Friday, December 30, 2011

Modern Minx Bee - Janurary

Hi everyone!  This is my first attempt at a tutorial, so please be patient me and don't hesitate to contact me and/or ask questions.

First of all - welcome to everyone and Happy New Year!  This is going to be so much fun!  Just to make sure everyone is on the same page, the Guidelines for our bee can be found here:

We are working from the book, "Modern Blocks: 99 Quilt Blocks from your Favorite Designers"; compiled by Susanne Woods.  I hope everyone has a copy.  If not, please let me know.  After many hours of pouring over all of the blocks in the book, I have finally decided on making my project using the "ENVY" block, shown on page 56 with directions on page 57.  

My inspriational fabrics are from Denyse Schmidt's Hope Valley line with some Kona Cotton Solids in Snow and Green Tea. In my test block I have made the centre diamond in 'snow' and stripes around the center motif in 'green tea'. The placement of the solid fabric is the only thing that I would like to have constant so please let me know if that is not possible. 

The instructions in the book are very straight forward, so I won't elaborate on them.  I have been quilting for over 10 years, so if you have any questions - DO NOT HESITATE TO ASK!    I will do my best to help you out.  Note:  The pieces are cut exactly to size, so be sure you have an accurate 1/4" seam.  If not, the final pieces may be a bit short.  I use a 1/4" foot and I have marked my sewing machine with a piece of masking tape at the 1/4" mark.

I took photos during the process and I have added my notes and tips (if any): 
Step 1 - Be sure to press all the seams in the same direction; it will make the next step a little easier and smoother.  I used a striped fabric for one half of the triangle and made sure that all were facing the same way.  I think it works in the final result.
Step 2 - The easiest way to mark the center of the solid square is to fold it in half and press a tiny portion on each side, then open up the square and do the same in the other direction.  Match the seam of your triangles with the pressed markings.

Tip:  I find that when you are sewing a piece with seams to a flat piece of fabric, be sure to keep the seamed side of your work up - then you can make sure the seam allowances don't get flipped the wrong way causing a bump or making extra work "un-sewing"  (my term for seam ripping or unpicking).  A teacher once told me, "Sew what you know!", to keep your work smooth and flat.

Step 2 continued - Pressing away from the center

Step 2 continued - Repeat with the two remaining sides - I trim the overhanging points before adding the second set of triangles for ease of sewing.  It helps with accuracy.  
Step 2 - Here is the center motif after trimming to 4-1/2" square.
Step 4 - Sew A's and B's together; press toward the larger segment (in this case the printed fabric).
Step 5 - ONLY sew the upper right edge of the first segment - this will be completed once the rest of the segments are attached.
Step 5 - Back of work.  Note you are pressing away from the center.
Steps 5 and 6 - To get really sharp points, make sure your seam goes through the intersection of the previous seams.
Step 7 - Once all segments have been attached, go back and finish the partial seam of the first segment.
Step 8 - After pressing, trim away any wobbly bits to 12-1/2" x 12-1/2" square.
Voila - The finished block.  Sadly, the colors here are not really accurate - they look pretty dull.  I assure you that they are much brighter in real life.
So, any questions?  I'd love to hear from you and don't forget to post pictures the our group in Flickr! 

1 comment:

  1. This is a super cute block thanks for sharing, I think I'll give it a try out next weekend :)