It's a layover week this week with the end of March at the beginning of it and the start of April at the end. I'm hoping to clean up some loose ends this week before April starts in earnest. With that, here's the BOM report for the blocks completed for the last two outstanding BOMs for March:
Christmas (technically "Scrappy") Figs:
The first block I made was the easier of the two: the Flying Geese Criss Cross. As always, with these blocks and the limited "coordinated by sales" stash I have, I'm always a little nervous picking the fabrics for each block. In the end, I was pleased with how this one came out.
Now the second block was the tough one that I had avoided making last month when I was time crunched: it's the Feathered Star block:
For this one, I decided to make my first dive into the FQ bundle of designer coordinated MODA Fig Tree Solids I have. Believe it or not while it is a challenging block, it isn't hard per se: This one is definitely about accurate cutting, carefully following the directions and taking it step by step.
The block is made up of twelve pieced square sections and four single fabric corner squares. Joanna's directions are great in that each section of the block is cut slightly over size and is trimmed down after you complete the piecing of it. For a job like this when it is important to get it squared along both diagonals, I love using the Tucker Trimmer by Deb Tucker of Studio 180 Designs:
Unlike with my regular square up ruler, this one allows you to line up along both diagonals of the block which helps you to trim it up more accurately along all four sides. Quilt In A Day's Square Up Ruler or any of the larger the Creative Grids Square Up Rulers would also work well here (Note: the link is to the 6-1/2" Square Up but Creative Grids has larger square up rulers as well).
When Pat Sloan made this quilt as a Quilt Along two years ago, she demoed every block on her blog, giving tips that she found helpful to make them accurately. I didn't think to go back and read up on this one until after I was finished. Fortunately, it turns out I had actually followed most of her advice (including working on it over the course of two days!). I guess all of that good info had been retained deep in my memory from when I read about it back then!
One tip I would add is that it was also very helpful to trim the the tips of the corner triangles when adding them to the pieced HST strips. Of course another gadget helped with that!
I've had these Fons and Porter Triangle Trimmers for ages and every so often they come in real handy for a project. There are other types of these around too --- Gudrun Erla has a set she used during the recent Elvira quilt along and her set also includes a trimmer for 60 degree triangles. When I made that project, I used the trimming tip on my 60 degree ruler.
One BOM down and one last one to go: AQS Twilight Flurries. This month's blocks are their #4 and #6.
Edited to Add: I forgot to note that the block on the right was another one in this series that called for some of the units in the block to be paper-pieced. Last month I had skipped making another of these blocks because I didn't think I'd have time to tackle that process. Well, I didn't do it this month either! Turns out Block # 6 offered another opportunity to use a gadget to work a little more quickly. I used the Lazy Angle ruler and methods to cut and piece the corner units instead of making templates to paper piece them. Fortunately the ruler makes units as small as 1" finished which is what I needed for this block.
Once again, I'm realizing that these blocks are kind of complex and I'm still getting a handle on fabric choice since I'm not working with the tone-on-tone/solids AQS used. For now, I'll settle for having all the BOMs done until next week!
I'm joining the other BOM-badeers over at Lynette's BOMs Away linkup at What A Hoot Quilts and co-host Katie Mae over at Katie Mae Quilts!
Bonnie Hunter is doing a "Sew In Place Unity Quilt Along" that started Monday. She says there's no paint chips for this mystery and the design will employ all of her usual "Scrap Users" sizes. So here's a chance to pull out your scrap bins for this one! Unlike Bonnie's usual mysteries, this one will be made medallion style so you will see the quilt develop as you finish each step. This could allow you more flexibility to "design as you go" as far as your fabric choices, block substitutions and possibly any layout changes you might want to make.
As always, if you're busy right now with all those UFOs or that hand work project and can't sew this up right now, at the very least go download the steps. They will be released on her blog and the "Unity" tab on her website every Monday for the next seven to eight weeks. Once this one is over, she will offer it as a complete pattern in her Quiltville Store.
Kim Lapasek of Persimmon Dreams and Trisha Frankland of Quilt Chicken are hosting a special edition of Project Quilting 2020 -- Quarantine Limited Edition which Kim says will run until we are all able to freely go back outside! If you've always wanted to do Project Quilting but felt you didn't have the time to participate, here's your opportunity.
The first challenge went up on Sunday and you have until the following Sunday (Noon, Central time) to submit an entry. This will be an "all shares" challenge with no prizes this round -- that is, none in addition to the admiration of or inspiration from your fellow quilters! However, this could be the perfect chance to test your skills for participating in the regular Project Quilting Challenge event when it returns in January.