Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend

I can tell I am totally restless to get this baby out, because I have almost finished this quilt. I never finish anything unless someone’s baby is due or the birthday/Christmas/Quilt Show is coming! This is it a couple of days ago, and once I finish sewing down the binding and the rain stops I’ll shoot the completed thing.

I love how versatile half-square triangles are for design.

diamond

Our Friend, the Stiletto

I would never sew in stilettos. However, I would sew WITH a stiletto. I didn’t know that they moonlight as a sewing tool until Christmas time, when a friend from quilt guild made these adorable things for everyone in the guild:

stiletto1

They are really useful for holding down little pieces of fabric in spots where my fat fingers just dare not go.

stiletto2

See? I think this stiletto’s grandmother was a shish kabob stick. And look where she is now!

stiletto3

Quick Quilt + Batting Scraps Tip

Ever wonder what to do with all of your million strips of leftover batting? Well, you should pull out your basting spray, and make a very small quilt that is batted with strips. Basting spray and strips of batting are a match made in heaven.

star1

First, take your backing outside so you can get it nice and dirty on the cement in your back yard. Spray basting spray on it, and then arrange your strips edge to edge.

star2

Next, spray the batting. Fold your quilt top in half, and spread / smooth it over your batting, then smooth your way from the fold up to the top. Basting spray is really forgiving. You if you get a wrinkle you can just pull up the fabric and smooth it down again. They should make something like that for skin.

star3

After you’re all basted together, call your sister who likes to free-motion quilt, and enslave her to finish the quilting while you watch and eat bonbons.

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I did bind this quilt, but I forgot to photograph it finished. It was in my UFO pile for a long time, and finally someone is due with a boy at a convenient time for me to finish it. I love how quickly a quilt comes together when the top is just one block. One. Done. Fun.

Hexagon Corner Binding Tutorial, Outer Corner

If you are familiar with the mitered corner, this should be a breeze. I sort of wanted someone to hold my hand the first time I did it, just because it wasn’t the same angle as a normal corner. It turned out fine. I did it, and you can do it, too!

outer corner 1

Lay your binding down flush with the edge, like a normal binding.

outer corner 2

Fold the binding so it sticks out at a 90 degree angle from the center of the corner you are rounding.

outer corner 3

Fold the binding back down so it is flush with the rest of the corner as well.

outer corner 4 finger press

At this point I like to finger press my binding fold down in both directions. The finger press line will make a nice little guide for where to stop the needle when you are sewing it down, and where to start again.

outer corner 5

See that pretty little line? Hello line. Thanks in advance for your help.

outer corner 6

Needle down, sew the binding down to your finger press line. Sometimes I backstitch here, if I am feeling confident in who I am, and where I have stitched. Raise and remove the needle, and adjust your position so that you start sewing at the finger press line on the other side of your corner.

outer corner 7

Yes, that line there.

outer corner 8

Sometimes I backstitch here, too, if I am still feeling confident. Like on those days when I remember to brush my teeth AND wear deodorant.

outer corner 9

You should end up with a corner that looks like these.

outer corner 10

And you can fold that baby over, and sew it down by hand or machine, depending on what flips your skirt or how soon the Christmas present is due. This one was finished at 4:30 on a Christmas Eve, for the record.

corners

Look at those sexy corners. Way to go!