Thursday, December 21, 2017

Better Than Sex Biscuits!

I thought I made great biscuits, but these are better!

I simply had to share this recipe because, if you think your mom made the best biscuits, I can say with great confidence, you’re probably wrong and these are better. They are everything a great biscuit should be - light, fluffy, buttery, and easy to make.

I will begin by saying don’t substitute anything in this recipe, and if your baking powder has been sitting on the shelf, open, for more than 3 months, throw it out and buy new. Yes, I’m serious!  It makes a huge difference. Oh, and if you don't have buttermilk on hand, don't substitute!  Go buy a pint of buttermilk at the grocery store. The recipe only uses a cup, but the biscuits will disappear, and you will want to make a second batch immediately!

Better Than Sex Biscuits 

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

Spray a plain, single layer baking sheet with non stick cooking spray (not double layer “airbake” baking sheet-save those for cookies). 

In a mixing bowl, combine:

2 cups all purpose flour
1 slightly rounded tablespoon of baking powder (fresh)
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Blend these dry ingredients with a wire whisk. 

Add 1/3 cup plain shortening 

Cut this into the dry ingredients with two butter knives, or a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles VERY coarse corn meal. 

Add 1 cup of buttermilk, slowly, as you gently fold with a fork, just until most of the dry ingredients are moistened. 
Turn out on a floured board and VERY gently knead 8-10 Times, just to smooth out dough. Do not over handle dough. 

Pat dough into a round disk about 1” thick and 8” across. Cut into 8 wedges as you would a pizza. Move wedges to the baking sheet leaving about 1” between them. 

Melt 3 tablespoons of salted butter. Add a pinch of extra salt to the melted butter , and using about half of it, brush tops of biscuits. 

Bake for 13-15 minutes until puffed and golden brown. 
Remove from oven and brush with remaining butter. 

Serve immediately.

Have a warm and Happy Holiday!


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Twilight Garden - Finishing Your Top

Putting it all together

Well, If you have been following along, month by month, with me, then you know our patterns have some issues.  I was hoping that the final assembly would just go together smoothly, and for the most part it did.

Like any other sampler quilt, there are always adjustments to be made, and this quilt is no exception.  I would like to give you just a fool proof set of instructions for assembling the blocks in this quilt, but I believe whatever cutting dimensions I supply would work for some of you, but not for everyone.  I think you have to be open to adding in a little more sashing, or cutting some sashing pieces a little narrower, to make things fit properly.

My approach was to lay out all my blocks in their approximate locations.  The quilt is assembled in 4 rows, and your goal is to make each of those 4 rows the same width, so everything fits properly.
The first thing I noticed is that one of the three blocks on my bottom row (the Twinkling Stars block) was not as tall as the other two blocks. Not sure why, but it really doesn't matter. I just added another row of the 1" finished scrappy squares to the bottom of the block and that brought it up to the same height as the other two.
From measuring the width of all the blocks, I gathered that my middle row of blocks was going to be the widest row, so I sewed the blocks in this row together, and used this as my target width for the rest of the rows.  The bottom row was narrower than the middle row by about an inch, so I added another row of the scrappy 1" squares onto the right side of the row. Then it matched up nicely.
The row of piano keys goes above the middle row of blocks.  This is an easy row to size. Simply measure the target width of the middle row and sew together that many piano keys.  They are each 
1 1/2" by 5 1/2" so each key will finish at 1" wide. For my quilt I used exactly what the pattern says, 39 keys.

With the bottom 3 rows assembled, all we have to do is adjust the width of the 2 black sashing strips in the top row so it finishes at the same width.  For me, I had to cut these sashing strips at 2" x 12 1/2" rather than 2 1/2" wide as the pattern stated. but with this simple change, the top row fit perfectly.
After sewing all the rows together, it was then a simple matter to add borders.  I chose to add a very narrow border of solid black before adding the next border of red.  My red border is made exactly per the instructions, using all the leftovers of red fabric from my kit. I then added the outer border using the charcoal stripe fabric with woven stars.  I purposely cut this border along the length of the fabric, partly because there is less stretch to your border if cut this way, rather than across the fabric, and also I like the stripe pattern better this way.

 Even with the pattern issues, the majority of this quilt came together with little difficulty.  I really do like the way it turned out, especially adding in the very narrow border of black.  It frames the center beautifully.
I will be custom quilting this top, as i think it will enhance the quilt a great deal. Unfortunately, I have a fairly long queue of tops to quilt, so I won't be getting to this one for a while.   I have selected a print fabric for the backing as I think it will be a little softer than the yarn dyes used in the top.  My binding is already cut out and prepared from the same fabric as the outer border.

Thank you for following along as I constructed the Twilight Garden Quilt.  I hope you are as pleased with your version as I am with mine.


Friday, November 3, 2017

Friendship Triangle Exchange

Hi Everyone,
I would like to propose that we do a Friendship Triangle Exchange, roughly following the guidelines layed out by Edyta Sitar in her book "Friendship Triangles,"published by Landauer.
Please note this exchange is only for participants with a U.S. mailing address (this includes Alaska and Hawaii).  I am sorry for those outside of the U.S., but shipping cost makes it prohibitive.
The idea is to trade half square triangle units, made using triangle paper for accuracy. These are easy to make in groups of 20 or so at a time, all from the same 2 fabrics (1 dark and 1 light). Then we will trade,  and I will return to you a wonderful scrappy mix of HST units made from a huge variety of fabrics. You can use new fabrics purchased for the exchange, or, better yet, use up some fabrics from your stash. We all have different tastes in fabrics, and so I am going to set color guidelines for this exchange to be "Country Colors".  This is meant to be fairly broad, and should include any color in the color wheel, but not brights.  Country Colors can be rich and saturated, or softer in shades. They are not bright jewel tones, and they are not sparkling fabrics overlaid with silver and gold, just a nice blend of colors that you would see on the couch in a country home. Avoid novelty prints (unless they read strongly as a single color). 1800's repros, old Thimbleberries or fabrics from designers such as Edyta Sitar or Kim Diehl fall nicely into this color range. You can include prints, solids, homespuns and batik.  Just about anything as long as it is 100% cotton quilting weight fabric, and falls into the color guidelines.  If you do not care for the colors in this exchange, I am sorry, but I can only handle one exchange at a time.  Perhaps sit this one out, and if the exchange is a great success, we will repeat the exchange and go with a brighter color palette the next time around.
We will exchange these half square triangle units to increase our color and fabric variety, and most importantly, to have a little bit of each other's fabrics in scrap quilts that we will make at the end of the exchange. It will be fun and should not be that time consuming.  A word about fabric quality.  We  all would like to make quilts from good quality fabric. I am not going to police this exchange to make sure everyone is using quilt shop quality fabric. The point of this exchange is to have fun. I know some of you do not live extremely close to a quilt shop, but wherever you acquire the fabrics used in this exchange, be sure you are using good quality fabrics that you would be proud to use in your own quilts.
The rules for the exchange are as follows:
1. Half Square Triangle (HST) units must be sewn using triangle paper made for these units. The size of the units will be 2" finished.  Make sure the paper clearly is marked for 2" finished half square triangles (not Quarter Square Triangles).  You can use any brand of papers that you like. Some examples are Triangles on a Roll, Thangles, Triangle Exchange Papers from Laundry BasketQuilts, or other similar papers.  You can also print your own triangle papers from CD masters made for this purpose, however, if you choose to print them on your printer, you MUST use paper made for paper foundation piecing, not standard printer paper.  This assures that the paper will tear away easily.
2. We will exchange in groups of 40 HST units for ease of keeping track of numbers.  Whatever number of HST units you send in, that is how many you will get back. You can sew them in groups of 10 or 20, or any number that works for you.  However, I do ask that you don't make any more than 20 units from the same two fabrics.  Switch it out so we have greater variety of fabrics in the exchange. If you are using up smaller scraps, you may be making them in smaller groups, but we will still exchange them in groups of 40.
3. For those of you who have not made HST's using triangle paper, please review the technique, either in Edyta Sitar's book (mentioned above), or watch an instructional video on Youtube before you get started. You will want to layer your fabrics with the dark fabric right side up, then the light fabric on top of that, right side down, then the triangle paper on top of that, printed side up.  This order is important so that when they are opened and pressed, the seam will be pressed in the direction of the dark fabric. Sew on all the dotted lines, then cut them on all the solid lines using a rotary cutter and ruler. When sewing triangles using triangle paper, reduce your stitch length from a normal 8-10 stitches per inch ( 2.5 to 3.1mm), down to about 16-18 stitches per inch (1.4 to 1.6mm). This will make tearing the paper off much easier.  Be very careful when sewing and cutting, accuracy is important.
4. IMPORTANT!! Once the units are cut apart, do not remove the paper! and do not open and press them!  We will be exchanging them at this point. They are protected from stretching with the paper still on them.  Just count out 40 and put them in sandwich size ziplock bags to be sent off for the exchange. The recipient will press them open and remove the paper (hence the reason to reduce your stitch length when you sew them, and to use a good quality, easy tear triangle paper).  It's like a little surprise each time you open and press a unit to see the fabrics you have received in the exchange.
5. Select a light and a dark pair of fabrics for each set of HST units you make. The lights can be creams, beiges, tans, or any pale light color that looks good as a neutral scrappy background. Avoid pure whites. Lights can have print patterns, but nothing too distracting. (example - shirting prints are ok,  small calico prints are ok, large/bold checkerboard prints, not so good). Make sure your matching dark fabric has good contrast with the light you choose. The darks can be medium to dark value as long as there is good contrast. Think about using a mix of colors and scales of prints for variety.
6. You can choose to exchange as many units as you wish. They must be packaged in groups of 40 in sandwich ziplock bags. So you can do 40, 80, 120 . . . etc.  It is good to look through some patterns that use 2" finished HST units so you have some idea of how many you will need to make a quilt. Great patterns that use a lot of HST units include Broken Dishes, Tree of Life, Ocean Waves, and many others.  Whatever number you turn in is what you will get back.  We will open your ziplocks, count them to make sure your bags contain 40, then sort them, so every bag will be a mix of units from everyone. The members of my small quilt group have volunteered to help sort, package and return ship units to all the participants.
Jamestown Landing by Bonnie Hunter
Broken Dishes
Tree Of Life
Ocean Waves
Tree Of Life
Jamestown Landing

7. You can send your HST units to me using whatever courier you would like to use.  I will be returning them ALL to you via the USPS in padded flat rate envelopes, as these will hold a lot, and they are economical to send.  You will need to include $7.50 return postage along with your exchange units. This can be cash or a check made out to me, Steven Lennert (I suggest putting this in another ziplock bag with your name on it, and tucking this in to your shipment). A padded flat rate envelope will hold around 12 to 14 bags (each 40 units), or a total of 480-560 HST units.  If you will be sending in more units than that, that is fine, but you will need to send $15 return postage to allow for either two envelopes or a medium flat rate box.
8. With the Holidays coming up, I would like to give everyone plenty of time to make their units, so I am setting January 31, 2018 as the date that all exchange units should be mailed in. Please do not mail them before January 15th, as I do not have space to store them. We will then work on them during February and should have them returned to everyone sometime in March.  Exchange blocks received after February 7th, 2018 will not be included in the exchange and will simply be returned to the participant. NO EXCEPTIONS! Exchange units can be sent to: Steven Lennert, 11237 SE Vernazza Ln., Happy Valley, OR 97086
9. For the sake of variety, I would like to have at least 30 participants in this exchange. Please share this with your quilting friends who may want to participate.  I am setting a limit of 100 participants, as I think that is all my small quilt group can comfortably handle in the exchange. So sign up soon if you would like to join in.
If you have read through these instructions and you would like to participate in the exchange, please send me an email stating you would like to participate in the HST exchange,  to,  and include the following information: Your full name, your email address where you can be reached (please include this even if your email was sent from this address), and a telephone number where you can be reached if we have any questions (This is REQUIRED), and your mailing address for return of your exchange units (in case you forget to include this when you send your units in).  I will not share any of this information with anyone, it is just for us to contact you if necessary. I will send out a confirmation email to all who have signed up around December 1st. (please notify me if you should be signed up and do not get a confirmation email). And, I will also send out a reminder email in mid-January about the deadline for mailing in your exchange units.  
If you have any other questions, please email me at

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Block 10 - Twinkling Stars

I have to begin this month by apologizing up front for the difficulty in cutting the pieces out for the the Twinkling Stars block.

Just about all blocks can be simplified to a grid.  Usually 3 x 3, 4 x 4, or 5 x 5.  To give you an example, a 9 patch is a basic 3 x 3 grid.
A friendship star is also a 3 x 3 grid, and similar to a 9 patch, except 4 of the squares are replaced with half square triangles. Our block this month has 8 friendship stars positioned in a wreath.  The block width spans 3 of these friendship stars, left to right and top to bottom.  So the grid for our block this month is 9 x 9. 

The block has a lot of pieces, and that would not be so bad, except the block finishes at 12".  So the issue is that 12 is not divisible by 9 evenly.  Each block in our grid must finish at 1 1/3", which makes the math difficult, and any cutting we do with standard rotary cutter and rulers with be just an approximation of the correct dimensions. Our rulers are divided into neat half, quarter, and eighth inch segments, so when cutting out your pieces this month, be aware that I am going to suggest cutting at dimensions that fall in between your normal measuring lines.

The cutting directions supplied in the pattern are close in some cases, and way off in others, so I suggest you ignore the cutting directions and follow mine instead.

When I say, cut your square at just shy of 2 1/4" x 2 1/4", I mean measure 2 1/4" on your ruler, then slide the ruler slightly, so that you are cutting perhaps 1/16 of an inch less than 2 1/4".  There are several dimensions that require this.  Just aim for halfway between your 1/8" lines on the ruler. I know this is a bit of a pain, and for those of you who are incredibly precise, you might find this a little unnerving, but trust me, it will come out way more accurately, than following the cutting directions in the pattern.

Fabric Choices

I am again using solid black as my background for this block. You should select 8 other fabrics for your friendship stars.  Each should contrast nicely with the black.  Although I did pick one fabric with a small + pattern in the weave, I avoided really busy, large scale patterned fabrics and plaids.  This is my personal preference, as I wanted each of these stars to show very clearly, and not have a lot of distraction from pattern in the fabric.
I also chose several different colors and values from a light golden tan, to a medium dark charcoal (still contrasting with the black background). I used 2 reds, a green, a tan, a brown, and one of teal blues.  The original quilt only had these teal blues in the Tulip and basket blocks, but I love these colors and so I decided to throw one in this block as well.


From the black background cut:

A- (16) 2 1/4" shy squares. (Note when I say shy, your actual cutting dimensions should be reduced by approx. 1/16").  Cut all of these squares in half once on the diagonal yielding 32 HST pieces. 

D- (4) 1 7/8" shy squares. 

E- (1) 4 1/2" square (Note this cutting measurement is exactly 4 1/2").

F- (4) Rectangles 5 7/8" shy x 1 7/8" shy

G- (4) Rectangles 4 1/2" (exact) x 1 7/8" shy

From each of your 8 friendship star fabrics cut:

B- (2) 2 1/4" shy squares. Cut each of these squares in half once on the diagonal yielding 4 HST pieces.

C- (1) 1 7/8" shy square


I would like to stress that your 1/4" seam allowance is pretty critical in this block.  If in doubt, test your seam allowance first, before sewing your pieces together.  If you are a bit off from a 1/4", it is better to err on the small side (i.e. a scant 1/4" rather than a generous 1/4").

Begin by matching one black triangle to one friendship star triangle, right sides together, and sew them on the long diagonal. Press the seam allowance to the black, and make sure to open the seam fully.  Clip dog ears off.  Repeat with all the triangle friendship star fabrics, matching each with a black triangle.

Organize your friendship star colors by making little piles of 4 HST units and one square on top from each color.

Then begin laying out your block.  Follow the diagram in your pattern to arrange the friendship stars in a wreath with the large black square (E) in the center.  Double check your layout to make sure all of your HST's are facing the right way.  It is very easy to position these incorrectly.  Note that four of the stars are spinning to the right and four are spinning to the left.

Your block layout should look something like the photo to the right.  Remember that not all the pieces will line up evenly spaced at this point, because you have lots of seam allowances that will be lost when you begin sewing your units together.

I begin by sewing each side unit together.  These include two black rectangles and one HST unit in the center.  There is a side unit for each of the 4 sides of the block.  Then begin pairing squares and sewing them together.

Here, on each end, I have sewn a line of pairs together and joined them to a side unit (A + G's).
Then 3 pairs on each side of the center square (E).
When you join the 3 center segments, all that remains is to add the two final side units (A + F's) to each end.

As you are sewing pairs of small grid squares together, press seam allowances in alternate directions, so the pairs join to each other easily. When you add the side units, I pressed the seam allowance toward the side unit.  When joining the two groups of six grid squares to the center black square, I pressed seam allowances toward the center square.  When I joined the 3 large center sections, I pressed the seam allowance open, as there were lots of cross seams coming into this seam, and I felt it would lay flatter if pressed open.

The finished block should measure 12 1/2" square.  Mine was actually just a touch under that measurement, but very close. Sewing with a scant 1/4 seam allowance would probably help with this. 

This was a most challenging block. Partly because the designer chose a very difficult grid measurement, and partly because there are just so many pieces in this block. 

We are now at the point where we have completed all the blocks for the quilt.  The next two months I will focus on the sashing elements to bring all the blocks together into a quilt top, and then a little bit about quilting and finishing the quilt.

Give yourself a pat on the back for finishing your blocks.  Have a glass of wine and celebrate your accomplishment, and I will be back next month with some sashing tips.


Monday, September 4, 2017

Twilight Garden - Block 9 Flower Baskets

Attention - Pattern Corrections

I am sad to say that again we have pattern corrections this month, and these are very important cutting measurement corrections.

First, I am a little confused, as my copy of the pattern has 3 almost identical pages with instructions for the flower baskets.  In my pattern, they are pages 17, 18, and 19.  I have no idea why these are all in there.  All have the same dimensional cutting errors, so it isn't like there is an older version and then a corrected version.  If you have multiple pages with pattern instructions for the flower baskets, check at the top of the page where it says "Approximate size"  meaning the finished size of the block.  2 of my pages say 12", which is wrong.  One of my pages says 6", which is the correct finished size of the basket block.  Keep this one, and you can discard the others.

Under cutting instructions
From a dark background fabric:

1st line should read:
A  Cut one square 2 1/4".  Cut in half once diagonally to make two half square triangles.


From a Contrasting fabric

1st line should read:
D   Cut one square 1 7/8" x 1 7/8"


From Basket Fabric One:

1st line should read:
E   Cut two squares 1 7/8" x 1 7/8"


From Basket Fabric Two:

2nd line should read:
J   Cut one square 1 7/8" x 1 7/8"


Under Block Assembly
Making Flying Geese Units

1st sentence should read:
Pair up half-square triangle A with half-square triangle units D and E.

Please be aware that when cutting out your pieces, the directions are for cutting the amount necessary to make one 6" finished block, and you will need three blocks for the quilt.  It is suggested that you make each of the three blocks scrappy out of different fabrics, but you might want to consider cutting the pieces out for all three blocks at once to save time.

Basket Blocks

These blocks are suppose to be scrappy, like the rest of the quilt, so I am picking quite a few fabrics this month.  I am using a blue fabric for the top of each basket, a different blue for each block.  Then the baskets themselves I am using an assortment of reds, tans, grays, browns, plaids, etc.  For all three backgrounds I am using black, however it might be a nice variation to try using black for one, and a dark charcoal for one, and perhaps even a dark brown for one.  The setting triangles around the outside of each block are dark grays for the top and bottom blocks, and I am choosing a light tan for the setting triangles on the middle block.

After cutting out your pieces, you can follow the basic directions under block assembly.  Make your sub units so you have them all ready - The half square triangle squares, and the flying geese.  Then you can lay them out as shown at the left.  Be sure when you are making the flying geese to make a right handed and left handed one (i.e. watch your fabric placement). 
You will be sewing all these units together.  The bottom 4 can be sewn into a 4-patch, then added to one of the flying geese units.  The second flying geese unit can be sewn to the upper background square.

I pressed one of the interim seams open to reduce bulk.  Flying geese always present a dilemma as to pressing direction for the seams.  They have a point coming into the center of an adjacent seam, and always seem to produce a fair amount of bulk, and so, opening these seams and distributing this bulk helps make your finished blocks lay flat.

You will then need to sew the bottoms of the baskets on (left and right sides and the bottom triangle.  These seams can be pressed toward the outside of the block.

The last assembly step is to add the setting triangles to all 4 sides of the block, making the baskets upright on point.  Do this by folding your block and the long side of each setting triangle in half to find the center.  Align these centers and sew the triangles to the side of the block.

The setting triangles will be a little oversized to allow your blocks to be trimmed down to size.  To do this, the easiest way is to use a 6 1/2" square ruler and center the diagonal lines on the ruler with the actual seam lines in the center of your basket.  (Note the criss cross diagonal lines cross right in the center of the basket design).  This should give you at least 1/4" seam allowance on all sides beyond the darker block background points.  Trim the excess away, and then sew your blocks top to bottom to make a tower of 3 baskets, one on top of another.

Sorry for all the corrections to the pattern every month.  I have been notifying the pattern designer, so she can make corrections on future printings.

Our next block is the circle of friendship stars, really a fun and beautiful block.  Until next month, happy sewing.


Friday, August 18, 2017

Crazy Log Cabins - Block 8

The Crazy Log Cabin blocks for Twilight Garden can be paper pieced, or if you choose, you can make templates from the diagram on page 15. If you choose to make templates be sure to add a 1/4" seam allowance to your templates before cutting your fabrics.

If you are opting to do the foundation paper piecing method (by far the easiest method), you can follow along with me, as this is the method I have chosen to do.


 For these blocks I have chosen a wide variety of fabrics. Honestly, just about any of the fabrics in the kit will work well for these blocks.  They are very scrappy and I would pick out some lights, darks and mediums, and also some fabrics with pattern, just because they add a lot of visual interest. 
Each block will have a different sequence of fabrics, and, if you want, you can use many more fabrics than I have selected.  I avoided any of the blue fabrics, as I thought that would take away from the tulips, and also avoided the very light cream used in the day lily flowers, for the same reason. I did include some reds, greens, browns, golden tan, and grays.


First a word about foundation paper.  If you have experimented with papers for foundation piecing, you probably have your favorite that you use all the time.  For me, this is the paper from That Patchwork Place.  It is not expensive, and comes in large reams of 100 sheets.  The reason I like this paper is that it tears away easily.  There are several brands of vellum paper on the market that are touted as easy tear, but I find that all vellum is too robust for paper piecing.  For me, the lighter the paper the better. I do like the crispness of vellum, and it makes a sharp fold, but I have never found one that tears away easily.  Vellum always rips out some of my stitches, regardless of how small I make my stitch length.
The paper pictured at left works very well, and runs easily through my computer printer.
Make sure when you are copying foundation patterns that you have your printer set on 100% scale, or "actual size". 
Even with that, some printers are not accurate to size.  Be sure to measure your first copy against the original and only continue copying all your foundations when the copies match the original size perfectly.
A very handy tool to use when paper piecing is the Add-A-Quarter ruler.  It is not required, but will make trimming excess fabrics away very quick.  It comes in a 6" and also a 12" length.  The 6" version is adequate to do these blocks, but the 12" is a more versatile size. Here it is pictured butted up against the fold of the foundation paper.  The 1/4" lip on the bottom of this ruler assures you are trimming to exactly a 1/4" seam allowance.
 You will also need a small rotary cutter, and a small cutting mat to have at your work station.  It also is a time saver if you have a small ironing pad and iron right at your station as well.  Paper piecing requires that you press after each fabric addition, so if you iron is a distance from you work space, you will be traveling a bit.


There are some minor errors in the numbering of the the foundation pattern.  Not a biggy, but you might want to correct these numbers so you don't get confused as to the order you add the fabrics to the block.  Note in the photo, I have crossed out and re-numbered a few spaces on the pattern.  Please make these corrections before you copy your foundations. Newer versions of the pattern may already have these corrections, so double check just to be sure.

A word about cutting out your fabric pieces on the straight of grain. The pattern author stresses that this is very important, and she does provide a block diagram in the pattern with grain lines clearly marked.  If you wish to take the time to cut your pieces out with correct grain direction it will ultimately make the block more stable and less stretchy around the outside edges.  However, I personally do not bother with this.  I find as long as you use reasonable care when handling your pieces and particularly while pressing, you will have no problems assembling these blocks, or sewing them into the quilt. If you are really concerned about stability, you can always leave the foundation on the block until it is securely sewn into the quilt, then remove the paper.


I will not go into great detail about the process of paper piecing, as it is covered extremely well in many books that focus on this technique.  I will tell you a few hints to make your work easier.
First, sit next to a window, or have a light box handy so you can see your fabrics through the foundation paper to get proper alignment.  Second, if you are worried about your fabrics slipping while flipping over the foundation pattern and sewing.  Use a pin to hold the fabric to the foundation.  Just make sure your pin does not cross the sew line you will be sewing on. And Third, reduce the stitch length on your sewing machine so you are sewing about 15 stitches per inch or more.  This will help perforate the paper and make tearing away your pattern much easier.

Begin by placing your 1 and 2 fabrics right sides together and place them on the back of the pattern with the 1 piece wrong side to the paper.  Align them so their common edges overhang the sew line between 1 and 2 by at least 1/4". Pin these in place, flip the pattern so the printed side is up and sew on the line between 1 and 2, beginning your stitching a little before the line starts and continue your stitching a little past the end of the line. Clip threads and remove from the machine. 
With the printed side up, fold the pattern back on the line you just sewed. and trim the seam allowance to no more than  1/4".  The Add-A-Quarter ruler comes in handy for this. With the fabrics on top, flip piece 2 and press.
Add each new piece in numbered order, making sure to align each piece, pin if necessary, sew on the common line between the two fabrics, then fold and trim.  Very quickly you will get the hang of it, and most people really enjoy the process.

The pieces of fabric can be much larger than you actually need.
Just so long as once they are sewn in and flipped into position, they have to completely cover their numbered area on the pattern, plus have at least 1/4" seam allowance all around. 

This is particularly important when you reach the outer edges of the block.  Here, the numbered pieces must cover their numbered area and extend beyond the dotted line along the outside edge of the block.

Once all the fabrics are added, the block will be trimmed on this dotted line and that space along the outside edge is your seam allowance to sew you blocks to the adjacent blocks in the quilt.

You will be making 4 of these blocks, then they will be sewn together in line. Once you have your row of Crazy Log Cabin blocks, they can be sewn onto the bottom of the Day Lily block from last month.

We will then need to sew together chains of 1 1/2" scrappy squares (using lots of fabrics from your kits).  We will need one single chain of 16 squares to go along the top of the Day Lily block, and a double chain of 2 squares wide by 13 squares long, which will be added to a 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" rectangle and sewn onto the left side of the block as in the diagram on page 16 of your pattern.  This is a great way of using up your leftover 1 1/2" squares from the Picnic Block.
We will be making more of these sashing filler strips as we begin assembling the quilt top, so don't worry about cutting out a few extra of all the little squares.  We will also be making one large piano key strip set (scrappy) from lots of 1 1/2" x 5 1/2" strips of all these same fabrics.  So if you have some 1 1/2" strips cut out, cut some 5 1/2" segments as well as your squares.  You will eventually need 39 of these rectangles.

Our block next month is the basket blocks.  Just a warning, there are some rather important corrections for the cutting directions for these blocks.  I might suggest you wait for my article in September, with corrections before cutting, or, make some sample blocks with scrap fabrics so you can make adjustments before cutting your kit fabrics.

Thanks for following along!

Happy Sewing