Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Steam Punk Blocks: Final Set

Hooray! This is my last set. Some of the fabrics are from 'My Precious' pile. For example, the blade fabric in the second from left bottom row is from Sue Benner. Her work is glorious and I have treasured the scrap she gave me. I finally had the courage to cut it. Isn't it an improvement to be seen and enjoyed in this quilt rather than hidden in my stash?

Three blocks are made of leftover pieces from previous blocks... just to use them up. It makes this set livelier than the previous ones. Hopefully these odd blocks will be good blenders.

Steam Punk quilt blocks #81-96

The next task is deciding the final layout. I'm still debating straight set versus on-point as well as sashing (or not.) My original plan was straight set without sashing but I've had a few more thoughts. The original pattern was set on point with grey sashing. Jeannette at Gone Aussie Quilting started a SteamPunk QAL that now has 194 members. These fabulous quilters have posted an exciting variety of blocks, sets and quilts. Many of them are straight set... at least while they are being posted. Take a look. What setting would you use?

Enjoy the day, Ann

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Steam Punk Quilt Blocks - Fifth Set with Construction Notes

The Steam Punk blocks are almost done. Just a few more and then on to the sashing!

Propeller blocks in pinks, greens, blues and reds.
Steam Punk Quilt blocks 65-80

I've been taking photos of each block as they are finished and cropping the edges. That makes it very easy to create these collages in Picasa. Each collage inspires a slightly different set of blocks: lighter, darker, brighter, quieter. Previously I simply took photos of layouts on my design wall. Cropping and collaging with Picasa is a big improvement because it approximates the sewing edge. You can even add a sashing effect with any solid color by increasing the grid spacing.

Nine Propeller blocks in green, blue, brown and pink/red.
Steam Punk blocks with sashing
While we hope our blocks finish square that is not always the case. Especially curved seam blocks. After making a few I decided to alter my cutting method for the quarter circle corner pieces by cutting the outer sides of those pieces slightly larger than the template. I didn't change any other templates and still sewed quarter-inch seams.

Plastic template is positioned on fabric to show how larger outer seam allowance was cut.
Quarter Circle piece cut with larger outer seams

The extra seam allowance in the outer corners leaves enough room to square the blocks even when my sewing pulls one corner in.

Marimekko fabric in greens and blues is used with browns and yellows to create a Steam Punk block.
Top right corner of this block is not square. But larger seam allowance allows trimming.

Then I use my square ruler to trim the block to 9.5 inches with a quarter-inch seam allowance past the blade edges.

Steam Punk block ready to trim to size

I considered extending the seam allowance on the triangles also but using the correct size helped ensure the blades didn't get too big.

Here are my previous posts on this quilt:
First Set with Tutorial
Second Set
Third Set
Fourth Set

Enjoy the day, Ann

Monday, July 7, 2014

Steam Punk Quilt Blocks - Fourth Set

These Steam Punk blocks are rolling along now that I'm in the groove. Loving the novelty prints - bicycles, bees, koi and phones!

Steam Punk blocks with geometrics and novelty prints
Steam Punk blocks 49-64

Enjoy the day, Ann