29 February 2016

1930s Farmer's Wife QAL - #47 Joy

Welcome to another stop on the Farmer's Wife 1930's Sampler Quilt-Along! I can't quite believe the time has come around so quick for my next instalment, so much so I was delayed in sending out this post today! Though it turns out I had already made this block yonks ago in prep for the blog-tour I'd just completely forgotten!? Not sure how I forgotten when it turned out to be one of my favourite FWQ blocks so far. I copied the colours used in the book almost identically, as I loved it so much. I'm definitely going to use this dark green, lemon yellow and red colour-scheme together again, it give such a strong effect. 

As with all my blocks, I have machine pieced and rotary-cut using the rotary cutting templates provided with the CD. I'm not as clued up as Kerry for the foundation paper piecing method unfortunately. You can find Kerry's version of this block on her blog today.  If you're a machine piecer like me, I posted some tips on a previous blog post here. I hope this helps. Looking forward to making some more of these soon! 

You can link up your blocks on social media with the hashtag #fw1930sqal, and with this block in particular; #joyblock #fw47joy
Fabrics: Kona Solid 'Leaf' and 'Red' from the 1930s Fat Quarter Bundle at Sew and Quilt.

18 December 2015

Winter Wishes Christmas Table Topper Tutorial

It's my stop on the Riley Blake Stitch 'n Kitchen Christmas Blog Tour today, so I'm sharing my Winter Wishes TableTopper pattern which you can make in no time for your festive table this year. Learn how to make my *delicious* recipe for authentic Cornish Fairings biscuits as well, also known as the best ginger biscuits ever! ;-)

The Recipe:
Title: Winter Wishes Tabletopper
"Making" Time: One evening
Notes:  Please read through all instructions carefully. Seams are 1/4" unless otherwise stated. RST means right sides together. Press seams open unless otherwise directed. 

White fabric 1FQ
Red fabric (4) Fat Eighths
Green fabric 10" x 10" square
Binding 1FQ
Backing 1FQ

Cut the following;
* From each red 1/8, cut (1) 2-7/8" strip. Sub-cut into (5) 2-2/8" squares, you need (20) squares total. Cut (1) 4-1/2" square from each red fabric, you need (4) total. 
* From the green fabric sub cut your 10" square into (4) 2-1/2" squares. 
*From the white fabric cut (1) 2-1/2" strip, sub-cut into (8) 2-1/2" squares. Cut (4) 2-7/8" strips, sub-cut into (20) 2-7/8" squares. 

1. Draw a diagonal line through from one corner to the opposite corner of each of the 2-7/8" white squares. Place a white square with corresponding red square RST together, sew 1/4" from the each side from the drawn line. Cut along the drawn line. Open and press seams to the dark side. You now have two complete half square triangle (HST) units. 
Repeat steps for remaining squares to make 36 HST units. 

2. Assemble your block as follows. Your block should measure 6-1/2" square.

3. Assemble your blocks in two rows. Join rows together. Press all seams open. 

4. Cut an 18" square from backing fabric and batting. Make a quilt 'sandwich' with your quilt top, batting and backing fabric. Baste. Quilt as desired. I chose to machine quilt at 1" intervals diagonally through the centre. 

4. Cut (2) 2-1/2" x WOF strips for binding. Piece together. Press in half length lengthwise (wrong-sides together) to create your binding. Sew to quilt top, miter corners and fold and hand-sew to the backside to finish. 

I hope you've all been enjoying the Riley Blake 'Stitch'n Kitchen' blog tour. Hop over to the main page for all the details with lots more sewing ideas to make and Christmas recipes to enjoy. Thanks for stopping by, Jessie

The Recipe:
Title: Cornish Fairings Biscuits
"Making" Time: 30mins

100g Butter
225g Plain Flour
2tsp Baking Powder
1tsp Ground Ginger
2tsp Mixed Spice
100g Caster Sugar
4 tsp Golden Syrup

Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. 
Lightly grease 2 large baking sheets. Put the flour, ¼ tsp salt, baking powder, bicarb and spices in a food processor. Add the diced butter and mix until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Tip into a bowl and stir in the sugar. 
  1. Gently warm the golden syrup in a pan, add to the mixture and stir to form a dough. Roll the dough into 16 medium-sized balls, and spread them on the greased baking sheets at least 2cm apart. Bake for 8-12 mins until golden. 
    Cool on the trays before transferring to a wire rack.

    Voila! Now enjoy that lovely Christmassy mixed spice taste! I eat them all year round too! (Thanks mum!) Hope you enjoy them too, Jessie

16 December 2015

Great Granny Twist with Lori Holt - Blog Hop

The 'Granny-Square' quilt block is absolutely one of my all-time favourite blocks, and today I'm sharing a super fun project using Lori Holt's Great Granny Mini block, with a twist! Quite literally in fact … 

I'm putting them on point! By adding some setting triangles and corner setting triangles the finished blocks are ready to turn into a pillow! I'll be showing you how to set any size block on point with the quilty maths. 

This is part of the Great Granny Twist Blog Hop, where bloggers have been invited to put a spin on a project from Lori Holts book. You can read all the details on the rest of the blog tour with Fat Quarter Shop here and find out what the rest of the bloggers have come up with. Such a fun idea, thanks FQS! As well Kimberly, from FQS has put together this video tutorial of her twist on the Granny Square block using appliqué circles. 

I pulled some crazy bright fabrics from my stash for this special project! The blue floral print used in the triangles is a vintage fabric I've been hoarding for *just* the right moment and I think it makes for quite a striking finish! I had lots of fun choosing the fabrics for the blocks for an eclectic mix of modern and old - I even fussy-cut the centre block with some vintage stichery taken from an embroidered tablecloth. 

I hand-quilted using Aurifil 40WT thread using the Fat Quarter Shop Finishing Set. It worked a treat! I'm so pleased I took the time to hand-quilt. 

First, make up 5 Great Granny Mini blocks, according to Lori's instructions featured in the book. Once you have your finished 6-1/2" blocks we need the following calculations to determine what size to cut our pieces. Adjust the finished block size to make any quilt block on point. 

Corner Setting Triangles

6.5" (finished block size) / 1.414 + 0.875 = cut size of square 
Cut square diagonally to make 2 finished (Half Square) corner setting triangles.

Side Setting Triangles

6.5" (finished size of block) x 1.414 + 1.25 = cut size of square
Cut square diagonally twice, to make 4 finished (Quarter Square) side setting triangles. 

Assemble your pillow top as follows. (Navy squares are your finished Granny Square blocks.) Piece together in rows, then add the corner setting triangles to the each corner. 


These measurements finish slightly oversized triangles so you have lots of wiggle room to square up your quilt top. I have a tutorial from a few years ago on how to finish your pillow with an envelope closure

Granny Square 'mini' block by Lori Holt, adapted with permission by Jessie Fincham.
You can purchase the book from Fat Quarter Shop here, and if you're in the UK you can purchase the book from me at Sew and Quilt

30 November 2015

1930s Farmer's Wife QAL - #23 Charlotte / Rotary Cutting Tips

I'd completely forgotten how much I loved making these little Farmer's Wife blocks! It was such a pleasure rummaging through my scrap bins and stash auditioning different fabrics for each one. Thank you Kerry for inviting me this week on the 1930s Farmer's Wife Quilt Along, I don't think I would have got round to making one if I didn't have a special post to write. 

The big stack of blocks above are all from my original Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt, which I happen to make in 1930s reproduction fabric, so it's completely fitting for today's QAL blog post - so they made an appearance ;-) I started making these quite a few years ago but still haven't got to the finish line with it, I thoroughly enjoy making them (which can be extremely labour intensive), so I'm in no hurry! I'm all about the sloooow sewing…

I really love the new addition of the miniature diagram thats included on the pattern page of each block. How fun. I know this is used for foundation paper piecing directions, but I thought it might be a nice memento for a quilt journal with some watercolour paints perhaps as well? 

Says the girl that hasn't even finished all the blocks from the first quilt? I know, I know. 

I digress, back to the #23 Charlotte block, which you can find on page 182 of the book. I rotary cut and machine piece, as I have done with all my FWQ blocks. There are rotary cutting templates provided, in addition to the foundation paper pieced ones. Just print them out on regular paper (they have a 1inch size guide on the page so you know you're printing out at the correct size, which of course I didn't on first time, oops. I succeeded on second attempt by selecting the US Letter page size in my printer - you might want to also use something like 'do not scale' etc). 

Most often I will dig through my stash as they are such tiny pieces you really don't need much. If I use yardage I'll rough cut a strip larger than the template and rough cut a larger shape than the template. I will often fold the strip to double over, depending on how many pieces are required for that fabric/shape. 

I usually stack about 2-4 pieces (depending on how sharp my rotary blade is) and trim off the excess, lining up with the edge of the template. Turn and cut, turn and cut, being careful not to shift too much. I use a mini rotary cutting mat that spins, not sure why it didn't make the picture? 

Once you're all prepped you're ready to go. Chain piecing makes life much easier here. Once I'm done with the chain I'll bring it straight over to my iron for pressing (without too much handling) and trim the threads while at the iron station to save time going back and forth. 

And here she is all finished! I went for a different colour combo than the book version. I used Corn Yellow Kona solid, which is a really bold yellow that packs a punch, alongside an old Mother's Melodies print I used to sell a few years back in the shop. The opposite side is my favourite green, Aloe Kona solid and a matching Pretty Posies print by Darlene Zimmerman. I have a popular Kona bundle I put together for Sew and Quilt, which is a complete FQ bundle of all 22 official 1930's Kona solids. They are perfect for this QAL!

Of course I couldn't leave without sharing some 1930's repro eye candy from Sew and Quilt with you! *plug, plug, plug*. On the left is the delightful Pretty Posies FQ bundle, it's subtle and sweet without bring over the top, plus it's 10% off ;-) On the right is a special Farmer's Wife FQ bundle I put together for the release of Kerry's QAL. What a great bunch hey?!

If you fancy joining in VeryKerryBerry's QAL, you can find all the details here. Kerry has lots of helpful tips and information on making the blocks using the foundation paper pieced method and other bloggers have been hosting to share their tips on the different methods of construction also. There is also a very useful errata page thats kept up to date so do take a look. (I reported no problems with my block).

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week! 

14 November 2015

Quick Update

My new quilt pattern will be ready for release soon. I'm tweaking the pattern here and there and working on some last minute edits. The newly named Penny Tiles quilt has arrived back from the long arm quilter with a lovely Baptist Fan design, I'm really happy with the outcome so once I'm done with the binding I'll share the full reveal! Exciting!

I'll also be planning some quilt kits hopefully! A loooovely delivery of Liberty Tana Lawns arrived this week for Sew and Quilt, so I've been busy petting and admiring for the last few days...

As well I don't think I could write a blog post today without mentioning the terrible events that have happened in Paris last night. So, so devastating. My heart goes out to everyone in France. This is a photo from my trip to Nantes this year, my first time visiting the country. I've never been to Paris, but its a place I've always wanted to visit and hope to someday. 
Have a peaceful weekend friends.

2 November 2015

Lori Holt's Cozy Cottage Calendar: Blog Tour!

Today I'm kicking off the Lori Holt tour for her newest release; the Cozy Cottage 2016 Calendar! Lori, of Bee In My Bonnet puts her unique quilty spin on this fun calendar which you can use and enjoy all year! As well, you have the pattern to make the mini quilt on the front cover...

… and these cute pillows! Don't you just L-O-V-E that flag border around the cottage block!? A perfect finish. 
For my cozy cottage block, I decided on a Christmassy theme going all red, which I figured would be really sweet as a Christmassy pillow, or mini quilt for the upcoming festive season (not that long to go!). I made the larger 8" size. Lori has included pattern instructions for a 4" block and an 8" block. Whatever I decide to finish it into, I know I'll be using the border like Lori, for sure!

If you're a fan of the delightful Lori Holt Farm Girl style, you'l love this. Quilty, country styled photos are featured on every page, so each month will be a treat to turn over. A big thank you Fat Quarter Shop for my copy, I look forward to getting organised in 2016! You can find it available to buy from them here. I also have copies available in my Sew & Quilt shop too, for those who want to order from the UK/EU. 

Have a great week friends! Its my birthday today, so I'm hoping for an afternoon of sewing, fingers crossed! Jessie, xo

Pssst… In other Lori Holt news new brand new Bloom Sew Simple templates have just been released and are now available at Sew and Quilt! Lori will be using these in her new QAL starting January to make the 'Bloom' quilt, which will be offered as a free pattern on the Riley Blake website. < Order your 'Bloom' Templates here >