Quilter's Academy - Volume 2 - Sophomore Year

Vol 3 - Junior Year

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Project 4 - A Plethora of Problems

Today I intended to head down to the beach, due to a predicted hot and sunny 32 deg.  By mid morning the sky was cloudy and dark - no sun and a chilly breeze off the ocean.  I headed to the sewing room instead.

Prepare the Fabric

Problem # 1 - Off grain print
When I got the red fabric on grain, I noticed the print went off grain.  Hmmmm.  Harriet covers this, suggesting that if the fabric is to be cut small, the off print won't be noticeable.  I bow to Harriet's superior knowlege here and let it go.

Cut The Strips

Problem # 2 -Not enough fabric. 
I am supposed to get 6 strips from each fabric piece - I got 5 ????? how does this happen - it's not the first time.  I made sure to buy the correct amounts - I usually buy extra, but of course, not this time.  Grrrrr

Set Up For Sewing
Next I cleaned my machine, wound a few bobbins, changed the needle (Universal 70/10), put in the straight stitch plate and 1/4 foot, engaged the IDT and prepared for sewing.

Sew & Press

Problem #3 - Bendy strips
Pressing caused distortion, as it often does - no idea what I am doing wrong here.

Check the Measurements
Measured up the completed strips checking all along the length of each strip - all ok here.

Cut the Strip Sets into Squares

Problem # 4 - Not enough squares (directly related to Problem #1)
I measured and cut the strips into 4 1/2 inch squares, taking my time and re-truing the edge after every 2 - 3 cuts.  I am supposed to have 50 squares of strip set A and 49 squares of strip set B.  I have 40 & 44. 

Problem # 5 - Blunt Cutter
Before cutting the strips, I replaced the blade in my cutter - using a Birch blade I bought because it was cheap.  Not even half way through it started sliding over the fabric and leaving jagged edges.  I replaced it with a Clover blade.

Layout The Design

Problem # 6 - Cutting to the wrong measurement
What is wrong with this picture?

Yep I cut the strips to the wrong size - it was supposed to be 4 1/4 not 4 1/2.  Either a blonde moment or a senior one, take your pick.


Now I need to re-cut the other 80 squares.  Ho Hum.  This simple little quilt top should have been completed over a couple of afternoons. 

I hate being a beginner!


  1. Oh dear, what a day! But I must say it is nothing to do with being a beginner. Everyone has days like that, even Harriet I am sure! I started working on mine yesterday too, and stitched a block together completely around the wrong way and had to undo it and start again. Lesson learnt for the next 39 though!

  2. Hi Susan - thanks for checking in! You're right of course, it's harder to make the same mistake twice (I still feel like a Block Head though :)

  3. Great work. Pretty impressive. To help with distortion try sewing every second stip from the opposite direction.

  4. Suzie - really? Now that sounds like something which may help. I will definitely try that. Thanks!