I needed to get this week's BOW done quickly since I am going on retreat later this week. And I am getting better, so should be able to go. Tomorrow back to work, then Thursday to retreat (YEAH!). The BOW (block of the week) this week was Sister's Choice. I made several of these when I made a quilt for my sister with her fabric choices. Sister's Choice seemed like a good pattern for it, and I was thrilled with how it turned out (a few years ago now). Anyway, those were even multiples of 5 so I could easily rotary cut it. These are 6" blocks, not so evenly divisable. So I went back to templates (like Jennifer recommends), and got it pieced last night. As long as I was working on the SBS blocks I decided to make one or two more, so went to the list of old BOWs and picked two from the A row, A-8 and A-09. I paper pieced A-9 Chinese Coins. I discovered a new trick while doing that. With freezer paper piecing you can loosen the seam allowance bit and iron it opposite of normal. I was using plain paper so couldn't, but wanted to so that the center row and column could nest. So I modified a tip from Ricky Tims, put Scotch tape over the seam line, gently tore the stitching from the paper, and then ironed it the way I wanted it to go. Worked like a dream
. Ricky uses the tape when he needs to remove stitching, but hey, it works great for this too. Then I went to work on A-8. Another revelation. I have been using Marti Michell's templates for the Patchwork Party blocks. I also have her E set for stars and found that E34 is perfect for the corner squares and E-35 is perfect for all of the triangles, so the only template I needed was the center octagon. With MM's corner snipping, all the pieces aligned perfectly, making this block a breeze to make. Only wish I had picked fabrics a bit better. I ended up making this block a second time, the gold just washes into the background and the two blues were just too close. But it was so easy to do, barely took any time at all to make that second one .
On another note, I have been catching up with watching The Quilt Show.com while stitching. Bonnie McCaffery was on, and mentioned vidcasts on her site. Check them out at http://www.bonniemccaffery.com , great techniques and things that look like a lot of fun to do. Want to try her fantasy fabric pins soon.