Wow! Week 0 was so fun! And thanks to all of you who used the hashtag #gatewayqal2021 and shared your fabric and intro posts, we have 67 new sign ups! So if you’re one of the new quilters joining us, WELCOME! We’re so glad you’re here!
If you aren’t following the #gatewayqal2021 on your socials, make sure you do that now. That’s how you are entered into the weekly prize drawings and how the other quiltalongers can find you!
By now, you “should” have your pattern and template set purchased. If you haven’t, there’s still time. Click here, here, and here to purchase. You also need to get your fabric choices pinned down and get that ordered or pulled from your stash.
If you didn’t see the Week 0 email, you can read it here.
Let’s Get Cutting!
Week 1 is all about cutting the blocks. A few things to keep in mind…
1. In addition to the Everyday Curve Template Set, you’ll need a regular rotary cutting ruler. The best size is 8-1/2″ x 12-1/2″, but your favorite ruler that is wider than 8-1/2″ will work. We also like a small ruler – 6-1/2″ square or so for the smaller cutting that we do for the bonus quilt.
2. It’s a good idea to put a new rotary blade in your cutter if you haven’t done so in a while. There’s a lot of cutting happening this week!
3. If you haven’t yet, now is the time to prewash your fabric, if this is something you normally do. If not, press your fat quarters.
4. The bonus pattern – Happy Scrappy baby quilt – is available for free download. You can access it by using the QR code in your pattern or clicking here. The Gateway block leftovers are used to make this baby quilt. We’ll cut the squares for it as we cut the Gateway blocks.
Each fat quarter makes 2 sets of backgrounds and 2 arches. You also get 4 large and 8 small bonus quilt squares plus maybe a bit extra for your scrap bin.
The first step is to cut the rectangles for both the background and the arches, then additional cuts are made to them with the template set to get the curves.
Something important to note: If you are using directional fabric that runs across the length of fabric, you’ll need to deviate from the cutting instructions in the pattern. The pattern was written for non-directional fabric, but there’s an easy work-around for directional fabric. More on this is in the video, below.
Background: The 2 background pieces are mirror images, so be sure to stack your initial rectangles right-sides together before cutting the curve. Also make sure your stack doesn’t shift before cutting. You want all 4 of them to be the exact same size – at least initially.
Arches: Because the 2 arches are folded before cutting, it’s best to cut them individually rather than stacked. They shift very easily when folded and stacked so cutting them individually is more accurate.
Develop a system to keep all the cut pieces together as you go. Depending on the size of your quilt, you’ll have enough pieces to make 30, 80, or 132 blocks. That’s a lot of moving components to keep track of, so organization is important!
Week 2 is about arranging and sewing the blocks. We’ll have lots of sewing and pressing tips to help you, especially if this is your first time piecing curves!
Week 1 Video
Click the here to see the week one video. We step you through how to use the Everyday Curve Template Set, cutting both non-directional and directional fabric, and more information about the bonus Happy Scrappy baby quilt including how to cut the squares to make it.
While you’re on YouTube watching, make sure to hit subscribe to get announcements when our videos go live.
Our QAL Progress
Jenifer’s Version: Since there’s so many moving pieces in this quilt, I try to keep it all organized as I go. I have a small box for the squares for the Happy Scrappy bonus quilt to keep them separate from the Gateway blocks. I also separate and stack the background pieces together so they don’t get lost in the pile of cut pieces. This works for the most part, but occasionally some do wander away! But I haven’t had to recut anything yet!
I am making Gateway with Malibu by Heather Ross and Ruby + Bee Solids from Windham Fabrics. Don’t you think this is going to be the cutest quilt?
Trisch’s Version: I’m really lagging behind Jenifer. My fabric showed up Thursday evening – I posted an IGTV video on our Instagram page if you want to see it piece by piece! I chose to go with half-yard cuts rather than fat quarters so it won’t be quite as scrappy. I am using Golden Hour by Alexia Marcelle Abegg for Ruby Star Society. I love her designs and the warm colors she uses. So, I have that entire collection of 18 prints plus 4 Speckled prints and 5 Add It Up prints which are Ruby Star Society Basics. What size am I making?? Who knows! I have not decided and that’s the great thing about a block-based design like Gateway: you can make it whatever size you want. I have 27 prints, I can get 4 complete blocks from each so that’s 108 blocks. I have some options – I also have a pretty good stash if I feel like it need even more blocks!
Jenifer & I are going to swap our Happy Scrappy pieces so we each will end up with one Malibu quilt and one Golden Hour quilt. Seems like a great idea to me – maybe you want to take a peek at what your friends are doing and negotiate a trade!
How to Enter the Week 1 Giveaway
For the Week One giveaway, post a photo of your rotary cutter and tell us why you like that one (or maybe don’t like it!?). Don’t forget to use the hashtag #Gatewayqal2021 so we can all see!
The drawing will be Wednesday, January 13. We’ll draw a random winner during the Instagram Live session at 7 p.m. central. One lucky quilter will win a fat quarter bundle. Winners will be notified by email or direct message.
Weekly Live Q&A
Each week we will host a live Q&A Session on both Facebook (10 a.m. CST/15:00 UTC) and Instagram (7 p.m. CST/Midnight UTC) if you need just a little more help or clarification on anything at all – or maybe you just want to spend some time with like-minded quilters. You can submit questions ahead of time here or post them during the live session.
It is important that you follow us on FB and/or IG to see these events. If you haven’t done so, here are the links:
We hope to see you then!