Category Archives: Quick Curve Ruler

Dragonfly Kisses

Yesterday I finished piecing Dragonfly Kisses, based on the pattern Chic Diamonds by Sew Kind of Wonderful:

Dragonfly Kisses 51 x 60

I originally thought about using white or pale blue for the background but am so glad I went with the pale mint instead. It’s so refreshing, don’t you think?

Chic Diamonds pattern cover with blades
Chic Diamonds
was designed as a jelly-roll friendly pattern, since the pointed pieces (I call them blades) are made from 2½” strips that are sewn in pairs and then trimmed using the Quick Curve Ruler. Triangles cut from the strip pairs are saved and used in each block. Six blocks in the design are intentionally left blank as a design element, perhaps to give the eye a place to rest.

I decided early on not to use all the triangles, wanting to make my quilt less busy so a viewer’s eyes would be drawn to the X blocks (the kisses). I used only 20 triangles rather than the 240 called for in the pattern. And I put my triangles in the middle of the blank blocks rather than in the blocks with the blades. (Thanks to my friend Deborah for giving me that idea.) I like to think those triangles form the “chic diamonds” in my quilt.

The original design uses a 6 x 6 setting, finishing 54″ square. I went with a 5 x 6 setting using five blank blocks instead of six. I like the asymmetry of the look. And I added a narrow border of background fabric to float the outer blocks a bit, giving a bit more airiness to the design and making the top slightly bigger. It now measures 51″ x 60″ — a nice size for a throw or lap quilt.

Now to piece the backing. The dragonflies that gave my quilt its name are hard to spot among the narrow pieced blades so I’ll use my remaining strips of that fabric line (Dance of the Dragonfly by Kanvas Studio and Benartex) on the back.

I’m excited to report that I’ll be teaching Chic Diamonds (both the original design and my variation) at the Pine Needle Quilt Shop this fall. And rumor has it the Pine Needle is going to have kits available of Dragonfly Kisses!

 

 

 

Posted in Quick Curve Ruler, update | 6 Comments

Pondering and Sewing

While I ponder how to move forward on my Chipmunk Love quilt, based on the “Star-Crossed Lovers” class with Colleen Blackwood that I took last week in Sisters, Oregon, sewing continues on two other WIPs (works in progress).

I’ve made a few more wonky Greek key blocks using the pattern from the other class I took in Sisters last week, Karla Alexander’s “Rewind” using her new pattern of the same name. Here are the blocks I made before we came home . . .

Rewind first 9 blocks
Blocks Measure 8½” Untrimmed

. . . and the ones I have made since then:

Rewind blocks free form
Four More

These last blocks along with two from the first group were made by cutting the strips free-form rather than following Karla’s template.

Despite the wonkiness, all of the blocks look a little like the @ sign on a keyboard. Because of that I’ve decided to name my quilt Where It’s @. 

I’m also working on a quilt based on Chic Diamonds, a new pattern from those talented sisters at Sew Kind of Wonderful. This design calls for the original Quick Curve Ruler, and it’s been enjoyable working with these easy no-pin curves. Here’s one of my blocks:

Chic diamonds block
Block Measures 9½” Unfinished

Aren’t those fabrics gorgeous? The prints on the dark side of each blade are from a brand new line of fabric called Dance of the Dragonfly. Designed by Maria Kalinowski for Kanvas Studio in association with Benartex, the fabrics are due in stores next month. The Pine Needle, where I teach, will be carrying several fabrics from the line. I paired the prints with batiks for my blocks.

I’m doing something a little different with the Chic Diamonds design. Here’s a hint: I’m naming my quilt Dragonfly Kisses. I’ll post a photo when I have the top together, which should be very soon.

 

 

 

Posted in Quick Curve Ruler, Quilter's Affair, update, wonky Greek key | 7 Comments

Friday Finish: Mini Rings Quilt

2016-6 Ring Toss, croppedMy quilt Ring Toss, based on the double wedding ring block, is finished. It measures 32¼” square. The pattern is  Mini Rings by Sew Kind of Wonderful and was made with the mini Quick Curve Ruler.

As much as I liked this little quilt after getting it back from the longarm quilter (Karlee Sandell of SewInspired2Day), I like it even more now that it’s bound:

2016-6, Ring Toss binding detail

One of my friends wondered why I chose green for the binding over black. Black would have provided a strong dramatic frame for the quilt, it’s true. So why green?

First, I wanted to draw attention to the playful nature of the focus fabric used in the rings. That fabric (from the Doodle line by Alice Kennedy for Timeless Treasures) is mostly black and white with touches of lime green and light blue. The overlapping circles in the fabric remind me of ferris wheels and fireworks. A bright color seemed more appropriate than black for the happy mood I wanted to emphasize.

Second, instead of piecing a backing for the quilt with different fabrics, as I usually do, I used one piece, the same print used on the front. From a distance, the fabric reads primarily as black and white. If I had pieced the back I would have added quite a bit of lime green to liven it up. Since I wanted the quilt to be bright and cheerful from both sides, green binding was the obvious choice.

Oh, and then there is that third reason, which I think I’ve mentioned a few times before: green is my favorite color.

In keeping with the block design, fabric design, and quilt name, the label features  — what else? — a double ring:

2016-6, Ring Toss label

Do you think I should have named it Coco’s Quilt?

Coco's quilt

 

 

 

 

Posted in cats, QCR Mini, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 8 Comments

Ring Toss: Quilted!

Ring Toss, my little quilt made from Sew Kind of Wonderful’s Mini Rings pattern, is back from the quilter already. Take a look:

Ring Toss, quilted 1
I asked Karlee Sandell of SewInspired2Day.com to quilt this for me, and I couldn’t be more pleased. I had been thinking of Karlee as an up-and-coming longarm quilter because she is quite new to the field, but it’s quite clear she has already arrived.

Here are some close-ups of her lovely quilting, first on an X block . . .

Ring Toss, quilted X

. . . and then on an O block:

Ring Toss, Quilted O
The acanthus motif fills the center of the O block beautifully. And don’t you love the quilted “pearls” in the elongated oval between the rings?

For the green and black triangles that form an on-point square where the rings meet, Karlee designed her own quilting motif, intertwining rings that reinforce the theme of the quilt:

Ring Toss, quilting detail 1
I have been trying all morning to photograph this quilt. Every time I place the quilt on a flat surface, my new cat Coco photobombs it:

Ring Toss, photobombed by Coco

Ring Toss and Coco

Doesn’t she look innocent?

Ring Toss measures 33¼” square after quilting. Now it’s on to the binding and the label. I’m going to use the same lime green fabric for the binding that’s in the quilt; I think it will frame it nicely.

 

 

 

Posted in cats, QCR Mini, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 14 Comments

Mini Rings: Off to Be Quilted

Mini Rings top done
The Mini Rings quilt top I started last month is done and — as of today — off to be quilted. The top, measuring 34″ square, was made with a focus fabric from a Timeless Treasures line called Doodle, designed by Alice Kennedy.

The quilt is small enough that I could have quilted it myself on my domestic machine but I chose not to do that. You probably know that quilting is my least favorite part of the quiltmaking process. I decided I wanted the quilt to reflect the deft touch of a talented free motion longarm quilter. We seem to have a growing number of them in the Portland area.

I used a single piece of the focus fabric on the back, a portion of which is shown here:

Doodle

Primarily black and white with touches of lime green and cool blue, the print features overlapping circles ranging from 1¼” to 2¾” in diameter. What do you see when you look at them? I see fireworks and ferris wheels, which makes me think of carnivals.

And that led me to the name for my quilt:  Ring Toss. Isn’t that perfect? Or should I call it Mini Ring Toss?

 

 

 

Posted in QCR Mini, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 4 Comments

Hitting the Jackpot

That shipment of Garden Pindot fabric by Michael Miller that I’m using as the background for my Mini Rings quilt finally arrived today. It shipped out 10 days ago, and I’d been wondering if it would ever arrive.

I think the wait was worth it:

2016-05-31 15.59.37
That sticker was on the plastic bag my fabric was packed in. I ordered five yards — and received 11½ yards instead.

But that’s only part of the story. All I needed was a small amount of this white-on-white dot to finish my Mini Rings quilt:

2016-05-31 16.00.05

I couldn’t find it locally so I decided to shop online. When I discovered that fabric.com had 11½ yards of this fabric available, I impulsively ordered it all, reasoning that it would serve as background for a great many quilts and I would never be in a situation where I would be using noticeably different dye lots in the same project.

Then fabric.com notified me that the yardage was not one continuous piece of fabric but rather several pieces in 1 yard, 1.5 yard, and 2 yard cuts. Did I still want the fabric? I decided to rein in my impulse purchase and modified my order to three pieces totaling five yards. The fabric shop altered my order and refigured the price.

When the box arrived today, I lifted it and thought, “Gee, this is awfully heavy for five yards of fabric.” Inside were eight cuts of fabric totaling 11½ yards. Talk about hitting the jackpot! Thank you, fabric.com!

Interestingly, two of the eight cuts are noticeably creamier than the others, so I will set them aside and make sure I don’t unwittingly combine them with the snowier ones.

Guess I won’t be running out of Garden Pindot anytime soon.

 

 

 

Posted in QCR Mini, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 5 Comments

Mini Rings Update

I thought I would have my Mini Rings quilt top (pattern by Sew Kind of Wonderful) assembled by now, but I still have two blocks to go:

Mini Rings in progress

I’m making a square quilt of nine blocks; the blocks finish at 11″ so the quilt will finish at 33″. My plan was to make a block a day but alas, I have fallen behind. Too many other things going on at the Portland White House. Plus, I’m still waiting on that shipment of my background fabric (Garden Pindot by Michael Miller).

Still, my top will be finished soon. I’m going to keep it borderless and bind it in that acid green.

Speaking of binding, I’m halfway done sewing the binding on a baby quilt you’ve seen come together recently:

Stefan's quilt, binding detail

I am really liking the narrow border, using a pale lime Fairy Frost from Michael Miller for both border and binding.

It’s an absolutely beautiful day here in Portland, Oregon. The delicious aroma of something cooking on a neighbor’s barbecue is wafting in the open windows, the DH is happily working outside in the garden, and our new cat Coco is stretched out on a chair in the TV room. It’s been a lovely three-day weekend.

I hope you have had a lovely weekend, too!

 

 

 

Posted in baby quilt, QCR Mini, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 4 Comments

A Quartet of Mini Rings and a Thank You

Mini Rings four blocks

Four of nine blocks for my Mini Rings quilt, made using the QCR Mini (mini Quick Curve Ruler), are done.

I’ve run out of background fabric, a white-on-white Michael Miller pindot. I could make more blocks using one of several other white-on-white prints in my stash but I am  holding out for having all my blocks the same. A little obsessive-compulsive, perhaps? Now I have to hope that the fabric I ordered on line is from a similar enough dye lot that no one can see the difference between the old and the new. You would be surprised, even with white and black fabrics, how much dye lots can differ.

Working on these blocks has helped take my mind off the loss of my little cat Theodora, subject of my previous post. Thank you so much to those of you who wrote consoling comments on my blog. I cried the entire time I was writing that post, and I cried while reading the comments.

In the 35 years my husband Charlie and I have lived in this house, we’ve never been without a cat. If one of our cats died, there was at least one still at home to help ease the grief. Not so now, since Theo’s last feline companion, Elfie, died three years ago.

Charlie and I are going to the Oregon Humane Society next week, hoping to bring home a cat (maybe two) in need of a “forever home.” Although it seems a little disloyal to Theo’s memory, I’ve already been on the OHS website looking at pictures and descriptions of available cats. There are some very sweet looking ones! We’ll choose an adult cat, since the older ones are not considered as adoptable as kittens.

By the time of my next post, there may be a new resident of the Portland White House.

 

 

 

Posted in cats, family, QCR Mini, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 6 Comments

Doodling Around

Remember this block?

Mini Rings block 800 11.5 in

It’s the test block I made back in January using the mini Quick Curve Ruler — known as the QCR Mini — and Mini Rings pattern designed by those Sew Kind of Wonderful sisters. I’ve been wanting to make a Mini Rings quilt since the ruler and pattern were introduced last fall. I’m using the fabrics you see above in another quilt so that one block was as far as I got.

Time to try another one. For my second test block, I did something different. Instead of making the rings from four fabrics in a strip set, as the pattern instructs, I used one large print, a wonderful black and white and yellow floral I found last summer at a quilt shop in Central Oregon. Having bought the fabric for its possibilities in a kaleidoscope quilt, I was reluctant to cut a chunk out of it just to test my theory that it might look good in something else.

So I didn’t cut into it. Not at first. I placed the fabric on my printer screen and took a color photo of it:

fabric Studio 8 for Quilting Treasures-001

Then I cut the paper into rings, just as if it were fabric, using the QCR Mini:

Mini Rings test paper

I liked what I saw so I went ahead and cut enough fabric to make one block. Here it is:

Mini Rings test block yellow

I liked the block . . . but not quite enough to make an entire quilt out of it.

I tried again, this time using a fabric from the Doodle collection designed by Alice Kennedy for Timeless Treasures:

Mini Rings test block green

I liked this block. A lot. Enough to make an entire quilt out of it?

Mini Rings fabric cuts

Why, yes!

 

 

 

Posted in QCR Mini, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 9 Comments

Quick Curves, Large and Small

3 test blocks qcr
Dawn’s Quick Curve Ruler Test Blocks

 

In preparation for teaching a recent class called “Secrets of the Quick Curve Ruler,” I made several test blocks, including the ones you see above. One block was made with the original Quick Curve Ruler from Sew Kind of Wonderful and two were made with the new QCR Mini.

The idea of successfully sewing concave and convex curves together without pins was what compelled me to try out the Quick Curve Ruler a few years ago, and I quickly became a fan. The original ruler produces curves based on a 15″ circle while the Mini makes curves based on a 9″ circle. Can you tell from the photo above which blocks were made with which ruler?

The talented women behind Sew Kind of Wonderful (founder Jenny Pedigo and her sisters Helen Robinson and Sherilyn Mortensen) launched the QCR Mini a few months ago along with new designs for the original ruler and a new book as well. Too many choices! But isn’t that what makes the quilting world go ’round?

The directions that come with the QCR Mini include a pattern for a table runner. The block for that design also makes a mini version of the free Fun Poinsettia pattern offered on the Sew Kind of Wonderful website. The first test block I made with the QCR Mini was the mini Fun Poinsettia:

Mini Fun Poinsettia block
Mini Fun Poinsettia Block, 14″ Square Finished

 

I knew right away this block would find its way into a quilt. I’ve since made four more blocks, including the one at the top of this post, and have an idea for a unique setting.

The second QCR Mini test block, cropped in this photo to look like its 11″ finished size, is from the new Mini Rings pattern:

Mini Rings block 800 11.5 in
Mini Rings Block, 11″ Finished

 

I will definitely make this pattern, although not in the fabrics you see above. I have plenty of strips left over from the black and white fabrics I used for the full size pattern, Metro Rings, in this quilt (Honeymoon in Paris) made in 2013:

2013-12, Honeymoon in Paris
Honeymoon in Paris (56″ x 75″), 2013

 

I’ll cut the strips down for the size needed for the Mini. My Honeymoon in Paris quilt went to a good friend who actually did honeymoon in Paris (a charming story — I’ll tell you about it sometime) so I am motivated to make another one to keep.

Of the test blocks, the last one was from the new pattern Chic Country, based on the traditional Winding Ways block:

Chic Country test block
Dawn’s Chic Country Test Block, 9″ Finished

 

The Chic Country block finishes at 9″ square, making it the smallest of the Sew Kind of Wonderful blocks I’ve experimented with.

While I love the look of this quilt and have seen a few smashing versions on social media, I didn’t find the process of making the block enjoyable. Since quiltmaking, for me, is all about fun — and fabric, too, of course — I’ll stick to the blocks I do enjoy making.

Here’s a collage of the quilts I’ve made so far using the Quick Curve Ruler:

mug shots

I trust there are many more in my future!

 

 

 

Posted in QCR Mini, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 7 Comments