Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The angst of the newbie quilter

So, I joined the $1 Block of the Month at the LQS last month. I know what LQS is because I am cool. Since you may not be so cool, I will tell you it stands for local quilt store. There, now you are on your way to being as cool as I am. Good luck with that.

The deal with the BOM is that the material for the block each month is $1. So you make the block and if you return the next month, with your completed block, you receive the material for the following months block for $1. Howfreakinever, if you do NOT complete your block, then the next months material is $5! What the crap? The pressure! Normally I am a professional procrastinator, but oh heyll no they are not getting an extra 4 bucks out of me!

I love this whole BOM of the month thing because you are essentially making a quilt for $12. Sort of. Also, at the meeting every month I have the opportunity to meet up with other quilty chicks. None of my friends are quilters which is why I need to explain what LQS and BOM are! You see they are loyal, kind, devoted readers of my blog so I must cater to them, BUT I must also make some quilty friends. I have new friends right here in blog land that quilt....but I need some that I can touch (that might have sounded weird....but you know what I'm sayin!) and call and drink margaritas with and go fabric shopping with and go on quilting retreats with....

Back to the $12, sure the blocks are $12 total, assuming you complete them each month. But then add in the center block which was I believe $35 or so, then the backing, the the batting, then the thread....and the $12 is a vision of the past! On top of that the meeting is in the store. Hello? You can't go in there without "needing" something. AND during the meeting the teacher showcases a new handy tool that would make making the new block SO easy, and well then everyone MUST have it and then the line for the registers is out the door after the meeting! So you pay your $1 for the block and then at the end of class you spend an additional $60 on stuff. It is a racket, they have you captive in the store and what other choice to you have??? Honestly.

Aunt Gay warned me about the inevitable quilters addiction.

Last month I bought the Triangulations software.

We used this software in my beginners class and it was SO easy, so I felt justified buying this. It essentially takes all the guess work out of making triangles. I failed geometry in h.s. and if I remember right a triangle is a geometric shape, so it is all together a better world if someone does the math for me. (I said I was COOL, I never made a claim on smart!)

Here I go yesterday afternoon all ready to make my block for this month.

It is the one in the top left hand corner.

Fire up the Triangulations software. Very simple, you choose the finished size of your half square triangle. Print it, pin it on your fabric...

...sew on dotted line and cut on solid.

Whah- La!

But wait!

Mine measures 4"? It is supposed to be 3.5". In the directions it warns you to make sure you choose "none" for page scaling before you print. My computer won't allow none or zero as an option, but when you print it, it tells you the measurement the grid should be assuming it was printed correctly. Mine measure right but my square ended up being 1/2" off?

In the directions they print from Adobe. So I down load Adobe. Choose "none" for the scale....and it prints just the same. So I know there must be a user (gasp) error!

I gave up and went to bed because it was hurting my brain. So here I am back in the sewing room again this morning. Recalculating, refiguring, remeasuring. It was all coming out right except for my pesky square which was 1/2" off.

OHHHHHHHHH! The "finished" size of my square! OHHHHHHH! Finished means once it is all pieced together, NOT at this individual joining stage! HELLO! When it IS "finished" there will 1/4" seam allowances on each side which will make it 1/2" smaller OR 3.5"!!!! Yeah me! I was doing it right, I just was not clear on the stupid terminology!

There you have it people, my first guffaw to file away in my quilting goof up rolodex. Know the terminology! Well, all of this extreme wordiness to say: #1. this software is really a terribly easy way of making perfect triangles. I think it was $27. Well worth it.
#2. Know the terminology so you don't waste an entire day trying to make a block that might have taken an hour!!

Words of wisdom from the fledgling quilter. Priceless.

Accountability for today: I ran 2.7 miles again this morning. I did varying intervals which did burn more calories but not increased distance. I am still recovering from my Christmas holiday slacking!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

YOU make me dizzy!! I will do the margaritas, shopping etc., but I do not need to come near a sewing machine, because of my painful memories of Home Ec., I have panic attacks when I come near one.
Lori E.