Tuesday, February 26, 2013

My Brain Is Rusty

I'm finally feeling much better (antibiotics = good), and have been able to get some sewing done!  Yay!  However, I'm apparently out of practice.  My brain couldn't quite remember what to do. *grin*

Finished blocks, ready to sew together
I decided to "warm up" by working on some more of the Scrappy Trip blocks that I had started sometime last year.  My guild is making lap-sized quilts for nursing homes, and with the addition of a border, this will be the right size - 42 inches square.  I'm using all scraps (except for the black) to make these blocks, from my drawer of already-cut 2.5 inch strips.  I had 6 blocks already finished and only needed 3 more to make the lap-sized quilt.  Easy, right?

Umm, it didn't go quite the way I wanted.  I didn't actually look at the blocks that were already done, so the first block I made I put the black strip in the wrong place.  But the worst of it was that I had the wrong foot on my sewing machine and the seam allowances ended up the wrong size - more like 3/8 inch than 1/4 inch!

OK, figured out the foot thing, adjusted and then made 2 more blocks.  Oops.  More boo-boos.  I didn't realize that the already-done blocks all had a black strip running through the middle.  Totally left out the black.  I wondered why I was short a strip when I was sewing the blocks together!  It wasn't until I decided to lay out all the blocks that I realized my mistake.  I just had to laugh!

So, here they are, in all their glory.  The top left block is correct.  The top right and bottom left are pretty blocks, but they don't have the black strip in them.  The bottom right is the one with the wrong seam allowance and the black strip in the wrong place.  The pretty blocks that don't work will be put aside to go into another quilt someday, and the wrong-sized one may go on the back of this charity quilt, just to use it up. 

I lined the small block up with a block of the correct size, and you can really see how it gets worse and worse as you "read" it from left to right.  Yikes!  A perfect example of what a too-big seam allowance will do to your block.

A close-up shot, where you can see the different-sized seam allowance.  (top block vs. bottom block)  I'm sharing this as an educational opportunity.  I know I learned something from this!

So, now all I have to do is sew the blocks together and then find something for the border, and this little lap quilt will be ready for quilting.  I'm thinking green for the border (all the blocks have green in them) and then a black binding.  Hopefully that will go more smoothly.  *fingers crossed*

Saturday I did a "sewing" project with my granddaughters.  We went to Jo-Ann's and bought fleece, and they made started no-sew fleece blankets for themselves.  We did the "2 layers tied together around the edges" method. We didn't actually get them finished, but we got a good start on them, and they can finish them at home.  I didn't get a single photo!  (bad blogger!)  Interestingly, at the store, they didn't hesitate about what fabric they wanted.  They took a look at what was available, and made their decision right away!  They each had to get some extra fabric as they want to make blankets for their stuffed toys.  We didn't have time to work on that and I can't wait to see what they come up with!

We seem to always have good weather in February up here in the Northwest, sunny and maybe even as warm as 50+ degrees.  Lately, it's been pretty darn chilly even though it's sunny.  When we get rain, we get fresh snow on the mountains.  But winter always comes back in March - sometimes we even get measurable snow!  But we're having a little tease of Spring out on the back deck!  My crocus are up and starting to bloom.  In the upper right corner you can see that my tulips and daffodils are starting to come up too.  What a welcome sight!


  1. I think your blocks look great! I did the same thing and sewed my seam allowance wrong. At least you can claim you were sick, I on the other hand have no excuse!

  2. Oh well. At least you were working mostly with scraps! I think we get the tease of spring here in the Northwest so that we can get through the last little bit of winter without crazy.:)

  3. Looks great! I'm sure whoever gets it will feel very fashionable in the nursing home.

  4. Wow, I've got the rusty brain syndrome, too. Now, I realize maybe it has something to do with living in a rainforest when I'm in Alaska, and Oregon's annual rain yield when I'm here. I just may be as saturated at your vanilla bean in the vodka! Love your kitty pics. Am down to one feral cat and I miss my loving cozy kitties who tested my quilts and loved on me! Thanks for the stop by, the comment and the linky! Appreciate you and your blog!

  5. I love your Trip Around the World blocks. I can so relate to your getting in sinc problem. It has happened to me and it took me a while to understand what was going on and how to fix it! What fun you must have had with your granddaughters.

  6. I'm having to cut some more strips for my Scrappy Trips blocks. I have this irrational urge/need to not use one fabric more than once. Talk about making it hard on myself! I may give in eventually and repeat prints. Heaven knows I have plenty of strips already cut that I could use!


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