Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Back to the cutting mat

I was so proud of myself, finally seeing some progress on my Quilting Divas mini sampler bee blocks. In this bee (only the second one I've ever joined), there are 7 people in my group. Each of us will make 6 blocks that will finish 12" (7 if we make one for ourselves). Every block is the same design, but each participant has requested specific colours and one Kona solid for their background.

I scoured the Quilter's Cache for a pretty block. Since this is a sampler bee, I wanted to find a traditional, but not so common block to make. Plus, I wanted big enough pieces that would show off some pretty designer fabrics. The Snow Blossom block was the winner. After printing the foundation patterns, I double checked to make sure the 1" test square on the pattern had printed to scale (in other words, it was indeed 1" on all four sides). Check. I was ready to go.

Quilting Divas mini-Sampler bee blocks by Poppyprint

See how pretty this block is? Only these 2 are duds. Epic Fail, as my son would say. When all was said and done, they are EXACTLY 1/4" too small. ARRGHH! I carefully sewed on all of the printed foundation lines. I am Irrrr-i-tay-ted (I say this in my best remembered Afrikaans accent from working in South Africa. No one says 'irritated' in English like an Afrikaaner, complete with rolled 'r') . I actually lost sleep last night I was so disappointed.

I just love this block, so I'm back at it today. I'll make the long outside background pieces larger than the foundation, then trim them back with my 12.5" square ruler after the block is pieced. I hope it works. It will work, right? This time I'll make ONE block and check the results before forging ahead on block #2.

Every mistake is a lesson learned. And as my Flickr friends have already pointed out, now I have the beginnings of two lovely, coordinating pillows that just might look really fab on our red playroom couch!

23 comments:

badlandsquilts said...

They really are gorgeous blocks especially with your fabric choices. Good luck with your next try! (I know all about that learning from mistakes... mine always happen when I'm in a hurry!)

nicolette said...

I absolutely adore thse blocks! Snow Blossom, wonderful name too! Such a petty they are too small, but indeed, they can be turned into some lovely pillow covers!

I hope the next block will be 12,5 inch square. I often end up with blocks that are 1/4 inch too small. I recently changed the setting of my 1/4 inch foot on the machine and that works like a charm!

Michele Pacey said...

What a great block design. I can see why you settled on this one. It's totally new to me! And from where I stand the blocks are awesome! I'm a little perplexed as to what happened and why these turned out to be the wrong size, since you checked everything before hand. I don't get it... I know... I'm a little dense that way...

Dianne said...

You are the fabric Queen Krista! these are lovely. I love that Quilters Cache and can spend ages perusing their blocks. Weird how the paper piecing didn't come out with the correct measurement. The center of the orange block looks like the view through a Kaleidoscope. Pretty pretty!!

Katie B. said...

These are incredible blocks, even if they are a bit too small!

greelyrita said...

"Epic Fail" What a great expression!! But that's not what your 'bit too small' beautiful squares are. Pillows are a great idea!!

Amy said...

I'm so sorry. They are such pretty blocks. At least you have a good attitude about them and a headstart on fab pillows!

Corrie said...

I love them. I would love them on my patio if they don't work on the red couch.

Live a Colorful Life said...

Wow, that is a wonderful block! Boo, at being too small. Great fabric choice, too! Good luck. Lucky recipients...

Cathy said...

Lovely! So beautifully pieced and they will be great pillows. When one door closes, a window opens, right?

traceyjay said...

these blocks are awesome! I want a whole quilt of them now. :)

sorry about the quarter-inch-off-ness. :( (If one was for me... I'd take it with the wrong size... no problem). :)

Jackie said...

I love the blocks! They truly are wonderful! But what a bummer about the 1/4". Trimming down is always a great way to go about it and yes, two wonderful pillows!

Rebecca Jane said...

Okay, I have to post before Dianne, she always says what I'm thinking! In this case, it's the amazing kaleidescope in that orange fabric. Sorry for the less than stellar finish.

felicity said...

Gorgeous blocks. Bummer about the final size. If that had happened to me, you'd've heard me swearing all the way in North Van.

Mrs Moen said...

How disappoiting, but they are beautiful for sure! Sometimes the folding and pressing of all the seam allowances will shrink a block a little even if you follow the directions.

Lynne (Lily's Quilts) said...

Oh my gosh lady pops, I am nuts about those blocks - and just a tad too small - how mad are you??? that drives me nuts when that happens - it makes me feel very bitchy - oh but those blocks are just tooo fabulous

Patchwork and Play said...

They are indeed beautiful blocks! And the color and fabric choices make them SING!

Cassey said...

1/4" off = your gain! These will make great pillows that you didn't know you wanted until they were done...looking at it on the bright side. Plus, you were smart enough to take a break from it and come up with a quick fix for the next blocks. Yay you!

pinksuedeshoe said...

well, they certainly are pretty! I particularly love the orangey one!

Sue said...

Could you sew a border around them to exact size? They are beautiful!! I especially like the mustard and gray color combo.

Kiwi said...

I love the blocks but I'm sad for your disappointment. How frustrating! Good luck with the next ones!

Diane said...

No way are those blocks a failure! They are beautiful and I love the idea of making them into pillows. Good luck gettting that 1/4 inch back!

Jackie said...

I've only done one paper pieced/foundation pieced project but when the block was trimmed we had to trim 1/4" BEYOND the block lines for sewing. In other words, we had to add the 1/4" to the outside of the paper before trimming.

I hope it all works out for you! The blocks are beautiful.