November Challenge Week 2 - my work

Posted by on 12 November 2018 | 2 Comments

I'm getting double fun with this challenge. I love teaching so teaching Emma new techniques is always fun (see yesterday's blog post) and today I get creative as I start building my background element. Sky shouldn't be too difficult!

This week's task: Build my sky using 8 fabrics and modern piecing (my choices from last week)

I have to admit, I never like cutting lots of the same pieces over and over to create a block. My style has always been to create variation or irregular shapes. I'm glad it's caught on and now even a technique. It is totally fun, free-form cutting with a rotary cutter and that is what I have planned for my background.

Starting off with half-length (approximately 20" or so) 2 1/2" wide cut strips, I lay them down on the cutting mat overlapping them by 1". With eight fabrics I should be able to render enough width for my desired size. I can always trim it down a bit if I need to later.

ruth w2 1background strips cut

2-1/2" strips overlapped by 1"

Now the fun begins.... using the rotary cutter, I cut curvy lines along the 1" overlap using the cutting board lines as a guide. The trick is not to make them too curvy as sometimes it can be a little difficult to get the seam to lay completely flat after they are sewn.

ruth w2 2background strips curved

Curved lines cut within the 1" overlap

I remove the excess pieces and discard them being careful not to muddle those that remain. Then I flip the darkest strip over onto the one above it so the right sides are together. These strips are short enough to pin together at each end and once in the middle. Even though I try to avoid using pins, I found I needed them for this otherwise the fabrics shifted too much while stitching.

ruth w2 3strips pinned

First 2 strips pinned

Now it is just a matter of matching the raw edges together as I stitch. Of course, they also need a good press afterward.

ruth w2 4strips stitched

First few strips stitched and pressed

I created the video to show you how to do the stitching.

stitching a curved seam - I'm planning on putting the full video and others in my workshop Getting Started with Quilt Art

Here's how the background looks with all the strips joined - almost like waves in an ocean.

ruth w2 5strip stitching completed

All the strips sewn together

This could work for my background as is, but I'm having too much fun to stop now! I decided to cut this whole block up. First I cut it in half so I had two pieces, one I flipped upside down so the dark was at the top, then using a similar method, I cut wavy lines across the strips.

ruth w2 6second cutting

There's a lot of movement in this piece

Pinning ends and centers again, I began stitching the new strips together....

ruth w2 7second stitching

First strips stitched

and voila! ....this is what I ended up with.

ruth w2 8background complete

my finished background

It almost looks like Emma's river!  I'm sure by the time I get my foreground element in place, it will look very different. We'll see next week.

For more information & updates be sure to sign up for our newsletter


You can unsubscribe anytime!

quilting classes available at the Academy of Quilting

Get this pattern FREE

Quilt Designers Blog Ring

Home/Join | List | Next | Previous | Random

Post your comment


  • Barbara, your comments have to be approved before you get to see them. You can send them to my email or on facebook, either way is fine.

    Posted by Ruth, 18/11/2018 9:45pm (5 months ago)

  • I am doing the challenge, but never see my comments and where do I send pictures?

    Posted by Barbara, 13/11/2018 7:46pm (5 months ago)

RSS feed for comments on this page | RSS feed for all comments