Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Block of the Month... The Nightmare Edition!

Posted by Strlady at 12:20 PM
There is no love coming from me for this BOM that I'm working on. I'm going to start by saying this is the first kitted BOM I ever bought. It is also the first solely pieced BOM. I have picked up several applique series that have gone on to linger forever in the pattern drawer with little to no hope of being made. When I saw this Quilt I fell in love and said, I must make it. So, I invested a relatively small amount if you consider this kit includes the fabric and all the patterns for the BOM series (these puppies can be very expensive if you buy them on a monthly basis). I brought the kit home with high hopes for a beautiful Quilt in 12 months.

This weekend, I decided to tackle my first goal this year and push out those 4 blocks in the first month's packet.


Oh HELL! WTF! Are they joking?

That was my reaction after spending all day Sunday piecing ONE 6.5" block. Yes, just O-N-E block. ALL DAY! ARGG!!!!

Let's recap...

First I pull out the above instructions and did a double take. hmmm.. okay... no instructions on the piecing, just a little diagram to note where each piece should go.

Then I started cutting the fabric and I realized that no thought was given to bias and how ALL the edges of this block would be bias edges. So many ways to cut fabric and they chose to cut so the edges are bias? hmm.. not very bright, or maybe just uncaring to those that are piecing the thing.

Okay.. After I cut the pieces (with bias edges all over the place) I proceeded to piece them together. To say the block turned out Wonky would be a kindness and on top of that, it was 1/2" too small.

(wonky block hidden underneath it's replacement)

After checking that my seam was set properly to a scant 1/4" allowance, I decided that the only way this block had any chance of making it into the quilt would be if I paper pieced it. That meant I had to draft the pattern (yes, I did first search for a 6" pp pattern of the Handy Andy block online). Because my brain had gone on vacation, I started hand drafting the bugger. Many attempts later I finally had a pattern.


It went beautifully from there but I knew I had a difficult road ahead of me. After enjoying the fruits of my labor (see above for the finished block) my brain returned to take residence in my head and I pulled up my EQ5 program and drafted the rest of the blocks in the packet.

I now had the correct measurements for each piece that made up each block and I could construct the blocks using any method I wanted that might yield the proper size piece (not a big fan of paper piecing and will not do it unless I absolutely HAVE to)

For Example, I needed a few flying geese for the next block and knowing they were a finished 1x2" size, I could use my Fit to Be Geese ruler to make them. 1" half-triangle squares? Cut the squares bigger and sew using the Angler guide to avoid the bias. Yup. Perfect little pieces that made perfectly sized blocks.


The other blocks have moved along fairly quickly but I need to figure out how to iron the seams so the blocks will lay flat. There are so many seams in such small blocks they end up bumpy and hard. Any suggestions?

So, that was my adventure into BOM land (still have one more block pending for this packet). Needless to say that I will not be buying more BOM kits without actually opening them and really looking at what I'm getting. The diagrams can tell you where to place the pieces you cut but without the measurements for the components of the blocks you are really winging it until the very end. If I knew how big the center piece should be I could have made proper adjustments along the way and not wasted the fabric the kit brought. I don't even want to think about the pieced borders....

4 comments on "Block of the Month... The Nightmare Edition!"

Cora on February 9, 2010 at 2:46 PM said...

Wow! Glad that was you nightmare and not mine. I don't think I would have completed it. Good job.+

Crafty Mama on February 9, 2010 at 3:37 PM said...

Good for you to keep on going! The end result is beautiful. I don't think I could have done that. I probably would have destroyed my poor sewing machine beating up on it in frustration first,lol.

Thelma on February 9, 2010 at 7:25 PM said...

Sounds like that "EQ5" is a life saver! I've been mulling over getting that software. I had one quilt with "directions" like yours, not fun. It's like you have to do all the work yourself! The finished blocks look great, give yourself credit for finishing them. I hope you'll stick with it, although the quilt I made using my nightmare directions, I gave iaway!!

Brenda on February 9, 2010 at 10:10 PM said...

LOL! Sorry, but you know how I love piecing. I would have tossed that baby and moved on... You're so good to figure it out. I swear it's the mathmatician in you. I knew that degree was going to pay off for you, LOL!
Maybe that's why my piecing sucks...I'm a biologist, we don't have the analytical skills needed for piecing! Yeah, that's it! LOL!
Can't wait to see your progress. You go girl!

 

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