Friday, April 17, 2015

Flying Geese Tutorial

As we are winding down here in Florida, ready to be like the geese, and fly northwards home, I thought I'd share my favourite way of creating multiple flying geese units, since I've been making lots.

Sidenote: there aren't many northerners, aka snowbirds, left down here; this is the latest we've stayed.  And you know WHY we are staying extra long!!  'T' minus 3 days until Monday night's trunk show and talk at the guild meeting, followed by Tuesday morning's class I'm taking!!  With whom?  None other than Angela Walters IN PERSON!  I'm already doing a happy dance.  Okay, let's be honest; I've been doing a small happy dance ever since early February when I found out about it, each time I think that this is really going to happen.  Pinch me.

Okay, um what is this post about?  Oh yes.  Flying geese.  Big breath.  You will love this. Guaranteed.

This is Eleanor Burns' method.  I first learned it from the first quilt book I ever bought, back in about 1996-7, her Pioneer Sampler book.

It's also known as the No Waste Method, and there is a great tutorial here as well.
Here is my take on this method, which I used to make 78 flying geese units for the current quilt.

You need 5 squares total to make 4 flying geese units.
Your background or "peak" fabric (think mountain) is a square that measures 1.25" (1 1/4") larger than the finished width of the flying geese rectangle unit.  Mine finish at 3X6" so I need a square that is 7.25".

Your four "wings" squares must be 7/8" larger than the finished height of the flying geese rectangle unit.  Mine finish at 3" so I need 4 squares 3 7/8".
All units organized. What you see here will yield 24 flying geese units.
1.  Draw a line on the diagonal (I used my Hera marker, love love it) of each of the 3 7/8" squares.  Set two of these squares across the larger square, right sides together. There will be a slight overlap of the two squares in the centre.  Sew a SCANT (very important) 1/4" on either side of the drawn line.
Small squares are the darker purple, the large 7 1/4" square is the lighter purple
2.  Cut apart on your drawn line, which is between the two seams.

3.  Press seams (carefully, it's bias) to the wings, aka the darker purple in my case. You will have two heart-shaped looking units like this:

4.  Take the remaining two 3 7/8" squares and place one in the corner of each of the large squares.  Sew on either side of your drawn line as before.

5.  Cut apart on the drawn line.

6.  Press seams again to the peak fabric.  Trim to your desired size.  In my case I trimmed to 3.5 X 6.5" as my finished rectangle will be 3X6.  In the photo below I trimmed the top one, but left the bottom one so you can see what it looks like once you press the second wing out.


7. Repeat with the other 'heart' unit and you will have four flying geese!  Cool, no?
Most important is that scant 1/4" seam; otherwise you will lose some of your 3 1/2 X 6 1/2" needed.

In fur kids news, I know it's heating and steaming up when Rocco does this after our walk:

Under the fan.  In the AC. 90 and something like 90% humidity out there yesterday.  Now for a pittie puppy to lie like a frog is nothing new, but  upside down, getting air on his fur-less belly and inside legs, you know it's steamy! Time to head north where it's 30 degrees cooler.  Then he'll be wearing his hoodie, lol!  And Miss Bella not only snuggled with me last night in bed while I read, she also slept for a little while in her customary position, snuggled against my belly, this morning.  Yay, she's speaking to me again.

Linking up with Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Pink Doxies, buttons on sidebar.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

The Greek and the German Have It!

A post on two recently purchased tools.  I should add that I am not being paid or recompensed in any way for this post.

Greek
I'd heard some talk about Clover's Hera marker, and, because I am always on the lookout for a fine line marking pencil, or in this case, tool, I decided to pick one up.  Hera, by the way, is the Greek goddess of women and of marriage, particularly of married women.  Women.  Not sure if Clover named this knowing that, but it wouldn't surprise me.  Sorry quilty guys.  But let's not go there regarding the fact that her husband, Zeus, was her brother... (in her defense he was beyond a jerk as to what he did to her, and she did not marry him for love nor lust).

I love it.  The marker.

It leaves a definite crease, aka line, along which, or on either side of which I can sew.  I've done both.  I've used it on light fabric:



 and dark:


It shows better on the light fabric, but that may be because I was using it on dark fabric at night, so not as good lighting, more tired eyes could have contributed to a less visible line.

Don't you just LOVE those rich royal purples?  Think I may have been a royal (okay cue the song, it's now going to be playing in my head all day) in one of my past lives, as I have always loved royal blue, but royal purple is a very close second.  I wore a royal blue dress to my university graduation; I wore a royal purple suit, (a micro-fibre faux suede with cut-out embroidery on the collar) to my first interview for a teaching position.  (yep, got it...the job, did finally part with that suit, even though it was a classic...no, it wasn't a case of the 80s are calling; they want their suit back either)


German
Let's move to the 90s.  My present iron in Kingsville, a Phillips, is from 1998 I believe (I will check that next week when we are back home!)  It has been a terrific iron.  However, the teflon coating is peeling off and it actually did suffer a little fall, but it still works just fine...well the steam part sometimes sweats near the handle where my hand is, but hey what's a little adventure when pressing, right?

I did some research, JC Penney had a great sale, and I now have this beautiful bad boy in my possession.


Yes, he is made in Germany.  China does not cut it. Seriously, the reviews all said be sure to get the one made in Germany.  I get that.  I drove my beloved VW Passat for 12 years, never an issue.  We've owned our 1999 Porsche 911 now for 5 years, fabulous car.

This Porsche-channeling iron has a good weight to it.  Think solid, as in the solid sounds of those sleek doors closing.  I love the pointy end!  The stainless steel plate glides, make that skates, in a good way, across the fabric.  This skating feeling may be due to me remembering a "rough" glide probably due to the tufts and blistering sunburned skin feel of the peeling teflon, lol.

It has no on/off switch, which I find odd.  It does have an auto off though, which my other iron did not.  This is a good safety precaution, especially for my menopausally afflicted headspace, aka melon.  If it clicks off due to lack of use, which it has when I am humming along, 911-style, stitching seams, a simple flip into pressing position turns it back on.  And, it heats up über-fast!  The lights dim and all.  No lie.

Ergonomically, it feels good in my hand too.  The critiques said the lid to the water receptacle was really hard to open.  I have not found that at all.  You just squeeze the edges as you pop it open.  Easy.  I do also find I have to have the steam setting towards the high end of the dial for it to continuously steam, but I haven't been using a lot of steam lately, so when I do, I will pay attention to this perceived annoyance.  It also has a self cleaning feature, which I have yet to use, seeing as I've only had it for a few weeks.

It will go north with me next week, and I will leave my cheap Sunbeam iron I bought at Target in 2008 down here.  It, by the way, has been a damn good little iron for under $20!

Yes, heading north.  In preparation for this event next Wednesday, Bella had some un-royal treatment yesterday.  She was not amused.  She had her cute little butt end shampooed yesterday.  At the risk of completely mortifying her, let's just say she had a little need of bidet action, 'nuff said.  If that wasn't bad enough...oh, the hurt, accusatory looks I got, as well as a small but deep scratch that drew blood, and mine isn't blue like hers...I then decided to trim the offending claws, er talons.  Think chocolate brown furry paws, uncooperating diva, and oops, I cut one claw too short, and her blood dripped forth.  Tinged with blue, right.  She left little prints all over the tile and a nice blob on the sewing room carpet, which I got out no problem.  And then...Joe held her, and that in itself is nasty to her, ew, man smell (poor Joe, he really is smitten by her, and tries so hard, to little avail).  So he held while I applied flea stuff to her neck and shoulder area.  This makes her beautiful fur oily in that area, but it is a necessity, as we will be spending one night in a pet-friendly, read flea-infested, hotel on the way home.  It is the only time I apply the stuff, since she is an indoor cat.  And, to top off all this indecent assault on her beautiful person, while Joe had her, I quick grabbed the scissors and gave her fancy ass hair and pantaloons a little trim.  No more, er, dangling bits where nasty bits might cling.

Contemplating her escape
She was pissed.  Sorry, but she really was.  To the point where she did not even come into the kitchen as per usual, miaowing for her supper.  She got real tuna last night, which only slightly mollified her, as she gets it fairly regularly,  but I did feed her a few morsels by hand, which she haughtily accepted.
Is it just me, or do I detect a slightly piercing anger in those beautiful baby blues?
Didn't even sleep with me last night.  Did not even deign us with her presence in our bedroom last night, and that has never happened before...

I hope she won't hold this grudge for much longer.  Cats, unlike dogs, do not exactly live in the moment, do they?!

Linking up with WIP Wednesday (my purple project) and Let's Bee Social. Buttons on sidebar!




Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Q2FAL List

Wow, we are into the second quarter of 2015!  Time to make a list for this quarter's finish-along over at On the Windy Side.

How did I do with my Q1FAL list?  I had 8 projects on it, and I completed 6 of them!! I am very happy about that.  I will move two of them over to this quarter.

Here is the new list:

1.  Stack 'n Whack quilt from Q1FAL
You always have enough fabric to make two quilts using Bethany Reynolds' method.  I made my brother-in-law and sister-in-law one with these fabrics, but with a dusky coral-pink rather than the deep coral I have.  I think that was 10 years ago?!  Worked on it again last year, or the year before, but still have a ways to go.

2.  Brrrrr Park from Q1FAL
I would say I am about 1/3 of the way done of the quilting.  I did quite a lot last quarter, but it got put to the side in favour of a couple of more pressing projects.

3.  Charity String Quilt
These are a bunch of blocks I have made so far using Cyndy's Scrap-a-Palooza Quilt #8 from August 2014.  I intend to give them to a seniors' residence in our town, along with a second as-yet unplanned or started quilt.  They will both be lap quilts for residents in wheelchairs.


4.  Bento Box quilt for one of my nephews

This has been in the works for a year now; my friend, Nancy, and I shared the pattern.  I have since learned the original colour scheme I thought would work, won't.  So most of the blacks and whites are staying, I've added a couple meaningful ones, and totally changed the colour run.

5.  This is a small project that I've seen floating around quilt blogland, but I saw a good tutorial on Molli Sparkles blog.


6.  Secret Quilt Project #1
This is going to be a star quilt out of Pam and Nicky Lintott's Layer Cake, Jelly Roll and Charm Quilts book, but I might modify the pattern as I will not be making it out of a jelly roll.

There will be some more fabric in this quilt; I just do not have it, um, available for the photo.

7.  Secret Quilt Project #2
You've seen some glimpses of this baby.  'nuff said for now.


8.  Hand-quilted runner
I'm doing the walk of shame right now...I had this last year as my goal for a month in ALYOF.  I did make a fair amount of progress on it, but it got set aside, I believe for the "Fleurs" flurry (ha) of work.  I have not touched it this winter, although it has sat, alternately forlorn and glaring at me, in a basket in my sewing room.  I hope to quilt while we travel for the day and a half north back to Kingsville.  Then it will just need binding.

9.  NINE??!!  Fabric bucket
Last year I bought the pattern, Nesting Fabric Bowls, from Nova at a cuppa and a catch up and I did buy some Amy Butler fabric at that time with the bowls in mind. Then at fabric.com I saw this, and thought, 'Ooh, that would make some cool fabric buckets.  Because I had quite the success last quarter with creating pouches, I think why not make some more buckets/bowls in the second quarter?

I also have a charity quilt to be completed for this quarter for Hands2Help and my placemats for my April goal at ALYOF (see sidebar buttons).  This a lot to do, I know, and for 12 days in early May, my mum is coming down to visit us in Kingsville!  I'm excited for many many reasons, but one is to show her how I quilt on my longarm.

One last note about the cutting backwards technique that I mentioned in my last post.  Here is the method I used yet again this morning.  You can do this in any increments that result in your desired measurement.  Here I needed 3.5"X6.5" rectangles, so I cut a 13" long strip out of my WOF fabric, but I could have cut a 19.5" strip.

13" line and then cut in half to yield 2 6.5" rectangles by 3.5" wide
Because you have more length of your ruler along the side edges of your strip, you have a better chance of getting precise pieces.  When I was cutting 3.5" squares, I used the 10.5" line, cut, backed up my ruler to the 7" line, cut, then backed it up to the 3.5" line and cut one more time to yield 12 3.5" squares (oh yes, I had a double WOF strip under my ruler!)

Linking up with WIP Wednesday and Let's Bee Social, buttons on sidebar!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Two Blocks for Two Kids

Although I don't know Yvonne, I have run into her work several times over the past several months of linking up at various linky parties.  When I heard from Judy at Quilt Paradigm that she was asking for blocks for two kids whose father passed away very suddenly, I thought, well this sounds like a worthy cause.  I went to her blog, and hey! found that she does Thankful Thursdays!  I wrote my first one here, thinking I had something unique and original...well, great minds think alike is what my mum always says, and she is absolutely right.  I truly believe in the idea that all beings, animals too, are linked, connected, that we can tap into a mega stream of consciousness if we only find the right frame of mind.  Anyhow, I'm not sure when Yvonne started doing Thankful Thursdays, but I will have to link up my next post.  I don't do them weekly anymore; all right, let's be honest, last week's was the first in several months!  But talk about synchronicity (another thing my mum says a lot), it was right around the time I wrote my last Thankful Thursday post that I went to Yvonne's at Quilting Jetgirl.

Yvonne's April 2 Thankful Thursday shows some of the blocks she has received, and provides links to her original posts where she explains about the project and about Mike's death, her friend, who was the kids' dad, the pilot of the Virgin Galactic mission.  This post is worth the read about a challenge quilt she created that expresses grief, yet hope in working through the aftermath of the tragedy.

The first block I made is for the girl.  Her blocks need to be in portrait orientation, 7X10" finished, and could be ocean or dance-themed.  My first thought was, no surprise, the ocean.  I went to Google and eventually with much surfing (and digressing), found this page.  I also did a second Google search for "lighthouse quilt blocks" and combined and rearranged a couple I saw there.  Got out my newsprint paper, and drew this:


Traced it one more time, cut apart the drawing into six sections and went to work.  I am so happy that I brought a bunch of blue scraps down here to Florida, because I even had sky scraps!  And here's a thought I had while making this block:  can one have scraps of quilts one hasn't yet made?  Apparently so:  the water is fabric I just bought last week to go in my as-yet-unmade-or-designed-but-it-will-be-my-own-design Lake Erie quilt, and the sand fabric I'd bought about this time last year for the same unborn quilt!  Ergo, scraps from quilts that have yet to be made, right?!  ;-)

Here is the result, and I couldn't be happier.  Note, I resewed nearly every single seam in this block; I'd even flipped the long and short pieces of sky fabric on the top section, forgetting that pp yields a mirror image!  However, it was all worth it:
Think this block might have to work itself into my Lake Erie quilt

The black and white are Kona scraps from various quilts, and the blue sky Moda marbles fabric is from a Joan Statz quilt.  Like my sister, Linda, I have always loved lighthouses; an original painting hangs on the wall in our Kingsville home of 3 local lighthouses.  Moreover, in creating this block, I felt the symbolism was especially dominant:  guidance, hope, light, a safe path, peace.

On to the boy.  He would like music-themed blocks as he is learning to play the piano.  As a former piano player and teacher, I was pretty extremely excited about this subject!  I was surprised how long it took me to decide upon a design:  I drew the staff with two eighth notes on it, thinking to paper-piece it too, I drew the treble clef, thinking I could appliqué it onto a blue or music-themed background, I thought about appliquéing letters for forte (loud in Italian, but related to fort in French, meaning strong, good symbolism again)...in the end, it came to me late last night: a word, yes, but why not simply "piano", appliquéd onto a music-themed background? And why not a little improv designing?

Beautiful calligraphy-style writing comes quite naturally to me; bubble letters not that hard either...30 years a schoolteacher rears her head once again!

I drew these letters:
Cut out the 'P" and then realized I needed to trace them onto Steam-a-Seam.  Um then realized I needed to trace them backwards, yep I learned that the hard way!  Decided that the music fabric fat quarter destined for my Bento Box quilt (aha! another scrap from an unborn quilt) would be the ticket, cut it at 7.5X10.5" and played with the letter arrangements until I, with input from Dayna, was happy:

This morning I got up, pressed the letters in place, and went to work appliquéing them down.  I found a spool of Sulky Twist in royal blue and black and knew it was perfect, as the boy likes that shade as well as a light shade of blue.  Not sure how well the thread shows up in the photo, but it is a great effect in person.  I think I might appliqué a dot over the "i" though; what do you think?  It didn't bother me until I now see the photo on the computer screen... thoughts most welcome.

Again, the black is scraps, and the music fabric which I adore, is future scraps, lol!

I will be sending these off to Yvonne tomorrow; if you are interested in participating, the specs are all here in this post.

Linking up with Oh Scrap! button on sidebar.

Update:
Well, that didn't take long; did Judy's suggestion (duh) and both Joe and I, and she, said, yep.
Took it in the sunshine, so hopefully you can see the beautiful thread



Friday, April 10, 2015

Building Blocks

I've designed another quilt, inspired by a guild nametag that a blogger somewhere out there made.  I've drawn out an entire quilt and I've been doing the calculations for fabric, as it might just become another pattern in my as-yet-unborn pattern collection.  Now I'm cutting the components that make up the blocks and strips for this quilt.  It is going to be an interesting method of construction...but I'm getting way ahead of myself!

When I was cutting the fabric this morning, it struck me that I automatically do this little trick I learned while watching one of Alex Anderson's "Simply Quilts" shows that used to be on HGTV.  The guest, whose name I cannot recall, showed how she, in my own coined phrase, "cuts backwards".  I have found that this results in a "more square" square or rectangle.  Here is the tip!

For example, this morning I was cutting 3 7/8" squares from a WOF strip.  Instead of cutting each 3 7/8" square individually, I cut a rectangle from the strip that was 3 7/8" X2, so 7 3/4". Note that the strip is a double layer of fabric.

From here I backed my ruler up (cutting backwards, get it?), put the 3 7/8" mark where you see the 7 3/4" measurement in the above photo, and cut across.  Yield: (4) perfect 3 7/8" squares.
For some reason, this keeps my edges more square, probably because I am using a longer length as one of the guidelines.

You can do more than just double the measurement of your squares.  For example, if I have a bunch of 3.5" squares, which I do have in this particular quilt, I will cut perhaps a 14" section out of my WOF strip, and then back the ruler up to the 10.5" mark; cut.  Without moving the strip, back the ruler up again to the 7" mark; cut.  Back the ruler up one last time, again with moving the strip, this time to the 3.5" mark; cut.  Yield: 8 very square 3.5" squares!  Tip inside a tip: place that line of each measurement as you are backing up your ruler, exactly on the cut edge.  Otherwise you will find that you do not have 3.5" (or whatever your squares are) left to cut your last square.

Here are the components so far of this newest quilt:
A few Moda fabrics here...yep, I think I've often waxed poetic about my love for Moda fabrics over the last what, decade(?), and it continues...I've always loved the Moda Marbles and own/owned several pieces, and I now love the new-to-me Marble Swirls.  The purchase of the Moda Marble Ombre Dots was a bit of an accident; the darkest part of the fabric was showing on the bolt and when she unwound it to cut some for me, surprise!  Even in this 6.5" square you can see the colour shading change.  Coolio!

I know...there's looking to be a lot of white (Kona Snow, love it) in this quilt; however, there are 3 more coloured "sections" of fabrics I have not yet cut.  Exciting!  Still, there will be a nice, make that fabulous amount of negative space for quilting!

I also made two more placemats which may grow up to become a bag of sorts, since pink does not really have a place in my dining ambiance, but I want to be able to experiment with triangles in Angela's Dot to Dot Quilting class.  There was a LOT of math figuring in this:  one placemat required 4 different sizes of 60 degree triangles!  In case you're wondering: 2 sizes of full triangles, and 2 sizes of the half-triangles needed at the ends of each row.
Reversed the colour placements in each.  Kind of cool, the effect, no?
Here are the two styles side by side.

When I showed my grandson the other night, he said, "I like the green one; it looks like a Minecraft face."  Who knew.  He loves quilts, so I always like to show him what I'm working on.  Again, the difference in colour between the first, outside on the lanai, photo, and the second, inside my sewing room, amazes me.  The bottom looks like blues here, but it's really blueish-greens. The lanai pic is the true colour of the pinks.

Woo hoo, I'm doing a happy dance because of TWO more, three if you count the 2 placemat designs, of my own, original designs!  I'm linking up with Confessions of a Fabric Addict  and Pink Doxies, buttons on sidebar.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Set the Table

First things first:  I added a new member to my growing herd.  I just love looking at these cuties on my design wall. This is my April block for the RSC at SoScrappy.  I love how the yellow pansies just happened to fall perfectly in place on her blaze.  That purple body and ears fabric is pretty much the end now of Bonnie Benn Stratton's Quilt for a Cure fabric. The pansies, of which I have just a very few scraps left now, too, are from my daughter Dayna's Mariner's Compass quilt, under which she sleeps every night!

But on to the topic of today's post:
Another original design!  Woot! Woot!  Although this is not anything intricate, it is my own design again.  No, they are not complete; they are just flimsies at this point.  They will be my ALYOF goal for April.  I made them specifically for a class I am taking through the Sarasota Quilt Guild in two weeks today...a class about which I am over-the-moon excited:  Dot to Dot Quilting with none other than the queen of it herself, Angela freaking Walters!!!!!!!  You bet your sweet bippy! ("Laugh-In" talk)  We are staying down here one extra week just so I can take advantage of this amazing opportunity.  For those of you with excellent memories, you will know that I have already taken this superb class on Craftsy, (button on sidebar) along with every single other class Angela offers there!  However, to be able to take a class with her in person is worth every single penny.  (aside:  so, in Canada, my home and native land, since there are no more pennies in use, will this idiom become "every single nickel"? Just musing...)  For the class, she asks that you bring 6 fat quarter sized sandwiches on which to practise, so since I have already done the class, bought the book, incorporated these wicked designs into a few quilts, (see Hidden in Plaid Sight and Pocketful of Sunshine), I thought I would make something that I could actually put to use after the class!

Last night we had another one of my favourite salads, one a colleague brought many years ago to a staff potluck we used to have once a month at school.  It's a Kraft recipe, and she was kind enough to share it with me.  Like me, she doesn't like olives (but I love olive oil, weird) so she omitted them.  So without further ado, for your dining pleasure, I offer you another great salad recipe!

Greek Rice and Feta Salad
1 1/2 cups rice, cooked
1 large tomato, seeded and chopped (I prefer to use 2 medium roma tomatoes and I do not seed them)
1/2 c each chopped green pepper and English cucumber
1/3 c each sliced green onion and black olives
1 c feta cheese, divided
1/2 c Miracle Whip salad dressing
2 tbsp plain yogurt

Prepare rice according to package directions, cool slightly.  Add vegetables and 3/4 c of cheese.  Combine dressing and yogurt; toss with rice mixture.  Cover and chill for 2 hours (if you can; bet you can't!)  Sprinkle with remaining feta and serve.
Makes 6-8 servings.


Last week I celebrated another birthday, and, as I have in the past, I bought myself some fabric I've had my eye on since it first came out, Drift, by Angela Walters.  It was inspired by a trip she made to St. John, one of the US Virgin Islands, so it is ocean-themed.
I plan to make the same quilt that I have planned for my husband with his Gothic-themed, and badass skulls on fire fabrics.  It will be interesting to see how each one turns out!  Yes, no surprise, here I go yet again with the blues and seafoam green colours...

So many many projects; never enough hours in the day.
Especially when you have time-wasters like my fur kids...  She was lolling about behind my machine once again, but that night she was a little more playful, gently waving her paw at the fabric or patting my hand that was between the presser foot/needle area and her body.

Linking up with the Tuesday linky party at Freemotion by the River, button on sidebar, as is the ALYOF button!

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Rounded-edge Small Bag Tutorial

When I made the Itty Bitty Knitting Bag to hold my fingerless gloves I was working on, it was about the size of the plastic bag I'd been using.  I soon realized it could have been a bit bigger, and I also knew I wanted to remake it to improve that tutorial.  I have quite a bit of scrap fabric left from my "new bag" so I set to work.

This bag was going to be a rectangular bag sitting on its small side, but it just evolved into a much smarter, wider opening, rectangular bag sitting on its long side.  Flying geese can go sideways or up and down, right?



Here's what you will need:
24 2.5" squares
fabric for 4 2.5X4.5" unfinished flying geese, amount dependent upon your method
2 rectangles 2.5X8.5" for end strips (or 8 more 2.5" squares if you prefer)
2 lining pieces 8.5X10.5"
1 rectangle 5.5X7.5" for inside pocket, if desired 
batting scraps
30" length of pre-made (or make your own like I did) piping, corded or flat (mine was flat)
a 12" zipper (so you can apply zipper tabs)
thread

Here's what I did:
For the first side, I made one 16-patch using 2.5" squares, and for the second side, I substituted four flying geese units measuring 2.5X4.5" unfinished.  I like Eleanor Burns' no waste method, but if your scraps are small you can make them with a rectangle and two squares, or even one large triangle and two small ones. Here is a link to a well-written tutorial for the no waste method. There are YouTube videos out there too.

To make the bag a rectangle, add a strip measuring 2.5X8.5" to one end.  You could add 4 more 2.5" squares if you like.  I grabbed a couple of leftover batting pieces, hit them with a little quilt basting spray, and went to town quilting!

And forgot to take a picture...for the 16-patch side, I did Cumulus out of Christina Cameli's new book, Step by Step Free Motion Quilting (terrific book!). For the second side I did some Dot to Dot à la Angela Walters in the geese, wrote my initials, did a little feathering, and Leafy, a variation of a design I've done for over a decade on a lot of my quilts. I love quilting leaves, as they're so forgiving.  It goes to show, however, that (IMHO) no one "owns" a quilting motif, unless it's McTavishing, or Angela's Dot to Dot or "signature" motif... :-)
Interesting, the colour difference in these two photos. This is in daylight, under my huge window

Trimmed up to 8.5X10.5"; you'll never know the batting is pieced! Do this to both your sides.
And this is under my Ott Lite. This is the true colour!
When Julie of Pink Doxies saw a different colour of yarn in the original Itty Bitty Knitting Bag, she asked if I'd sewn elastic inside to hold tools like scissors. Great idea!  I didn't have any elastic for this bag (but gosh, I might just have to make another bag, and incorporate that splendid idea) but I did have more scraps, so I made a small pocket which worked perfectly to hold the cable needle and large-eyed tapestry needle.

Take your lining fabric that is 5.5X7.5".  Fold it in half, wrong sides together, so you now have a 5.5X 3.25" rectangle.  Stitch around 3 sides, leaving an opening in the edge opposite the fold for turning.  Turn right side out and press.


You could write on the label at this point if you like; I am a HUGE proponent for labelling all quilts!  Centre the pocket on one piece of lining fabric so the top edge of the pocket  is 2" down from the top edge of the lining.  Topstitch around 3 sides (I did this about 1/8" in from the edge.)



I ordered a set of 25 14" multi-colored zippers from Zipit Zipper Supply (awesome prices and service) and she even threw in a zipper pull, how cute!

I found the closest in colour was a lettuce-green pale yellow zipper.  I only needed about 10" length of zipper, but that was not a problem, thanks to zipper tabs! Here, at Pug Mom Quilts, is a great tutorial that I always refer to when I put mine on.

Voilà! Perfect size and no bulk at the ends
You might be thinking, "What was she thinking? That zipper does not go!" But wait...  One side in:

Here you can see Cumulus quilting motif. Fun!
How did I do that?  The zipper is sandwiched between the lining and bag body.  To do this, place your lining right side up. Place zipper on top, aligning edges, right side up (note that the wrong side of the zipper is against the right side of the lining). Now place your bag body fabric right side down on top of the zipper, again aligning edges (note that the right side of the bag body and the right side of the zipper are facing each other).  Sew with a zipper foot 1/4" from the raw edge.


Open up and you should have a unit like that in the above picture.  Repeat this process for the other side of the zipper, and you will have the following:
You can topstitch along the zipper at this point, or you can do this after the bag is assembled
To round the lower edges of this bag, use a circular object that is about 3.5" in diameter. My teacup worked perfectly!

Using the edge of the round object as a guide, draw a curved line.  Trim with scissors.  Repeat for the opposite side of the bag body piece.  You only need to do these two at this point.

To make the flat piping as I did, cut bias strips 1" wide and join them to make a continuous piece that is about 30" in length.  Fold in half and carefully press.  Remember bias edges are very stretchy.  Here's what you will have.  Well, minus the cat maybe!


Yep, she's claiming this as her own new cat mat.  Is that a hint, Bella?!  If you look closely, you can see that 2 edges are rounded, and the ones closest to me are still square.  That is just fine.
Lay the piping with the fold in and the raw edges aligned along the bag body with the rounded corners.  I like to kind of "fade out" the piping at the beginning and end, which in this case, is up by the zipper.  Pin, and sorry Clover clip lovers, but I lo-o-o-ve my Clover pins.  I can (and do) sew slowly right over them, and nothing shifts.  Sew slowly and carefully with a 1/4" seam.

All done:
See how I "fade out" the piping at beginning and end?
Now to finish up this puppy!  Wait! Hold the phone!  I have realized I meant to put a small carrying strap on one end of the bag....guess there will be yet another bag!  So at this point you could cut a strap approximately 6.5" long by 2.5" wide.  Fold it in half, wrong sides together, so the long edges align. Press.  Open out and now fold the raw edges to that fold. Press; fold once again, encasing the raw edges and press. Topstitch along both edges. Your strap is now 6.5" long by about 5/8" wide.  Fold it in half with raw edges together and place the raw edges about 2" down from the zipper on one side edge of the bag body. The strap is completely on top of the bag body and all raw edges are aligned. Pin, being careful to ONLY pin to the bag body and have the lining fabric completely out of the way.  Baste in place.

Now we can assemble this bag!  Very important!  Open the zipper about half way or more.  Place the two bag body pieces right sides together, and the two lining pieces right sides together. Pin.  You will not see the strap if you applied one, nor will you see the piping.

Hmm! The Cumulus quilting shows up better here!
Sew with the stitching of the piping side face up so you can use it as a guide.  Sew 1/4" seam.  One side of the bag body is still square.  That is okay; we will use the rounded edge to trim afterwards.

When you get to the zipper tabs, push the bulk towards the lining.  I have struggled with what to do with this area and I think I have it figured out!
Be sure to leave an opening about 5-6" long in the bottom edge of the lining fabric for turning right side out.  I like to put a different colour, larger pin there to remind me to stop sewing!  Backstitch at beginning and end of this seam.  Before you turn it, use the previously rounded edges to trim the last two edges you left square.  Because the seam is only 1/4", I found there was no need to clip the curves.

Reach in, through the opening left by the open zipper (you remembered to do that, right?!) and grab the bag body, and pull it carefully through the opening in the lining.  Smooth everything out, turn the edges of the opening in the lining in 1/4" and topstitch or hand-stitch them closed.  Push the lining back into the bag body.  Topstitch the zipper edge at this point if you didn't before.  Sometimes I think you get a better finish on the zipper tab ends if you do it at this point.  Will get back to you on that...but of course there's another bag, or ten, in my future...

This is really a handy sized bag!
Here is how it compares to my Itty Bitty bag:
Side one...
And
Side two!
Too much fun.  So quick to stitch up.  And I love that pop of black that the piping adds.
I used a Gutermann sparkly thread in the bobbin on the Itty Bitty Bag.  I took  a full sunlight photo to try to catch the shimmer of this thread,
but it doesn't do it justice.  Ah well, take my word for it; it is really pretty!  And, since I forgot to attach a strap, I think there is yet another version of this bag in my future.  Like shoes, a girl can never have enough bags

I'm linking this up with Pink Doxies Pet Project #14, and Oh Scrap! See the buttons on the side bar.