I don’t often blog about the completion of just one block in a quilt along but in this case…I think it deserves it. The July Aurifil Block – The Chained Star by designer Laurie Simpson brought us back to basics. She hand pieced hers…you could use templates and have lots of crazy seams…or you could do what I did and English Paper Piece the block. As I diligently worked on this block – at swimming lessons, in the car, waiting for food at a restaurant, at meetings, or have a beer with friends, many thought I was crazy. There were times I thought I was crazy…why all this work for just one block? But that’s just it. I can do any technique, any method for just one block. And who knows- after that one block maybe I’ll have discovered that I really love using that method. Or I won’t. But either way, I’ve tried something new and really – you can do anything as long as you know the end is in sight. And so it began. First I cut out all my shape templates and chose the fabrics I wanted to go with them. If I was going to do this thing…I really wanted it to look cool.I started with the inner star. It went together pretty smoothly…I had just less than an hour for 5 different swimming lessons to work on these.I even found the perfect new clutch from ‘boris loved natasha’ at the summer craftacular that was perfect for paper piecing! (Now that I’m done with this block I’ll be moving my hexi’s in there…)Once I had the inner star together it seemed to go together much smoother. It was just a matter of finding that ‘down time’ or the time when you’re doing other things but your hands aren’t moving. Those are the times I like to work on hand projects.By the end of my Monday night quilt guild meeting I had gotten this far. We had a fabulous speaker – Amanda Jean of Crazy Mom Quilts! This may sound weird but for me to truly be able to listen and pay attention, my hands need to be moving. I’ve finally determined the reason I don’t like driving so much is because you can truly only do one thing while you’re driving – and that’s drive. Very difficult times for me. Some friends were over the other night and I was able to get three of the four final corners on. The next morning, I gave up ‘normal’ time to just finish this block up. I added the fourth corner, pulled the thread, ironed the block nice and flat and trimmed it down to 12.5”. I’m SUPER happy with how this block turned out! I’m really proud of my fabric choices and think it’s a truly eye catching block! It’s now ready for the rest of the blocks (don’t forget – I’m mixing my Aurifil BOM blocks with the Bungalow Quilting and Yarn Fairy Tale BOM blocks)! And during the time I was working hard on the July block – the August block came out too! This one looks a bit more standard in it’s piecing method – can’t wait to get started!