I liked the block design in the last post enough to figure out how to make it into a block.
It took quite a bit of trial and error, especially with the point triangles. In this finished block, they're not quite right, but I've since adjusted the measurements.
Figuring out how to square up the four side yellow, purple and green blocks as well as the four point blocks was also difficult. I like to make slightly larger blocks and trim them down to size. I'm pretty good about making a consistent 1/4" seam, but can usually perfect the block in the trimming process. And, I think I've figured out a process to trim everything.
I'm not to keen on the purple in this block, but I do like the design. And, I really like the design it makes in a whole quilt.
"There's an app for that," my husband and I joke all the time. And, most of time it's true or at least someone should invent an app for that.
Lynne over at Lily Quilts discovered an application, TouchDraw, which is a vector based drawing application. It works great for drawing quilt designs. She's done a couple tutorials on how to use the application specifically for designing quilt blocks and quilts.
I played around with it a bit and came up with a few designs.
The first is a Kaleidoscope block and quilt. Last year, I started working on a Kaleidoscope quilt. It's stll in process, but I was (with help from Lynne) able to design a block and quilt based on the colors I'm using in the quilt. It took quite a bit of trial and error to figure out how to create the triangles.
Then I started playing around with the application a bit more and designed this block:
Which in turn, led to this quilt:
Or with a little bit of playing around, this quilt:
As you can tell, I'm enjoying this app. It's pretty intuitive. As I learn different processes, I'm able to build on that knowledge and "figure out" how to do something else. The possibilities are endless.
How do you design blocks and quilts? What tools have you found useful? I'm always up for sharing knowledge and bouncing ideas of one another.
I managed to finish all of my bee blocks for May well before the end of the month. It helps when two boys nap at the same time!
The first set, for the Sew Modern Bee, I forgot to photograph. Although I've found time to sew and mail packages, I haven't always remembered to take photos! Luckily, the queen been photographed them when she received the package. Rather than repost her photos, I'll link you over to the flickr pages. Block 1 and block 2. The blocks are Garden Fence, from this tutorial. They were super easy to make, especially since all the fabric was already cut for us!
The second set of blocks were for the Wonky Quilt Bee. For this month, the queen bee asked for large bear paws.
The blocks were fun to make and again, super easy.
This is the last month for one bee and next month is the last for the other. We are continuing the Wonky Quilt Bee, but turning it into a Traveling Quilt Bee. I'm super excited to be working on the traveling quilts. I just need to start thinking about my own colors and ideas for my quilt!
Thanks for all the comments to the giveaway! Wow! 312 comments is a record for my little old blog here. As I suspected, most of you hate hoops, too!
And the winners of the Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway are . . .
Kaufman Animal Party:
Today is Giveaway Day (really week) at Sew, Mama, Sew. It's a fun way for bloggers to connect and get new readers through a collection of giveaways.
This year, I'm giving away three yards of fabic from my stash. The only thing you have to do is leave a comment (make sure I have your email). No hoops (I hate hoops).
Kaufman Animal Party
This yard of fabric doesn't have one of the selveges. I probably cut it off and used it for something else. But other than that, it's a full yard.
Moda (don't know the fabric line)
I bought this years ago and don't remember the fabric line. It's an off-white base fabric with a white pattern. A bit hard to photograph, but you get the idea of the print.
Go visit the link above for more giveaways. The giveaways are open all week to give you enough time to peruse everything. Have fun entering!
ETA: The giveaway is closed and the winners are:
Kaufman Animal Party:
I'm been trying to introduce Liam to a few preschool activities, especially those that involve outdoor fun.
A friend recommended a web site that has a free preschool curriculum from age two to age five. It's called, ABC Jesus Loves Me. I've been trying the 2 Year Curriculum with Liam. Well, we've done two days, and not all of the activities. I'm not sure wether or not I'll continue with it, though.
I had grand plans, being a teacher, of doing the recommended activities throughout the day, and engaging him in learning the different elements. The Bible story, the verse, the Bible related art project, the poem, the song, the color, number, abc activities. It's all good stuff.
But, I've found I don't have the time. One, to plan it. And, two to implement it with any consistency. There's always something else I'd rather do. I suppose I'd be more diligent if I knew that I could stay home full-time. But, as it is, I go back to work in a couple weeks (only for two weeks before summer break) and I have to work in full-time next year, too.
I'm also torn. Being a teacher, I have a strong background in direct instruction and teaching with a purpose. What that basically means is having objectives that you want the child to learn and teaching them those objectives. It involved a lot of instruction and a lot of repetition. The above web site gives you ideas for that type of instruction and they're all fun activities that would engage almost any two-year-old.
However, I'm not sure it's a good use of time. Liam is two. I'd rather he learn about the world through exploring it and just being "in" it, rather than learning about it through school-type activities. I'd like him to "decide" what he wants to learn and be engaged in learning, instead of just learning facts. I want there to be a purpose to him learning something.
For example, we've been working on colors. Colors come up in the books we read, the markers we play with, and the playdough we create. He needs to know his colors to tell us which "one" of something he wants. We repeat and work on the colors throughout the day as the necessity arrises. There's a purpose to him knowing the colors and the learning comes from all different places.
I really like the philosophy of unschooling. Google it and you'll get an idea of what it's all about. We waste so much time in school and in classrooms. Being a classroom teacher, I see and experience it all the time. Think back to your time in K-12 education. How much of what you learned do you use today? You use things specific to your job, definitely. But, general education skills?
The one thing that I've learned how to do is "find out" what I don't know. I know how to figure out how to do what I want to do, whether it be how to fix something at home, how to quilt, knit, how to grow vegetables, or how to use some piece of technology. Part of that is my personality (always a learner), but it is what I want to instill in my children: the ability to learn. I don't want them to know a lot. I want them to know how to learn what they don't know.
Including how to clean up from a messy activity!