Think Happy Thoughts Blog Month 4
by Faith Nelson
Well it’s no secret that most of us have been in a fog. In a daze. Anxious, tired, thinking of the way ahead. Many of us are hunkering down. Many of us are homeschooling, while working from home and preparing three meals a day. What an unprecedented time we are experiencing together.
So what can we do to ease our tension, and free our minds? How can we help and inspire joy in others? Many have decided to share their art. Thanks to the amazing technology available to us, we are able to connect, chat and empathize with others in a way that we couldn’t have done 20 years ago in the same situation. Share your art. Share your music. Share with the world what you’re working on. And of course, share your sewing projects! I encourage you to embrace Month 4 of the Think Happy Thoughts quilt project as a way to release some stress. Breathe in some fresh spring air and have a quick quilt block photoshoot outside. Take your time piecing Month 4 and cherish the quiet time in the studio. Inspire people to craft! Inspire and Think Happy Thoughts. We all could use it!
Now onto Month 4! The blocks and panel in Month 4 couldn’t have come at a better time. It’s April and flowers are blooming, the birds are chirping and the soft hues in Month 4 really reflect this time of year. Easy piecing is a welcome relief from Month 3’s challenging Lone Star Block. And aren’t we all just ready for something that feels easy?
Enjoy simple cutting instructions this Month! Cutting is done in a flash. Keep those lovely pink and green strips separated by block for organization.
I love listening to podcasts while I’m sewing, and Blocks A and B are the perfect podcast blocks! You can let yourself zone out while sewing strips together. Be mindful of keeping your ¼” seam accurate and consistent throughout.
Sewing and subcutting your strip sets for Block A is as easy as could be! You will have that done in no time.
Nestle seams when sewing together Block A using the subcut units. When possible, turn the units so that seams facing away from you go through the sewing machine facing upward, and seams facing toward you go through the sewing machine facing down. This prevents those pesky feed dogs from chewing your fabrics! I don’t know about you, but that is a real problem for me! My machine loves to chew those seams on occasion. In order to do this method, you may opt to piece Block A together in 4-patch units first. Then piece the 4-patch units into a complete Block A.
Check out the pictures at the end of the blog for the completed Block A!
I absolutely adore Block B. I love putting different spins on flying geese. And this particular block sort of looked like a blooming flower to me. A perfect opportunity to mix and match pinks.
Begin by creating your rectangles, sewing the strips together lengthwise. Ensure that ¼” seams are accurate so that your Fabric B rectangles fit properly onto the corners when completing flying geese assembly. You may opt to starch fabrics during this step to prevent unwanted stretching. I personally use Best Press.
Do you ever create flying geese by sewing on the drawn diagonal lines, trim and press them only to find that the flying geese triangles don’t quite come to the corners to create a perfect rectangle? I have a trick for this! When I’m piecing flying geese, no matter how large or small the finished size will be, I always use a trick to ensure that my flying geese come out to a perfect rectangle. Sew 1-2 thread widths away from the drawn line. Sew along the side of the line closest to the exterior of the flying geese, or the part that will be trimmed away. I always start and stop my seam on the drawn line to ensure my points are preserved. But the sewing in between the start and stop points are just offset from the drawn line. This helps to bring that triangle to the corner more accurately and prevent shortages. Sometimes depending on how much wiggle room you take, you can trim the flying geese for a perfectly sized unit.
The reasoning behind this is because when we are sewing, thread and the ironed crease from pressing seams takes up space. Now granted, it’s a very minute amount of space. But it’s enough space to cause a short corner when piecing flying geese units or stitch and flip units.
The photo below shows how much wiggle room I take. It’s not much, but it does the trick!
Now that we are done creating these lovely blocks, enjoy putting them together. Easy assembly! How fun was Month 4?
I hope you enjoyed creating Month 4 with us. We look forward to bringing you back for Month 5. Until then, please share your progress with us on Instagram by tagging @gingibermakes @gingiber and @njcrabtree. Use hashtag #thinkhappythoughtsquilt.
Keep your chin up, stay healthy and safe, and remember to Think Happy Thoughts!