Thursday, March 17, 2011


I'm happy to report I finished the Bullseye Block Quilt! Well - okay - I finished the top. But that counts as a finish, right?

Using Tanya Whelan's lovely fabric line Delilah, this quilt only took 9 fat quarters, and I have plenty left to spare for a cute pieced back or another project.

The blocks came together fairly easily (once I cut the correct number of pieces!). I decided to try opening my seems to press and have decided I'm not a 100% fan of it. It certainly has it's place but found it made my seams weak. Perhaps I should have back stitched?

In any case, this pattern is fun and quick. The blocks give an overall dimensional effect with a lot to look at for such a simple pattern. I plan to baste this weekend and want to try this quilting technique.

Last weekend, I "splurged" on a new quilting supply - starch! Who knew this could be so much fun to use? I love how crisp the fabric is under its spell. Maybe it's my imagination, but I think it is making me a more accurate cutter?

Do you use starch? If so, what brand do you recommend? I bought this one for no particular reason except that I hoped the name "Faultless" would rub off on my quilting. Ha!

In more serious news, like you my heart and prayers go out to those in Japan who are affected by the terrible disasters that have occurred over the last week in their country. I read on Heather's blog today that a sewing charity is being assembled to benefit Japan. Be sure to check out her Flickr group - Modern Relief - to learn all the details on how you get involved.



  1. I am a starch user - of sorts. I use Best Press and they call themselves the "starch alternative". They have some great scents, none of that flaky stuff and it also adds a nice crispness to the fabric. I love this stuff so much I buy it by the gallon and refill by bottle. I think of the scents are quite icky but that is a matter of preference. I really do LOVE LOVE LOVE Best Press and HIGHLY recommend it. Give it a try! BTW I love your quilt, so much so that I bookmarked that tute for future use. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I love starch and Faultless is my fave (I use heavy but that's because I can't find regular) but I hear good things about Mary Ellen's Best Press, which is too smelly for me. I have a bottle that I won, but one whiff was enough. There might be unscented though.

    I think it makes a big difference in cutting and piecing both. Tells the fabric to stay put and no stretching allowed mister! Just have to be careful not to burn it to the bottom of your iron, or the next time you steam something you may get nasty brown stuff on whatever you iron.

    We have friends in Japan that have given us donation info. Thanks for helping get the word spread!

  3. I haven't tried using starch .. maybe I should. Thanks for the tip.

  4. I love this fabric. Just made a needle case out of Delilah - check out my blog

  5. I use Best Press on every one of my fabrics before cutting. I think it makes a huge difference in cutting and piecing accuracy because it keeps the bias edges from stretching. There IS an unscented option. And Quilter in the Gap is right - buy the gallon and refill your spray bottle.

  6. I love the look that starching gives to the fabric. I took a class when I first started quilting and the instructor mentioned that instead of buying the spray starch to buy the liquid starch that come in the blue bottle. All you have to do is mix the starch with water in a spray bottle. There is a ratio formula on the blue liquid starch bottle.

    I also use Best Press. I love this too! I have been using this lately since I have heard or read somewhere about the use of starch. I heard that using starch can draw silver fish. I don't know if it is true or not but it kind of makes me shiver to think of it. Would ask your listeners and readers if there is any truth behind this comment. I know I did not dream it!

  7. Thanks everyone for your comments. Guess I need to give Best Press a fair shake before becoming a devout starch user! :-)

    @ Janet - I wasn't sure what silverfish were and looked them up. Now I'm totally freaked out and feel like I'm crawling with them! Apparently, they are common in Ohio. Maybe starch isn't for me...

  8. I think as long as you wash your quilt when it's done it'll lessen the likelihood of getting silverfish, right?

    As to pressing seams open, I got that tip from Elizabeth Hartman's patchwork book too, but am not liking the results on my blocks. Maybe if they weren't tiny scraps...