Monday, August 30, 2010

BOW #13: Buckeye Beauty

Buckeye Beauty is another one of those simple blocs that can make different, wonderful patters, depending on how you turn the blocks.  It's a 4 patch, with 4-patches within that 4-patch.  The dark squares in the 4-patches make a chain when you start putting it with other Buckeye Beauty blocks.

 To make a 12" block you'll need:
(4) 3-1/2" light squares
(4) 3-1/2" dark squares
(2) 6-1/2" light/dark half square triangles

Use the squares to make two 4-patches, the arrange with the HSTs as shown below:

I think I remember that Mary Kay has a Buckeye Beauty quilt, and she'll share a photo with you.

This quilt, made in jewel-tone colors, flips the dark/light color locations of the half square triangles for a little different look. That's probably why this variation is sometimes called Anvil. Simple changes in blocks can make for interesting variations!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Another Bow Tie Quilt

While looking for a photo of another one of my quilts today, I ran across this one of a Bow Tie quilt. It was taken 3 years ago when I was visiting Karen and she was showing me some of the quilts she had acquired from our Grandma Susie's estate. I guess a love of the Bow Tie block runs in the family!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

BOW #12 Anvil

Anvil is another block that uses lots of HST (Half Square Triangles).  It is most often done as a two-color block (one color for the anvil and another for the background) but it would be fun to do it as a scrap quilt with dark/medium and lights for the background.  Or you could do the center square as one color and the HSTs as another.

For a 12" block you will need:
(1) 6-1/2" square dark
(8) HSTs, dark and light, 3-1/2"  (See BOW#1 for instructions for making Half Square Triangle Units; you will start with 3-7/8" squares, 4 dark and 4 light)
(2) 3-1/2" light squares

Arrange the pieces as shown:
Mary Kay has a beautiful Anvil quilt; I think I can persuade her to post a photo of it...

When you arrange multiple blocks for a quilt, try rotating the blocks to create different patterns--diagonal stripes, or a concentric square/rectangle pattern.

MK says: Ooops! Sorry, Karen, I was wrong: that wasn't an Anvil quilt but one of those blocks that goes by various names. The article I referenced to make the quilt called it Anvil, but it's not this block. So instead, I'll post this snapshot from BlockFab, showing the Anvil pattern with blocks rotated using Sunshine and Shadow symmetry.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

BOW #11 Bow Tie

I love the Bow Tie block.  It can be very casual and country (can't you see it made it with shirtings?) or funky or elegant.  Years ago I made a small wall quilt with bow ties set over white rectangles with little buttons running vertically down from the tie, so that it looked like a formal shirt.  I wish I had take a photo of it.  (Another "note to self...")

The quilt shown at the end of this post was made "the hard way"  (with what's called a Y-seam, when you have to turn a corner in the middle of a seam) but you can do it more easily.  Let's do it that way.

For a 12" finished block you'll need:
(2) 6-1/2" dark squares
(2) 6-1/2" background squares
(2) 3-1/2" dark squares

On the wrong side of the smaller dark squares draw a diagonal line, corner to corner.  Place one of these squares, right sides together, on a corner of a background square. Make sure the small square is placed with the drawn line as shown below.  Sew on the drawn line.

 Trim off the corner, leaving about a quarter inch seam allowance, and fold back the dark square.  There is now a triangle on the square--and you didn't have to deal with bias edges! Repeat with the other small, dark square and background square.  (This technique is used quite often in quilting.  If you did this on all four corners you'd have a Square in a Square block; if you used smaller squares and did it on each corner you'd have a Snowball block  But that's another story.)

Now sew the 4 pieces as shown below, and you have a Bow Tie!   You can play with the proportions, if you like:  make the small squares smaller and your tie will be tied a little tighter, with a narrower tie.

Have fun tying your Bow Tie!

Monday, August 9, 2010

BOW #10 Churn Dash Frame

The Churn Dash, with a few changes in the sizes of the pieces in the block, can become a frame for another small block.    If the Churn Dash Frame is 12" you can use a 6" (finished) block of your choice for the center piece.  (A 9-patch configuration--3x3 squares--is a good choice for the 6" block.)

The piecing of the frame is the same as for the Churn Dash in last week's BOW, but use these sizes for the pieces in a 12" finished block:

(1) 6-1/2" square or block
(4) 3-1/2" Half Square Triangle units (light/dark)
(4) light 2" x 6-1/2" rectangles
(4) dark 2" x 6-1/2" rectangles

The table runner at the top of the post is made from 3 Churn Dash frame blocks, set on point, and with 3 different 6" blocks in the center.  It makes the block more interesting--something more to look at.

Below is a Block of the Month recently finished at Kanesville Quilting.  "Dots and Dashes" uses many Churn Dash (the "Dashes") frame blocks, each with a different block in he center.

Just think of the possibilities!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

BOW #9 Churn Dash

Churn Dash (the block in the center of the star), as with many quilt blocks, is known by other names, as well; Monkey Wrench and Hole in the Barn Door are common.  (And at least one other block called Churn Dash does not look like this one.) 

It's an easy block, using HSTs and rectangles. (You can find instructions for making Half Square Triangles in BOW #1.) For a 12" block, you will need:

(4) Half Square Triangles (light/dark), 4-1/2"
(4) dark rectangles, 2-/12" x 4-1/2"
(4) light rectangles, 2-1/2" x 4-1/2"
(1) light square, 4-1/2"

Sew the light and dark rectangles together along the longer sides, to make 4 pairs.

Arrange the HSTs,  paired rectangles and light square as shown:

The dimensions of the Churn Dash can be changed to make it a frame, so that other blocks can be inserted into the center to make a combination block.  We'll look at that, with a couple of examples, next week.

You can almost see the paddles of a dasher on a churn in the block.  Pioneers often used a plunger type of churn for making butter, other types of churns with various paddle dashes.  (One type of church was on a rocking chair, and you could rock milk into butter!)  In our days, we think more about the dasher in an ice cream freezer.

The Monkey Wrench name would not have been used before 1840-ish, as that is roughly the date of the invention of the monkey wrench. This block does look very much like two monkey wrenches laid head to head; take a look at the photos and diagrams in Wikipedia.   (In fact, one of the names of this block is Double Monkey Wrench.)

Hole in the Barn Door has always conjured up images of a horse escaping from the large hole in the door!