Monday, December 11, 2017

Sweet Shoppe Quilt-Along - Day 5

Welcome back for Day 5 of the Sweet Shoppe Quilt-Along!  Hope you all enjoyed your weekend!  With fresh snow on the ground here in New Hampshire and more on the way, my Christmas spirit is definitely on the rise, so let's get started!

Today we'll be making green peppermint blocks.  Or should I say spearmint or wintergreen blocks?  Either way, these blocks are super sweet and minty fresh!  Hmmm... "minty fresh," am I crazy or is that a cute name for this block?!




For your Minty Fresh blocks, you'll need:

1 green print #1 5" x 5" square
1 green print #2 5" x 5" square
1 green print #3 5" x 5" square
3 white 5" x 5" squares
24 white 1½" x 1½" squares




To make your Minty Fresh blocks:

1.  On the wrong side of a white 5" x 5" square, use a pencil to lightly draw 2 diagonal lines a scant ¼" from each true diagonal of the square as follows.



2.  Layer a marked white 5" square atop a green print 5" square with right sides together.



3.  Stitch the pair together exactly on the drawn lines.  Press to set seams.



4.  Use a rotary cutter to cut the unit in half vertically and horizontally and in between the seams to make 8 half-square-triangle units.



5.  Press the seam allowances toward the green print.



6.  Trim the HST units to measure 2" x 2" unfinished.



7.  Lay out 4 matching HSTs in 2 rows of 2 each as follows:



8.  Join together the pieces in each row.  Press the seam allowances toward the green print.



9.  Join the rows to make a Pinwheel block that measures 3½" x 3½" unfinished.  Fan seam allowances open in back, pressing toward the green print, to reduce bulk at the center of the block. Press.





10.  Repeat to make 6 Pinwheel blocks, 2 from each green print.




11.  On the wrong side of the 24 white 1½" x 1½" squares, draw a diagonal line from corner to corner.



12.  Layer a marked white 1½" square atop one corner of a Pinwheel block with right sides together.  Stitch the pair together along the drawn line.




13.  Press open toward the white and trim seam allowances to ¼".



14.  Repeat with remaining 3 corners to make a Minty Fresh block measuring 3½" x 3½" unfinished.



15.  Repeat to make 6 Minty Fresh blocks, 2 from each green print.


Yay!  I just love these little blocks!  Hope you have fun making yours!  If you post pictures of your Minty Fresh blocks on Instagram or Facebook, don't forget to tag me @jendalyquilts and use the #sweetshoppeqal.  I'd love to see what you're up to!

— Jen

Friday, December 8, 2017

Sweet Shoppe Quilt-Along - Day 4

Woohoo!  It's Friday and Day 4 of the Quilt-Along!  Today we'll be making half-square-triangle units... only kidding!!  As promised we're moving on to something new—split quarter-square triangles.


These fun little units are so cute when they're combined to make Double Pinwheel blocks, just like the one pictured above.  We're going to be doing something different with our split quarter-square triangles, or "SQST"s, but I'm going to save that reveal for another day!  Now let's get started...


You'll need to gather:

10 red print #1 3" x 3" squares
5 green print #1 3½" x 3½" squares
5 white 3½" x 3½" squares



To make your split quarter-square triangle units:

1.  On the wrong side of a white 3½" x 3½" square, use a pencil to lightly draw 2 diagonal lines a scant ¼" from one true diagonal of the square as follows.  If it helps, go ahead and draw the true diagonal line first.



2.  Layer the marked white 3½" square atop a green print #1- 3½" square with right sides together.



3.  Stitch the pair together exactly on the drawn lines.  Press to set seams.



4.  Use a rotary cutter to cut the unit in half between the seams to make 2 half-square-triangle units.



5.  Press the seam allowances toward the green print and trim the HST units to measure 3" x 3" unfinished.



6.  On the wrong side of 2 red print #1 - 3" x 3" squares, use a pencil to lightly draw 2 diagonal lines a scant ¼" from one true diagonal of the squares.  Again, draw the true diagonal if it helps.



7.  Layer the 2 marked red 3" squares atop the 2 green/white half-square-triangle units with right sides together.  Make sure that the lines drawn on the red 3" squares are perpendicular to the seam between the green and white triangles on the HSTs.  




8.  Stitch the pairs together exactly on the drawn lines.  Press to set seams.



9.  Use a rotary cutter to cut the units in half between the seams to make 4 split quarter-square triangle blocks.  



10.  Press seam allowances toward the red print and trim the 4 split quarter-square triangle blocks to 2½" x 2½" unfinished.



11.  Note that you'll end up with 2 SQSTs that are the mirror of the other 2.



12.  Repeat with remaining white and green print #1 - 3½" squares and red print #1 - 3" squares to make 20 split quarter-square triangle blocks total—10 with the green print in one quarter and 10 with the green print in an adjacent, or mirror, quarter.



That's all for Day 4!  Well done, you!  I can't promise that there won't be more HSTs in your future, but I can promise that we're moving on to some very sweet blocks!  Enjoy your weekend and I'll see you back here Monday for Day 5.

: )  Jen

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Sweet Shoppe Quilt-Along - Day 3

Wow, it's Day 3 already—welcome!!


You may have surmised from the above picture that we're making half-square-triangle units again!  These will be smaller HST units and we'll be making quite a few of them.  We won't be making the star pictured above for this project, but I'm definitely filing the idea away for another time—I love the red and green polka dots together!


Today you'll need to gather:

5 red print #2 4" x 4" squares
5 green print #2 4" x 4" squares
10 white 4" x 4" squares



To make your half-square-triangle units:
Today we'll be using the same "Magic 8" method that we used on Day 2, but just in case, I'll lay it out for you here again today.

1.  On the wrong side of a white 4" x 4" square, use a pencil to lightly draw 2 diagonal lines a scant ¼" from each true diagonal of the square as follows.  If it helps, go ahead and draw the true diagonal lines first.



2.  Layer a marked white 4" square atop a red/green print 4" square with right sides together.



3.  Stitch the pair together exactly on the drawn lines.  Press to set seams.



4.  Use a rotary cutter to cut the unit in half vertically and horizontally and in between the seams to make 8 half-square-triangle units.



5.  Press the seam allowances toward the red/green print.




6.  Trim the HST units to measure 1½" x 1½" unfinished.  Don't forget to use the ruler trick to keep your HST units true as you trim them to size.




7.  Repeat with remaining red or green print and white 4" squares to make 40 red print #2 half-square-triangle units and 40 green print #2 half-square-triangle units measuring 1½" x 1½" unfinished.



Whew, I know that's a lot of trimming!  That's why we split it up over two days.  I think that's also the first time I've ever typed the word "whew!"

And that wraps up Day 3!  We'll be moving on to something else on Day 4 and don't despair that we aren't assembling blocks yet, I promise it'll come together in the end!  So much fun!!


By the way, if you're enjoying making HSTs, (and who wouldn't?!) you might want to give my Candy Stars project a try.  Here's a picture of the original Moda Bakeshop tutorial:



...and a picture of a Christmas version featuring Kate Spain's "North Woods" fabric that I finished as a 16" x 16" pillow:


Happy quilting and I'll see you back here Friday!

Monday, December 4, 2017

Sweet Shoppe Quilt-Along - Day 2

Welcome back for Day 2 of the Sweet Shoppe Quilt-Along!  I hope you all had a good weekend and that your fabrics are cut and ready to go!



Today we'll be making half-square triangle units in both red and green.  The method we'll be using makes 8 half-square-triangle units at a time—some quilters refer to it as the "Magic 8" method.  I like to make the half-square-triangle (or "HST") units a bit bigger than they need to be to start out with and then trim them down to ensure that the HST units are the exact size that I need, so that's the approach we'll be taking today.

Ready to sew?  Here we go!


You'll need to gather:

2 red print #3 5" x 5" squares
2 green print #3 5" x 5" squares
4 white 5" x 5" squares



To make your half-square-triangle units:

1.  On the wrong side of a white 5" x 5" square, use a pencil to lightly draw 2 diagonal lines a scant ¼" from each true diagonal of the square as follows.  If it helps, go ahead and draw the true diagonal lines first.



2.  Layer a marked white 5" square atop a red/green print 5" square, with right sides together.



3. Stitch the pair together exactly on the drawn lines.  Press to set seams.



4.  Use a rotary cutter to cut the unit in half vertically and horizontally and in between the seams to make 8 half-square-triangle units.



5.  Press the seam allowances toward the red/green print.




6.  Trim the HST units to measure 2" x 2" unfinished.  It helps to use a ruler with a 45° line on it.  Before trimming, make sure that the 45° line runs along the diagonal seam of the HST unit.  Trim the right and top edges of the HST unit.  Then turn the unit 180° and trim the two remaining edges in the same manner.






7.  Repeat with remaining red or green print and white 5" squares to make 16 red print #3 half-square-triangle units and 16 green print #3 half-square-triangle units measuring 2" x 2" unfinished.





These versatile little HSTs couldn't be simpler, but they're pretty nonetheless!  We won't be assembling these units into blocks today, so just reserve them for later.  Very mysterious...

And that's it for Day 2!  I'll see you back here on Wednesday for Day 3!