Market preparations are in high gear, with all the usual craziness – even though I started way earlier than I typically do. I actually have proof of how early I started – two of my photos in the new book were shot last fall (see fall photos below). I knew I had to start early because I have a 2-year-old and a baby. How would I ever get the book done with two little munchkins? I try to spend as much time as possible with the kids and everything that entails, so I figured I better start way earlier if I was going to find the time to do it. And I intended to do a small book, with just a few projects. *cough* *cough*
Well – all that taking care of kids, doing laundry, making meals and being the cheerful, domestic goddess that I am (not!), turned out to be just the fuel that I needed to create. Apparently, my brain doesn’t function well with no time to sew and pursue ideas. I suddenly found myself with an abundance of ideas as my brain tried to cope with my new occupation as a stay at home (and work at home) mom. Strange right? I guess you never know where ideas will come from. You know how some people nap when their kids nap? I used that time to work on these ideas and I thrived on my time alone to create.
All those ideas became the quilts in my latest book, “Angles With Ease 2”. Somehow this has turned into my largest book to date (except this one, which I did with a publisher).
That starting early thing? It didn’t work out so well for me. I didn’t finish months in advance as I had planned, while sitting in an easy chair with my feet up.
Turns out that starting early thing just meant more time for my crazy brain to formulate more ideas. . . . And every year I promise my husband that I will do a smaller book! I’m really not a liar. It’s really not my fault. I tried not to come up with new ideas. I tried to pare things down – and I did. I had like 10 more ideas that I could have put into this book if I had the time. I guess the creative side of my brain just doesn’t take orders well from the sensible, follow-the-rules, orderly side of my brain.
So what idea had captured my attention this time? For those of you who have been following me for a little while, you may remember the concept behind my “Angles with Ease” book and Triangler ruler. (If not, click here). While making this book, I just fell in love with the basic kaleidoscope shape and the concept that unique shapes could be made from a strip units or by using the ruler to cut different shapes. My sketch book is full of ideas using this basic shape and those sketches became the quilts in this. Today I will share the quilts from the book that all begin as a strip unit.
First off, the cover quilt –
This quilt is called Petals on a String. It comes in 6 sizes from runner to queen.
Did I mention that the fabric requirements all use Precuts? I love Precuts and use them whenever possible. I used 1 Layer Cake (10″ Squares) to make this quilt, but you can also use Fat Quarters and Fat Eighths. This fabric line is called Fresh Cut by Basic Grey (Moda). It’s a beautiful line and I wish my photos did it justice.
And see that circle in the middle? That covers up any points in the center of the block that aren’t perfectly aligned.
My Friend Maria of Passing Down Crazy made the second quilt on the cover and she chose to live dangerously and leave the circles off! She can pull it off though, as she has loads of quilting experience.
The pattern also comes in a runner size and uses 5″ Charm Squares. This fabric collection is called Somerset by Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree Quilts (also Moda)
Next up is China Doll. This quilt comes in 5 sizes and uses 10″ Squares or Fat Eighths.
This fabric collection is called Aloha Girl by Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree and Co (for Moda). The blue border print from this collections just pops!
The runner shown in the book is made with just 3 blocks and uses the fabric collection April Showers by Bonnie and Camille (also Moda)
In this design, strip pieced flower petals are combined with folded corners to create the scrappy flower blocks.
Next up, Paperweights – Available in 5 sizes using 10″ squares, Fat Eighths, or Fat Quarters.
I had originally planned to use my scraps to make a scrappy binding. As I laid the binding next to the quilt to see if I had enough length, I decided it needed to be the border instead of binding. So, even though those angles make the border look a little more challenging, it’s as quick and easy as sewing binding strips together
I couldn’t decide how to quilt these blocks, so I did the inside of each one with a different pattern. It was fun to come up with all the ideas!
This design uses a very basic kaleidoscope block, but it’s the addition of the red pinwheels that makes it sparkle.
The pinwheel blocks aren’t as hard as they look. I simplified the process by starting with a strip unit, then using the ruler to square them up to the perfect size (and that way they are all the same size too, which is generally hard to come by when using skinny, bias angles).
Also, the points float roughly 1/2″ in from the edge of the block so you don’t have to worry about your points getting cut off.
Featured fabrics: Flea Market Fancy by Denyse Schmidt.
Next up, Strip Stars
This is one of the designs from the book, that looks really hard, but that I find to be relatively easy. Again, the block is made with a simple strip unit, then you use the ruler to cut out the star points. The pattern uses Fat Eighths and a feature fabric that you want to show off.
The design also comes in a runner size. This is a good size to test out if you want to try the technique/ruler and see how you like it.
And the last of the strip pieced quilts, (though not the last of the projects from the book), “Let it Snow”
This one only comes in one size, but it is a nice little wall quilt at 46″ x 53″. It uses only 1 Layer Cake and some background fabric – that’s it! (Perfect for those Layer Cakes that you might not have gotten around to finding coordinating border fabric for???) You can also make it Christmas-sy or Winter-ry. This fabric is called Evergreen by Basic Grey (Also by Moda)
Did you notice the little Cabin hidden in the trees? No templates required for this – just use the ruler to cut a strip. There are also a few little stars hidden in the background, for just a touch of applique.
I think that’s a long enough post for today! I hope you enjoyed Part 1 of the preview of the new book. I will be back later this week to share more of the projects from the book.
As is tradition on this blog, I always give away the first copy. To be entered to win, just leave me a comment saying which project you would make first if you won!