June 10, 2016

Follow the Rules!

I signed up to receive the Modern Quilt Guild's Spring 2016 challenge fabric in December 2015 and the fabric was distributed at a Greenville MQG meeting earlier this year. We each received 3/4 yard of Riley Blake's Sashing Stash in black and white by Eleanor Dugan.

Running short on time and not really inspired as to what to make, I decided a Becca Bag zippered pouch would be perfect for this fabric if I fussy cut the design elements.  I made another Becca Bag from Cotton and Steel fabrics which you can see here.

Becca Bag made from Riley Blake Sashing Stash and Circle Dot
When I factor in the planning of best how to showcase which element of fabric and then fussy cutting them, this Becca Bag took longer than most, but I think it was worth it.

In the fabric were half square triangles, and, what I would call, Seminole patchwork.

Riley Blake's Sashing Stash  fabric
Also included were flying geese, a checker board and large chevrons.

Riley Blake Sashing Stash fabric
I decided to piece the panel for the pouch from the flying geese and chevron.  For the flying geese, I left 1/8" of the black border showing one either side of the flying geese.

Flying geese from Sashing Stash after sewing in the zipper for the Becca Bag
After inserting the zipper, I quilted along the edge and through the center of flying geese.    I was surprised to line up the flying geese perfectly when reassembling the zipper.

Flying Geese aligned on the Becca Bag after sewing in the zipper
And for the chevron, I left 1/8" of the white showing above the chevron and made the bottom edge of the chevron the base of the pouch.  I outlined and quilted along the top and bottom of the chevrons.

I made a smaller gusset than called for so the bottom edge of the chevron would fall at the base of the bag. And since I had quilted along this edge it actually gave the bag bottom more definition.

Base of Becca Bag
Here's where things went terribly wrong...excited about my finish (before the May 31st revised deadline) and wanting to share on Instgram, I referred to the challenge rules and guidelines for the proper hashtag to use when posting.  And there it was, not necessarily in black and white, 
You may use corresponding Riley Blake C100 and C120 solids.
How could I have done that..we even talked about using solids at Greenville MQG meeting.  But that slipped my mine and I purchased Riley Blake Circle Dot and used it as my accent color.  And while the color red, in my opinion, always looks good with black and white, in this case, I disqualified my entry! It was too late to search out and order a coordinating solid.

MQG Riley Blake Spring 2016 Fabric Challenge rules

And since I broke the rules and wasn't able to enter my bag, I'm still happy with the outcome. Here you can see the quilting detail on the chevron and the pull tab I made from the 'wrong' coordinating fabric.

Becca Bag quilting and pull tab detail
 I used a black zipper slide/pull tab and braided bakers twine for the zipper pull tab.

Becca Bag with red and black zipper by Paige Alexander
I used a Riley Blake dot for the lining and like the how the quilting secures the lining and I finished the raw edges by overlocking the seams.

So my advice when making a challenge piece is...Follow the Rules!

The Riley Blake Sashing Stash Fabric Challenge winners can be seen here. Congrats to all!

I have definitely learned my lesson and am linking to Lessons Learned with Afton at Quilting Mod.

And, though it is small, it's a finish and linking to Finish Up FridayWhoop Whoop Friday, Sarah at Sarah Goer Quilts hosting Thank Goodness Its Finished FridayFabric Frenzy Friday and Show Off Saturday.

2016 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop

Be sure to stop back Monday, the 13th, when the 2016 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop kicks off.  I'm part of The Sewcial Network hive hosted by Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl.  Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs is hosting Miss Bee Hivin' and Stephanie at Late Night Quilter is hosting the Hive Sewciety.


  1. I do worry about doing just that same thing, Paige. The red looks so good with the black and white; the pewter and black as solids seems so much more limiting.

  2. I love your pouch! The red accent fabric is just perfect - so sorry it ended up breaking the rules. :-(

  3. That rule was very limiting and the end result wouldn't have popped like that red does. I'm sorry about the contest; but your pouch is so pretty with that red!

  4. Oh goodness. Yes, rules are important. Your bag is so pretty though with that red circles fabric.

  5. Well, dang!! It's easy to misread or totally miss a part of rules...but your bag is very cool! I do love red with black and white! The challenge fabric looks like it would have been fun to play with!

  6. I'm sorry you were not able to enter it into the contest, but I think this little bag was telling you something. It wanted that red circle fabric because it's fabulous!

  7. Darn those rules. At least you have a cute bag. I think the red dot is fabulous.

  8. What a rule breaker you are Paige!!! Shame it doesn't meet the criteria as the red and white polka dots were just meant to be the match. it is just lovely.

  9. Your bag is lovely, even or maybe because you didn't follow the rules. I did that at one of my guild's Challenge one year. I didn't realise that one of the rules was a size maximum. It was disqualified from being voted on, but I'm not sure that I would have made it smaller anyway! Sometimes rules are made to be broken, even if it disqualifies us!

  10. I think the red fabrics you used make the bag.

  11. Loving the "rebel red" Paige! Breaking the rules in the best way! 😉

  12. You were a winner anyway Paige - this bag is wonderful! That polka dotted lining was such a fun surprise! I'm in awe of your zipper!

  13. I agree, your bag is a definite winner. Love the black/white/red combination! Nicely done!

  14. The pouch looks great, I love how you placed all the different elements to great effect! The red is a winner even if you couldn't compete!

  15. Can I just say that if Riley Blakes reads this post and looks at that 5th photo of the outstanding workmanship and perfectly installed zipper they will be sorry they included that 3rd rule. The circles play so well with the Sashing Stash fabric. Oh well...
    PS I made a similar mistake with this month's DAMQG charity blocks. Completely missed the FIRST rule that they needed to be solids! Oh well...

  16. Your zippered pouch looks great and your meticulous fussy cutting worked out perfectly. Our guild members had lots of questions about the rules and what was allowed for this challenge. At least you made something fun. I tried several different ideas out, but none of them got me excited, so I didn't enter. The Michael Miller challenge was just announced and there has been a flurry of questions and clarifications about the rules. I think I'll let the dust settle before I start brainstorming!

  17. Gorgeous zippered pouch, perfect fabric and I love black, red and white it always looks so classy. Thank you for sharing....

  18. Oops! Your bag is great anyway, so all is certainly not lost. Thank you for linking up!

  19. Rules or no rules, you rocked the challenge!

  20. You're bag is lovely, rules or not! Enjoy it!