Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Fabulous Support Group

As 2014 comes to a close, I’m thankful it’s been a great year of discovery, of finding like-minded folks! In October, I created a “closed” group on Facebook, the Lone Star of Texas Quilts for Others. The membership is full of supportive and encouraging people sharing the same goals as we journey through creating quilts for national and community based service endeavors.

The collective group creates quilts to honor and comfort our Veterans and Active Military, for children and adults in need of a hug, and even Veteran Service Dogs who are instrumental in the emotional wellness of our veterans.

Sometimes we have questions, or someone is looking for something specific…

Like this morning… I had a longarm stitching question… wondering what I was doing wrong writing with the machine and within minutes, two members explained what I was doing, and what I needed to do!

I can’t recall how many times someone has requested specific print fabric needed and someone else has it in their stash – ready to mail it out if it will work!

Oh, and don’t forget the math questions…

And, the wonderful tips to make a quilt design easier…

And, oh, all the creative ideas that runneth over!!!

I’m thankful for this fabulous support group!

Are you like-minded? Join us!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Daily Journal Writing

I know it takes discipline to write a daily journal. I wonder ~ will I be able to maintain such an endeavor? We’ll see. I started one on the 10th of December. It’s been 10 days today. So far, so good.

The focus of the daily writing is simply to log what I’m doing ~ basically how I spend my time ~ and what’s going on around me. I decided when I started, I would omit sharing any feelings or rambling thoughts I happen to have that particular day/time/moment. It’s just the facts, Jack!

In addition to the daily journal, on December 10th I also started an excel file, recording time spent creating/working on quilts for others. This is not only for my personal information, but also for the local Texas Extension Education Association group I recently joined. They need a monthly report from members as to time spent on community service, and the other mission aspects.

The mission of the Texas Extension Education Association, Inc. is to work with the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service to strengthen and enrich families through educational programs, leadership development and community service.

I’m using MS Word to keep the daily journal. I now click SAVE after every bloomin entry ~ already learnt the hard way to do this!!! After 3 days, I decided rather than go to the bottom for the current day, to always use the first page (which is what automatically opens up) to add the new day. Okay, did you get that? Hope so!

Do you keep a daily journal? Do you hand write or type it? How detailed do you make it? This inquiring mind would love to know!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Barn Quilts

A recent post, and its following discussion, on a Facebook group page caused me to explore further the concept of a barn quilt! Goodness, I’ve mention many times how I’m “late to the party” on a variety of things. This is indeed one of them!

Of course, I had to do a (my default search engine where each one of my searches provides a penny to the non-profit I selected – Wound Warriors Family Support)!

Straightaway, I found this one that I absolutely LOVE!

At Barn Quilt Info, there is an interactive map of the United States. This is an amazing resource… did you know about The American Quilt Trail? Click on the map, then click on the state of interest… maybe you’re going on holiday and would like to make this part of your trip!

My sister is going to Tennessee for Thanksgiving… I clicked on Tennessee… WOW! I can hardly wait for her to see this map!!!

Oh my goodness… only TWO counties within Texas – and they are opposites sides of the Great State of Texas! This is pitiful! Maybe there are more, and the website hasn’t been updated… maybe….

How fun would this be in Lampasas County, like stated on their website:
 … quilt trails take visitors on a drive through the countryside where barn quilts are mounted on farm buildings, on homes, along fences, and sometimes on freestanding posts. A quilt trail may include stops at galleries, farm stands, wineries and other points of interest that make the journey a day-long event.
Okay. I live on a ranch. I have TWO barns and NO barn quilt square either structure!

This will change in 2015.

So, I need some ideas…

On Quilters Cache, she has created blocks for each one of the US Armed Forces. Due to her copyright instructions, I can’t share a picture of the actual blocks, but trust me! It’s worth taking a look!

Not to mention the 1,000’s of other patterns she shares!

In addition, QuiltViews had an interesting article, A Barn Side Salute to American Quilters, dated October, 2014, stating:
Now, barn quilt trails have sprung up all over America, as rural communities re-ignite quilting’s important national presence.
Of course!

So, what to do, what to do…

Pinterest was also full of different ideas for Barn Quilt squares… go explore! Make a barn quilt block and put it out! Let us create a trail of our own here in Lampasas County and all across Texas!

Side note:

You’ll see in lots of the Pinterest pictures that “barn quilts” aren’t for just barns!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Friday, October 17, 2014

Do you have the time?

I need your help! It's difficult making the selection because I love them all!

I’d like to make something like this quilt I found at Block Central (but not as big so minus the outside border), 
Sentimental Journey
Block of the Month Quilt
using Downton Abbey fabrics!

I found this "team" chart on a Mystery Quilt that Love Bug Studios will hold in January 2015, but I'm not participating because I want to see what I'm working toward!

You can find more, and bigger swatches at Hawthorne Threads

So I need six (6) different pieces of fabric! I need:
2 darks (one will be used for the dark border & binding)
2 lights
2 mediums

What are your picks? Which six do you think will go nicely together? Because I love them all, I'm not mindset on sticking with one specific person/character.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Moving On

Several times within the articles I’ve written for Lanetta’s Creations, I’ve offered links to various community and national services projects I found, and support their missions, their purpose. For well over a year now, I have been actively involved with a specific non-profit organization because I supported (and still support) its mission: “to cover service members and veterans touched by war with comforting and healing Quilts of Valor.” I’ve made and awarded several Quilts of Valor® over the past year. A separate blog shares my journey, albeit short under the umbrella of this organization.

It’s with a heavy heart that in January 2015, the powers-that-be will put in place a set of new policies and procedures toward a direction I cannot fully support without further information. Enough said on that. I will add, however, that fortunately they do not have a registered trademark on creating and presenting quilts for our veterans!

Many other non-profit organizations and simple gatherings of like-minded people are creating quilts across the nation that honor our veterans and service members!

Of course, a new ~ closed ~ Facebook group has started! If you want a place to gather for support and encouragement while creating quilts for our veterans, and other fabulous community and national service projects, feel free to join our Facebook group, Lone Star of Texas Quilts for Others!

Lone Star of Texas Quilts for Others is a place for like-minded folks to gather while creating quilts for others! As we journey through National and Community based service endeavors, we offer support and encouragement to one another.

And, a new blog is in the works! The Lone Star of Texas Quilts for Others will be the place I’ll share pictures, the journey, and events for those that “Honor Your Years of Service” quilts and beyond!

Our 2nd gathering = a fabulous start!
The ladies and I, in the Lampasas County Chapter of Lone Star of Texas Quilts for Others, are in the process of creating 30 quilts for our Lometa American Legion Post 116. Once presented, LCC will move on to cover the members of Post 277 in Lampasas. Beyond that, who knows! I know Lampasas County has many more veterans that do not belong to an American Legion post!

As of today, I’ve changed the non-profit organization that benefits from the following websites I frequently use: (instead of Google or Bing etc) (instead of simply Amazon)

I hope you will select a non-profit that you can support and use these simple tools to help fund their operational expenses.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

2014 Fundraiser Quilt

2014 Fundraiser Quilt
Proceeds benefit the
American Legion Auxiliary 
Unit 116, Lometa, Texas

Local Sponsorship of "Girls State"

Drawing to be held Veterans Day, November 11, 2014

tickets are $1 each
or 6 for $5.00

Send me an email if you are interested in purchasing tickets!!! 

You do not need to be present to win!
ALA will notify winner via telephone!
ALA will pay for postage to mail quilt to the winner!

57" x 72"

Quilt created by Lanetta J Sprott

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Only Time

Poor Romeo... it is the only time I make the time! Fortunately, it doesn't happen often (a broken machine, that is)!!!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

It’s a Wrap!

If you’ve followed along during 2014’s National Sewing Month, I’ve concentrated on creating a quilt top. If you’ve made one this month ~ or anytime ~ you know it’s not quite a “wrap” ~ yet! There are a few more steps before you, or anyone, can wrap up in your handmade with love quilt!

But, it’s a wrap for me, for this month-long daily post series!

Of course, it’s not a quilt until it’s quilted, then binding set in place! Oh, and don’t forget to apply a label telling your name as the piecer (and the name of the quilter, if different), the date (I use date finished!), your city/state, and anything else you want to share – like maybe washing instructions. Trust me! Decades later folks will want to know about you and the quilt's process!

Until the top is quilted, remember to always fold so that the right side is out. This protects the cut edges from raveling out from all the little pieces sewn together!

(The bold words below are what I used in my search to find a link to share with you! I’m sure you can find other great resources as well!)

There are three ways to turn a top into a quilt…

Hand quilt Sew Mama Sew
Home machine quiltQuilt Bug 
Longarm Quilting Services – depends on your location…

The Next Step – apply binding Hope Yoder 

One of mine, in the process of sewing on the binding!

The Finishing Step – adding a quilt labelCreative Bug 

But then, sometimes the quilt will hang on display ~ make a quilt sleeveTallgrass Prairie Studio 
An example of one of mine: A stitched-in sleeve pocket for a wall hanging

Oops, a few things I failed to mention before…

  1. On the Stitched in Color’s website, you’ll find a great informative article on Choosing Fabrics. Among several points, Rachel talks about scale and value – something to think about!  
  1. Sew Red Glasses “Color Value Made Simple” is a relatively new product that does indeed help with color values! I love mine!  
  1. When sewing most everything besides quilt pieces together, we backstitch a few stitches at the beginning and then at the end of a seam. Never backstitch (beginning or end) when piecing pieces together for a quilt top!

I hope you found this series helpful and informative!

Wishing you all ~ Happy Quilting! 

Monday, September 29, 2014

Storing Quilts

I like noodles! They are such a versatile tool. I so wish I had stock in the company that makes them! Kind of like “white out” – I arrived too late to the party! I had never ever thought of doing this…

The one thing I would do a bit differently, that she doesn’t mention at Sew Kind of Wonderful, is add sheets of acid-free tissue paper between the noodle and my quilt! The noodle is made of plastic!   

Quilting 101 shared these “eight” tips (but there are two #7’s !!!):

Eight tips for storing your quilts safely 
Tip #1 – Keep your quilt dry. Find a place where your quilt will get good circulation of cool, dry air. Damp air and moisture can attract mold and mildew to that will quickly rot the fibers in the fabric and ruin your quilt.
 Tip #2 – Wrap your quilt in a cotton sheet. Never store your quilt in a plastic box or plastic wrap as these are non-breathable and will cause moisture to build up. Wrapping your quilt gently in a cotton sheet is great as it will protect the fabric from dust yet will still let the material breathe.
 Tip #3 – Avoid extremes of temperature. Although it may be convenient, it is never a good idea to store your quilts in the attic or cellar as extremes in temperature can be very damaging to a quilt. Changes in temperature can cause stress and deterioration of the fibers in the quilt and excess heat will cause it to dry out.
 Tip #4 – Watch out for bugs and mice! When choosing a place to store your quilts, think about how accessible that place might be for small bugs, mice and insects. Garages, attics and sheds are popular havens for rodents and insects and should be avoided at all costs. Cardboard boxes should also be avoided as it is not unknown for mice to chew through the cardboard and harvest fibers from the quilt inside to build their nests!
 Tip #5 – Keep your quilt in the dark. Sunlight can be very damaging to a quilt, by breaking down the fibers and fading the colors. Direct sunlight should be avoided at all costs. Be particularly careful when drying your quilt out on a line after washing it. Even the light from fluorescent lighting can be damaging to a quilt over time.
 Tip #6 – Keep your quilt unfolded. It is best to try and avoid folding your quilt for long periods of time unless you have to. By far the best place to store your quilts is by lying them on an unused bed with a cotton sheet on top. If you must fold your quilts, then every few months you should make a point of unfolding the quilts and shaking them out to air them. Make sure when you put them back that you re-fold them in a different way to prevent creases that occur when a quilt is folded the same way all the time. The topic of folding brings us on to the next point which is:
 Tip #7 – Use acid-free paper. If you must fold your quilts to store them, you should always place some crumpled acid-free tissue paper in the folds to pad it out and minimize creasing. Remember that creases tend to become permanent over time and the tissue paper will help the quilt keep its shape. It is important to use acid-free paper to do this however as conventional tissue-paper contains acids that will stain and corrode the quilt fabrics over time.
 Tip #7 – Roll your quilts. If you are short of space then it is preferable to roll your quilts rather than folding them. The rolled quilt can then be kept safely inside a large cardboard tube, but make sure that you line the tube and wrap the quilt in acid free paper first to prevent contamination from the cardboard!
 Tip #8 – Keep your quilt away from wood. Be careful where you leave your quilts! Unfinished wood, such as the type often found inside wooden drawers or chests, often contains acids that can damage fabric. If you must store your quilts in these places make sure you line them carefully with acid-free paper before putting the quilt down.


In the “How to Store an Antique Quilt” article, I found an additional TIP worthy of noting:
If you're hanging the quilt on the wall for the summer season, be sure to distribute the weight evenly over the entire width to avoid stressing the fabric. Don't plan to store a quilt on a wall for more than six months. (Emphasis mine)

Common themes I found across the different sites …

Keep quilts away from ALL LIGHT (Direct & Indirect)
Keep quilts away from plastic and anything with acid in its makeup (such as cardboard)
Re-fold often and not the same way
Quilts must breathe!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Orphan Blocks

It works out this way sometimes - I make too many blocks for a quilt top! Maybe I counted wrong in the first place, which is not unusual for me! Or, I’ve decided after-the-fact to make wider border(s) rather than another complete row of blocks. But, now I have orphan blocks! What to do? I can’t waste the fabric, or the time involved to make the blocks. I just can’t do it.

I also like to “play” with different designs with the scraps, but they end up differing sizes. That’s not a problem. I simply add a “sashing” around the smaller one(s) to get them all the same size. That’s what I did to make this banner….

Sorry it's a fuzzy photo! But you get the idea!

One day while playing around, I used one inch scraps to make a couple of braided star blocks...

I may make more, someday. Every now and then, I glance over and see them, and think, what can I do with them?

I’m thinking “out loud” here…

Maybe coasters? My sewing machine sits on an oak desk. I will not place a coffee cup, or an Iced Tea glass down on the wood without protection. Right now I’m using an up side down tin lid! Tacky, I know! A quilted block with extra protection from liquids will be just the thing to spruce up my sewing room!

Maybe a pincushion? Momma came up with a great suggestion! She thinks I ought to make a pincushion to hang from my neck to use while I’m loading a quilt top on the long arm frame! I have it on my “to-do” list!

Maybe a placemat? We have an antique repurposed library table with a glass top sitting between our recliners. I use an old yucky placemat now for our Iced Tea glasses (and my wine glass). I do believe a quilted orphan block with a nice border around it would be lovely there!

In fact, I made a wall hanging for our living room…
This picture was taken shortly after I made it! It is not hanging here permanently!
I have a much better spot, but don't have a picture of it right now.
This was a quilt-as-you go technique I was attempting to learn!

And have two blocks left over (as the wall hanging was long enough!) and they would make the perfect “placemat” for the coffee table! Where's my to-do list I started?

Maybe potholders for smaller, say 6 inch block leftovers… I have the insulated stuff needed for heat protection!

Which reminds me – I need something that when taking my iron to a sew-in gathering, that I have a bag large enough to carry a hot iron back home! Again, I have the heat insulation stuff needed! A couple of orphan blocks would be a perfect thing to use!

Then there are table runners. I wouldn’t mind a new quilted one for my oak buffet!

What else?

Oh, totes! Of course! Set your timer so you don’t lose track of time, then check out Pinterest for all the wonderful ideas!

Some folks are into pillows… I personally am not… but ~ again ~ Pinterest is full of ideas on quilted pillows!

What do you do with orphan blocks?

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Make it Last

I’ve had self-healing cutting mats for over 25 years now. They are all still in beautiful condition, because I take care of them!

I did a (because QOV receives money for every search I do!) for “care for self healing mat” and the same information came up time and again!

Keep your mat…

1.     Flat (never store on its edge, or with something underneath it! It does not forgive!)
2.     Away from heat (no iron, no coffee cup, trunk of vehicle)
3.     Moist – give it a good bath following the instructions Generations Quilt Patterns shared:   
To soak it, put your mat in a bathtub or large container (would have to be large so it can lay flat) and soak it for 15-20 minutes in a solution of 1/4 cup white vinegar to every gallon of cool water. Let me repeat, cool water. Do this every so often to help extend its useful life.
 Then use a squirt of mild dishwashing soap (Ivory) and clean the mat with a mushroom brush (soft is the key word here). The purpose of this gentle scouring is to remove the fibers that get trapped in the cuts marks preventing the cuts from "healing".
 I love it when one of my favorite tools last… forever!!!


Friday, September 26, 2014

Fresh Spinach

Storing the small stuff – I love fresh spinach. I also love repurposing the containers to store my scraps! As I cut yardage strips needed, when I get down to the last itty bitty bit, I trim the leftovers into the largest size width possible.

Even the 1” scraps go into the container. They create lovely braided stars I’m working on every now and then…

Of course, you can buy storage tubs...

But I love fresh spinach, I love repurposing the containers! I can take the money saved from buying "store bought" and buy more fabric to make a quilts!!!

Storing the big stuff – yards and yards of fabric!

Honestly, it makes me nervous seeing something like this… oh, it’s lovely in my dreams, but I don’t sew that fast!!!

Yes. The entire room and shelves and cutting & sewing stations and desk area are all very lovely and dreamy, but I know how natural light (and not even direct sunlight) coming into the room can fade out fabric before you realize it!

Trust me! Hide it all in a dark closet, or a darken room! The file cabinet idea is a good one…

If all else fails… sew sew sew!!!

She who dies with the most fabric, didn't sew fast enough! 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

THE Sewing Tool

Oops! There is one essential sewing tool I failed to mention during the first week of this year’s National Sewing Month! Better late than never!

If you aren’t using a stiletto while machine sewing anything (I’m not talking about the sexy shoes), it’s an invaluable tool!!!

Using the pointed end of the stiletto to guide and push fabric under the presser foot, keeps the fingers away from the needle! It also helps when you approach a seam intersection!
With the needle in the down position, stop sewing, lift up the fabric with the left hand, bend down & check the underneath seam and make sure the bottom seam allowance is going in the correct direction before stitching over! The reach of the stiletto works perfectly in flipping the small seam allowance which ever way it needs to be.
I happened across Quiltville’s Quips & Snips and found Mary’s beaded stilettos tutorial!!!!

Of course, I had to make some!

Since it’s not turkey season – Thanksgiving or Christmas – I couldn’t find any “turkey lacers” in the local stores. Never fear, online shopping is here! I did a search on Amazon and found lots of sources!

I have a nice assortment of beads left over from a prior endeavor…

The metal jewelry glue I found, I’m not impressed with… will get something else, probably what Mary recommended, the next time I’m in Dallas.

I made a few! I wanted to make something to give as a Thank You to the local ladies who gathered for our first Quilts of Valor sew-in.

I wrapped each one in white tissue, tied with a blue curling ribbon, and placed them all in a red “Celebration” box. When we broke away from our sewing machines and sat down for lunch, I passed the box down the table for each to take one!

 I’m so glad I took the time to do this!

Jan P. Krentz, a Quilt Designer & Teacher, has a nice selection of “store bought” stilettos to give you an idea how fancy they can be!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Frame the Quilt

Above all else ~ the bottom line ~ designing a quilt is personal preference. It’s what you like, what makes you happy. Fortunately, there are no “Quilt Police” anywhere!

From my viewpoint, a quilt is like a painting. The center focus and the frame should work together, they should complement one another, not compete for attention.

When planning a border, remember ~ eyes will travel to the most detailed part of the quilt. If the primary subject of your quilt is the piecing, then I highly recommend keeping the border(s) simple. Otherwise, the border may cause confusion in the mind’s eye.

Sometimes, there are no borders at all, just the binding! In fact, adding a border would totally take away from the quilt. Simplify shares a stunning borderless quilt!

NOTE: Which ever type border you decide upon, always always always measure your quilt top across the center width and length! Do not measure along the edge (where stretching from pressing and handling may occur).
The Fabric Buffet shared a lovely quilt when a single border works beautifully… 

 A double line border will accent, therefore complement, the center’s focus. A prime example, found on Diary of a Quilter’s website, is a lovely Soul Blossoms Quilt

Making a few borders …

Ivy Arts’ Ribbon Quilt Border – easy that looks elaborate! 

A border then a repeat of the quilt pattern… an interesting effect created and shown by Sweet Jane

Here you see a busy border that works as a continuum of the quilt itself. … The Secret Life of Mrs. Meatloaf (isn’t that a fun name for a blog!) shares “A quilt for Autumn”.

I never get bored looking through Pinterest for ideas. It’s the spot to search “quilt borders” for the perfect border!

Enjoy your borders, or no borders! No Police Here! 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Good to Know

As I’ve shared before… I have yards and yards of fabric! During one of my mother’s recent visits here at the ranch, she helped me tremendously by going through tubs of my stash and sorting, gathering together coordinating pieces for me to use in making a quilt. 

Although she spent several days doing this for me, it’s an absolute time saver! I can go pick up a bundled together section and know things will match. Again, thank you Momma!

I’ve made one top she sorted for me, a quilt for others, but then went back to making Quilts of Valor since I have a self-imposed deadline of April 2015!!!

Quilts for Others is a need as well, but one thing at a time...

Because math hurts my brain, I’ve often wondered how much fabric it will take if I want to cut “such and such” size square. Before finding “Quilting Tips – Estimated Yardage Chart for Squares,” I would just plow into it and make it work, holding my breath most of the way through! Now I can breathe easier, which is always a good thing!

I’m always looking for short cuts…

When sewing the diagonal – across a square – I hate having to pick up a pencil and a straight edge and then drawing the stitching line. When doing about 50 of these for a quilt top, it gets pretty tedious!

In one of Missouri Star Quilt Company’s fabulous YouTube videos, Jenny explained to fold the square into a triangle and press the fold. There you have it, a stitching line to follow!

I recently stumbled upon another great time saving trick on Quilty Pleasures!

I do believe I have a cereal box to cut up! Will try this soon!

Remember me mentioning about a gazillion times over the years how math hurts my brain?

I certainly am doing the happy dance since finding the online Quilting Calculators!!! It calculates backing, binding, borders, on-point-setting triangles, and fabric measurements! You put in the size and it tells you how much fabric you need!!! Yippppeeee!

For example: You have a quilt top that measures 57” x 68” ~ How many 2.5 inch wide x width of fabric strips do you need to cut binding? How much fabric is this - a half yard, full yard, what? This is a quick reference for finding that information! Oh My Goodness!

Do you have any “Good to Know” resources? 

Monday, September 22, 2014

Software, Online, Old Fashion - Design Your Own!

Why not design your own quilt top? You can do it!

I’ve shared several block designs over the past couple of weeks, and the easy way to create them! Maybe you are a tad like me and have several favorite block designs, and not so favorite others. How do you mix and match, creating your own design rather than follow a quilt top pattern?

I haven’t yet figured out the Electric Quilt (EQ-7) software program, even with all the video tutorials I’ve downloaded from its site or YouTube! It’s a bit complicated. There is certainly a learning curve that requires some quiet time and focused concentration ~ neither of which I have right now. Hopefully by National Sewing Month 2015, I will have mastered all the whistles and bells available and can share then!

Who knew? I decided to do a with the phrase “design your own quilt” and found several sites of interest!

If you don’t have the EQ7 software, but you do have unlimited bandwidth (which I don’t), maybe Quiltivate is the site for you! They say it’s a FREE online design process that “When you're finished, you'll receive a custom quilt plan. Your plan includes detailed fabric calculations and full-size images so you can get straight to the sewing!” That sounds pretty darn cool!

I discovered another free online designer, My Web Quilter, but again, it’s going to take the bandwidth I don’t have. I did register so when I’m in Dallas ~ where bandwidth is not an issue ~ I’m ready to play! 

For now, I’ll do it the old fashioned way!

I gather my supplies:
  • #2 pencil
  • assortment of colored pencils
  • straight edge
  • sheet(s) of ¼” squares graph paper
  • clear scotch tape
  • paper scissors
  • big pink eraser

This is a great project for me to do while watching television! Yes, I can multi-task!

Using the graph paper, I design quilt tops two different ways…

Using the whole sheet(s): 
Sometimes it takes tape, like scotch tape, when I have to tape the 8.5” x 11” pages together to make it large enough when each square of the paper represents 1 inch. Keep in mind, at this writing, the minimum size of a Quilt of Valor is 55” x 65” (recommended size is 60” x 80” and maximum size is 72” x 90”) – so one sheet at 1” per square won’t be large enough! I personally create QOV’s around 60” x 70” ~ a nice couch or recliner lounging quilt size.

NOTE: Using a 1” square scale is great when working with 9” blocks!
Sometimes I designate the squares of the graph paper to be 2” per square, if I know all the blocks I’m going to use will be finished with an even number, like a 12” block.

Using pieces of a puzzle: 
What if I wanted to mix 12” and 9” finished blocks? What do I need to do? What do I need to add here & there to make it work out? This is when I have to take a bit more time, but it’s worth the extra effort to “see” the whole picture before making the first cut!
NOTE: Using this method, I always use 1 square equals 1” !!! 
I’ll draw out the block I like in the correct size, color it in, then repeat the process scattered about the graph paper, not worrying about placement at this time! This process may take a couple sheets of graph paper.
 Once I’ve created all the blocks I want to incorporate within the quilt top, I will take paper scissors and cut out the individual blocks. It’s then time to take a new piece of graph paper and draw the quilt’s outside diameter. I then start placing the pieces around until I like what I see.
 The spaces between different sized blocks (for example, putting a 9” up against a 12”) are prefect places to add sashing (a narrow strip of fabric) around the smaller blocks. Using the graph “paper doll” method, you’ll know exactly the size you’ll need!

Whether you use a software program, the online sites, or the old fashion way, I hope you’ll try designing your own quilt top!

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