Friday, February 18, 2011

Aaaaaand, we're back!!

I bet you thought I'd lost my computer in the move, didn't you? But thankfully, no. We are coming out from under the sea of boxes and I managed to uncover my sewing machine this past weekend. I missed her. A lot. Pretty sure the lumberjack was happy I was sewing again too...I was crazy anxious leading up to the move.

Anyhow, just before Christmas (was that really 7 weeks ago already??), I ordered and received this fabulous bundle of Freebird by MoMo fat quarters - not the whole line, but 20 of the prints. Delicious, no?
This FQ below is going to be a pillow, in the end, I just couldn't bear to cut into that...

Ever since I got these I've been plotting in my head on what to do with them, and all I kept thinking about were stars. More plotting over lunch hour below...

I've had a hankering to do some classic quilt blocks and I want to start with stars. I foolishly thought "I'll just google star blocks and see if there are a few to choose from". Are you laughing at me, or with me right now? There must be thousands of patterns for stars!! I narrrowed it down and attempted my first one this weekend.

I don't know what this star is called, since I've seen a LOT of names for it, so in my world it is the "Simple Star", fair enough?

I wanted to make blocks that were 12" finished (go big or go home, right?). I don't have the full requirements for fabric as I just grabbed scraps that would be big enough to test this out, but stayed tuned for further posts on this little project. Oh, and this tutorial also has the coolest way to do Flying Geese, which I've always shied away from as I felt you lost too much fabric in making them, but you don't lose any with this one!

You will need two fabrics - one for the star and one for the background. Cut the following from each fabric:

Main Star Fabric:
1 - 6 1/2" square
4 - 3 7/8" squares

Background Fabric:
4 - 3 1/2" squares
1 - 7 1/4" square

Your first step is to make 4 flying geese. So easy, I love it!

Take your four 3 7/8" main star fabric squares and draw a line with pencil ( or your choice of disappearing marker) from one corner to the opposite, on all four squares.

 Then place two of them on your 7 1/4" background fabric square, right sides facing, on opposing corners, with the pencil marks lining up.

 Sew 1/4" on either side of the line.

Cut down the pencil line.
Iron seams open, toward the darker material.
For each of these two pieces, take one more of the 3 7/8" main fabric squares and lay it, right sides facing, on top.
Sew 1/4" on either side of the pencil line and cut down the pencil line.
Iron seams towards dark material.
You now have four flying geese! Congratulations! Doesn't that make you just want to spend the day doing that? Yeah, me too. 

Okay, now you will square up your flying geese...give them a tiny trim if they need it. Their length should be the same as your inner square (for us, 6 1/2" long). Mine needed a tiny little trim, but I also tend toward sewing with a scant 1/4" and I think you need to be generous here.

Now, line up your block for sewing...
Top Row: 3 1/4" background fabric square, flying geese (point facing in!), and 3 `/4" background fabric square
Middle Row: flying geese (point in), main fabric large square, flying geese
Bottow Row: 3 1/4" background fabric square, flying geese (point facing in!), and 3 `/4" background fabric square
Sew each row together and iron your seams well.

Then sew your rows toghether and, voila! Shan's Simple Star.

By the way, if you know the actual name of this star block, please tell me!


Junkie handmade projects


  1. that seems like such a good way of doing flying geese.

  2. Cool! Now I can throw out my quilting bible, 'coz you're working your way through every block and sharing your tutorials so nicely! (Thanks for that!)

    I never wanted to make Flying Geese, since they looked so intimidating. Now, I can't wait to try making them!

    Shan, you're the best! And your quilts look fab!


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