Let's Talk Fussy Cutting with Pat Sloan

We're so excited to share that Elisabeth will be chatting today with Pat Sloan on the American Patchwork and Quilting radio show! She'll be sharing more about the book, the process, and life around the fabric industry.

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If you want to catch the interview, you can listen live today at 1pm PST here: http://www.allpeoplequilt.com/magazines-more/quilting-podcast, or you can listen after the show as well! You can listen on your computer, or subscribe to the American Patchwork & Quilting podcast. We hope you have the chance to tune in too!

As always, Happy Fussy Cutting!

 

The Fussy Cut Sampler 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

Can you believe it's almost Christmas?? We've been busy sewing up a storm for all our family and friends. I don't know about you, but this year it seems like a lot of folks want to know what Quilters want to see stuffed in their stockings! We have a few favorites, and wanted to share them here, in case you're stumped, or just looking for a fun little gift for friends. We've tried really hard to keep our shopping list at three small shops we love so you can combine shipping and support a small business owner, win-win!

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#1 - Bobbinis - These little gems are a steal at only $.99! Perfect for keeping your bobbin connected to the spool it goes with, you'll wish you ordered one for every spool in your stash.

#2 - Kwik Klip Basting Tool - If you like to pin baste your quilts, you NEED a Kwik Klip in your life! This little tool is a serious finger saver when you're basting quilts of any size. We even use them when we're basting minis or quilted pillow shams. Trust us on this one, the Kwik Klip is a no brainer for your sewing tools, and it's only $9.00!

#3 - Everyday Essentials Pattern Booklet - Okay - I know we're quilters first, but every now and again it's really fun to challenge yourself with a different kind of project. This pattern booklet by Anna Graham of Noodlehead features 3 different patterns perfect for an adventurous beginner. There's a tote, a pouch and a wallet pattern, all in one darling pattern book. At only $18, it's a great investment in your crafty pattern arsenal. 

#4 - Tulip Pins - If you're anything like us, half the fun in pinning (when you have to pin) is having the CUTEST pins on the block! These adorable tulip pins will keep you smiling, even if you do accidentally prick a finger. At $9.50 they're a little pin luxury, but they'll look adorable in your pincushion and holding your projects together. 

#5 - Tuesday Bassen Needle Minder - Now that Nichole works at Sublime Stitching, we get to see some really fun new items from an industry adjacent to quilting! While you might think needle minders are only for embroidery or cross stitching, we use ours all the time! They're great to use when you're basting a quilt, doing any type of small hand project, or working on needle turn applique. It helps that this one is SO cute, and after all, who doesn't love pizza! This sassy (and hungry) little lady will perk up any project for only $16.50.

#6 - Rainbow Wonder Clips - We love wonder clips. We loved them in red, loved them in pink and REALLY love them in rainbow! These are perfect for holding binding down when you're basting a quilt, but they also work for keeping pieces together if you're working on a complex pattern. You can even use them as pin-replacements. They're so useful all around our sewing space that they always end up on our wish-lists. If you're curious, try them out with a mini pack that's only $7.25, soon you'll want hundreds more.

#7 - Hiroshima Needles Gift Set - If you're looking for a slightly larger stocking stuffer, consider this needle set as a great little gift. For $55.95 you receive a sampling of Sewing Needles, Milliner Needles, Quilting Needles, Applique Needles, Embroidery Needles and Patchwork Pins. In our opinion, these needles and pins are the best on the market, and we'd definitely be SUPER excited if this showed up in our stockings!

#8 - Complete Quarter Circle Template Set - If you're curious about sewing curves, but still want to fussy cut, look no further than these amazing templates by Jen Carlton-Bailly. For $38 you receive 5 template sets that let you make perfect quarter circles ranging in size from 2.5" to 6.5". You'll love the ease of Jen's templates, and she sends them in a CUTE drawstring bag too!

#9 - Flatter - Flatter is another product that always ends up on our wish lists because we can never get enough! This starch alternative will keep your seams nice and flat, and smelling delicious too. It's only $12 per bottle, and it's a fantastic addition to your patchwork process.

#10 - Seam Fix Seam Ripper - While it's never super FUN to admit we sometimes need a seam ripper. If you're anything like us, you might even lose yours pretty often under piles of fabric. We love the bright teal color since it makes the seam ripper stand out on our tables, plus, the rubber top acts like an eraser to help remove stray ripped threads. It's only $7.50, and we tend to buy multiples of these little guys!

#11 - The Ultimate Embroidery Kit - If you're looking to expand your crafting skills and are interested in trying embroidery, this kit is perfect for you! You can pick your favorite design, and for $40, you receive everything you need to make your first embroidered tea towel. This would be a fun project for a long weekend away, or a road trip!

 

We want to wish you a very Happy Holiday season to you, your family and your friends. We can't wait to continue to share our fussy cutting and sewing adventures with you in 2018. 

Chapter 12, Block 48

Oh my gosh. It's block 48 and the official end of our Sew Along. We can't thank you enough for spending the last three months sewing with us. We've loved each and every one of your blocks. Take some time with block 48 to celebrate that you're finally done! We're so excited to see your custom labels.

Winners will be announced soon, so keep your fingers crossed!!

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 SURPRISE! If Kyle is watching this blog she'll see that we've been working on a special quilt just for her!

SURPRISE! If Kyle is watching this blog she'll see that we've been working on a special quilt just for her!

Chapter 12, block 47

This technique takes fussy cutting to the next level. The goal is to select motifs that almost entirely fill the space of the shape you are fussy cutting. When it's done correctly, it's REALLY cool! We know it can be hard to find the right size motifs though, so give yourself a break if it's making you crazy.

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Chapter 12, block 46

We think this is one of the BEST fun tricks in the book. While it makes for a super interesting block, it's also a great technique to use if you're matching up patterns for a quilt back, or if you run out of a single color and you need to create a motif on the fly. Once you've mastered this trick, you'll want to use it all the time!

 Our talented guest star for the day,  Angie of Gnome Angel , created this absolutely delightful block using these dashing Tigers! 

Our talented guest star for the day, Angie of Gnome Angel, created this absolutely delightful block using these dashing Tigers! 

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 This block features Jasmine by  Valori Wells  + Arroyo by  Erin Dollar .

This block features Jasmine by Valori Wells + Arroyo by Erin Dollar.

Chapter 12, Block 45

Well here we are at chapter 12! I can't believe we've made it this far already. This block isn't super complicated, which makes it a nice breather before we get to the trickier blocks in the chapter. One thing we run into often when fussy cutting is the need to cut blocks off-grain. This means if we're not careful we're at risk for more stretching and pulling in our fabric. This block covers a freezer paper technique that might help get rid of some headaches later down the line! 

 If you haven't been following  Karen of Lady K Quilts  - you should, you can see that all here:  #LadyKandAMHgetFussy . Her mix of Anna Maria Horner fabrics, plus solid black and a stripe have made her QAL blocks some of our all-time favorites. We love how she used this block's trick to force her rose garden to all grow in the same direction.

If you haven't been following Karen of Lady K Quilts - you should, you can see that all here: #LadyKandAMHgetFussy. Her mix of Anna Maria Horner fabrics, plus solid black and a stripe have made her QAL blocks some of our all-time favorites. We love how she used this block's trick to force her rose garden to all grow in the same direction.

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Chapter 11, Block 44

This block is all about making YOU shine through. Pick fabrics and motifs that you feel most closely reflect you - mix them all up and see if you can really show your personality in one single block.

 We love how guest star,  Heidi of Fabric Mutt  used her newest fabric collection 'Five and Dime' combined with some of her other favorites to create this beautiful block! Read more about her story  on her blog !

We love how guest star, Heidi of Fabric Mutt used her newest fabric collection 'Five and Dime' combined with some of her other favorites to create this beautiful block! Read more about her story on her blog!

 Elisabeth decided to feature lots of quilt blocks and sewing tools, since quilting is her absolute favorite. Dogs go in the center, and cats on the outskirts (since she loves, but is very allergic to cats). The liberty print is her favorite of all, and it's also the same fabric her little dog's collar is made from!

Elisabeth decided to feature lots of quilt blocks and sewing tools, since quilting is her absolute favorite. Dogs go in the center, and cats on the outskirts (since she loves, but is very allergic to cats). The liberty print is her favorite of all, and it's also the same fabric her little dog's collar is made from!

 This block features  Sevenberry Mini Prints , Architextures by  Carolyn Friedlander , and Whiskers and Tails.

This block features Sevenberry Mini Prints, Architextures by Carolyn Friedlander, and Whiskers and Tails.

Chapter 11, Block 43

When you're selecting fabrics for blocks, you're likely pulling fabrics from many companies and multiple fabric designers. It can be tricky to get a good overall cohesive feel in your blocks this way, since many artists have different styles. Take extra care when considering fabric colors and art style - this can do a lot to make a block look well composed.

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 This block features Whiskers and Tails,  Darlene Zimmerman  and Blueberry Park by  Karen Lewis .

This block features Whiskers and Tails, Darlene Zimmerman and Blueberry Park by Karen Lewis.

Chapter 11, Block 42

We all have our favorite fabric collections. Sometimes it's almost easier to work within one collection instead of pulling many collections together, since the designer arranged everything to coordinate and look amazing together from the get-go. Although this seems like a no-brainer, it can be tricky to achieve just the right balance using one collection. Make sure to consider resting space for your eyes, and where a fussy cut motif will have the most impact.

 Guest star,  Anna of Noodlehead  switched the placement of the top and bottom rows since it created a more visually compelling block. 

Guest star, Anna of Noodlehead switched the placement of the top and bottom rows since it created a more visually compelling block. 

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 This block uses  Elizabeth Hartman 's Rhoda Ruth collection.

This block uses Elizabeth Hartman's Rhoda Ruth collection.

Chapter 11, Block 41

Picking a theme is a really fun way to add an interesting story to your quilt blocks. Your theme can be anything you want, as long as you're consistent with your fabric selections, your end result will be a compelling story.

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Chapter 10, Block 40

This block looks pretty easy, but it's definitely one you'll want to pay attention to when you piece together! All these small pieces have a tendency to get flipped around fairly easily. Use your small design wall and go slowly, and you'll get fantastic consistent lines in your design.

 We love how  Nicole of Modern Handcraft  used this block to showcase Alice and Wonderful. Plus, we LOVE the hidden message!!

We love how Nicole of Modern Handcraft used this block to showcase Alice and Wonderful. Plus, we LOVE the hidden message!!

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 This block features Doe by  Carolyn Friedlander , Blueberry park by  Karen Lewis  and Conservatory by  Heather Jones .

This block features Doe by Carolyn Friedlander, Blueberry park by Karen Lewis and Conservatory by Heather Jones.

Chapter 10, Block 39

This block is a nice easy breather before we get to the tricky stuff in the last few chapters. The border is great to play with directionality, and the giant fussy cut center gives you room to explore different motif types.

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 Remember, if a motif isn't working with the block orientation exactly the same as the book, flip it around to make the block work for your fabric!

Remember, if a motif isn't working with the block orientation exactly the same as the book, flip it around to make the block work for your fabric!

Chapter 10, Block 38

In this block we wanted to try using a different sizes of spaces to mix many motif sizes. Try fussy-cutting in the backgrounds of geese blocks, or using a favorite long design in the center space!

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 Notice how on this block, we just turned the design 90 degrees so we could showcase this cute envelope print!  This block features Sealed with a Kiss by  Laurie Wisbrun , Blueprint Basics by  Elizabeth Hartman , Remix by  Ann Kelle  and Mystic by  Valori Wells .

Notice how on this block, we just turned the design 90 degrees so we could showcase this cute envelope print!

This block features Sealed with a Kiss by Laurie Wisbrun, Blueprint Basics by Elizabeth Hartman, Remix by Ann Kelle and Mystic by Valori Wells.

We're also excited to share Guest Sewist today, Suzy of Suzy Quilts! Suzy has a great take on how to make a single block into a small masterpiece! Maybe you don't have the time to commit to an entire new project, but if you're up for making a single block, some quilting and hand stitching accents really make the block pop!

 We love how Suzy created this amazing mini from Block 14! 

We love how Suzy created this amazing mini from Block 14! 

Chapter 10, Block 37

This block is all about using both two-way prints and directional backgrounds. But as you might tell, we've also tried some alternative options, using mirroring, and all-over prints. Have fun with it, and don't feel compelled to do exactly what the directions say. You're at the point in this sew along where you've played with color, scale and design motifs enough to have a good sense of achieving balance in your blocks!

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Chapter 9, Block 35

Finding secondary designs with geometrics is all about using fussy cutting to make the block flow. This is especially important when you aren't adding in motifs to draw the eye. We particularly love how Samarra created a dynamic, graphic block using this technique.

 We don't think there's anyone who works better with Geometrics than  Samarra . In fact, her newest fabric collection,  Geogram , is ALL geometrics. When she sent us this block image, we were totally impressed. She manages to make the block flow effortlessly with just black and white and some key directional fussy cuts.

We don't think there's anyone who works better with Geometrics than Samarra. In fact, her newest fabric collection, Geogram, is ALL geometrics. When she sent us this block image, we were totally impressed. She manages to make the block flow effortlessly with just black and white and some key directional fussy cuts.

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Chapter 9, Block 34

Working with Complementary Geometrics pulls many of the same techniques as block 24 - make sure you carefully select your prints and cut in areas were multiple seam lines won't disrupt the flow of your block's design!

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