The New Swap: Yesterday I saw a tutorial on Instagram that I thought would make a great swap block--over-sized and points don't have to meet. Perfect. I checked on our guild Members Facebook page to see if anyone else wanted to play.
Very quickly there were at least a dozen interested so I came up with a plan. I am a natural-born organizer, I just can't help it.
First I wrote to the designer for permission to use her tutorial and to write this blog. She graciously granted permission. Here is the wonderful Tiny Star Block Tutorial by Lindsey Weight. If you are not on Instagram here are photos:
NOTE: HQH MEMBERS, if you want to join in and are not on Facebook, just send me an email.
Here are the "Rules" for the Heritage Quilters of Huntsville swap, feel free to create your own rules if you put together a swap:
1.Sign up to make 10, 20, or 30. (So far, everyone wants to make 30)
2. They are due at the November guild meeting--you will get the same number of blocks you turn in, 10, 20, or 30, none of your own. (That is one month--don't drag it out, these are fast to make)
3. First quality fabric only.
4. Blocks are 4.5" finished, 5" unfinished. EASY blocks to make quickly. DO NOT TRIM DOWN FROM 5"--each person can trim their own IF they want to. Mine will "float" so I will not trim. .
5. Use light fabric for the background, contrasting print for the star. You may choose to put a different fabric in the center, one that looks like it belongs with the star points. You can make several exactly the same but this is a great way to use small scraps vs. yardage.
6. Do your best work--turn in blocks you would be happy to receive.
7. See photos for two pressing options for outer seams. First pressing of block units: middle row in to the middle, top and bottom rows, out toward the outside--do this on ALL blocks.. The two ROWS can be pressed to the outer edges OR open, your choice.
|Rows pressed toward the outside|
|Rows pressed open|
Today I found these blocks are perfect as leader/enders, startie/stoppies--just have them cut out and sew the units as you sew other projects:
If you like to draw pencil lines as a sewing guide, it can be time-consuming to draw diagonal lines on those 8 small print squares. Here is a trick that makes it much faster.
Cut two 3" squares. Draw a line on both diagonals, from corner to corner, with a mechanical pencil:
Carefully cut the 3" squares into four 1.5" squares:
NOTE: I tried 3 methods--drawing pencil lines as above, pressing the 1.5" squares in half to create a crease I could see, and just winging it from corner to corner as I sewed. All three methods worked for me so try all three and decide which you prefer. I know some people use the Angler on the bed of their machine--that is yet another option.
My guild actually used this method a few years ago for swap blocks--those were 9" finished blocks. These tiny ones are just so cute!
Since I am in the middle of several projects and my cutting table is piled high with fabrics, it will be easy to cut a bunch of these and get them made. I'll be in Houston for two weeks before our November meeting so these will be done before I leave.
If you like this, why not ask some friends to swap with you? It is fun and just like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get!