What is your name?
Francine T. and I blog at Mochawildchild.blogspot.com
Where do you live?
My family moved to Dusseldorf, Germany about a year and a half ago from a small town in Pennsylvania.
Tell us about your family (Spouse, kids, grandkids, pets, etc.)
I have been married to my FedEx pilot hubby for 23 years and we have 3 sons (23, 21, 15) and a 5 year old princess daughter. Yep, shes' the boss. The 2 younger children are here in Germany with us and my eldest son is in the process of moving here as well.
Tell us about how you got interested in quilting.
I've been quilting off and on for about 14 years. A good friend introduced me to quilting and hand stitching and after the first time I shopped and matched fabric together I was hooked! I got serious about it 3 or 4 years ago and began concentrating on improving my skills, starting a blog and meeting more quilters. The internet is a wonderful thing, right?
How do you organize your fabric stash? (Picture appreciated)
My stash is perfectly coordinated and organized at all times – yeah right!! I do have the good fortune of having a large sewing space here which I share with my messy daughter’s play area.
I love Lotta Jansdotter, Lu Summers, Malka Dubrawsky, Allison Glass, Lauri Wisbrun and many, many more.
What is one thing you have learned that you wish you knew when you first started quilting?
When I first started quilting, I thought that a ¼“ seam was an urban legend. I thought it was a waste of fabric. I am embarrassed to admit how long it took me to understand why my seams were always popping open. I also didn't understand why my quilt blocks never ended up the same size as the pattern. heh heh
What is your favorite sewing/quilting tool and why should we all go out and buy it?
I recently started using basting spray and I always stock up when my husband visits America! This has made such a huge difference in controlling shifting fabric! I still use my curved basting pins as well. What I'd really value is if someone would invent a cup holder to attach to the side of my sewing machine so I didn't slosh wine on my projects late at night.
Who is your favorite fictional character and why? (Could be from a book, movie, TV show, etc.)
I like Cher’s character in Moonstruck because she goes around slapping people and telling them off. I also am in love with Westley and would totally push Princess Buttercup off the mountain again to get together with him.
The Block - WONKY PINWHEEL
Have you ever been to a good restaurant and had SUCH a hard time making a decision that you have to promise yourself that you’ll come back tomorrow and try the other thing you wanted? Am I the only one that greedy? Oh, have you ever preemptively had your food wrapped up to go ‘cause you’re physically afraid of not having room in the belly for a potentially fantastic dessert? I digress…. Anyway, that’s the trouble I had picking this block. There are SO MANY choices – good grief!! I REALLY wanted to do this capital T block since we’re the Taylor family and the quilt will be for my family room. I’m not sure how much the quilt needs to match the room, but I definitely used the décor as inspiration for my color scheme. Yes, I know it’s boring but when you’re renting, you have to deal with very stark white walls and modern furniture here in Germany. The palette generator came up with a “dirtier” or “dustier” scheme than I prefer, so I substituted a gold for the brown.
(16) 4.5” squares of background fabric (BG.) I used Kona Ash, but other shades of grey, white or maybe super low LV would also work. You could also cut 5” squares and trim them down later just in case you have any piecing drama ;).
(8) different scraps of modern fabric. Please use one color per block. See pic. I cut 6” or 7” squares of scraps and then cut them in half diagonally. Please no batiks for this one :)
We will be making a 16.5” unfinished block. Here is a link to Natalie @ Greenleaf Goods’tutorial. I found it very thorough, but I’ll walk ya through, just in case.
Ú Take your trusty ruler and Frixion pen (or any writing utensil) and draw a diagonal line from one corner of your BG square to somewhere in the middle of one side. Draw another line from the corner to the other side. I did all my BG squares at once while watching and screaming loudly at the World Cup.
Ú Take a colored triangle (or scrap), place right sides together with BG square and make sure you leave a ¼“ seam allowance. A window can help. Pin. I am all about chain piecing, so I prepared all blocks at one time.
Ú Sew directly on the first drawn line
Ú Finger press fabric back. This is especially important if you’ve used a Frixion pen. Ask me how I know what happens if you press with an iron at this stage. Figure it out? You lose the 2nd drawn line because of the heat from the iron. Whoops!
Ú Sew 2nd scrap to 2nd drawn line
Ú Now you can press. At this point, I trimmed down my BG square to 4.5”
Ú Using the BG square as a guide, trim off the excess main fabric
Ú Line up blocks according to pattern shown on tutorial
I can’t wait to see what my Hive comes up with! It’s fun making quilts for friends and extended family but I’m really looking forward to making one I can actually use daily!