Go Ahead --- You know You want to . . . Quilt!

I had never made a quilt before 2012. The first class I took on Craftsy.com was the FREE Block of the Month 2012, given by Amy Gibson. She has a blog, Stitcherydickorydock.com, so you might want to check it out. For the Block of the Month 2012 course, she gave us two blocks a month for 10 months, then lessons on adding the sashing and borders, making the quilt sandwich, quilting the blocks, squaring it up and adding the binding. Amy finished the last few lessons while visibly pregnant with two little boys. There is also a secondary quilting class on free motion quilting of this quilt with Leah Day. In fact, if you want to focus on the Free Motion Quilting lessons, you can even buy a pre-printed template of the blocks from Spoonflower.  There is a new block of the month on Craftsy, with batiks and a focus on colour theory. It is also free. The reason I am pushing for Amy's 2012 course, is the variety of quilting techniques that you will learn. (You can work with the colour theory one after you learn to sew.)

But, if you are a first time quilter you can learn so much by taking this FREE class. If you look at the photo carefully, you will see traditional blocks, like Log Cabin, or Flying Geese, or Drunkard's path, and then a more modern twist on these blocks. The only one I didn't do, was a Hexi block, as I didn't like the hand stitching aspect, and I didn't think the block was that attractive. So, I gave myself permission to replace it with two different blocks that I liked better.

There are no Quilt Police! By not being intimidated by a pre-conceived tradition of quilting, I felt really free to learn whatever was offered and put aside something I didn't like. It was very freeing and this quilt now hangs above our fireplace. I chose the colors based on what I loved (turquoise, greens, and browns), although I did think this would be a quilt I would use on our couch in the bedroom. But, since we couldn't afford a large painting above our fireplace, this fits the bill!

Also, Amy chooses blocks that are easy and then gets progressively more difficult. I learned how to paper piece, sew on a curve, slash and sew, do half triangles, and how to nest seams. She really gave me confidence in trying new techniques, by explaining things well, and showing how to cut, sew, iron, nest seams, and square up the blocks. She was charming! The course is still available, and you can watch any block, in any order. All blocks were 12 and 1/2 inches square, so when sewn, they were 12 inches square. Go ahead, try it out. 

Also, for about $8.00 for the year, Amy also has a Sugar Block Club where she sends a block, and a dessert each month. I haven't tried this, as the first course started me with a wealth of ideas for quilts, but I intend to take this. It is such a deal to have all the patterns, and support for each block for under $10.00 for the year. 

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