BOMs Away - Eternal Bloom Center Block B

Whew - a somewhat easy week this time! You know, if you consider 16 pieces in one 3-3/4” block to be easy…?

Eternal Bloom Center Block B by Katie Mae Quilts

It really wasn’t that bad - although since I precut the green, it was actually more difficult to find the piece that was 1-1/4” vs 1-1/8”. Sigh. Such fiddly little bits! But the little red buds are done and we’re moving over to the coral block next.

Eternal Bloom Center Block A/B by Katie Mae Quilts

This is where it will go in the center block. I’m not sewing them together yet, since it will get rather large and unwieldy as the months go on. Much like the entire quilt.

Moda Block Shuffle by Katie Mae Quilts

I also made these four blocks. My almost-local-quilt-shop said they were going to post a block on the first of the month, and anyone who finishes it by the 10th gets a $15 off. Except they posted three blocks. And $15 off….? I mean - that’s $180 to every person who does a block (or three?) every month of the year. So I’m not entirely sure how this is supposed to work - but hey, I’ll make three blocks for $15 to see what happens.

Except, as you see, I made four. Because I didn’t read the directions and cut eight of the HST blocks instead of eight of the background, so I ended up with twice as much. So I made the inverse of the block as well.

They’re 6” blocks, which is going to take forever to make a sampler, so we’ll see how it goes. I’m doing RWB because I don’t actually like samplers, so mine will end up as a QOV.

So… Did anyone else work on (or start) a BOM? Or a project broken into {slightly} more manageable monthly pieces? Or a few blocks for someone else’s charity project? Link up here or at What a Hoot!

BOMs Away - Quilts of Valor January

For my last BOMs Away post of the month, I’m going to do a wrap-up of the Quilts of Valor stuff that I’m working on. Since I’m now a district coordinator (and the only QOV longarmer in the area!) a lot of quilts are coming through my sewing room, some just needing labels and stars, some that are blocks needing assembly, etc. And my own stuff! I’m still plugging along on the Rail Fence, after all!

Friendship Chain Quilt Blocks by Katie Mae Quilts

First up - my big project! QOV Sew Day is next Saturday, and my local quilt shop is hosting a sew event in the classroom. I’m teaching the Friendship Chain block, so I made a bunch of the pieces as visuals…which are pretty boring. (Here’s two squares with a line on the neutral. Here they are sewn together. Here they are cut apart. Here they are pressed.) These four blocks were donated - so much prettier! I also cut sashing pieces and cornerstones and tons of scraps into the usable pieces. So be prepared to see a LOT of these quilts next month!

RWB Quilt by Katie Mae Quilts

Then, I grabbed some other blocks sent by an Instagram friend (thanks Lhm_nv!) and sewed them together. It’s an awesome layout! So awesome that I screwed up the bottom two rows and had to redo it. Sigh. Rip rip rip. It’s just a bit shy of the QOV size guidelines, so I pulled the red fabric from my stash for borders. This will be presented at the end of February, so you’ll see the full quilt soon enough!

SWOKQG block of the month by Katie Mae Quilts

And finally, I pulled out my quilt guild BOM from 2018. I need one more official block, and one more extra block to complete my layout. I’m not in a rush, though - I want to show this one off at the guild before it’s presented, so it’s not a priority for the February event. I made the rest of the half blocks that go on the sides to complete the chain. (Stars and chains - it’s a BOMs Away theme this week!) And I’ll cut the pieces for the last two blocks this week while I’m cutting more…and more…and more Friendship Chain scraps.

And that’s all for January! I also spent a lot of time on the phone, coordinating the February presentation event, talking to guilds in my area, and planning Sew Day. Hopefully this will yield some new QOV members, and more tops/quilts. If nothing else, it will yield lots of pictures for next month!

So… Did anyone else work on (or start) a BOM? Or a project broken into {slightly} more manageable monthly pieces? Or a few blocks for someone else’s charity project? Link up here or at What a Hoot!

Marine Carpenter's Star - a Finished Quilt!

So, it’s not officially official yet, but I’m the district coordinator for the SWOK region of Quilts of Valor! I’ve already started a local block drive and started reaching out to the shops and guilds in the area. But most importantly, I finally started presenting the quilts!

Marine Carpenter's Star QOV

This quilt was for a Marine (duh!) QOV typically doesn’t use branch-specific fabric, but I knew from the start who this quilt would be for, so I decided to go all-in on the theme.

I’ve wanted to make a Carpenter’s Star for ever, but as it’s a square quilt, it’s hard to make to QOV standards. (We aim for 60x80”.) However, I had an EQ drawing from Patchwork Times saved, so I wiggled the design to fit my emblem and the fabric on hand and the guidelines.

Marine Carpenter's Star QOV

I already had the emblem panel and the Marine fabric, but not quite enough to do all the background fabric in Marines. So I went with a neutral background (Stonehenge beige) in the central area and top/bottom edges. The red also changes - I used every bit of the yard I had in the center, so the top and bottom are a new red (America the Beautiful by Kaufman) - but with similar gold stars as the center emblem. The blue is Timeless Treasures.

Marine Carpenter's Star QOV

The backing is royal blue 108” wide backing, because any time I can avoid piecing backing, I will! And I ordered the nice QOVF labels from Spoonflower. (Yes, it was filled out before the presentation.) The quilting was loops and stars in a variegated red, white, and blue on the front, and blue on the back.

Marine Carpenter's Star QOV

64x76”

The presentation went very well - for my first one and considering I was fighting a cold! With the help of many cough drops, I was able to present it at the local VFW’s Veterans Day luncheon. And now I just need to make 21 more to catch up on the local area!

See also: Finish It Up FridayWhoop WhoopTGIFFNeedle & Thread ThursdayFinished or Not FridayShow Off Saturday, Let’s Bee SocialMidweek Makers, Oh Scrap!

BOMs Away - QOV Stars

Hey, it’s another Quilts of Valor project! Wait, it’s almost not one. My intention on Sunday morning was to sew the remaining blocks from my Pieceful Swappettes month as queen bee. I already decided on a layout, I knew exactly how many more blocks in each size that I needed, and I jotted down the sizes to make them.

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Except I jotted down the sizes for a 16” block, not a 12” block. And it never really occurred to me that this block was ending up way too big until it was done and I put it next to the 12” blocks. Sigh.

I played with the design a bit more before deciding, nope, I liked the original plan. So I made the one 12” block that I needed, and two of the four 8” blocks. I’ll make the other two and the few 4” blocks next time, and the 16” star will just have to wait for another quilt. Sometime after I finish the fifty other QOV projects I have in the works.

So did anyone else work on their BOM? Or a project broken into {slightly} more manageable monthly pieces? Link up here or at What a Hoot!

Friendship Chain - a Quilt Block Tutorial

I had a few requests, so I decided since I was writing up the instructions for my local block drive anyway, I would add them here! You can use them for your own Quilts of Valor, mail them to me (just leave a comment and I’ll email you my address), or change up the colors and do your own thing.

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I am experimenting with some things - graphics instead of photos, mostly. Because let’s face it - my photography skills are just not getting any better. And it’s raining and too dark to do step-by-step photos anyway. And I’m supposed to be binding a Quilts of Valor to do my very first presentation, not making more blocks quite yet!

And I have a (free) printable PDF version available here!

Friendship Chain Quilt Block

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Material Requirements

Red – (8) 2.5” squares

White/cream – (8) 2.5” squares; (2) 5” squares (use charm packs or jelly roll strips!)

Blue – (2) 5” squares; (1) 4.5” square

Step A – Four Patches

Sew the red and white 2.5” squares right sides together into pairs. Press seam to the red fabric.

Match the pairs with the middle seams facing opposite directions, butted together. Sew together with the top seam allowance toward the machine.

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Before pressing, clip the threads of the middle intersection and push the seam allowances in opposite directions, spinning it so each seam goes in a different direction. Press.

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Repeat until you have (4) four patch blocks that measure 4.5” square, unfinished.

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Step B – Half Square Triangles

Draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of the (2) 5” neutral squares. Pair each with a 5” blue square with right sides together. Stitch a quarter inch on both sides of the center line. Cut squares apart on the center line.

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Press seams toward the blue. Trim half square triangle blocks to 4.5” square. Repeat until you have (4) half square triangle blocks that measure 4.5” square, unfinished.

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Assembling the Block

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Layout the block as shown. Sew blocks, pressing in the direction of the arrows.

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Sew the rows together, pressing the final seams open.

Block should measure 12.5” unfinished.