Thoughts On Binding

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I am so excited to share that  I actually finished a real quilt in 2016! Here is a picture of the binding.  It’s not perfect but pretty good considering I probably went all of 2015 without putting on a traditional  binding.
Here are some thoughts which I shared on IG and FB but I added a couple of bonus thoughts  just for my blog  readers) and because I thought of them after I shared everywhere  else)
1) Always check the recommended width of the strips before cutting,  I cut mine at 2.5″ because that sounded right in my head but 3″ would have made life so much better.
2) When machine binding and planning to finish by machine, stitch the folded binding on the BACK of the quilt then fold to the front
3) At each corner  leave a tail of thread to hand finish the miter
4) Use a matching thread to stitch the binding  to the quilt because when you have to fold the binding  over to cover it, it will blend better 
5) A zigzag stitch is a life saver for this method
6) Eleanor Burns still has the best tutorial  in her book Egg Money Quilts and I’ll probably  never get rid of that book because of the tutorial for binding (and her instructions are for machine finished  binding!)

Bonus thought:
Clover clips are not just useful for hand binding, they are perfect for machine binding too  since they hold the small edge in place and they don’t poke!

Binding isn’t hard and isn’t something to be afraid of.  It’s the best part of a quilt because it means it’s finished and it feels so good to finish something that can actuality be used by adults (coming from a girl who only made mini quilts in 2015).  Just take your time, do some research (I have a whole board dedicated to binding  tips on Pinterest) find a technique that you feel comfortable with. Don’t worry about it looking perfect because in the end as long as it holds up through wear and tear and washing then it is doing it’s job. If you still hate binding  but have lots of quilts to bind, find a friend who enjoys it and work out a swap. Just do the first part of the work  by squaring up the quilt and making the binding at least.

If you have any favorite binding tutorials you’d  like to share please link them in the comments below.  I’m probably going to do a binding test during my summer quilt retreat.

Good luck  and happy stitches!

Anna

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Tutorial Tuesday: Pinterest

Tutorial Tuesday

Do you know which website I adore almost as much as I love Instagram (and you know how much I love Instagram)?  Pinterest.  If I’m looking for ideas for decorating or parties,  I’ll search there before I search Google.  Why? Probably because of the visual nature of the site and the ease in which I can find items and save them for reference later by pinning them to a virtual cork board. If I need inspiration for a mini quilt or color ideas, Pinterest, it’s so easy to create a new board and save every item that catches my eye.

How does it work?

I think Pinterest is the best tool for nursing moms who are holding the new baby in one arm and only have one free arm. To use Pinterest you only need to have one hand free for clicking the mouse. In fact when I was nursing my son I think my pins probably doubled in that time. The pins come from everywhere around the interwebs. When you sign up you can install a widget in your browser tool bar that is the little “p” logo, that allows you to find content all around the Web and pin it to whatever board makes the most sense to you. I have at least 10 boards that are only quilt related posts. I have 3 or 4 that are about different types of organizing, I have inspirational sayings boards, and some for recipes that I may or may not ever make (but they sure look good). I even have a board of items that I’d NEVER make in 100 years, it’s called Not in 100 Years!  (If you want more of that, look up @pinterestyouredrunk on Instagram, hilarious!)

Following Boards vs Following People

When you join pinterest you’ll be prompted to follow people you know who are on there, it really is just another form of social media after all, depending on how you sign in it will pull from your Facebook friends or your email (I think it pulls from FB because I noticed my profile picture is always the same as my FB picture). You can visit the boards your friends have created and pin from their boards OR choose to follow their boards.  I’d highly recommend you follow specific boards instead of following people because even though you love your sister and you may be interested in her quilt board and her ideas for fast recipes, you may not have any interested in her newly created board about hiking the Appalachian mountains. Anytime she pins something to the boards you are following,  those items will show up in your feed on your home page. So only following the boards you are interested in will keep your feed less cluttered. I made the mistake when I first joined of following people and ended up with 30 or so pins about wedding plans and tropical plants in my feed and realized I needed to be more selective.

A recent addition is that Pinterest will show related posts which are not from people you follow and promoted posts from people who are paying to get their content in front of your eyes. Recently, I’ve started seeing pins in completely different languages show up as related posts, which is rather annoying but I’ll talk more about what to do about that next week.

I hope this quick Pinterest overview has piqued your curiosity and you’ll consider checking it out. The Android app is really user friendly but the website is great too (they started out just before Smart Phones became the thing). If you decide to sign up, look for me, my name is craftygirlanna and I have something like 3500 pins for your entertainment (although most of them are quilt related).

Fair Warning

Oh and fair warning: Pinterest is the best way to waste time since Spider Solitaire (the computer version). When you start pinning you may get sucked into the time vortex and look up thinking a couple of minutes have passed and it has been two hours. So don’t say I didn’t warn you.

If I can figure out how, I’m going to link this up with Late Night Quilter (Stephanie) Tutorial Tuesday round up.

Happy Stitches!

Anna

Tuesday Tutorial – Flickr Mosaic

Have you joined up with some awesome swaps and now have to post a mosaic but have no idea how? Here’s an info-graphic tutorial I created with the steps (I created this in 2013 and haven’t checked the steps so if something has changed, please let me know so I can make adjustments. I hope this helps YOU create an awesome mosaic for your swaps!

MakeAMosaic

Quick Note: If you need to load the image to Instagram instead of Flickr, don’t worry about copying the code, just save the image. You may want to paste it to Flickr anyway so you can reserve the sources of the photos. That’s VERY important when creating a mosaic. Also this assumes you are working out of Flickr anyway which is why that nifty code grabs the image source.

Have fun!

Anna

Tutorial Tuesday – Wonky Churn Dash

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EDIT: I just realized that the images in this tutorial aren’t working and I can’t put my hands on the images at the moment to fix that! SO I’ve whipped up a little PDF file to give you the down and dirty on making this block. Hopefully you can use this visual and the short instructions I’ve provided to be able to make the block. If not, please let me know and maybe I can make some improvements or at least fix the pictures some day! Click the link below for the PDF file!

Wonky Churn Dash PDF

The unfinished/final block size is 8.5″ but you can use any size for the background squares which will of course change the size of your block.

NOTE: It’s actually really difficult to just cut your squares at a certain size and end up with an 8.5″ block (mostly because there are nine squares and 8.5 doesn’t divide evenly by 3) SO, you will actually make the block larger and trim it down to 8.5″ when you are finished piecing the block.

Use 1/4″ seam allowance

Materials needed for each block:

1/8 yard white (or other solid) for background (a white charm pack would work great for this too), if you want the block to be bigger you’ll need more than 1/8 yard background fabric

A variety of scraps roughly the size of your background squares (mine are 3.5″)

Cutting:

Cut the background fabric into (9) 3.5″ squares

Assembly:

I chose to mark my white squares with a quilting pencil (don’t iron over it) so that I knew which side the patterned fabric would face. It is especially helpful if you need guidance for wonky placement. I only did this for the first block, on my second one it didn’t seem necessary. 

The patterned fabric will roughly line up with the line you drew. 

Now flip your square over again, fold the patterned piece back.

Trim the corner to 1/4″ seam allowance.

Repeat these steps for all your pieces.

Press your seams and pat yourself on the back for making a wonky churn dash block! (Now repeat this about 11 more times and you’ll have a good number of blocks for a quilt!)

See? That wasn’t so bad was it? If you make a wonky churn dash block or quilt, I’ve love to see it! Please feel free to share a link the comments.

Happy Stitches,

Anna

P.S. If you have ANY questions, please feel free to ask them in the comments, and I’ll reply so that everyone can benefit from the answer.

Tutorial Tuesday – Flickr Mosaic

Every Tuesday I hope to be able to post some sort of helpful tutorial. Since the HMQG is doing a swap this year at our Holiday party we were asked to create a mosaic and post it to our Flickr group. I thought it would be fun to create a tutorial for that and share it here. I know it’s an odd layout as one long scrollable image, but I think its kind of fun too. Please let me know if you find this useful and what other sorts of tutorials you’d like to see.MakeAMosaic