Last week, Bonnie Hunter came to Montana, and I was lucky enough to get to take some classes with her! I have been following Bonnie since before I became a quilter. Actually getting to take her classes was a dream come true. If you aren't familiar with Bonnie, you can check out her blog here.
The first thing we did was test our seam allowance. We sewed two squares together and measured the finished unit. The size of the unit tells you if your seam needs to be adjusted. I was pleasantly surprised when I nailed it on the first try!
From there, we were ready to start working on the quilt. She showed us how to use the Easy Angle ruler to make half square triangles. I had tried this method before, but it went much better this time. Nothing beats getting a unit to come out just right without any trimming.
The next thing we learned was to make hourglass units using the Companion Angle ruler. I've never made hourglass units before, so I can't compare this to any other method. I will say it was much less confusing than what I have seen in the past. It was no time at all before I had a pile of hourglasses ready to be sewn into blocks.
The final unit we had to learn was flying geese. Bonnie showed us how to make them using the Easy Angle and Companion Angle rulers. Ideally, this lets you cut your pieces from normal size strips and not have to trim the geese down. It went fairly well. I think I need to cut less layers of fabric at a time if I want to get the full benefit of this method.
Once our units were made, Bonnie demonstrated webbing to keep the block pieces in order (tutorial here). I always use this method to assemble blocks into a top, but I haven't used it in individual blocks before. She also gave us pressing tips to make our blocks nest when we sew them together. I managed to make one of each type of block before class was finished.
At the end of the day, we laid out everyone's finished blocks on the floor. It's interesting to see all of the different color choices side by side. I'm excited for the finished quilts to start popping up at show and tell at guild.
I had so much fun in this class. It was extra special since Mom was there with me. She also finished one of each block that day. My blocks are smaller because I decided to start with 2" strips instead of 2.5" strips. I like the smaller scale, and it's not too crazy since I'm only making a wall hanging.