still visible.  So I scrubbed...still visible.  If I dry this they may get darker and they would definitely be set in by the heat.

Plan 2...Hydrogen Peroxide.  A quick soaking, a light hand scrub and let it stand for about 2 hours.

It didn't do anything.

Plan 3...dump the original mixture in the washer along with a half gallon of vinegar.  I let it stand for a few hours then run a gentle cycle.

STUBBORN stain!  It barely made a difference but it seemed a little lighter.

 Plan 4...About 1/2 cup of Dawn dish detergent and Hot Water in a heavy duty cycle.

It looks like it might have worked!  But is it all really gone?

Maybe, It sure looks gone.  

But I'm not taking the chance and putting it in the dryer.  So I hung it to dry in the studio in front of a fan.

After drying it looks good, but we'll see if the stain returns after hanging on the wall for a few months.

~ Lea Anne ~

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Monday, January 15, 2018

~ I Love Home Grand Prize Giveaway! ~

Just wanted to pop in for a quick reminder about the huge Grand Prize Giveaway for the I Love Home Quilt Block of Month hosted by Jacquelynne Steves.  Valued at $200 it's worth taking the time to pop over to Jacquelynnes blog to enter.  

The quilt along is over but you can still get the pattern free for the next few days.  After January 31, 2018 they will NO LONGER be free.  This is the LAST CHANCE to get them FREE! You can find all the information for the free quilt pattern by clicking here.  

  As a featured blogger in this quilt along we were given the freedom to do what ever we wanted with the blocks.  Below is my Finished quilt.  You can see more of the details I added to my quilt by clicking here.

There were so many creative bloggers and quilters with some unique ideas.  You can find tons of  I Love Home quilt inspiration for your blocks by visiting the  Facebook group called Sew Quilty Friends and the Pinterest group.

Leaving a comment on this blog post WILL NOT will not enter you in the giveaway.

~  Lea Anne ~
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Thursday, January 11, 2018

~ Getting Romantic ~

As soon as I saw this new line of fabric I fell in love.  This is First Romance by Kristyne Czepuryk of Pretty by Hand, made for Moda.  Isn't it just the sweetest?   Now comes the hard part...cutting away the plastic and removing the ribbon.

It took a little time I finally did it...And OH MY GOODNESS!  My knees went weak and my heart began to flutter.  Two hours later I came to my senses and chose a few little lovelies for my next quilt.  Before this line was released for sale I started designing quilts just for this bundle.  About 20 quilts were designed but only four made the cut.  And from that four I plan to make at  two.  Both are quick and easy quilts with large blocks.

So the process began.  Below is my fat quarters drying after being starched.  The starching process is very simple.... a Rubbermaid kitchen container with liquid starch.  I refold the fabric to fit the container, lay all my fat quarters in the container and pour the starch mixture in.  After the fabric absorbs the starch I carefully squeeze out the excess.  Then hang on my frame with a fan and space heater blowing on them.  When almost dry(about 45 minutes later) I start pressing each piece.  The pressing(not ironing) while still damp helps to preshrink the fabric.  

A few hours later I'm well on my way to having a quilt top made.  

I couldn't help myself....I added a little Lakehouse Drygoods(green) to the mix.

Hope to see you in a few days with a completed quilt!

~  Lea Anne ~
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