classes, Piecing, possibilities, Teaching

Saturday’s class – Four into Sixteen

We couldn’t have asked for better weather for our Saturday class at Tittensor.  Having had to cancel the previous class due to snow and adverse road conditions we all enjoyed being able to set things up with warm sunshine, birdsong volume turned up and the gentle clack of bowls from the bowling green at the side of the car park.  Full house again to discover and explore a very simple technique with lots of potential and possibilities.  There were even samples, instructions and a demo! The technique part was based on Billie Lauder’s “Quick Tricks Squared”  and it begins with two 10inch squares. (Think Layer Cake).  Simple stitching and slicing leads from these two squares to two 4patch units –

starter 4patch

starter units

and then on from here with some further stitching and slicing

first slice

to arrive at something like this

finished block

So far so good.  Lots of fun and several blocks made.  But one of our favourite things is “What if?” so we went back to the start with the 10inch squares and instead of 2 fabrics, some of us tried out 3 different fabrics, some of us tried out 4.  And cutting at different intervals, and swapping slices around ……………… it was all very absorbing, and probably one of the quietest classes we’ve ever had!

finished block


two sets of blocks

definitely blue

more blocks

carried away

hands on

hands on

4 fabric blocks

4 fabric blocks

2 block combination

variations on a theme

more blocks

4 fabric block

more variations

3 fabric block

Maggi Birchenough had brought in a small selection of her yummy hand dyed fabrics and threads

Maggi's fabrics

hand dyed threads

we had a basket of fat quarters from The Corner Patch  and we put flyers out for Staffs Patchworkers programme and also the British Quilt & Stitch Village Show  which is (gulp) less than a week away.  So while we wait for everyone to rush and stitch their blocks together into wonderful quilt tops we need to put things together for our demo spot at Uttoxeter – perhaps more caffeine is called for?

classes, Teaching

It’s all a mystery

New comfy chairs at the Village Hall were much appreciated for our Mystery Day.  Lots of sitting and stitching but with no idea of what the result would look like ….

Here’s where everyone began   – the official version followed by the real thing –

Once these first units were made – and there were quite a lot of them! – it was on to cutting more strips and stitching and slicing

At lunch time we had a quick look at a quilt top by Ann Jermey that she had begun in one of our Grow Your Own classes – apparently it is awaiting a final border and then it’s ready for quilting.  We thought it looked terrific –

We did allow pauses for coffee, tea and cake consumption as well as lunch, but there was a slight problem with the cake this time – no suitable knife of any kind could be found in the kitchen, so improvisation with a fork (!) resulted in an interesting display on the plate –

The pattern we had chosen for this year’s Mystery was based closely on “The Wonderland Quilt” design by US quilter Billie Lauder.   When we asked Billie for permission to do this, she graciously agreed on condition that we sent pictures of the day – think we might omit the cake!  The block  for this quilt is very easy to make, just straight measuring, cutting and stitching, but is very versatile, in that the component units can be turned in any number of directions.  Which is why we chose it – it means that everyone will have made the same blocks to the same instructions with their own choices of fabric and then when it comes to putting together there will be all sorts of choices both for the block and its setting.   Here you can see what some of the blocks will look like –

We’re looking forward to seeing the quilt tops we’re sure will follow on from our Mystery Day – everyone had done enough cutting and construction to make 12 blocks each.  Well done to all!