Thursday, February 14, 2019

Vintage Block Along - Quilting Bee Block Tutorial!!


Good morning cute people...
it's time to sew vintage today!



I'm sharing another 
vintage quilt block with you 
from my grandma's pattern basket:)





I chose a red and a coral pink from 
Farm Girl Vintage 
to use for todays block:)



I added the pink vintage phone
 in the photo ...



And the pink thimble...



And I'm going to explain 
what these two things have in common 
and why I'm calling this 
traditional vintage block
"QUILTING BEE"


Of course you know by now 
that my grandma and all 5 
of her sisters were quilters.

Anytime that there was a special occasion happening 
in town like a wedding 
or a baby announcement...
well of course that meant that 
it was time to make a quilt!

Many quilt tops were already completed
 by grandma and my aunts
 and were just waiting
 for the right occasion:)

Grandma would get on the phone
and let everyone know when 
the quilt would be
 "on the frames"
Of course living in a small town...
back then we were all 
on a party line and so the word 
would spread quickly and within 
a day or so the 
Quilting Bee would begin!


Everyone showed up with 
their own needles...thimble and scissors.

I love seeing everyones
 "sewing kits"
And I still love sewing kits 
and containers to this day!


Of course everyone also brought a
 covered dish for the potluck:)

It was my grandma that most often 
organized the quilting bee because
 it was at grandma's house or at our house.

Both of our front rooms were situated
 so that you could walk around the frames 
and also have easy access to the kitchen.

Because the quilt remained on the frames 
for several days until it was completed ...
it was important to be able
 to get around it:)



I just love rotary phones:)
This pink one is just like the one 
that was on grandma's kitchen wall.

She had a pink desk top 
rotary on her bedroom side table.

I mentioned that we were on a party line
 when I was a girl...
 and most of the time you had to wait
 to use the phone because when you 
picked it up someone was already on there!

We would sigh and roll our eyes 
when we recognized the voice of
 certain people because we knew it would be
 a while until we could make our call lol.



This is what the phone on our 
kitchen wall looked like.

It had a super long cord.
Most of the time when mom was 
on the phone she held it up to her ear
 with her shoulder because she would be
 doing the dishes or cleaning
 the kitchen or baking.

When we wanted to go downstairs...
 we had to go through the kitchen and
 that meant we needed to 
lift up the cord and go under it.

But obviously to "some" of us kids
 it was an invitation to play jumprope 
and if we missed our jump...
 the phone would be
 suddenly snatched away 
from moms ear...whoops! lol


Anyhoo...sorry I was so "chatty"...:)

I named this block Quilting Bee 
because I think the red center looks
 like a quilt and the coral pink triangles
 represent all of us 
sitting around the frames 
and quilting and talking and laughing:)

That's how I grew up!
First...playing under those frames...
threading needles for grandma and my aunts...
until I was old enough to 
put my own stitches into the quilt:)


Okay...enough of the vintage memories...
let's talk about todays tutorial.

If you know anything about me...
you know that I love to sew scrappy.
That's how grandma did it.
She did it out of necessity...
I do it out of the simple pure love of
 fabric... color... and prints!
Scrappy patchwork is my favorite:)

This photo is from my 
Scrappy Project Planner 
and it's a photo of my 
scrappy stash baskets that I sew from.
To watch this video if you want to
 see my sewing room and how 
I store my scrappy stash.



Whenever you see photos of my
 scrappy sewing you can bet all of the fabrics came from those baskets.


I usually buy fat quarters or half yards
 and then cut them into the strip sizes 
that I use most often...


And from those strips I can
 easily cut squares or rectangles 
or whatever shape is needed.

I have sewn all of the 
scrappy projects for my 
books from my baskets:)


I love my method and have done
 tutorials and blogged about it...
taught workshops about etc.
It works perfectly for me 
and I continue to sew in this way.

I outlined my complete how and why method
 in my Scrappy Project Planner 
that has been out for quite a while 
and I still use it everyday as well.

It has many different sections in it...
along with scrappy quilt patterns too.
if you want to know more about it.


This is a photo from one
 of my pages last year....


But what I especially want to 
show you today is this section 
where my scrappy method is and also my 
"short cut methods" 
for making popular quilting segments 
like half square triangles...
flying geese etc.

I'm telling you about this today because
 I'm going to use my 
half square triangle method 
from my planner for the 
Quilting Bee Block tutorial.

There are so many ways to 
piece a quilt block and I wanted to 
show you an example of that.

So far I have had you cut 2 squares
 that results in 1 half square triangle.
This time I'm going to show you how 
to cut 2 squares but get 
TWO half square triangles.
Sew...on to the cutting!


From the background cut:
6 - 4 1/2" squares
5 - 3 1/2" squares
3 - 1 1/2" x 20" strips


From the medium print cut:
6 - 4 1/2" squares


From the dark print cut:
3 - 1 1/2" x 20" strips



Let's make the half square triangles
 first using the short cut method.



Mark two lines 1/2" apart onto the 
back of the background square 
and pair it up with a print square 
with right sides together.
You will sew on both marked lines.



Or you can do like I do and instead
 of marking lines I just place the point
 of the squares on the line to the left of my
and follow it while sewing...



And then flip it around and
 sew the other seam.
Because the lines on the guide
 are 1/4" apart...
I automatically have 2 seams 
sewn 1/2" apart without marking:)
Easy Peasy!



Cut them apart like this.



Grab a 3 1/2" Trim-It Ruler 
and lay the diagonal line on
 the ruler directly onto 
your stitching line like this...



And trim all the way around 
holding the ruler in place and
 turning the Cute Cuts mini mat 
as you go.



Press it open...
and repeat for the other one.

You now have two half square triangles:)



You could also press first and then 
trim like this...
but I find it faster to trim first
 before pressing open.



Continue trimming up for all
 12 half square triangles.
They should each measure
 3 1/2" square at this point.

This method causes some fabric waste 
just like the one I have been 
having you do before when you 
trim off one half and discard.

The only difference is ...
the shape of the waste!

You could cut triangles and 
sew them together and 
there would be no waste...
but that is cutting and sewing
 on the bias and is very difficult 
to get accurate.
I would rather have easy cutting and
 a little fabric waste and be accurate...
as well as enjoy my sewing!!

You of course are free to do
 any method out there that you like best!




Okay lets work with the strips now.

Sew a 1 1/2" background strip
 onto each side of a print strip.
Press your seams open for 
accuracy and less bulk. 
Measure in 1 1/2" and cut.



Do this 8 times for 8 segments 
that measure 1 1/2" x 3 1/2"


Now sew two print strips 
onto each side of a background strip.

You will need to cut
 4 - 1 1/2" x 3 1/2" segments.



You will also need
 4 - 3 1/2" x 3 1/2" segments
 that look like this. 
I had you cut an extra set 
of strips in case you need it:)



All of you segments are almost ready
 to make your Quilting Bee Block!



First you will need to 
sew the strips together 
into 4 nine patch blocks like this.
These four segments should measure
 3 1/2" square at this point.

come in handy when piecing
 to line up the seams perfectly.



Just giving you another option:
If you wanted to cut 
all of these squares separately
 instead of using the strip method 
you would cut each square
 1 1/2" x 1 1/2"


You would cut each rectangle
 1 1/2" x 3 1/2" 
and sew them together.


You would cut 2 squares
 3 1/2" x 3 1/2" 
and sew them together to make
 ONE half square triangle
 like I have been showing you 
in my other block tutorials
 in this series.


Of course...the other 5 background 
squares would still be cut 3 1/2".

I'll continue to show you how to cut 
in this simple way that 
I have been doing from the beginning 
for the remaining block tutorials.

Today I just wanted to tell you about
 my shortcut methods that I use
 in my Scrappy Project Planner 
so that you could choose.

I always use those shortcut methods 
when making several blocks
 at a time for a quilt or runner...
but when I'm just making just 
one or two blocks...
this simple cutting and sewing is
 the way that I love the best!


Lay your segments out onto
 your design board like this.

There are 5 rows to sew across.
After sewing those...
sew those 5 rows together 
to form your block!


Here is the back of mine 
in case you want a peek:)


I LOVE this block!!!
I have so many fond memories of 
sitting around the quilting frames with family and friends.

Perhaps this corner of my block can
 represent grandma.
I miss her so!!

QUILTING BEE BLOCK
should measure 15 1/2" square
 before we sew it into our quilt:)


If you are just joining us and want to sew vintage blocks with me...
click on each block 
that we have already sewn
 for that tutorial:

9. Humble


Thanks so much for chatting with me 
today on our own 
Vintage Block Along Party Line...
and for sewing vintage!

I'll be back next week 
with another vintage block 
to share with you:)
xx
Lori



P.S. Inside of my book 
I have a block pattern for
 a vintage rotary phone...
just in case you feel 
the need to sew one:)


It looks like this and there are
 instructions for both a 6" and a 12" block.

I'm making an entire quilt 
out of the 12" size in all
 different colors and calling it 
"PARTY LINE"
I'll show you someday when it's finished!











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