Friday, September 14, 2012

Not My Favorite . . .

I've been devoting a little time here and there to Miss Rosie's Little Bites pattern, Speck. Speck is this month's Schnibbles group's pattern--really cute and there are two options for making the blocks, either with "X"s or "O"s. Nope, it's not Speck that's "not my favorite." And, it's neither Miss Rosie nor Ms. Carrie Nelson who are not my favorites either--'cause they are! Who DOESN'T love them?

Nope, what's not my favorite, when it comes to quilting, are these little corner thingies. I've heard them called connector corners. You don't want to hear what I call them.


Over the years, my cutting and stitching skills have become more and more accurate, but no matter how often I make these corner doo-hickies, they never come out perfect; those corners, once they're pressed back, are always a little wonky. And I don't like to leave all three layers; nope, I'm a trimmer. I like to get rid of that extra bulk. And doing that means I'm eliminating the constant, dependable block edges to line up with.

The first two blocks I pieced ended up being just a bit off. You know how sometimes they just won't lay flat no matter how much pressing and steaming you apply . . . until you get so frustrated you find yourself simply BEATING them with the iron and shouting, "Die, die, die"? No? Doesn't sound like something you'd do? No, me neither. Who'd DO that?! Sheesh!

By the time I got to the third block, I decided it would probably be worth the extra time to square up the pieces so the corners were a bit nicer and everything fit together well. And that DID work a little better.

Now I'm about half way done with my blocks, but I may need to take a little break from this project and go back to the appliqued winter blocks I'm making to swap with my guild group--the swap is supposed to take place Tuesday evening. That will also give me time to get a new iron. I don't know why, but for some reason the bottom plate seems to have come a bit loose from the body of the iron, so it's probably time to replace it.

Is there a type of piecing that's not your favorite?

15 comments:

Suzan said...

Thank goodness you posted this! I just won a full set of 8 of the Little Bite patterns. I am NOT going to start with this one! I can sew an exact 1/4" seam and I can cut an exact 1-1/2" square but I hate those little pieces. Even holding them in place with a stiletto, that bottom bit always goes just a little bit astray.

Jacqueline said...

LOL this post cracked me up because I was seeing myself with the road rage frustration I suffer sometimes when I think I have done everything just right and then blam you put it together and it looks like a drunk was at your machine.

JoAnne said...

I finished my Speck but I didn't enjoy those connector squares. I don't mind leaving the base block if the connector is wonky (which it usually is) but one of those "trangles" needed to be pressed the opposite direction, so it wouldn't work to leave on the base corner. I ended up pressing both "open" and then whichever one seemed most accurate became the one I pressed to the back.

dianne said...

ha ha ha!!! maybe your iron wouldn't be unhealthy if you stopped beating blocks into submission ... snicker

Denise in PA said...

Same thing has been going on in my sewing room the last few days. I've been beating my blocks with the iron too. I'm SOOOO glad the blocks are done - I'm at the sashing stage now. I almost left all three layers in there, but in the end I couldn't do it. o:)

Annie said...

I've no clue what "connector corners" are (apparantly one must know the pattern first), but I sure do know that I love that quilt you're working on!

Miss Jean said...

Are you talking about "magic corners"? I have a book by Mary Ellen Hopkins, who, if you are not familiar with, is a wonderful quilt teacher and absolutely hilarious. In her books she puts at least twice on each page to not cut the middle and back piece of fabric after putting on the magic corner. Just cut the middle. That way you have the back square to help you square up and accurately piece the block.

Plus, whenever I'm quilting those types of blocks and they don't exactly match, I quilt a little heavier in the mistake and nobody knows!

With that said, I'm sure you are just being hard on yourself. You are an amazing quilter!!

Wonky Girl said...

Yes, M. E. Hopkins! I saw her on a quilt show long time ago. What Miss Jean said, do that and when you iron be sure to just fold the piece over and press so it fits the corner. If your sewing line was crooked it won't matter. Hope that makes sense, LOL.

Deb said...

OMG! I've been working on a project that has the same doo-hickies on the corners and I HATE THEM! I have the same issue, I can cut perfectly and I'm really careful to make sure I do the perfect mark to sew on, but they're always wonkie! WOW - amazing, there has to be a better way to do this, when you figure it out - let me know!

Judy in Michigan said...

Just spiff-ballin' here but what if you cut the square bigger and drew the line then placed the line where it should intersect the bottom square and sew it. Then you could fold the triangle back and then trim according to the back piece. Once it was trimmed, you could cut the 2 extra pieces (middle and bottom). I wonder if that would work better??
I don't like these connectors either but I would always sew 1 thread inside the line (toward the corner)and then fold back, press, and trim. If the triangle was too big, I would trim it and the middle piece by following the bottom piece. Then I could trim both the middle and the back off. If the triangle was too small, I would trim out the middle but not the back piece. I think it depends on your thread also - thicker thread takes up more room and the triangle won't fit the bottom corner.
I just hate it when you are so careful with cutting, pressing, and stitching and it still doesn't come out right. How about paper piecing those squares??

CathyK said...

I seem to have a real trouble with half square triangles and flying geese. I have been quilting for a year and I still can't seem to get things to line up when piecing together. Poop!!!

Anonymous said...

If you ever get it figured out, maybe you can do a tutorial and teach us. I have read all of the comments and now I am more confused than ever. LOL

Beverley said...

Die die die while beating the blocks with the iron had me in stitches. maybe that's why you need a new iron?
Bev

Josie McRazie said...

Flying #*&$%!?geese! LOL. So wwhen I chose my last quilt pattern and I needed 144 of the blessed birds... I cursed myself every nighttill itwas finished!

Katie said...

A few months ago someone (I wish I could remember her name) showed a ruler on her blog that is made for these corners. It's the Folded Corner Clipper from Prairie Sky Quilting and it makes accurate corners. I put my cutting mat by my sewing machine and lay out a dozen squares at a time to work on. It's not the quickest method but my new favorite. Love your quilt!