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Wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, great-aunt and friend....and fur-kid mum I love Quilting, stitching, photography, cooking, baking, gardening, blogging and making new friends...stop by and say hi!

Friday 31 January 2014

January NewFO Time - Arctic Star

I am so excited to start a new quilt and have been showing you peeks of the fabrics etc. It wasn't hard to go with the colours of the original quilt, I mean look at this pic....penguins are just meant to be teamed up with blue and grey.

{source - Design Seeds}
The pattern I am working on comes from Homespun,an Australian publication, and this pattern is in the October 13 issue. I have been working on the project for the month of January so not all of this post content was done in one day.....I am not that diligent!

Week 1

Being a lazy weekend around here, I decided to start cutting my fabrics.  Generally I am really
BAD and tend to not read any instructions but instead I just look at the picture, glance at square sizes and start cutting - following the diagram (as above) - but to find how big the squares are for this quilt, I had to really look for them in the instructions which meant, for once, I did do some reading and then I just got totally confused.  Excitement was turning to consternation at this point.

Whaaaaaaat? I don't understand......oh, they want you to twice cross cut squares to make  triangles to sew to other triangles! Now, I don't know about you but I never sew triangles together. Much rather sew squares diagonally onto the end of rectanges, even if there is some fabric wastage, so I had to make some slight adjustments to the pattern for that part.  Aha, that looks alright! and that wastage I was talking about.....well I have plans for those offcuts later.

Then reading further down for the cutting instructions for the middle of the block I was aghast to be told to cut out teeny tiny 1 3/4 inch squares to sew together to make the 16 patch square block. Wouldn't it be easier to do this using the strip method?

So with the correct measurements jotted down in my journal, I will forget about the instructions at this point and plod ahead with my own methods. I cut 1 3/4 strips, sewed two contrast strips together and then I cut this strip in half  and sewed it together again so that when I cross cut, I had four 1 3/4 inch squares already sewn together.

 and here is my finished 16 patch block ready. I am sure this is a much better method than sewing all those little squares together.

Week 2 
One Arctic Star block complete - 1 down.....15 to go!

but before I continue......I think it is time for some more fabrics

and now I am confident that I have enough of a range to make the blocks interesting. Oh but wait, I have been tempted again.........Ok, now I have enough

And before I knew it, I had 4 blocks which is enough for a row but I am going to resist the temptations to sew this row together until all 16 blocks are done.

Week 3
With a number of blocks finished I decided to turn my attention to the one area that was giving me heart palpitations every time I thought of doing it.  Wavy line sewing!! but first I had to freestyle cut a wavy line through these two layered fabrics (which are Tilda fabrics btw)  EEEEK! better have a steadying cup of coffee first.

If you look closely you will see that I did draw a line because I was worried that I would have an indecisive moment while cutting and make a mess but I actually didn't follow the line once I got going. Oh, the relief of getting it done and it turned out ok.....but now I have to sew the two edges together. Another cup of coffee?

 Maybe not......lets just get this done with. The whole time I was sewing the two edges together on the sewing machine, I just couldn't imagine how they would come together ok but LOOK....they did! So now I need to sew the other two pieces and these will become the snowy hills for my appliqued penguins.

Still a fair bit to get done so I must be off to get another block done. I am determined to be more organised to get things done this year so look out for further posts about this project.

I am linking in  to the 2014 New FO Challenge with Barbara's at Cat Patches.  
Also linking in with Lets Book It at Vroomans Quilts

Other posts related to this New FO
The Inspiration
Fabric Choices

Go along and check them out or even think about linking in as well.  The more the merrier!



  1. Great post...hehe...thanks. Love your fabrics the quilt is going to look fabulous !'m

  2. Oh this is going to be nice Cath.xx

  3. The colors of this quilt are exceptionally lovely.
    You have done a wonderful job so far !

  4. I love that quilt, I agree with you about reading the directions, they never seem to make sense to me.

  5. This is gorgeous and is so inspirational...I'd love to have a go but I know I just don't have the time at the moment. So I'll enjoy yours ;D
    I'll look forward to seeing it completed. Enjoy your weekend!

  6. That is going to be beautiful! I love the colors!

  7. Oh so cute...I love the fabrics and penguins really are my favourite!

  8. This pattern is SEW adorable! Love your fabric choices.

  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. Wow your blocks are looking good, I like the fabrics you have chosen
      Cheers Pauline

  10. i love the fabrics you have chosen and they way you are working through it... I also try and make things easier like you do...

  11. Oh how fun! I love the colors you have chosen and I can't wait to see the final product :) Have a beautiful afternoon! Hugs!

  12. Love the colors! I like your way of construction too - I would cut all those little squares out either!!

  13. Ha - I know exactly what you experienced and so glad you re-read and then went with your comfort zone to accomplish those pretty blocks. LOVE you fabrics and color scheme. Thank you for joining in on Book It.

  14. Gorgeous colours and fabric prints... its going to be wonderful xxx

  15. Love the Penguins! Your color choice is perfect for this lovely quilt.

  16. This looks like it would fit right in here with our cold weather. Very cute

  17. Love the block and the colours of your fabrics are just right :-) I agree about how tedious cutting and sewing all those little squares...your way makes so much sense, Cath!

  18. This is going to be a beautiful quilt. I'm looking forward to seeing more of it. The colors you've chosen are perfect!

  19. Your blocks look great for this very fun quilt and I think your methods are far better to achieve the results . Great job!

  20. Love your blocks and your fabrics combo.Your will be wonderful.Happy quilting!

  21. Don't you just hate it when patterns are so complex or just plain wrong. Back ages ago when I was teaching, one of my students came in one morning nearly in tears. She had fought with instructions to make some starts (bit like yours) and nothing worked or fitted. We sat there together and fitted and juggled and tried to make it work for ages, before it hit me that the measurements were completely wrong. Another time I prepared a pattern for a mag (not mentioning the name) and when it came back for editing, all my cutting instructions had been changed. The deadline was too tight for me to remake the blocks and check them. So assuming that happens all the time, you never know if it was the original pattern or the editor who made those mistakes.

  22. Fun pattern and your fabric choices are gorgeous! I've learned to read the patterns, then do all the conversions so I can piece using my favorite methods.

  23. I love the colors you are suing. I would be concerned about cutting and sewing that wavy line, too!

  24. Love Love, Love your penguins! I agree with you about directions. I think I very rarely do it their way unless it is a technique I am not familiar with....then I do a test block in my ugliest fabric I have laying around. Wavy lines! One brave woman. This is on my bucket list. I did one a million years ago when they sold that stupid "ruler" that you bend into the curve you want. That was a waste of money but I learned a lot. For one thing freehand is just as good. I have used that ruler for paper projects. Can't wait to see your finished quilt!!!

  25. Good for you for using the strip method on the 16 patch blocks. They look terrific!!!

  26. Wrote a long comment but it disappeared. Anyway, Love your Penguins. I want to do something like this with owls. Like 12 months of owls in outfits of some kind. Can't wait to see you finished quilt!
    Aileen in FL


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