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Tag: #riverheritage

River Heritage – Port and Starboard

Quilts Ahoy! Month six in our river-themed mystery quilt is called Port and Starboard.Image of River Heritage Ad

I knew from Girl Scout days and canoeing that port meant left (both words have four letters) and Starboard meant right when looking out the front of your boat, vessel, canoe, ship, or even kayak, I guess. What I didn’t know was how those terms came to be.  Here’s what I found out:

When boats were controlled by a steering oar (before the rudder was centered on the boat), it was usually on the right side of the stern. Sailors would call that side the “steering side” and eventually it became a combination of two Old English words: “steor”  and “bord”, which mean “steer” and “side of the boat”. 

The opposite, or left side, of the boat was usually used for docking and loading the boat and was known as the “larboard”. Apparently, “larboard” was too easily confused with “starboard”, so the term “port” was adopted to refer to the side that faced the porters who loaded (ported) supplies onto the boat.

So there you have it: Port and Starboard.Image at Ferry Dockign

Image of Elmer Wichern

Uncle Elmer.

Now for the ferry! While brainstorming for ways to photograph the river for this fun mystery adventure, I thought of the ferry crossing in Ste. Genevieve. I have vague memories of crossing the ferry as a kid and I knew my Uncle Elmer piloted the ferry for a number of years. My cousin, Bonnie, shared with me that he and 4 other men purchased the ferry in 1975 to keep it running for farmers who lived in Ste. Genevieve and farmed in Illinois. He would pilot the boat on the weekends during his retirement.  Uncle Elmer loved the river and spent a lot of time there. If my Aunt Alice didn’t know where he was, she could find him at the river talking to fishermen and farmers. Before he married Aunt Alice, he was a river boat pilot pushing barges from St. Louis to New Orleans. Image of Young Man Working the RiverNow his grandson, Jeff, pushes barges from Tower Rock in Ste. Gen. down the river as far as New Orleans.

Elmer’s younger brother, Bill (my dad), also worked the river as a young man. The only story I remember from my dad about working on the river is that once while in New Orleans he got an anchor tattood on his arm–and a lot of trouble from his siblings when he got home! I loved that anchor tattoo.

Image of Orville Wichern

My dad.

Image of River Crossing

The Ste. Gen – MoDoc River Ferry Summer hours  (April 1 – October 31):
Monday – Saturday: 6 am – Last run at 5:30pm; Sunday : 9 am – Last run at 5:30pm
There are different rates for pedestrian, horseback, bicycles, motorcycles, and different size vehicles plus you can choose round trip or one-way. It was a lot of fun and I recommend it! Click here for more information.Image of River Image of Ferry Piloting across River

                                                  River Heritage

Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt

Month 6 Port and Starboard

Welcome to the sixth month in the River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt! Port and Starboard is made from sixteen half-square triangles squares, like Trail of Tears, but with a different layout. Follow the instructions for value (light, medium, and dark) and use your own color scheme to make your block. You can use as few as three different fabrics or as make your block as scrappy as you like. Remember to check your values by taking a black and white picture of your fabric choices.

Cutting Instructions:

From light fabric:                                         From dark fabric:                                        Image of Quilt Block

Eight– 4-inch squares                                     Four – 4-inch squares

From medium fabric:

Four – 4-inch squares

RST = right sides together

Half-square triangles:  Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on the reverse side of each of the eight light squares. Layer one dark square and one light square, RST.  Likewise, layer the other three dark/light pairs, RST. Stitch ¼ inch from the diagonal line for each set (chain-piecing method). Remove and clip the threads connecting the sets. Stitch ¼ inch seam on the other side of the drawn line. Clip apart. Cut on the drawn line. Press. Trim/square each set to 3 ½ inches. Makes eight sets.

 

Repeat the above method using medium/light combination to make eight sets. Trim/square each set to 3 ½ inches.

 

Assemble block:  Position the sixteen half-square triangles according to the picture. Take a black/white photo to double-check your layout using value.Image of Black and White Port and Starboard Block

 

Turn each piece from Column 2 onto Column 1, RST. Chain-piece a ¼ inch seam on the right edge. Clip apart and press odd rows to the right, even rows to the left.

 

Repeat with the next section by turning Column 4 onto Column 3, RST, stitch and press.

Repeat with the final two columns, stitch and press.

 

Nestle seams and pin Rows 1 and 2, RST, and stitch. Press open.

Nestle seams and pin Rows 3 and 4, RST, and stitch. Press open.

Repeat with final two sections, stitch and press open.

Trim and square your block to 12 ½ inches.

River Heritage Month 6 Port and Starboard Printer-FriendlyImage of Vehicle on Ferry

 

Share your block using #riverheritage on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!

Month Seven will be posted on July 9, 2018 at www.blog.creativebeestudios.com.

River Heritage – Trail of Tears

River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt

Month Five – Trail of Tears

 

The Trail of Tears State Park, located on the Mississippi River, in Cape Girardeau County, Missouri, is a beautiful park with four trails, three river overlooks, a lake, campsites, picnic areas, and a visitor’s center. It  also is a burial site which commemorates the tragic deaths and hardships of the forced relocation of the Cherokee.

Image of River View

View of the Mississippi River from Trail of Tears State Park.

Image of Cherokee on Trail of Tears

The visitor’s center is filled with information including audio recordings, video presentations, books, and static displays about the Trail of Tears, plus information about wildlife found in the area.

 

It is difficult to read, see, and hear about the struggle of these people at the hands of our government and, consequently, our country.  Still, it is wonderful to have the history and beauty of the state park right here in our own “backyard”.  If you haven’t been to the Trail of Tears State Park in a while, I recommend the drive, the views, and the history lesson.Image of Trail of Tears SignImage of Mississippi River

Image of Stone

Later found to have inaccuracies, this covered stone still stands to honor all those who endured the march of relocation on the Trail of Tears.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image of Quilt BlockThe Trail of Tears quilt block is made from sixteen half-square triangle squares (eight made from a dark/light combination and eight made from a medium/light combination).

Follow the instructions for value (light, medium, and dark) and use your own color scheme to make your block. Remember to check your values by taking a black and white picture of your fabric choices.  I look forward to seeing the variety of blocks you make!

Cutting Instructions:

From two light fabrics:                                             From dark fabric:                                        

Four – 4-inch squares, totaling 8                        Four – 4-inch squares

 

From medium fabric:

Four – 4-inch squares

                                                                                               RST = right sides together

Half-square triangles:  Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on the reverse side of each of the eight light squares. Layer one dark square and one light square, RST.  Likewise, layer the other three dark/light pairs, RST. Stitch ¼ inch from the diagonal line for each set (chain-piecing method). Remove and clip the threads connecting the sets. Stitch ¼ inch seam on the other side of the drawn line. Clip apart. Cut on the drawn line. Press. Trim/square each set to 3 ½ inches. Makes eight sets. 

Repeat the above method using medium/light combination to make eight sets. Trim/square each set to 3 ½ inches.

Assemble block:  Position the sixteen half-square triangles according to the picture. Take a black/white photo to double-check your layout using value.

Turn each piece from Column 2 onto Column 1, RST. Chain-piece a ¼ inch seam on the right edge. Clip apart and press odd rows (1 & 3) to the right, even rows (2 & 4) to the left.

Repeat with the next section by turning Column 4 onto Column 3, RST, stitch and press. Now you have two columns.

Repeat the above assembly with the final two columns, stitch and press.

Nestle seams and pin Rows 1 and 2, RST, and stitch. Press open.

Nestle seams and pin Rows 3 and 4, RST, and stitch. Press open.

Repeat with final two sections, stitch and press open.

Trim and square your block to 12 ½ inches.

River Heritage Month 5 Trail of Tears (Printer Friendly Version)

Share your block using #riverheritage on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!

Month Six will be posted on June 11, 2018 at www.blog.creativebeestudios.com.

Image of BeeIf you visit the Trail of Tears Visitor Center soon, you may experience the carpenter bees working at the entrance. While their buzzing is loud, they aren’t aggressive at all and are too busy making holes in the soft wood to bother you. It’s kind cool and I had to get a picture of one to share, because…you know. 🙂

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Welcome the latest #usebothsides pattern: Angelina!

Month Four – Lighted Bridge

River Heritage Mystery Quilt continues with Month Four!Image of Month Four Promo

Lighted Bridge

The Bill Emerson cable stay bridge stands over the Mississippi River between Cape Girardeau, Missouri and East Cape Girardeau, Illinois. Opened in 2003, the bridge is a beautiful landmark which thousands of people cross each day. Lighted at night, it is a beautiful  and iconic structure,  especially in the month of October when all the lights are pink for the Pink Up Cape breast cancer awareness campaign. The bridge is 4,000 feet long, 100 feet wide and is illuminated with 140 lights.

 

Lighted Bridge is made of four large flying geese (depicting the lighted cables and their reflection in the river) and three strips (sky, bridge roadway, and water). Image of Quilt BlockFollow the instructions for value (light, medium, and dark) and use your own color scheme to make your bridge block. Remember to check your values by taking a black and white picture of your fabric choices. I look forward to seeing the variety of bridges we make!

Lighted Bridge uses light fabric for the two bridge cables, medium for the lighted night sky and reflected cables, and dark for the bridge roadway and water.

Cutting Instructions:
From light fabrics:                                                                                                                       From dark fabrics:
Two – 3 ½ x 6 ½ inch rectangles                                                                                                         One – 1 x 12 ½ inch strip for bridge roadway
From medium fabrics:                                                                                                                             Four – 3 ½ inch squares for water
Two – 3 ½ x 6 ½ inch rectangles                                                                                                        One – 3 x 12 ½ inch strip for water
for reflected cables
One – 3 ½ x 12 ½ inch strip for sky
Four – 3 ½ inch squares for sky                                                                                            RST = right sides together

Flying Geese: Draw a diagonal line on the reverse side of the four medium and four dark squares. Position a medium square RST on the corner of a light rectangle. Stitch on the line. Press. Peel back the top triangle of the square you just pressed and trim the middle layer to ¼ inch from the seam to reduce bulk. Repeat this process at the opposite corner of the rectangle. Flying Geese should be 3 ½ x 6 ½ inches. Trim if necessary. Repeat with second light rectangle. Makes two light flying geese.

Align one light flying geese RST on another, making sure they are facing the same direction. Stitch on the right side. Press seam open.

Position a dark square RST on the corner of a medium rectangle. Repeat instructions for Flying Geese above. Repeat with second medium rectangle. Makes two medium flying geese.

Align one medium flying geese RST on another, making sure they are facing the same direction. Stitch on the right side. Press seam open.

Block Assembly:
Refer to the picture to lay pieces in order from top to bottom.
Place medium strip RST on light flying geese. Stitch; press to strip.
Place dark 1-inch strip RST on light flying geese. Stitch; press to strip.
Place dark 3-inch strip RST on bottom of medium flying geese. Stitch; press to strip.
Place medium flying geese on 1-inch strip RST. Stitch; press to strip.
Trim and square block to 12 ½ inches.

Image of Lighted Bridge

View from Red Star Boat Ramp

Printer Friendly Version

Share your block using #riverheritage on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!

Month Five will be posted on May14, 2018 at www.blog.creativebeestudios.com.

 

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Chain-piecing a Quilt Block

When piecing a sampler quilt (like the current River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt), chain piecing individual blocks can save you time and help you stay organized.

Since we have all levels of quilters participating in the mystery, I want to share a technique which would help our newer quilters down the road. Chain-piecing.  It’s something I take for granted now, but I remember the lightbulb going on when I was first taught to chain-piece. Here’s how I approach chain-piecing an individual block (which might just show up down the road (river?) in your mystery quilt).

Have you ever given road directions to someone and said, “It’s not nearly as confusing as it sounds.”? That’s how describing chain-piecing is. Hand’s on, it’s easy to grasp. In words, it seems confusing. Take it a step at a time the first few times and soon you’ll be chain-piecing without even thinking about it.

*Cut and prepare your block pieces. In the example I use here, the block is made from all half-square triangles (HST).

 

*Arrange your block pieces according to the block design. (I like to use my ironing board surface.) If it’s a complicated design, I like to check myself by taking a black and white picture (to see value) to make sure I’ve arranged the pieces correctly.

Image of Quilt Block

This quilt block is made of four rows and four columns.

 

*Notice that there are four rows (left to right) and four columns (top to bottom). Turn each HST in Column 2 over onto the HST to the left, in Column 1, right sides together (RST) as shown.

Image of Chain Piecing a Quilt Block

Turn Column 2 onto Column 1, RST.

Likewise, turn each HST from Column 4 over onto the HST to the left, in Column 3, RST.

 

Layer the sets in order, starting with Row 4 on the bottom, offsetting them to keep them distinctly separate as shown below.

Image of Layered Block Sets

Layer the sets from the bottom up to take to your machine.

Carry them to the machine, keeping them in order.

 

Starting with the top set, stitch along the right edge. 

As you get close to the end of stitching the first set, have the next set ready to slide under the presser foot. (I love using my knee bar for this step.) Stop stitching for a moment before you come off the edge of the first set. Slide the second set just under the foot so that it catches the feed dogs, but isn’t touching the first set and continue stitching. It is okay to have two or three “air” stitches between sets. Repeat this for all the sets.

 

Trim the threads between all the sets, keeping them in order. (Your first set is from Columns 1 & 2 in Row 1 and your last set is from Columns 3 & 4, Row 4.)

Press according to block instructions and arrange them in again, only now you have two columns.

Image of Chain Piecing Technique

Now you have two columns.

Turn Column 2 onto Column 1, RST, for all four rows. Again, layer the four rows with Row 4 on the bottom and Row 1 on the top. Take to the machine and chain piece along the right edges.

Image of Chain Piecing Technique

Turn Column 2 onto Column 1 and stitch.

Clip threads, press, and arrange the rows in order. With the columns complete, you only have four rows left to piece.

Image of Block Rows

Rows 1 is at the top and Row 4 is at the bottom.

Continue by piecing the rows together, turning Row 1 down onto Row 2, RST. Nestle and pins the seams. Repeat for Row 3 and Row 4. Stitch along the top edges.

Trim and press. Now lay the two remaining rows in order. Turn Row 1 down onto Row 2. Nestle and pins the seams. Stitch along the top edge. Trim and press.

Remember to square and trim your block according to instructions.

If you are a new quilter, what techniques are you wanting to learn? If you are an experienced quilter, what are your favorites to share?

Month Four in the River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt will be revealed on Monday, April 9 at 9 a.m.!Image of Three Quilt Blocks

 

 

Heading to AQS Quilt Week in Paducah? How about stopping in Hancock’s of Paducah? You’ll see TEN #usebothsides hanging there with patterns during the show!

Image of Three Quilts

Phoebee, Belle, and Lily

Image of Three Quilts

Rose, Emily, and Kate

Image of Cauldron Wall Hanging

Something’s Brewing

Image of Seahorse Quilt

Sally Quilt Pattern

Image of Flamingo Quilt

Fiona Quilt Pattern

Image of Poinsettia Quilt

Pepita Quilt Pattern

Month Three BOM Mystery Quilt

The third block of the River Heritage Mystery Quilt is revealed!

River Heritage

Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt

Pictured is Tower Rock (Grand Tower) on the frozen Mississippi River.

This photo, taken by Jake Pohlman in January 2018,  shows people crossing the frozen river to the landmark island and rock formation usually only accessible by land during extreme drought.  Tower Rock is located in the Brazeau Township, Perry County, Missouri, near the town of Wittenberg, Missouri, and across the river from Grand Tower, Illinois. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970. Jacques Marquette, a French explorer, mentioned this island in 1673 when he passed by this formation. Tower Rock has been known to instill both fear and poetry in river pilots due to the force of the whirlpool effect the water hitting the formation creates.

Month 3 – Flock of Geese

Welcome to the third month in the River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt! A flock of geese is a common sight in our area, especially in the fields adjacent to the river line. Flock of Geese is made with two easy components but, as with Railroad Crossing, it can be used to make a stunning quilt by itself or with a secondary block. As I mentioned in the introduction, I am making my quilt blocks very scrappy, so where it calls for one large dark and one large light square, I make two to achieve a scrappy look. I toss my extra squares in my BOM scrap bin to grab for future blocks.

Flock of Geese uses dark and light fabrics. It is an easy block made with two four-patches of half-square triangles (HS) and two large half-square triangles.

Printer Friendly Version

Cutting Instructions

From light fabrics:                            From dark fabrics:                Image of Flock of Geese Block                      

1 – 7-inch square                                1 – 7-inch square

4 – 4-inch squares                               4 – 4-inch squares

RST = right sides together

 

Draw a diagonal line on the reverse side of the 7-inch and 4-inch light squares. Lay the light squares on the same size dark squares, matching edges, RST. Using a quarter-inch foot, sew ¼ inch on each side from the drawn line. Cut on the line. Press each half square triangle towards the darker fabric. Square/trim each large HS to 6 ½ inches and small HS to 3 ½ inches.

Lay out the pieces according to the block picture. Make four-patches out of the small HS by turning the right-side HS onto the left-side HS, RST. Stitch across the top. Press Row 1 to the right, Row 2 to the left. Flip Row 1 onto Row 2, RST, match seams, and pin. Stitch. Press open. Square/trim to 6 ½ inches.

Flip the top four-patch onto the large HS. Stitch. Press to the HS.

Flip the bottom HS onto the four-patch. Stitch. Press to HS.

Turn the top row down onto the bottom row, RST, match seams, and pin. Stitch across the top. Press four-patches open. Trim the block to 12 1/2 inches.

You have made your Flock of Geese block! Share your block using #riverheritage on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter! Month Four will be posted on April 9, 2018. Subscribe below to get posts automatically emailed to you!

Mysterious Values

Value can be a head-scratcher. When separating your fabrics for a project like…let’s just say, the FREE River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt, you might find yourself guessing which fabric goes where.

That’s because the fabric value can change, depending on what value it is next to.

Say what?

How can a fabric value change, you ask? While the value of the fabric itself doesn’t physically change, how you see that value can be affected by what is around it. Let me explain and then give you a simple way to test your values…

Here are three piles of fabric stash I’ve selected for my River Heritage. Dark, Medium, Light. Straight forward.Image of Fabric Stash

 

However, if I were to choose to use a dark Light and a light Medium together, they suddenly look similar.

I’ll use my first-run at BOM as an example.

Because I like to mix it up with background fabrics in my #usebothsides quilts, I thought I could do that with my BOM as well. As you can see, the neutral on the bottom right from my Lights pile stands out and interferes with the rest of my block. (My eye goes right to it.)

Image of Paddle Wheel

See how the bottom right square competes with the rest of the block?

My Medium looks too light when I use that dark of a Light!

Or you could say…

My Light looks too dark when I use that light of a Medium!

The best way I have found to truly see the value of a fabric is to take a black and white picture.

Image of Black and White Paddle Wheel Block

Check your values by taking a black and white picture.

Boom. There it is. Block is fixed.

Image of Paddle Wheel Block

Paddle Wheel
Month One
River Heritage

(Now how did those too Grunge Dots get so close together? Come here, Sam ( the seam ripper). Read more about The Tricky Traits of Value here and here.

So why does mixing of values work in other quilts? Mixing up my neutrals for #usebothsides works because my focus fabric is a very vivid Dark value. Even a dark Light or light Medium  works in the background of these quilts.

Image of Quilt with Bee.

Phoebee was designed using both sides of a focal fabric.

You can really see that in Phoebee the focus fabric will be strong enough to override even a medium background fabric.

While I still want to encourage you to live on the edge (only in quilting circles) and mix up those fabrics, you do have to pay close attention (maybe even more so) to values.

If you’ve been in my classes, you know I don’t give any opinions about fabric options until I’ve taken a black and white picture first. I’ve been stumped many times by guessing and it’s just easier to know for sure. So grab your stash  and your camera and sign up below for the FREE River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt! The clue for Month Two is three weeks away!

Subscribe to my blog posts below to get the mystery clues sent directly to your email when they post! Share with friends and on social media. Share your progress using #riverheritage and let’s do this together!