Using a bullet journal to track habits

Filigree Free Quilt Pattern

Welcome to my stop on the Filigree Blog Tour hosted by the Fat Quarter Shop!

First let me say how much I love this pattern–the strong criss-cross elements, the secondary patterns that emerge, and the interplay of the fabrics.

filigree quilt

The Fabrics

Let’s start with the fabrics. I used the Playground line by Amy Sinibaldi for Art Gallery Fabrics–plus some AFG denim and Pure Elements solid in Linen. Have you ever felt fabric from AFG? It has a lovely silky smooth, delicate feel and a beautiful drape. It feels quite different from standard quilting cotton–in a very good way.

filigree quilt

And when I say denim, I don’t mean heavy denim like jeans. It has the awesome look of denim, but with the same wonderful lightweight feel as the other AGF fabrics. And the denim fabric has the wonderful quality that it goes with everything! Just like your favorite jeans, you can dress it up or dress it down. I am in love with the way it works with the Playground fabrics, especially the pinks and golds. This quilt has a light-weight, silky feel that I know is going make it favorite to grab and curl up with  on the sofa in our house.

filigree quilt

The Filigree Pattern

Whenever I start a new quilt pattern I first like to make a couple of blocks to make sure that the pattern is working as expected before I cut all the fabric. I would rather experience my learning curve on a couple of blocks than finding out I made a cutting mistake after I cut out all the fabric (don’t ask me how I came to this realization) . In this case it paid off in that I realized I I wanted to spend a little extra time fussy cutting one of the fabrics to get the most out of the print.

I was also reminded that I don’t like to use steam when pressing triangles–they get stretched out so easily. And speaking of pressing–this pattern includes pressing instructions, and if you pay attention to them it really pays off in the final construction. All your seams nest like a dream, which really helps keep your points sharp and the quilt top to lay nice and flat.

Stitch basting

Obviously this is a quilt where you want your points to match. At least I do. It was the first time I have put together a quilt where the nested seam allowances were coming in on a diagonal.  Pinning wasn’t really working for me to keep things in place. So I started stitch basting.

filigree quilt

I haven’t done much of this in past–but now I know I will do it all the time in the future. Let me explain: after I nested my seams, instead of pinning them to keep them in place, I would slip it under the machine and just sew a 1/2″ seam right over that area with a 3.0 stitch length. Then I would slide the block to the next seam intersection, nest the seams and baste that intersection in place, and so on.  At first I thought that this was going to be very time consuming.  But in short order I got my rhythm going and I think it may actually be faster than pinning. And the results are amazing! Every intersection is so firmly held in place with perfect points and no slipping, which I find happens sometimes with pinning. I am glad to have that l technique up my sleeve for future quilts.

The construction of the quilt was pure fun–lots of chain piecing and simple block construction. FQS created a wonderful video tutorial if you want to check it out for some helpful tips. It went together beautifully. I quilted it  using my favorite Warm and Natural batting and some simple, straight line quilting with a sweet pale pink thread (Auriful 2410). I love the pale pink against the denim and it is perfect for the Playground fabrics as well.  I was tempted to quilt it a little more densely, but I really love how soft and snuggly it is being rather lightly quilting.

filigree quilt

The blocks are oversized and then trimmed down to perfection–which is my favorite way to make a quilt. Trimming blocks before sewing them together really improves the accuracy and makes it so easy to do things like match up seams. I used the Creative Grids 7.5″ square ruler to trim up the blocks.  I tried to use a ruler that I already had to do this, and it is probably possible–but the correct ruler made the task so much more enjoyable that I was glad that I made the investment. I’ve never used a Creative Grids ruler before, but I have to say that I am a convert! They have these little spots on the bottom that prevent them from slipping and lines are nice and narrow, which really helps with accurate cutting.

You can get the Filigree quilt pattern for free from The Fat Quarter Shop. They also have a gorgeous kit for it that includes the denim that I also used along with the AGF line Wonderful Things.

beach quilt
(I had to add this one because it was crazy windy that day!)
Using a bullet journal to track habits

pretty playtime quilts: dragonfly block


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The first block in the quilt-a-long is the Dragonfly Block.  Not gonna lie–this one has a lot of pieces! I waffled on the background fabric. I had originally planned on the light gray dots, but when I saw how many pieces the block had, I was afraid that the dots would look too disrupted. So I bought some white fabric from the Fat Quarter Shop. While I was waiting, Erin posted her block and all of a sudden, I knew it would be alright. Yay! (You can never have too much white fabric, right? So no problem on my FQS order. Psst–I also bought some Little Ruby).

I sewed this block carefully and did some ripping out when things didn’t match up as well as I wanted them to. Then the whole block came out 1/4″ too big! (Not a big deal, I can trim up the sashing around it.) But, I wanted to figure out why.

I purchased a new 1/4″ foot for my Babylock sewing machine at QuiltCon this year. I have been thinking that it was sewing TOO scant of a 1/4″, but my HST quilt was working out, so I dismissed the thought. But after playing around with it a bit, and running some tests–it’s quite a bit less than 1/4″. I’m going to take it and my machine back to the dealer and show them.

In the meantime, I  looked up a few YouTube videos and went old school. I measured out a scant 1/4″ from my needle and built up a stack of painters tape to slide my fabric along. I ran a lot of tests–measuring the fabric, sewing a seam, pressing it open, and measuring it again, until I got it right. I think I might add a few more layers of tape to make it the stack a little taller.

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Things seem to be more accurate now, and Block  2: Bows, is coming together easily.

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Are you sewing along? How did your Dragonfly block come out?

Hop over and check out Wynn’s Bow Block today! I’ll post mine next week.

Week 2 – Erin from Why Not Sew?
Week 3 – Wynn from Zakka Art
Week 4 – Anorian from Samelia’s Mum
Week 5 – Amy from Diary of a Quilter
Week 6 – Renee from Sewn with Grace
Week 7 – Jemima from Tied with a Ribbon
Week 8 – Amanda from Jedi Craft Girl
Week 9 – Debbie from Happy Little Cottage
Week 10 – Tina from Emily Ann’s Kloset
Week 11 – Erica from Kitchen Table Quilting
Week 12 – Kristyne from Pretty by Hand
Week 13 – Heidi from Fabric Mutt
Week 14 – Brigitte from The Family Hearth
Week 15 – Lorrie from Sew Mod Designs
Week 16 – Kristin from They Grow Up Too Fast