Welcome back, my fabric friends! I just wanted to say thank you for everyone that commented on my “First Quilt” blog post, where I finally shared with all of you what I've been working on! It’s been a joy creating that quilt, and the positive feedback encouraged me to do something with a little more patchwork, but still beginner-friendly. This time I tried a lot of things differently from my first quilt, and I can’t wait to share with you all that I've learned. This quilt time around, I wanted to capture a very rustic vibe, with a lot of warm colors but small enough to not intimidate me, yet perfect for a wall hanging! I wanted to recreate #AGFQuiltBlockCollection’s most popular block on Youtube, the “Aztec Quilt block.” With a very simple technique including large Half Square Triangles and cutting them in half- two times. A really fun block to make for your first time, and a great starting point for making a quilt!
*Prints used: “Ojos Flame,” “Pano Stone,” from Arizona After and “Hula Dolphins Vog,” “Tiki Way Papaya” from Aura. Also “Tigerlily,” “Heart of the Ocean,” “Nocturnal,” and “Creme de la Creme” from our PURE Solids.
As I started creating this block, I realized that sometimes working with prints can be a little difficult because it’s easy to mess up on the direction its facing. This was one of my biggest challenges, and although I didn’t get it right every single time, I know next time to always being careful how you place your pieces before sewing it up. The second mistake I kept doing on this block was the direction I was cutting, please make sure once you draw your horizontal line, to cut your pieces facing the right way! (Had to remake some blocks because of this, haha.)
I love how fabric placement can really transform the way a quilt looks! The way I placed the fabric made it look like an “X” and I thought that was super unique. You can always make this your own by inverting the colors or changing the color palette for a different mood.
Okay, I forgot to mention, me facing quilters everyday challenge- matching seams. I knew to work on this quilt top, I would struggle with this because there are a lot more seams to match than my first quilt. But after some trial and error, I’ve discovered I wasn't pinning enough. A tip I learned was to try and pin exactly where the seams would line up and when I start sewing, to take out the pins when it gets much closer to the needle, for minimal movement of the fabric. This tip made a world of a difference, forcing my seams to match and pinning more on the edges, eliminated room for error. 4 blocks later, and my quilt top was finally finished!
As I began layering my pieces (the backing I used was “Tomahawks Stripe Blush” from Arizona After), I made sure to use big safety pins instead of regular pinning needles to avoid pricking myself while quilting. This time I was more nervous quilting because I struggled so much with my first quilt, I didn’t want to recreate my mistakes. I told myself this time around that I would do straight lines again but not diagonal (to avoid bunching of fabric on the sewing machine) and to try a different type of stitch to create a different look. I used this terracotta shade of thread so it can stand out from the quilt top, both front, and back.
On my first quilt, the binding turned out well because I decided to machine bind with 2 ½ inch stripes but I remember that I still had a lot of overlapping fabric. To try and avoid that mistake, I sewn my binding strip a little over ¼ inch, so when I would fold it over, I would machine bind it exactly on the line. Unfortunately, when I began to do that, I kept missing the flap and decided to hand bind for the time. This was time-consuming, but boy this was worth the effort! I loved the way it came out with an invisible stitch, made the binding super clean and I was able to avoid any leftover fabric from hanging. I’d love to know if any of you always hand bind your quilts and if you have any tips for me! This being my first time I felt like I was going really slow, but maybe there is a more efficient way to do this.
To turn this quilt into a wall hanging, I folded a 4-inch strip in half and tucked it underneath the binding, and made sure to clip everything together. You can bind this part with the sewing machine, as I did!
To fit my rustic vibe, I DIY some random wooden stick I found, stained it a darker brown and added some lovely cream-colored rope to hang! Before you know it, I was DONE. I can’t believe I have already created and finished my second quilt! Seriously, I now understand why people can’t stop doing this. The satisfaction of putting the pieces together, deciding which fabrics to use, and just completing a project is a very therapeutic thing.
Thanks for following along my quilting journey, and if you have any tips for me for my next quilt, please let me know in the comments below.
Till next time,