November is my month for my Ten Make Two Quilting Bee. Inspiring me was this string block I made for our Little Blue Cottage Quilting Bee. Please ignore that the white doesn’t line up, I’ll tell you how I avoid that now in a minute. I had been wanting to try this technique. It’s simple and fun.
I think by now everyone should have received the natural Carolina Chambray that I mailed out for the middle section of the blocks for some uniformity. The Raindrops little tidbit that I added doesn’t go in my blocks. I had hopes that everyone would generously add an extra strip of one of their fabrics that went into my blocks could be sent my way for making some extras and help create some more cohesiveness to the finished quilt. Please don’t feel obligated!
I couldn’t decide on a colorway, so it works out perfectly that we make two blocks. I’ll just make two quilts! I’ll either produce some more blocks with my stash and the extra tidbits sent or come up with a layout that works with ten blocks.
aqua/turquoise and red colorway:
(ignore the raindrops, they don’t go in)
And for the second block the fabulous colorway that Tacha used:
I didn’t get to that block today due to the fabulous weather and the need to get out of the house due to the crud. Here are some of the fabrics I used for Tacha’s blocks as an example (thanks for the inspiration Tacha!):
Hmmmm…so I guess I’d like no other solids, and that’s about it for limitations. I don’t mind some light blues in the aqua/red block. You can pick the size of the paper squares, I used 7 inches. No larger than 7 inches please, but you can go a bit smaller. Somewhat wonky lines are ok.
Some tips that have helped me:
-Make your strips between about an inch and two inches.
-Don’t forget to lengthen your stitch back to 2.5 when it comes to sew the 4 squares you produce together.
-Steam is not your friend until you have all strings sewn to the paper square.
-Starch is helpful in laying the strings flat as you go and in the final press.
-I used the basting spray and LOVED it (I complained about the price, but way better than the glue stick). Tacha brilliantly used wax paper, so you might give that a go.
-Lining up the chambray bit can be tricky and please don’t fret if it doesn’t line up in your final block. This is what I find helps. Spray your chambray string and lay it spray side up on your work surface. Position the paper over it to center it on the diagonal. Way easier to get it right than laying it on the paper.
-Make sure your first fabrics are seamed 1/4 inch from the chambray and straight, this will help with the points matching when the four blocks are sewn together. I used a lot of pins to make sure the blocks would sew together square.
-Don’t forget to shorten your stitch or the paper will be difficult to remove.
-Hold the end of you strip and perhaps give it a bit of a pull to realign it when sewing, they tend to migrate. This might have to do with the short stitch length, or maybe it’s just my built in walking foot.
Can’t wait to see what you all do!