Block Lotto · Block of the Month · Blog

Jan/Feb Block Lotto: Tri-Ball

The Block Lotto blocks for January/February are now up on Simone Designs (Simone’s blog). This block is called Tri Ball, and is a clever raw-edge applique design that can be laid out in multiple ways:

The instructions to make Tri Ball are up on her blog, but read on for some tips. There are also more layouts on her blog, where they can be seen in full size. As per her usual, Simone has created another stunning design for us. Gather together your fabrics:

  • Low volume for the background
  • Warm colored fabric for the half-circle, such as reds, pinks, oranges, and yellows
  • Cool colored fabric for the triangles, such as blacks, blues, greens and purple

I tried out her pattern and really had fun with it. (NOTE: I added a 1/4″ on the flat side of the half-ball to keep that shape once it’s sewn into the seam.)

[Bonus: by sewing an extra line 1/2″ away from the snowball-block line, I was able to cut in between the two stitching lines, gaining me a stack of half-square triangles.]

I decided to make some for myself, but wanted to have turned-edge appliqué, so I added 1/4″ all the way around, and used the freezer-paper method to shape that curve. You can see them pinned to the background with small appliqué pins on the right.
A REMINDER: We are asking you to make raw-edge appliqué for the blocks that you turn into for the Block Lotto drawing.

Please head over to Simone Designs for info on how to make these blocks. Make blocks during January and February, and bring them in to the March meeting for our Block Lotto drawing. The more blocks you make, the better your chances at winning!

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

January/February 2019 Block Lotto – Skipping Rocks

Our 2019 Block Lotto program promises to be fun and creative – encouraging you to try new techniques using a modern aesthetic!  We are fortunate to have the talents of our own Simone Bradford for our 2019 Block Lotto program!  For the new year, we’ve decided to do this program bi-monthly so you’ll have plenty of time to put together your Skipping Rocks blocks and submit them at our March meeting.  As with our 2018 Block Lotto program – the more blocks you make, the more entries you’ll earn!  We’ve attached a printable/view-able PDF print out of the pattern here.  Additional instructions, photos and details are available on Simone’s blog here.

Have fun and be creative!

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

November 2018 Block Lotto – No Waste Flying Geese

This is my version of following the online tutorial here. There are quite a few tutorials out there for this version of flying geese, but I liked this one best.  I tried the Eleanor Burns method and I didn’t care for it – mostly because I like matching things. I’m a quilter after all.

This month’s Block Lotto makes four [4] flying geese in about as much time as you can say honk!  It was REALLY fast – and like the title says – with VERY little waste! Choose a white/cream for background fabric and anything you want for your geese.

Step 1. I cut squares – one 5 ¼” for the geese and four 3” for the backgrounds. Yep, her tutorial says to cut 2 7/8” squares, but I don’t like squinting to line up the little tiny 1/8” marks on my rulers. Then I marked my smaller squares with a faint diagonal line.






Step 2. At the machine, stack two small squares on the larger square like this and sew ¼” away from each side of the line.

Step 3. Press and cut between the stitching lines. Then press again with seams towards background fabric.

Step 4. Back at the machine with the two unused small background squares, position and sew on each side of the line.

Step 5. Cut between stitching lines and press again with seams to background fabric.

Flying Geese!!!

Step 6. Trim to 2 ½” and 4 ½”. I make my first cut ¼” above the point of the geese, but trim away. This was all the waste I had from this little project. Pretty accurate description, I’d say!

A printed version of the instructions above can be found here (must have a pdf viewer installed).


IEMQG Fundraiser & Reminders – A message from Laura

Ahhhh … Our yearly fundraiser is finally here this Saturday, October 6th from 10am-4pm at Mountain Shadows! If you volunteered to help with the event, be sure to arrive 10-15 minutes before your shift. Becky will be calling during the week to remind you about your scheduled work time. Bring your baked goods as early as possible, preferably cut and packaged to sell in individual servings. As mentioned,we will not have a formal meeting and encourage everyone to bring a friend of two to help promote the event!

Complimentary coffee will be provided with a purchase. Purchases may be made with cash, check, or debit/credit via PayPal. Remember to bring a friend who loves sewing items and homemade goods. Let’s make this fundraiser be totally awesome, since we need the $$$ for next year’s activities.

Special tables will be displayed for Block LottoNominations, and Raffle. You may drop off your Block Lotto for November’s meeting or get the pattern. The Nominating Committee will have their slate posted, and you may add a nomination. Look forward to an email during October to vote via Survey Monkey by November 2nd. The position of Treasurer is open. We will have our monthly raffle for the fat quarter of the month.  Tickets will be available at the raffle table.

Remember to bring: 1) money 2) baked goods 3) Block Lotto blocks 4) nominations 5) any last minute items to donate for people to purchase 6) your name tag 7) friends.

We look forward to seeing everyone there!


Block Lotto · Block of the Month

October 2018 Block Lotto – Triangles 4 Fun

This month’s block is called ‘Triangles 4 Fun’.  You’ll start by printing out the one-page pattern to show the cutting diagram here. The rest of the instructions are found below for constructing your triangle block!  Happy Triangles!

You SHOULD spray and iron your fabric before cutting triangles; as you can see – I didn’t.






Align the print triangle fabric “down” ¼” from the point of the background triangle (yellow fabric).








After the first ¼” seam is sewn, align the points of the background triangles and stitch the second side,

After pressing – like a good quilter – you’ll have this.  Square up this module to 7 ½” wide X 6 ¼” high.

Add the 1 ¾” strip at the bottom to complete the square. Re-trim for a 7 ½” block.

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

August Block Lotto – Square in a Square

August 2018 Block Lotto Challenge

Square in a Square

This month’s challenge is inspired by a Pinterest post I can no longer locate.  I’m sure no one has EVER had that happen before!!

The quilt was composed simply of square in square blocks. No sashing, no repeating pattern, no color theme – it was stunning.  This month’s challenge is going to be that quilt!

Create an 8 ½” square in a square block. The “inside” square can be any solid (reads solid).  I used up some scraps and leftover squares from another quilt. The “outside” square should be a light neutral/white/beige. I used improve techniques for several of mine – again – just to use up odds and ends from my stash.

The inside square can be ANYWHERE in the square! You can put it in the middle, on the edge, in a corner. Make it big, make it small, on point. Have fun with it.

Bring your squares to our August 4th meeting and let’s see who wins!

Minutes · Minutes Monthly Meeting

June 2018 General Meeting Minutes

IEMQG General Meeting Minutes
June 2, 2018
Grand Terrace Community Center 22795 Barton Road, Grand Terrace, CA 92313

The meeting was called to order at 2:05 p.m. by Laura Greene, President.

Welcome – Warm-up

The Warm-up statement was “My fabric is organized well at my home.” Attendees grouped under the sign that best represented their response to that question – Strongly Agree, Agree, Slightly Disagree, and Strongly Disagree. After a few minutes of discussing the topic, Laura asked who mentioned “comic book boards” and there were four people, so Laura asked who most recently used boards to store fabric; it was Jennifer Adams, so she won the prize.

Because it is the two-year birthday of our guild, Laura Greene gave a brief history of the Inland Empire Modern Quilt Guild, which began with a small group called Friends of the Modern Quilt Guild.

Laura explained that the minutes which are posted on our website will not have any specific financial information because the minutes can be read by the public. Any member wishing to see the financial statements can do so by contacting our Treasurer, Gayle Bennett.

Committee Reports

Cat Wallace, VP of Programs, reported that the July Meeting program will be a presentation by our member, Simone Bradford, who will “spotlight” herself and her fabric designs. She will bring fat quarters for us to purchase. The August meeting program will be a lecture on using specialty threads, by Shawnee Miller. On June 10, we will be having a Sit and Sew at Mountain Shadows. Please let Tricia Williams know if you will be attending.

Gayle Bennet announced that if anyone hasn’t chosen a song title for the Song Challenge, she still has the bag of titles for them to draw from. Anyone who wants a different song can draw another one, for a $5.00 donation to the guild. The quilts will be presented at our September meeting. Linda Rasmussen has offered to curate the quilts for us.

Shelley Wardrop showed us samples of the house block for July’s block lotto. Patterns will be available on our website. The arrow block lotto entries were won by new member Ruthann Salera. (Gayle told her that we will expect to see them made into a finished quilt at our next meeting, but Ruthann knew she was kidding.)

Refreshments – Pat Klassen thanked Laura Greene for providing the birthday cake, and Allison Cutler for bringing beverages. Alisa Howe will bring refreshments to the July meeting.

Pat Klassen reported that were 28 members and 5 guests in attendance.

Laura Greene announced that the Thrilling Threads Workshop will be taught by Shawnee Miller during our August 19 Sit and Sew at Mountain Shadows. The workshop will be from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. Shawnee will provide fabric and threads for us to create a sampler using different types of threads. The cost of the workshop is $35. Our Sit and Sew will still be from 9:00 – 5:00, so we will be sewing and having lunch before the workshop.

Break – We visited and enjoyed birthday cake and beverages.

Meeting resumed at 2:50.

Laura Greene said that Natalie Barnes brought us each a copy of her book, A Modern Twist. Natalie said, “Well, I heard that this is a birthday celebration, so I brought gifts.”

Cat Wallace gave a lovely introduction to our speaker, Natalie Barnes of Beyond the Reef. Natalie’s interesting presentation included lots of beautiful quilts.

Show and Share – Members’ quilts were displayed and admired.

Raffles – Alisa Howe has agreed to take over the monthly raffles. The raffle winner chose from three sets of fat quarters.

Pat Klassen presented the name tag raffle winner with her prize.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:35 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Tricia Williams

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

July Block Lotto – Wonky House

Wonky House Tutorial

Block measures 12.5″ square
Seam allowances are 1/4″ but don’t need to be perfect
Press seams to the side that is darker
I suggest you read through all the steps first before beginning

You will need at least four prints for the house, roof, door and windows (more for additional windows, chimney, etc.), a background fabric and a green print for the grass.

I find it extremely helpful to mark off the finished block size on my cutting mat with painter’s tape.  This helps to keep proportions accurate and ensures you don’t cut anything too small!!


Looking at the final block picture above, you will see that it is basically three sections – the base, the house body and the roof.  Begin by cutting the base 13″ long and at least 4″ wide.

For the house body, it is easier to cut the door and window first and then “fill in” the area around them with the house pieces. They can be trimmed and adjusted as you go, but you don’t want a door or window that is too small or too big so I start with them. I like to cut the roof triangle now so I can “see” how it is going to come together.

These measurements are a good starting point, yours may be different. I like to start with straight edges and I trim them at angles later.

Now cut the house pieces.  Using the picture as a guide, cut a piece for below the window, between the door and the window, the right side, the left side, and the top.  Remember to cut them too big and trim as you go.

The numbers indicate the order to sew them together.

To make it wonky, trim the angled edges as you go.

To make your angled edges match before sewing, cut one piece to the desired angle, and then use a clear ruler to cut the second piece.  In the picture below, I first cut the blue door piece at an angle. Then I placed the red piece next to it – straight.  I placed a line on my ruler along the cut edge (the 3/4″ here, but it doesn’t matter). Then I cut the red piece.

I did this on both sides of the door.  Doing it this way keeps everything on the straight of grain which prevents distortion.

I used the same method to angle the window.

After sewing pieces 1 – 6 together, trim the top edge and bottom edges.  They can be straight or angled.

Sew on the top piece.

Trim the sides and do it wonky!!

Cut two rectangles out of the background fabric..  Mine are 4″ x 8″, but you will want them to be at least an inch bigger than the finished background area.

Using a clear ruler, cut the angle to match the sides of the house in the same manner
as you did the door and window.






Sew the two side pieces to the house body and trim the top and bottom edges even with the house.

It is looking pretty cute, right?  I know you are dying to see how it looks sitting on the green grass, so go ahead and sew that to the bottom edge.  First cut the angled edge on the green rectangle to match the angled edge on the bottom of the house.  You should be pretty good at that by now!!

Notice that the block is extending beyond the blue tape – that is good!  You will trim it up nice and square when it is all done.

Test the roof triangle to make sure you are happy with the fit now that the house is done.  If you want the roof to extend beyond the sides of the house, keep in mind that you’ll lose about 1/2″ in seam allowances.  Trim it smaller if you need to.  If it turns out that it is too small, toss it in the scrap bin and cut another one.

This is my foolproof method of making sure the roof and background fit together nicely.

Cut a rectangle at least 1 inch bigger on all sides than the finished piece will be.

Place the roof piece on top of it in the exact location of the finished roof.

Line up your ruler with the edge of the roof and cut through both thicknesses.
(oops – the sun was coming through the window!!)

Put the underneath piece of background fabric in the scrap bin.

Sew the roof piece to the right background piece and then the left

background piece. Don’t worry about the seam allowances or the edges not lining up – the piece will be trimmed down.

(If you want to add a chimney first, cut one of the background pieces in half where you want the chimney to go.  Piece the chimney with the background fabric and sew into place.)

Trim the lower edge and sew it to the house section.

Using a 12.5″ square ruler, trim the block to size.  If you don’t have a 12.5″ ruler, I recommend you get one!  It is the one ruler I couldn’t live without!!


I hope this all made sense and was easy to follow.
If you have any questions, please leave me a comment and I will be happy to help you!




If you’d like a print-friendly version, you can find one here. (Note:  You’ll need the latest version of Adobe for this page to load)

Block Lotto · Block of the Month

January 2018 Block Lotto – Stash Buster Improv


Did you make a New Year’s resolution to whittle down your stash?
Go on a fabric diet?
Complete more projects?

This project is perfect to help keep your resolutions.  Make a 6 ½” improv block using ONLY what you have in your stash.  You can’t buy anything new.  Use leftovers, re-cut rejects, re-design bloopers. Pull out your UFO’s and PIGS. Use solids, prints, fussy-cuts, pastels, florals, civil war or modern – mix them all up and do something new.  Add embellishment it if you want, but again, only use supplies from your stash. You can even make more than one!

Blocks are due on February 3, 2018. Winner to be announced at the IEMQG meeting!


Block of the Month

July Block Lotto

Umbrella Party! Even in sunny California, we can appreciate an adorable umbrella.

The lotto will be drawn for these blocks at our August meeting.

Donna made a wonderful inspiration board, as usual.


When finished, here is a taste of what they look like. So cute, right?