Fall into a Quilt Along: Barn

Welcome to block 11 of Fall into a Quilt Along. We only have one block left! On October 16, we will release the final block, as well as setting ideas for finishing your quilt. I’ll be sharing a fun setting that works well even if your blocks didn’t all come out the same size. I can’t wait to show you!

This week we have a lovely barn designed by Abbie Danahy of Sparkle On. You can find the free pattern on her blog post. Remember, all block patterns will be free until the quilt along ends on November 13, 2018.

Tips for Success

Seam Test

I always recommend testing your seam allowance before you start. That way you can be sure your block will come out the right size.

To test your seam allowance, cut two 2" squares and sew them together. Press to one side, and measure the resulting rectangle. The rectangle should be 3 1/2" long. If your rectangle is shorter, you need a narrower seam allowance. If your rectangle is longer, you need a wider seam allowance. Adjust your seam and try again. Once the rectangle is exactly 3 1/2" long, you're good to go.

Stitch and Flip

Stitch and flip corners are super versatile for making all sorts of blocks.  The secret to making a successful stitch and flip corner is to stitch just outside of the drawn line. The line you drew isn't the stitching line - it's actually where the fabric needs to fold! By stitching just outside of the line, you give yourself the extra fabric you need to reach all the way to the corner when you flip it over.

Just to be safe, I always test to make sure my corner is covered before I cut away the excess fabric from the back.

Choosing Colors

I don’t know about you, but choosing fabrics often takes me as long as making the block. One technique that helps me visualize my choices is to place the fabric roughly as it will appear in the block. That way I can see how everything will play together.

Trimming the Pinwheels

I love that Abbie has us make our pinwheels and then trim them down. I usually trim the half square triangles before sewing a pinwheel, but this saved a lot of time! For best results, line up the 45 degree line on your ruler with the diagonal through the center of the pinwheel. Line up the 1 3/4” lines with the horizontal and vertical centers of the pinwheel. It should come out perfectly!

Spinning Seams

I love to spin my seams whenever possible. In this block, I spun the seams of the pinwheels to avoid bulk at those center points.

I just love my Autumn Harvest Barn. I can’t wait to see yours!

My Fellow Hosts

I am joined by 6 other wonderful ladies in hosting this quilt along. They’ve each made their own barns and are sharing tips on their blogs. Be sure to check them out!

Abbie Danahy at Sparkle On
April Adams at JANDA Bend Quilts
Bobbi Bridgeman at Snowy Days Quilting <--- That's me!
Jennifer Fulton at Inquiring Quilter
Karen Thurn at Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats
Sherry Shish at Powered by Quilting
Vanda Chittenden at Quilting with Vanda

Prizes

As always, we have some fabulous prizes this week. Anyone over 18 is eligible to win, including international participants. To be entered in the drawing, simply share your completed acorn block  by 11:59 pm Eastern time on October 15, 2018. You can share on Instagram with the hashtag #fallintoaqal, in the Partners in Design Facebook group, or in the linky party on Abbie’s post.

Our prizes for this block are the Christmas Tree Farm table runner pattern by April Adams of JANDA Bend Quilts, and 1/2 yard each of 4 Boundless solids by Craftsy.

quilt along prizes

At the end of the quilt along, we will have a grand prize drawing for anyone that has made a complete quilt top with all 12 blocks. There's no need to have it quilted for the drawing. To be eligible to win, finished quilt tops must be posted by 11:59 pm Eastern time on November 12, 2018.

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Longarm Quilting Exhibit

The Piece by Peace Quilt Guild in Livingston, MT does a quilt show every other year. This is the second time they’ve included a longarm quilting exhibit as part of the show. The local longarm quilters are each invited to make a quilt, then quilt as desired. It’s a lot of fun to see so many way to quilt the same thing!

This year, we were asked to make a 24” carpenters star in any fabrics we chose. We could add borders as desired as long as the quilt didn’t exceed 40” square. I was only able to stop by the show for about 10 minutes, but it was so fun to see the exhibit!

The exhibit was so fun that I thought you might enjoy seeing close ups of a few of my favorites. First up is the quilt made by Tracy Yadon. I really like her combination of straight lines and flowers.

Next is this blue and purple quilt made by Lori O’Neill. She opted for an edge to edge design rather than custom quilting. I just thought her choice was really fun and playful.

This bright quilt was made by Bev Palm. Her border fabric is stunning! I really like how she carefully placed it to be lighter in two corners and darker in the other two. This quilt looks like something my sister would love.

This is my quilt! I couldn’t get the colors to come out right in these pictures, but I’ll be sure to take some better ones once I get the quilt back. I’ll also share more about my process for making it.

Lastly, I just love this modern take by Fatima Lucas. The colors are so bright, and she really took advantage of the negative space to quilt a variety of designs.

I hope you enjoyed getting a look at these quilts! I certainly enjoyed participating. I hope the guild continues to include a longarm exhibit in their future shows.

What do you think? Did you have a favorite quilt? What do you like about it?

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Fall into a Quilt Along: Canning Jars

Welcome to block 10 of Fall into a Quilt Along! We’ve rounded into the home stretch of this quilt along with fall quickly approaching. If you missed any of the previous blocks, my quilt along page has everything you need. All of the patterns will be free until November 13, 2018.

Fall is harvest season, and for many of us, harvest means canning. Sandra Healy designed these wonderful canning jars for our quilt. Head on over to her blog post for the pattern.

Tips for Success

As a quilt along host, I’m here to make these blocks as easy as possible. I have several tips that will help this block go together like a dream. I even wrote a tutorial for adding a beveled shelf to the block!

Seam Test

I always recommend testing your seam allowance before you start. That way you can be sure your block will come out the right size.

To test your seam allowance, cut two 2" squares and sew them together. Press to one side, and measure the resulting rectangle. The rectangle should be 3 1/2" long. If your rectangle is shorter, you need a narrower seam allowance. If your rectangle is longer, you need a wider seam allowance. Adjust your seam and try again. Once the rectangle is exactly 3 1/2" long, you're good to go.

Stitch and Flip Corners

Stitch and flip corners are super versatile for making all sorts of blocks.  The secret to making a successful stitch and flip corner is to stitch just outside of the drawn line. The line you drew isn't the stitching line - it's actually where the fabric needs to fold! By stitching just outside of the line, you give yourself the extra fabric you need to reach all the way to the corner when you flip it over.

Just to be safe, I always test to make sure my corner is covered before I cut away the excess fabric from the back.

If you’re not careful, the fusible web can make applique blocks really stiff. To combat this, I like to cut away the centers of my pieces before fusing them to my fabric. It makes a huge difference! Just make sure to leave about 1/2” of fusible around the outside of each piece.

I wanted to get my produce close to the bottom of the jars without losing anything in the seam allowance. I pulled out a ruler to mark that 1/4” seam while I was placing my pieces. It would be a good idea to put another ruler along the left side since there’s another seam allowance there.

Note - If you end up making a shelf like I did, it may be easier to add that before fusing the produce in the jars.

Once everything was fused in place, I pulled out matching thread and did a straight stitch around the edges of each piece. It’s important to stitch the pieces down to secure them, but you can use any stitch you like.

Making the Beveled Shelf

Once I had finished my block, I stood back and took a look. The colors felt pretty light compared to the rest of the blocks in my quilt. It didn’t take long for me to decide I would really like for my jars to be sitting on a shelf. I was thrilled to find a maroon woodgrain fabric in my stash that was just perfect.

Would you like to make your own shelf for your jars? I’ve written a tutorial just for you!

Sewing the Shelf

Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on the wrong side of both 3/4” background squares.

Place the squares right sides together with the shelf piece as shown and stitch just outside of the drawn lines. Stitching next to the line gives you the extra bit fabric you need to reach all the way to the corner.

Cut away the excess corner fabric 1/4” from the sewn lines.

Press the top piece towards the shelf, and the bottom piece towards the background, as shown.

Sew the 1 1/2” background square to the end of the shelf piece, and press towards the background square.

The shelf is finished and can be sewn to the bottom of your block. Press towards the shelf.

Trim the excess background fabric from the top of the block. Your block should measure 12 1/2” square.

Tada! You’ve successfully added a beveled shelf to your block.

More Wonderful Jars

I am joined by six other fabulous ladies that are hosting this quilt along. They have each made their own versions of the block. Be sure to check them out for more tips and inspiration.

Abbie Danahy at Sparkle On
April Adams at JANDA Bend Quilts
Bobbi Bridgeman at Snowy Days Quilting <--- That's me!
Jennifer Fulton at Inquiring Quilter
Karen Thurn at Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats
Sherry Shish at Powered by Quilting
Vanda Chittenden at Quilting with Vanda

Prizes

As always, we have some fabulous prizes this week. Anyone over 18 is eligible to win, including international participants. To be entered in the drawing, simply share your completed acorn block  by 11:59 pm Eastern time on October 1, 2018. You can share on Instagram with the hashtag #fallintoaqal, in the Partners in Design Facebook group, or in the linky party on Sandra’s post.

This week’s prize includes a free PDF pattern of the winner’s choice from Sandra Healy Designs. Sandra is our block designer this week. Be sure to support her by checking out her pattern store.

We also have a $25 Gift Certificate to Fort Worth Fabric Studio. Fort Worth Fabric Studio is an online-only fabric store based in Texas. They specialize in beautiful quilt fabrics & batiks for quilters and the creative seamstress.

Help us support our sponsors by visiting Fort Worth Fabric Studio to sign up for their newsletter for updates on new items and promotions. I took a look, and they have some fabulous sale prices.

At the end of the quilt along, we will have a grand prize drawing for anyone that has made a complete quilt top with all 12 blocks. There's no need to have it quilted for the drawing. To be eligible to win, finished quilt tops must be posted by 11:59 pm Eastern time on November 12, 2018.

Question for You

For some reason, the only things I remember canning with my mom are strawberry jam and tomatoes. I know we did so much more than that, because the basement shelves were always lined with jars and jars full of home-canned goodness. The memories I do have are fond ones, though. The best part was mashing up the strawberries with the pastry cutter. I was always a fan of the messy jobs. 😊

What memories does harvest season bring for you? Was canning a part of your life growing up? I would love to hear about it in the comments!