Friday, September 20, 2013

There should be more "Drama Free" zones!

Have you ever used the online Urban Dictionary?  I just looked up the word Drama and it had this to say:

"A way of relating to the world in which a person consistently overreacts to or greatly exaggerates the importance of benign events."

"Typically "drama" is used by people who are chronically bored or those who seek attention."

"People who engage in "drama" will usually attempt to drag other people into their dramatic state, as a way of gaining attention or making their own lives more exciting."

You are no doubt asking yourself what in the world does all this have to do with Quilting?  

Quilters are sharing kind of people. 

We spend hours and hours working our magic with fabric and thread only to give our creations to people who may or may not realize that you just worked weeks on something that they might casually call a blanket.  We are OK with that as most of these gifts are made with love and given freely.

We make quilts for charity.  We donate quited items to auctions and fund raisers.  We donate fabric to be used in charity quilts and if you belong to a guild you most likely have engaged in many kinds of charity projects and events.

We help other quilters by sharing our knowledge and experience - especially beginners.

In short, we put ourselves out there.

We share our work in progress, our successes and our failures - even when we are the only one who might think so.  We do that in a variety of places. Local quilt guilds. Lots of forums and groups on the internet.  Plenty of places to engage with other quilters and by far the most popular is facebook.

Groups on facebook are just so much fun and there is a virtual quilt show every day.   And these groups are for the most part, moderated by just the kind of people I have described above.  They pay attention to content, they watch out for spammers, they often provide a place for swaps and the sharing of our stuff to take place, they host group projects and they spend countless hours of their time doing so.  Many do not have a profit driven motive (although some do) and mostly just donate hours and hours of time for the good of the group.

But every once in a while you come across someone who has not embraced this mindset.  At first you don't really pay much attention.  Then the little voice in the back of your head starts whispering.  Then you see the same kind of comments again and again. The negativity that slides in.  The questioning of the rules.  Then the voice gets louder.  Then others get dragged into the drama.  And then when the moderator has had enough they get booted out of the group.  Sometimes it ends there and other times it does not.

And that brings me back to the Urban Dictionary:  

"People who engage in "drama" will usually attempt to drag other people into their dramatic state, as a way of gaining attention or making their own lives more exciting."


I am lucky enough to be good friends with the quilter who started such a group on facebook.  It's my favorite group and I have made many wonderful friends there. It is a wonderful group because my friend works hard to make it a drama free zone and does not put up with anything that creates controversy.  Recently when she came under fire, a group project that I put together got dragged into the drama-zone.  I was not part of the mix but was called out in the exchange of words. My friend pulled the plug and voted the person off the island.  We applauded!

But it didn't end there.  The person in question had to send the group moderator a hate filled message full of mean ugly words and even called her stupid.  She made my friend feel bad which caused her to take a break from fb to try and banish the evil that person was spewing from her mind.  I hurt for her.

This has been eating at me ever since it happened.  I can't get over the fact that my friend, who is one of the most delightful, caring people I know would be treated this way by another quilter.   I have seen this before.  I have experienced it myself due to some of my non-quilting posts on my personal facebook wall, but this one really got me thinking.

Why do so many people think it is OK to say something disrespectful to another person while hiding behind a keyboard.  About a hobby!!!  Why does meanness have to enter into it?  Why do some feel it is OK to engage in this kind of behavior over something as insignificant as QUILTING! 


Getting wound up over family - I get that.  Kids - I get that too.  Politics - boy do I get that.  But quilting is something good, no one gets hurt by it (well maybe our wallets) and many are helped by it - on many levels.  So why does it seem OK to so many to engage in behavior that is disrespectful and downright mean?

I don't have the answer. But I am going to do a better job of ignoring the drama seekers out there in the quilt world and not get sucked in.  It's hard.  But let's not let the drama seekers win! Let's not react when they toss a drama bomb into our world.  Let's try and not let our emotions get carried away and cause us to do or say something we normally wouldn't (note to self on that one!) and let's all be kinder to one another! ♥

Won't you join me in supporting and creating more drama-free zones out there? 

As my best friend says "It's quilting people!" 

Quilty hugs,



Saturday, September 7, 2013

Stash Buster BOM Block #11 - Chain

Whew!  Breaking the "chain" from all the triangles with this block!

This one is super easy but you need to make 6 of them all alike.

 This quilt is made up of scrappy blocks and lots of fabrics (which is the idea and supposedly to help us bust our stashes!) and this block along with the 4 patch bonus block we made a few months ago is what ties it all together. 

You will notice that the center of this block and the 4-patch are the same.  When you have a lot of different blocks made of lots of different units a block like this can really help tie them all together.  Or if you will, "chain" them together ☺

Four patch block - you made 17 of them




A   2" x 2" squares

Cut 8 of red print (scraps)

Cut 8 of tan print (scraps)

Cut 8 of black (background)


B   3 1/2" x 6 1/2" rectangle

Cut 4 of black (background)



C 3 1/2" x 2" rectangle - cut 4 of black (background)


As you know by now, I like to layout all the pieces.  Spencer seems to think he has to help with this part.

I start with the 4 patch units.



 I just chain piece them making sure I have them placed so I can just fold one over on top of the other and have them going the right way.  I also sewed the small squares to the inner rectangles at this time.

Once again, back to the layout part.  Just making sure everything is going the right way.  The red fabric is directional so I want to be sure I don't get one of them turned the wrong way.

 I always pin when I have things I need/want to match up.

 Center unit is complete.

 Sew the corner 4 patch units to the larger rectangles.  Pay attention to how you press these units so you can easily nest them together when you join the sides to the center unit. I pressed toward the big rectangles and away from the pieced blocks.

 Super easy.  Now make 5 more for a total of 6!

Note:  You can make these blocks using strip piecing for the four patch units, just cut your strips 2" sew them together and then sub cut into 2" units and sew together as usual.


Ta Dah!  Once you have all 6 made you are done with this step.  

kind regards,  Linda T.


Stash Buster BOM Block #10 - Magic Box

Just because I know you love triangles!

I wonder if the magic part of this block is when your points all come out perfect? The block reminds me of a combination of a Square in a Square and a Churn Dash.  I like blocks that have lots of pieces and sections so I can really get scrappy with it and this block is perfect for that!

As you can see I used five different prints and the black background fabric. If you want an even scrappier look you could add more - maybe the triangles are all different prints of the same color?  Go ahead, have some fun with it.


A   3 7/8" x 3 7/8" square 

Cut 2 squares of background fabric and then cut on the diagonal once

Cut 2 squares of tan print (scraps) and then cut on the diagonal once

Cut 2 squares of black/tan print (scraps) and then cut on the diagonal once

B   6 1/2" x 2" rectangle 

cut 2 of background 

cut 2 of scraps


C   4 1/4" x 4 1/4" square

cut 1 of scraps and then cut again on the  diagonal twice to make 4 triangles 

D  3 1/2" x 3 1/2" square - cut one (scraps)


When I make a new block I always lay out the pieces to make sure I am happy with my choices. I also check for any fabrics that are directional and get things lined up properly.  As you can see my triangles have a stripe to them and I want to be sure they all end up going the same way.

I like to start with the center.  Take your square D and pair it with a triangle C.  

Make sure that the little ears are extending beyond the square and that they are even.  If not, go back and check your cutting.  This is an important step. Sew. Add the opposite triangle and press toward the center of the block.

Do the same thing with the remaining two triangles.  Be sure to keep an eye on those little ears.  This time press to the triangle.  Pay attention to the intersection at the tip of my scissors - it should be visible.  If you press correctly you should be able to see all 4 of them.  This is really helpful when you go to add the next set of triangles.

Center unit is complete. Points look good, seam allowance is correct. At this time you can square things up if you need to.  The center unit should measure 4 3/4" x 4 3/4" - be sure when/if you trim not to cut off the seam allowance on one side more than the other.  Take care when trimming!

 Now add the next set of triangles A.  Again note those little ears - make sure they are even and stick out on either side of your center unit.  You should have a 1/4" of fabric showing on each ear.
 When you go to sew the triangles on, place them on the machine bed so you can see that intersection at the tip of my pencil. If you need to, pin in place.  Make sure your line of stitching does not cross over that intersection or you will cut your points off.
 Perfection- points are intact.
 Yay.  All 4 points look good. On to the next step.

Remember to keep an eye on that intersection.

 Sew the rectangles together using a print (scraps) and a background piece. Press to the darker fabric.

 At this point I like to lay out all the parts just to make sure I have things going the right way.  Now it is basically like sewing a nine patch together.  Sew two of the rectangle units to the center square in square unit and press toward the rectangle unit.

 Watch out for that intersection I am always talking about ☺  Always sew with that on top and visible.If you do your points will come out perfect! 

 Sew one half square triangle unit to one rectangle unit.

 Repeat with the opposite end.  Press toward the rectangle.

Once pressed you should be able to see the intersection.  Repeat for the other side.

 Add the side units to this center unit to complete the block. Be sure to watch out for the intersection of the center square unit. I always pin at this point.  Make sure the opposing seams are nested together nicely and put a pin on either side.  Sew the last two seams and you are done!

Yay - all of the points are intact!   Block should measure 12 1/2" x 12 1/2" but don't stress too much if it is off a tad. The sashing will help with that when we go to put them all together.

Congratulations!  Block #10 is complete!!  

 If you find these tutorials helpful please leave a comment ☺

Linda T.