Archive for August, 2011


19.1 Design Wall DeJaVu

August 29, 2011

So I bring you something on my design wall that has been there before. Usually my design wall is just a place to store completed (or half completed) blocks.  Today is no exception.

First I have some more Journey Steps blocks on my wall.

I am hoping that I can get these integrated with the rest soon. But I think I still need more.

I found out that the website from the pattern is defunct. I would have liked to link back to it eventually.

And no, I’m not going to post the pdf here, but I can always explain how I made this block if you wanna know.  think 4 patch inside 4 patch inside 4 patch.

I also received a nice set of light strips from Victoria at PeacebrookQuilting.  She completely deserves a great big shout out!  Can’t wait to put these into a few more blocks!


Next on the design wall

And next, I was fooling around with some of the left over triangles from my card trick quilt, and decided to make a few blocks for the back – because that’s now my signature style.

I know I could put these on the front, but I only have enough for these three blocks – my burgundy is gone after this. AND, I am not buying any more of the background fabric for this.

I was just messing around with the little hourglass blocks & put 4 together, and another 4 together.  Made me feel ‘designerish’ even though I made a design that’s been done before.  Really felt through the process of the design, ya know?

The block on the bottom I purposefully finished as a broken dishes block rather than a pinwheel.


And a few days left before starting the 5 inch fabric swap.  5 inch squares, how cute!



19.0 Rachel’s Genome Quilt

August 27, 2011

You gotta take a look at this quilt.

Longtime podcast listeners / blog readers may know that once upon a time I was inspired by Beverly St Clair to create a genome quilt.  Well, I have this very elaborate simple looking quilt idea that never went anywhere, but a pattern & an idea. It’s coming (probably), but I don’t have a gene to start with yet.

But this got me into contact with Rachel.  Rachel is a PhD student in Melbourne Australia & she sews fantastic clothes, and also quilts, which she blogs about both these passions at My Messings blog.

I have loved watching Rachel’s sewing come along over the years, but nothing as spectacular of a project as THIS – Rachel’s Genome Quilt!

Rachel’s quilt is filled with A’s, C’s, G’s & T’s, in code.  Each turn of the half square triangle represents a specific base.

The gene used in question: mouse integrin beta3

I love the subtle gradation of the aqua colors through the quilt, which really gives this quilt a lot of interest.

To the random observer, this quilt appears to be a random draw of half square triangles, but I’ve seen pictures of the blocks being sewn down, Rachel’s diagram of her final quilt done in sections, and now we get to see the finished piece.

A lot of preparation, planning, and persistence prevails here with this quilt.

Rachel takes the time to link back to all her past journey of the making of the quilt in her final blog post, so you should go over there and take a look at this quilt!

The back is pretty great too. (reminds me of electron orbital shells actually)

But the one thing that needs to be finished in order to tie all this meaning with all this beauty – a label.  So, I’m guessing that’s the next stage of the quilt.

It looks great, so go and take a look at what my blogging friend has done!

Well done Rachel!


18.9 wow 392 flickr favorites

August 24, 2011
Yale School of Architecture: Kevin Rotheroe's "Material Formation"P1020366modified bento box quiltOregon BeachesCubi danzantiMini Quilt Swap for Pam (Uberstitch)
Starburstcity greenInterweaving....designtesselation2P1020382First origami tessellations post!!!
12.23.10PaperReEnforcersInterlaced Star TemplateCeltic DominoesCrystal BallStarWeaveColorized
8.9.11 Finished front"Color Play"Rasberry Dessert QuiltMark & Laura's Quilt 2009RK - Solids only challenge

Scientific Quilter’s favorites on Flickr.

A style emerges when looking at favorites. I really see lots of bold, clean colors, solids, geometric designs, even favorited some flowers, & tiles.

Feel free to look through and see the (mainly) quilters that I am inspired by. Go ahead and favorite some yourself.

Maybe I’ll make this a regular feature, flickr favorites (probably want to do that on friday for the alliteration to work right.

Leave a comment with a link to your own favorites too!


18.8 Charm Square Swap

August 23, 2011

You thought I forgot about the Charm Square Swap after I chanted it a few podcasts ago, didn’t you?
Swap-bot swap: Charm Square Swap
I swap with Swap-bot!

Well I signed up for it and if you’re thinking about doing the same, you should too.  HOW EASY of a swap can this really be, 10 squares of 5 inch sides, to 5 different partners! (details in the swap itself)

We have 10 people, with now 5 people watching the swap.  You need to sign up soon (Sept 2nd) if you want to play along, but you don’t even have to send the fabrics until Sept 30th.  So if you have time to get them ready now, get the blocks ready now.  If you’ll have time later September, do it then.

You have to be  a member of the Quiltcast Supergroup Swappers group, and a member of swap-bot first, but once you are, you can be in all the other swaps we will do!

Here’s the link to the swap.


Also considering doing a color – coordinated sampler quilt swap spanning over several months.  This swap would be the blocks that YOU choose that square up to a specific size, with colors that I choose (for everyone), and size that I choose (for everyone).

Post a comment here if you’d like to encourage me into organizing it and right now thinking Jan 2012 to start. 4-6 swaps later, you would get a nice sampler and would have something that would push you do blocks that YOU desire to try.


18.7 SQ Episode 030 – Angles in Quilting: Part C Polygons

August 21, 2011

Podcast Feed

We’re back with more angles in quilting, and we’re tackling the 5, 6, & 8 sided figures – pentagons, hexagons, & octagons respectively.

What more can be said about these blocks?


  • These blocks provide lots of challenges to piecing.  These shapes are not typically pieced the same way as triangles and quadrilaterals.
  • Account for a much smaller share of the quilting pie than triangles and quadrilaterals.
  • Think of the general ‘shape’ of the block overall due to coloring or outlining stars of specific points

Techniques used for these block colors other than piecing.

  • applique onto the background
  • set in seams (yuk say most of you)
  • english paper piecing
  • adding two blocks of smaller # of sides together to create these shapes
  • subtracting part of a square or rectangle to create these shapes
  • (foundation) paper piecing and cutting back a specific angles

Star blocks

5 sided star has 10 sides, 6 sided star has 12 sides, and you guessed it, 8 pointed block has 16 sides!

How to avoid set in seams

Adding two blocks together or subtracting from the corners of a block.


  • house block (square + rectangle)
  • cut off the top two corners of a rectangular sashing block
  • dresden plate w/ curved bottom side


  • two trapezoids (half hexagon in quiltspeak) – likely isosceles
  • 6 triangles (isosceles or equilateral)
  • weather vane piece (squished pacman block) either pieced w/ square & 2 triangles OR two parallelograms butted next to each other
  • irregular hexagon, one central triangle, and 3 triangles on the outside could be scalene, isosceles or other based on the shape
  • piece of sashing with all 4 corners removed, with the corners on the thin side meeting at a single point
  • album / autograph block – square with opposite corners removed.


  • 8 isosceles triangles together in the center (think spider web or kalidescope)
  • remove all 4 corners from a square shape with the points on no sides matching

Some quilt blocks from EQ7

Pentagons & “pentagon influenced shapes”

Hexagons & hexagon influenced shapes.

Octagons & octagon shapes.

Other things of note:

And look at my Journey Steps on the floor.  Doesn’t look big enough, does it?

Need to do more.

Also you need to go to SeamedUP and sign up to put in projects.  And encourage me to do so too!

And friend me at SeamedUP, scientificquilter. 🙂

Additional Resources:

Pentagon 3D shapes

Pentagon flowers (not 3D), look like GMFG, but more complicated – very pretty! where you find many different card stock weight precut polygons of all shapes.

Link to english paper piecing video (watched w/ the sound off -don’t ask why-, hope it’s helpful)

Don’t you wanna say this in text after this episode?  Here’s hoping that I remember what this means later and that I didn’t inadvertently spell something that is commonly thought of as BAD.  If so – sorry, blaming innocence here.


Send me 1 and a half inch light batik strips if you are looking to downsize your strips. (comment or

To see the first 2 podcast show notes in this series, go to Part A: Triangles, and Part B: Quadrilaterals.

Additional Music:

Mevio’s Music Alley

  • Maori King by Greg Johnson


18.6 Testing Flickr Sets – Flower Walk

August 20, 2011
purple grape flowersDSC06001daffodillegsperfectdaffodil1perfectdaffodil2tulipside1
pinktreeflower3pinktreeflower4field of violetsfield of little purple flowers and swingfire pink and green
rocks and trees sceneorangeflowerwindmillpathredtulipsgrapeanddaffodilappletreepathpurpleflowersandposts

Flower Walk, a set on Flickr.

There should be nothing new here, but I wanted to test to see how sharing a flickr set worked. These flowers were between april 6 & may 3, so remember back to early spring.

Via Flickr:
Walkin around town


18.5 Quilt Apron Completion

August 20, 2011

I hearby declare myself the slowest quilter / sewer ever.  Anyone wanting to beat me for the title, tell me why and maybe I’ll deem it to you instead.

The summer I first started quilting, in summer of 2009 I wanted to make a quilted apron.  Apron.

You know, the fast and easy project, that saves you from water splashes when you’re doing dishes?

Jean was making them sound so lovely too!

First the end result after 2 years … nothing to get all excited about, nothing all that special or particularly complicated.

Yes, I know, I coulda put the strip (apron ties) on the inside, but I finally said, I’m going to sew it down on the outside and get this thing done.

You want to see the apron journey that took over 2 years?

First it started with a pattern and some fabric – dotted fabric!

You can purchase the apron pattern from Indygo Junction to give yourself a patchwork full or half apron (two other options for finishing on back).

And then it started with a color combination on graph paper. (this was all done in august of 2009, but the fabric & pattern was purchased closer to may 2009).

I counted out the squares and set to make an apron, not reading the part that this uses 4 inch squares rather than 5 inch squares.

And I sewed the thing up, I went in diagonal rows as you can see from the diagram, a little ‘on point’ quilt if you would say that.

Sadly, at this point, it appears I didn’t get a picture of the monstrosity at this time, so here is a picture I took much later (feb 2011) of the entire apron as made.

You may remember a post about sawing a woman in half, that’s this apron.

But back in 2009, I was going to fix the problem by folding up the apron in interesting ways, folding the edges which I didn’t like as much anymore.

This created a fold in the middle, from the top to the bottom, which actually provided a little pocket.  Not a bad idea for the pocket.

But I still had to deal with the binding (at the time I was planning to bind around the entire apron), and I had to figure out how to back it correctly, so in a bag it went and stayed, and stayed and stayed.

Then before retreat this February (2011), I was listening to a podcast about UFO’s and decided to cut the apron in half, (again see the post) and I got a walhanging and a smaller apron.  I used my artistic licence to remove and add squares in various places.


And I still have the wallhanging ready to quilt – it’s basted & everything.  I am actually slightly glad I waited because now I can use my 501 quilt design book to actually quilt it. I remember waiting for hours (literally) at the car repair shop (while they had to drive 3 tires all the way from another store in another town) and at the time I was trying to draw icicles or something for quilt designs, and I gave up & started embroidering instead.

I even prepared white muslin to go on the back of the apron, and pinned it all the way around.  I took both to retreat, but didn’t touch either.

Still the binding, & straps intimidated me, and what to do what to do, so put it away.

Then after KCMQG meeting, me & my friend are talking about getting projects finished, and I brought up this apron, we talked and talked a little bit, and actually bringing it to the front of my mind, gave me the push to get it back out.

So last saturday, here comes the binding strip, sew it closed first, decide to put the binding outside for visual contrast on the apron, so I can sew down & birth the backing and the top of the apron. Top stitch around the edges to make sure the backing really doesn’t show up very much.

Hang from my neck & pin the sucker onto my shirt to figure out how long to make the neck binding.  Top stitch the binding down to the apron.  Center the apron strings onto the quilt.

Did not quilt the thing, it’s done done done.  After more than 2 years.  Simple project turned interesting long story.