Monday, January 03, 2011

Quilting Tools & Gadgets

As I was cutting the 144 individual blue squares from my scraps yesterday (72 light, 36 medium and 36 dark), I started to think that maybe I could justify the purchase of a GO or other fabric cutter ... at least in the fantasy in my head, it would make all that cutting easier and more accurate.  As I repeat this exercise each month and work my way through my scraps for the larger project I have in mind for the Rainbow scrap challenge, it'll be interesting to see if I decide it IS worth it ;-)

A few of my favorite toolsIn the meantime, after dinner tonight, I was quilting "old school,"using some of my tried and true quilting tools to square up and trim the 144 triangle squares. For me, I still like the design of Quilt-in-a-Day's half-square triangle specialty ruler. Since you are trimming the units BEFORE you open and press them, you only have to trim the squares on 2 sides. I don't know if they are still making Brooklyn Revolvers, but mine is still going strong and perfect for trimming smallish blocks. I still love my ergonomic rotary cutter, too. I was thinking tonight that I don't think I could ever go back.

Do you have a tried and tool quilting tool that has stood the test of time? I'd love to know about it--these days I really have to be convinced that the latest-greatest gadget, ruler or other product is really going to work for me before I buy . . .

The first of many After all 144 of the triangle squares were trimmed and pressed, I had to stay up a little be later (on a school night!). so I could make the first block. I may decide I cannot live with that one really badly matched seam, but otherwise, I like it. Over the weekend I envisioned a quilt made of 100 of these 8 inch blocks and was thinking I could make 9 of the 9 designated "colors" of the challenge ... except tonight I realized that nine times nine is not 99 which was the basis for yesterday's plan, so . . .  I'm working on a new plan, probably for a smaller quilt ;-)

FYI, here's one example of the scrap quilt design that inspired me.

Scrappy Inspiration

This quilt, Charm Stars Quilt is from Leisure Art's book Quilt an Easy Scrap Quilts. It was made by Mary Carol Sternitzky of Garfield, Arkansas. 

This is a smaller quilt than I have planned (even with my new corrected math) made from larger (12") star blocks than my 8 -nchers.  My quilt won't be a charm quilt--I will use the same fabric more than once  if there's enough in my scrap bags to cut more than one 3-inch square. My borders will almost certainly be different ... but I hope all my scrappy triangles will tinkle like these ;-)

2 comments:

Stray Stitches said...

I really like your star and the colors are wonderful. I tried to find the triangle ruler you mentioned but can't seem to find it. Any ideas on where I might look?

scraphappy said...

What a wonderful block! I think I've seen that same quilt before, but hadn't thought of it in this context. Trimming all those blocks down is a real chore. I've tried doing it on my GO, but didn't have good luck getting the corners even. It will be a stunning quilt though, regardless of how the math works out.

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