Small Amish Quilt-Orphan Block

Amish Quilt, Orphan block, Stencil

An Orphan Block is an affectionate name given to a block that is all alone in the world.  It might be an extra block leftover from a larger quilt.  It might be a practice block–a block made in order to learn a technique…Most quilters have a box full of orphan blocks–too pretty to throw away…I probably have two boxes full (I have been quilting longer)  If that wasn’t enough, I actually purchased the center block of this quilt!    (For the non-quilters out there–I purchased just the inner square–the green and blue pin wheel part of the quilt below.)  Sometimes I think I’m crazy, but it was at an auction and it was for a good cause…

Amish Quilt, Orphan block, Stencil

I then challenged myself to turn that center block into a quilt…

Amish Quilt, Orphan block, Stencil

By setting the center square “on point”  I was able to achieve a nice balance.

I used stencils for the feathered circles and the feathered corners.

Amish Quilt, Orphan block, Stencil

The most time-consuming part was picking the colors and the layout.  I used my digital camera to test several options–this is very helpful when laying out blocks.

Amish Quilt, Orphan block, Stencil

This one of my favorite little quilts…and I hope you enjoy it, too!  You might also like the Fall Vase Quilt and the Summer Flowers quilts.  Both are orphan block quilts.

Amish Quilt, Orphan block, Stencil

Amish Quilt, Orphan block, Stencil

So dig out those Little Orphan Annies and see what you can do!

Amish Quilt, Orphan block, Stencil

Don’t forget to leave a comment on The Valentine’s Day giveaway.

I am greatly enjoying all the suggestions for new posts and will answer ALL of the questions…

WIP-Valentine’s Day-and a GIVEAWAY!

Free Motion Quilt Heart

Dear Gentle Reader,

Did you realize that it is only a month until Valentine’s Day?  I have hearts doodling themselves in my head already!

I would like to thank all of you who have stopped by, followed, pinned on Pinterest, left comments…I am so glad we’ve crossed paths…

As a way of saying “thank you”  I’d like to offer a small doodle vase-quilt giveaway!

Free Motion Quilting-Heart

Anyone who leaves a comment below will be entered in a drawing…I would greatly appreciate if the comment included a question for me or any suggestions for further posts, tutorials, etc…

Free Motion Quilted Heart, Giveaway

I will accept all comments through Sunday and the winner will be announced on Tuesday—when the next Tuesday Tutorial is added…

Thank you all from the bottom of my heart

You might also like:  Lollipop Quilt

Tuesday Tutorial–The Upward Curl

Upward Curl Lesson 1010

I hope you are all well and warm…We have hit a cold snap here in Minnesota.  The temperatures have been hovering around zero degrees Fahrenheit–Good quilting weather!

I hope you have had time to try a few of the other tutorials like The Curl and The Spiral.  If not, check out the “Quilts” tab above for more lessons and projects.

Today, I have a little free motion quilting tutorial for you.  I call this “The Upward Curl”.  It is very versatile and very simple.  Check out the sidebars on my blog and you will see many upward curls used both on the bird and on the  2013 banner.  So let’s give it a whirl (or should I say…let’s give it a curl!)

Upward Curl Lesson 1001

I have drawn several lines–one inch apart. These are your right and left rails.   Starting from the bottom left rail-curve up toward the right rail and the curl back to the left rail–leaving a small space.

Upward Curl Lesson 1002

After you finish the curl–stop with your needle down  (here’s a good place to adjust your fabric, your body, your radio—) then just trace back on the inside of your first curve.  The left upward curl is down the same way–just flipped…

Upward Curl Lesson 1003

In order to keep your curves as smooth as possible, it is important the choose the timing of your stops and starts.  In other words, when you need to stop for any reason–do not stop in the middle of a curve, line, stroke.  Instead wait until you are at a change-in-direction point.  In that way, the resultant change in stitch (which happens whenever your stop or start)…will be less noticeable.

Instead of heading straight up the line to start the next curl, we are going to add a little angular jog in our line–near the tip of the curl…

Upward Curl Lesson 1004

It looks a little strange when you only have one side complete…

Upward Curl Lesson 1006

However, it looks great once the other half of the line is finished!

Upward Curl Lesson 1007

This makes a fabulous border…

Upward Curl Lesson 1009

So give it a try!  I can’t wait to see how you use “The Upward Curl”!

On Thursday, I have another very cool variation of The Upward Curl for you to try…and tomorrow…

A Valentine’s Day giveaway!

PS…Thank you to several followers who posted the tutorials on Pinterest…I am always amazed by the power of The Web!