I entered my first Fair! I saw an Instagram post that the Lincoln Modern Quilt Guild posted about quilts being entered into the local County Fair. I had a couple days to decide, and I decided I would be able to finish one in time, and I had three I wanted to submit. I filled out the form, finished hand sewing the binding on the largest one, and dropped them off a week ago. I haven’t entered a quilt show or Fair or anything else before, so I was a little nervous about leaving them behind – they took so long to make and so much went into them – in the way of fabric, and time and trial and error and skill learning, and custom quilting! Judging was to be done the next day before the Fair opened.
Fast forward to Saturday and we went to the Fair, with Demolition Derby tickets for that night. We wanted to arrive a few hours early to look around the Fair at the activities and see some events, and go check on my quilts that I dropped off. We finally made it over to the room where the quilts were displayed and I saw Minecraft right away – with a tag with my name on it! I turned around to see my Gravity quilt, larger than life and bold in color – and I excitedly said “that’s mine!”. I took a photo of Minecraft on display, one with my son in front of Minecraft (it is his quilt…) and I waited for Gravity to be clear.
I walked over to my Gravity quilt and saw the white tag with my name on it again – and under the white tag was a red ribbon – 2nd Place for the Bed Size Quilts Class! I’m not exactly sure how the ribbons work with the Class being Bed Quilts and having 12 subclasses, but I was so surprised – and happy – to see a ribbon attached!
I was talking with the Lincoln Modern Quilt Guild Rep that was there about how excited I was to have a ribbon, and my husband took my photo – I asked if I could hold up the ribbon while he took the photo – she allowed it only because it was my quilt. You are not allowed to touch the quilts! I didn’t touch any but my own. And then I said I had one more entered that I hadn’t found yet. I turned to the next section and I found my third quilt entry – the Small Quilts Class – and I entered it into the Embroidery category. Under the name tag on this quilt was a blue ribbon! I couldn’t believe it – two ribbons and one of them was blue! I received a First Place Blue Ribbon! I was hoping Gravity would get me some positive feedback, as I worked really hard on that one and I thought my piecing was pretty good, and the quilting is beautiful (Thank you Teresa Silva: Quilting Is My Bliss). I was not expecting a blue ribbon for the Embroidery Panel quilt – but I am so happy I received it!
We talked about how they had a National judge come in who gave some really specific feedback (looking forward to and a little scared of that). And we talked about the Lincoln Modern Quilt Guild – my husband basically signed me up on the spot.
For now, I’m just very excited that my first quilt entry was a success. I did not expect to receive 2 ribbons but I am very happy. I am looking forward to having the quilts back home. And the ribbons.
Have you ever made a Panel Quilt? I just got 4 panels that I am very excited about! It all started with a quilt I saw hanging in a quilt shop recently – with a panel they don’t even carry! So I had to hunt it down because I needed it. You know?! So I tracked it down, and during my research I found three others I had to have, so now I have four panel quilts I have to make! The hard part right now is finding the perfect border and binding fabric, and the perfect backing for each. I think I want to do Minky backing for all of them and then they will be super soft and fuzzy, perfect for movie nights in our theatre chairs!
And the 4 Panels I have plans for – (Jack glows in the dark!) :
Have you made a Panel Quilt before? Do you have a favorite border size or quantity of borders? I like the idea of a Minky backing but the one I was looking at said no ironing and it wasn’t wide enough by itself, there would need to be a seam! Something else to look into…
I did it – I finished my Trinket Quilt Top just in time for the end of the challenge. I will get my Trinket Finisher Pin and be entered for one of the grand prizes. I am just happy I was able to finish in time and that it looks okay!
I did have some challenges with this quilt top – after paper piecing all of the individual blocks, my biggest challenge was sewing together all of the squares and trying to get them to line up together with enough seam allowance so it wouldn’t fall apart in the future. I hope I succeeded!
As I have previously stated, I used Alison Glass’s Kaleidoscope fabric collection for this, using 36 of the collection colors for the pieced blocks, and Raven for the background checkerboard blocks. You can see all of the individual blocks and colors used on my Trinket Sew Along page. For the final quilt top, I rotated some of the blocks for variety and interest so they are not facing all the same direction. And I kept my color flow throughout according to plan, starting with Cherry at the top left corner and ending with Beet in the lower right corner.
I have already ordered the backing fabric so that I can ship this out and have it quilted as soon as that arrives, and just get this one done! I opted for the larger version as we like the longer quilts when we share them on the sofa for movie nights or just hanging out. This version finishes at 76″ x 92″ with 218 pieced blocks – 437 total blocks! It was a lot but I am glad I am finished!
Did you sew along with the Trinket Quilt? How did it go for you – what were your challenges and how did you overcome them? And congratulations on being a Trinket Finisher!
I am so close to having all the blocks made for the Trinket Quilt. I decided to do the 76″ x 92″ layout which is 19 squares x 23 squares for a total of 437 blocks – 218 of which are paper pieced! It was a lot to take on, especially since I wasn’t expecting to be sick for a few weeks and not have the ability or energy to sew, plus the last 2 weeks my main sewing machine has been in the shop for repair, so I’m using my old little machine. It’s been rough.
Anyways, as of this moment I am 40 blocks away from finishing the blocks. I know what you are thinking – so many people ONLY made 40 blocks total. I know – this is why I am kicking myself in this moment, but I think in the end I will be happy with my decision to create so many more. Plus we like the extra long quilts for the sofa – it really helps when you have to share.
When I decided to create this quilt a few months ago, I came up with a layout idea based on the 19 x 23 block layout, and using 36 of the 40 colors for the paper pieced squares. I will be using Raven for the background checkerboard squares, and apparently Charcoal for the backing – I accidentally ordered Charcoal instead of Raven so… there you go. Probably Raven for the binding too, as I want the focus on the squares.
I will share the specific block layout later (each color square labeled) but for now just the color overview. With my 36 selected colors, I would create six blocks of each as a Base Color (i.e. base color Cherry, base color Fern, etc.), with the last 2 colors having 7 each to make the total of 218. I am also making five of each of the 40 blocks, plus an extra 17 of my choosing, and the bonus ribbon block. Here is my color grid:
It won’t look exactly like this of course because each colorful square will have some sort of design, but I am hoping this idea transfers through. And I should mention that I took the Kaleidoscope colors, selected the closest Kona cotton colors, and used those Kona colors that I have saved in the computer to come up with this layout – these colors will NOT be exact to the final Kaleidoscope colors.
Be sure to check out the Trinket Sew Along page for each individual block and their colors if you are interested. I will have more detailed information posted soon. And I hope to have my blocks finished this week so I can start cutting the background squares and putting this whole thing together!
Some of you may be wondering what this fusible grid is that I keep referring to (and have listed in the supply list and patterns), or asking if it’s necessary to use when you could just sew the small squares together. The answer is no, it is not necessary, but the results do turn out better in the end. The reason is because it provides a solid, stable base when sewing the small squares together in rows, and sewing the squares together separately (standard piecing) the bias from the fabric comes into play, even though they are cut as a square – they are very small!
Take a look at these 2 images: The top image is my Minecraft Chicken Mug Rug top, sewn together without using fusible grid (and slightly smaller squares). The second is the quilt block using fusible grid. The white background helps the outer squares blend together, but you can see in the beak and tongue areas they don’t always line up exactly in the mug rug; using the fusible grid below it turned out much better.
So here is my method of using fusible grid to make the Minecraft Quilt Blocks. What I found at my local quilt shop was QuiltFuse 2″ fusible grid HTC-3240-White, 48″ wide:
Cut out the squares for the block, and the piece of fusible grid you are going to use – just cut on the grid lines and make sure you are only cutting through one layer. (There wasn’t much left on the bolt so they sent it home with me, it was folded double on the bolt).
Assemble the block squares on the grid, edge to edge. It should be close to the grid lines on the fusible fabric, but it may not be exact. Take your time to cut your 2″ squares exactly and you should be okay.
Iron all the squares in place on the fusible grid – glue side up, grid side down – hot iron, no steam. The glue isn’t that strong and the pieces may fall off before you are done sewing every row. That happened to me at least once every block, just make sure to iron that piece back into place and be careful moving the block back and forth to your sewing machine, ironing board and cutting table.
Step 4: Fold one row or column over, i.e. column 8 folded over onto column 7 and iron flat, like this:
I have found that the grid is a little slippery when sewing, so it is helpful to have a quilting glove on the left hand while I sew the 1/4″ seam to help guide the fabric through uniform and straight.
Step 5: Sew 1/4″ seam to connect these 2 columns:
Cut off just the edge of the fold, just enough to allow you to iron the seam open:
Fold the next column over and iron flat, column 7 folded over column 6:
Sew another 1/4″ seam and cut off just the fold. Iron open.
Repeat this process for the remaining columns.
Rotate the block and fold the top row down over the second row:
Iron flat and sew 1/4″ to combine these two rows:
Step 12: Cut off just the fold and iron seam open:
Repeat this process until all rows are complete:
Your block is done!
As you can see with this finished Minecraft Cow quilt block, the squares line up nicely, even if sewing it together using the fusible grid wasn’t the fastest method, or even the easiest. But it’s done, it’s solid, and it looks great!
I would love to hear if the fusible grid worked as well for you as it did for me, and share your blocks with me – find me on Instagram @myrainydaydesigns and use the hashtag #MinecraftQAL.