Trophy Buck Quilt Along—Week 8

Posted by Christine Hobbs on

Lazy J Quilting progress

Progress shot from Teara Cornmesser at Lazy J Quilting


This week has been set aside as a break or catch up week!

If you're behind, no worries. This week should give you some time to focus on getting caught up. If not caught up all the way, at least a little bit closer.

And, if you're on schedule, take this time to replenish your creative juices. I guarantee that process is different for everyone, but an important part of having a hobby. Some of you may leave the sewing room to bake goodies or read a book and others may jump right back in and start another project.

And, who am I to judge? Especially since I'm planning to work on my next pattern!

Before you hie yourself off to your chosen distraction, be certain to check out Teara's quilting tips below.


Longarm League Guest Post

by Teara Cornmesser, Lazy J Quilting Services

My name is Teara and I own and operate Lazy J Quilting Services. I offer longarm edge-to-edge designs and quilt finishing services in the Columbus, Ohio area, but I also accept mail in quilts. I've been quilting for over 20 years and started longarm quilting in 2018 when I purchased my Gammill Statler machine.

My favorite paper piecing trick is to use Scotch adhesive roller dots to secure my first piece. I like it because it’s easy to peel off and doesn’t leave a gluey mess.

Now, confession time. I don’t always do a great job of making sure my thread matches what I’m piecing. And it’s even more difficult when you’re working on a project that has light and very dark colors in it. In order to fix this—and save my perfectionist sanity—I keep a Micron fine-tip pen handy for touch ups.

Lazy J Quilting threads showing

I take the pen and carefully color over the light colored threads, taking care not to get the ink on the fabric. And just like that the threads disappear!

Lazy J Quilting threads don't show now

I’ve used this technique on many of my quilts and Micron pens come in several colors. I like Micron pens because they’re chemically stable, waterproof, and fade resistant. I’ve used them on signature quilts and they’ve held up beautifully!

My preferred longarm guideline is that your backing is at least 8” wider and 8” longer than your top. Don’t be afraid to ask me anything!

Communication is key for a good relationship between you and your longarm quilter. If you’re unsure about anything, it’s always better to ask!


Weekly Challenge

Share your favorite non-sewing activity on the hashtag #trophybuckquiltalong.

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Trophy Buck Quilt Along—Week 7

Posted by Christine Hobbs on

Trophy Buck almost done

If you've stayed on track so far, you'll be almost three-quarters of the way done. Gold stars all around even if you've slipped a bit behind!

The focus this week is Panel 3 templates 75 through 83. Once those are done, you can move on to the assembly of Panel 3 to wrap up the week. It should go fairly fast, because there is little fussy matching of templates.  What can be better than that?!

We have another guest Longarm League poster this week sharing a bit about herself and some favorite tips. Meet Danelle!


Longarm League Guest Post

by Danelle Howard, Cottage Path Quilting

A Bit about Me

Hi there, my name is Danelle. I’m the longarm quilter behind Cottage Path Quilting in southwest Missouri. Around here the deer are plentiful! I just knew I had to participate in this quilt-along as soon as I saw it announced. Being a member of the Longarm League gave me the chance to not only sew along but offer some great discounts on finishing Trophy Buck quilts for others! And, I’m going to have fun telling certain friends about the huge buck I got this year.  ;)

Cottage Path Danelle Howard

Once completed, this quilt is going to migrate South to Texas as a Christmas gift for my brother. Actually, he is the first person I ever made a full quilt for. Twenty-six years ago I made my first bed size quilt for his wedding. It was a king size double wedding ring (shown below). At that time, I hand pieced and quilted everything. It’s the way my grandma and all the ladies at our church quilting circle quilted, so that’s what I learned. It still blows me away that I now quilt with this amazing, huge APQS Lucey longarm machine...and that other quilters trust me with their amazing works of art. I love being part of a hobby that allows us to connect past, present and future technology and tradition!

Cottage Path Double Wedding Quilt

My Best Advice

I am very new to Foundation Paper Piecing. This is definitely the largest project I have done yet! My best tip for other beginners is to buy a little extra fabric and then BE FEARLESS! I let these patterns intimidate me for far too long. There are great tips included each week of this QAL. I’ve personally tested the post about fixing mistakes and it works, lol. And fearlessly ask questions. Reading comments from others in this QAL, I’ve learned to use fabric clips instead of pins. A seam roller is near the top of my Christmas gift list. And ALWAYS triple check that I’ve picked up the correct fabric for the piece I’m sewing.

Longarm Tips

  • One of the best parts of FPP is how exact/precise it is! However, quilt tops can still get a bit wonky around the edges. Especially if you add a border as I plan to do. With these very bold, graphic designs, some of our normal quilting tricks for handling unevenness just won’t work as well. Measure the entire quilt in three places for both width and height but ALSO across diagonal corners to see how close it is to ‘square.’ If something is off don’t panic or start trimming, just let your quilter know you are aware of it and we can discuss how to handle any issues.
  • Depending on your personality, that final step of tearing out the papers can seem like drudgery or a personal triumph! Don’t be tempted to rush this step though. Adding a paper layer that hasn’t been removed to multiple seam allowances can make for messy stitches in those joined areas.

See that little scrap of paper? I almost didn’t either!

    Cottage Path Paper Removal Tip

    I’m just halfway through the piecing of this quilt (photo below) but, as a longarm quilter, my mind is racing with ideas and designs for the final step. Feel free to reach out with any questions you may have about finishing your Trophy Buck. But for now, I hope you are enjoying seeing your buck come to life one funny looking scrap of fabric at a time!

    Cottage Path progress


    Weekly Challenge

    Catch up if you've fallen behind and share a progress shot using the hashtag #trophybuckquiltalong.

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    Trophy Buck Quilt Along—Week 6

    Posted by Christine Hobbs on

    If you’re caught up to this point, you are nearly halfway done!

    It's probably not a surprise, but we're going to be working on Panel 3 templates 55 through 74 this week. Hopefully seeing your buck come to life before your eyes will give you enough motivation to keep at it!

    But if not, Nicholas of Mystery Stitch Designs (one of our Longarm League supporters) shares some tips below that he uses to speed up foundation paper piecing.


    Foundation Paper Piecing Tips

    by Nicholas Turcan, Mystery Stitch Designs

    When I started my Trophy Buck—seeing that both sides were a mirror image—I decided to do both the left and right sides simultaneously. It is the same amount of stitching but it lessens the amount of scrambling to find the correct fabrics to use. To do this, after I have cut and pre-folded the templates, I match them up with their mirror image partner.

    Then, I like to sort the templates by their starting fabric. Once I have several different stacks of templates (each with the same starting fabric), I cut the first piece of fabric and glue baste it in place. Next, I start new piles where all of the second fabric colours are all the same. By doing it this way, I am able to chain piece several units onto each fabric and spend less time going back and forth to the iron and cutting station!


    I HATE PINNING! There, I said it!

    When I am quilting, I have found several different methods to eliminate pins. For instance, when assembling FPP units together, if you imagine (or pencil in as shown in the photo) an extension of the 1/4” seam allowance to the edge of the paper, that is exactly the point where the second fabric should cross under.

    Mystery Stitch mark seam tip

    Mystery Stitch align seam allowances

    This is the same method I use when assembling diamonds but it actually works with any angle. Being able to line up my pieces this way—without having to stop for pins—really speeds up the assembly process!

    Mystery Stitch sewing 1/4 inch seam allowance


    I know some people like to finger press or use a roller to press units open at the machine, but I prefer to take my units to the iron and press my seams open. I find that this makes a much flatter quilt top which, in turn, makes a much nicer finished product.

    Mystery Stitch press seams open

    Mystery Stitch press seam allowance open overview

    Quilt Along Support

    As a member of the Longarm League, I will be offering a 20% discount off edge-to-edge quilting to those participating in the Trophy Buck QAL if your top is received by February 28, 2021. If you have never sent a quilt out to a longarmer, you can go to and read the quilting page for more information on how to prepare your quilt!


    Weekly Challenge

    Mystery Stitch halfway done

    As you can see in the photo above, Nicholas has pushed the boundaries on the color palette. You can also see a sneak peak of how he is gradating the sky using different shades of blue. 

    Even if you're not caught up, this week share a progress shot using the hashtag #trophybuckquiltalong. You never know, your progress may spark the quilting bug in someone else!

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    Trophy Buck Quilt Along—Week 5

    Posted by Christine Hobbs on

    Week 5 Progress

    Can you believe October is here already? I’m not one of those count down people, but I am amazed at how quickly the holidays are coming up. Yikes!

    If you're making your Trophy Buck as a holiday gift, it's definitely time to buckle down and stay on track. But, don't forget, there's a catch up week (Week 8) coming soon if you need it! And, if you don't need the extra time, you can start planning your next project. Because you can never have too many projects going at once—am I right?!

    This week, we're working on Panel 2 templates 50 through 54 and Panel 2 assembly. If you have slipped a bit behind, the full schedule is below and weeks 1 through 4 link to the corresponding blog posts. You got this! Just take it one piece at a time.

    Review to Date

    WEEK 1–Gather Materials and Prep Pattern
    WEEK 2–Panel 1 Templates
    WEEK 3–Panel 1 Templates and Assembly
    WEEK 4–Panel 2 Templates
    WEEK 5–Panel 2 Templates and Assembly
    WEEK 6–Panel 3 Templates
    WEEK 7–Panel 3 Templates and Assembly
    WEEK 8–Catch Up or Take a Break!
    WEEK 9–Panel 4 Templates
    WEEK 10–Panel 4 Templates and Assembly
    WEEK 11–Sew Top

    Sneak Peek

    Sneak peek of new project

    I know it doesn't look like much right now, but I've started working on a small companion piece to the Trophy Buck. Stay tuned for details! Any guesses on what it might be?

    Weekly Challenge

    Let us know the lucky recipient of your Trophy Buck (if it's not a secret!) by sharing his/her name and a progress shot with the official hashtag #trophybuckquiltalong.

    Picasso Trophy Buck

    No relevance to anything, but I just had to share this photo. I had my two panels on my ironing board before I hung them on the design wall when they shifted like this. I was leaning toward naming my buck Kingston, but may have to reconsider Picasso!

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    Trophy Buck Quilt Along—Week 4

    Posted by Christine Hobbs on

    We're Making Progress!

    Stack of sewn templates

    By the end of this week, you'll hopefully have another stack of templates since we're working on Panel 2 templates 28 through 49. If you're fairly new to foundation paper piecing, fingers crossed that you're getting more comfortable with the technique. And, if you're an old hand at it, I'm glad to have your company during these eleven weeks!

    Fixing a Mistake

    Just when you think everything is going along smoothly, you'll step back and find a piece that's the wrong fabric, a place where you didn't include enough fabric, or in this case missing completely.

    There's no need to panic!

    Last week, as my buck was hanging on the design wall, I realized I'd overlooked piece 11e. I could probably move on with few the wiser but this is something that would drive me nuts and cause me to lose sleep at night.  And, although it can be time consuming, it's not that difficult to fix.

    First, I determined the easiest route to reverse engineer to the piece I needed to correct. (That's code for I got my seam ripper out and start removing stitches!) The arrows in the image below show the seams I needed to pick apart to open up enough space to add the missing piece.

    Order to unsew

    I removed seam 1 about an inch past the nose bottom, seam 2 about an inch past the nose side, and seam 3 about an inch past where I needed to sew in the missing piece.

    Remove stitching

    I then folded back the stitching line on piece 11e and positioned the missing fabric as normal.

    Folding back the missing piece

    Unfortunately, when I tried using my Add-A-Quarter ruler and rotary cutter I risked cutting into the rest of my quilt top, so I opted to cut the 1/4" seam with a small pair of scissors.

    Cutting excess fabric by hand

    It was then time to hop over to the sewing machine and stitch the seam. I made certain to stitch at least 1/4" prior to and past my stitching line since my seam allowances had already been removed.

    Sewing the missing piece

    Next, I carefully aligned the seams I'd removed and stitched them back together. This time; however, I reversed the unpicking order by sewing the seam at the top of the nose, then the side of the nose, and then the bottom of the nose. At this point, I trimmed the excess fabric from the piece.

    Order to resew

    I wrapped it up with a good pressing and voila! No one will be the wiser and I'll be able to sleep like a baby!

    Nose all fixed

    The notes above are specific to my missing piece, but they should give you a bit of guidance to get back on track if you find that you need to fix a mistake. Good luck!

    What Others Are Working On

    I've seem some progress posts on social media and am crushing on the variety of fabrics being used! Unique color combinations and fantastic backgrounds are the current theme.

    Teara from Lazy J Quilting (lazy_j_quilting) found this amazing fabric that looks like starlight.  So cool!

    Lazy J Quilting Week 3 Progress

    Photo courtesy of Lazy J Quilting

    Now that you’ve spent some time getting to know your VIP (or would that be VIQ...Very Important Quilt?), have you named him? To be honest, I still haven't decided on a name.

    Weekly Challenge

    Let everyone know what you’ve dubbed your buck by sharing a progress pick using the hashtag #trophybuckquiltalong.

    Read more →