On to my failure. Oh yes. They happen. Boy do they happen.

I have decided to join in on Katy’s Swoon Along. I couldn’t resist the lure of the Swoon pattern any longer and I have all this fun Brrr fabric that I wanted to use. So I decided to make a “baby” swoon which is only four blocks instead of nine. Each block is going to have a fussy cut polar bear. Cute right? I thought it would be great for a baby quilt!

I started in on my first block, warned with the knowledge that the piecing was tricky and there was lots of it. Directional prints could give you fits and some people were having trouble getting all of the pieces they needed out of the required fat quarter if their fat quarter had been a bit skimpy. I carefully cut and sewed and pressed every last seam open.

Only to find that I had COMPLETELY misread the sewing instructions and it was too late to fix things. They had already been trimmed and cut. I was doing some pretty fancy sewing to follow the directions that I had unwittingly made up too.


If you are swooning along, you’ll understand when I say that I was sewing the flying geese together the same way that the half square triangles were sewn. Resulting in lovely flying geese and half square triangle blocks…but ones that are completely useless for this pattern.

I know the picture almost makes it look okay, but trust me…none of those pieces would be able to be sewn together. Seriously.  They are off by a 1/2″!

And the kicker? I managed to work with a directional print on this pattern and get all the pieces to run in the same direction! Success! on my epic failure.

It took me the whole evening to end up with the mess that will not be a swoon block. Disheartening to say the least. It was late and I was ready to throw in the sewing towel…give up the blog, sell off my fabric, the works. But in the sanity that is morning, I can share this with you all to let you see the frustrations that come with cutting up tiny pieces of fabric and sewing them back together.

I’m determined to make lemon aid from my lemons here and come up with a beautiful block from the pieces that I have that will fit together. It will not swoon…but maybe it will swag!

42 thoughts on “Epic FAIL”

  1. HAHAHAHA…I'm sorry…I couldn't help but bust out laughing when I read about your overdramatic midnight fit, lol! I'm picturing the whole thing in my head right now, haha! And I can laugh at you, only because I've been there before, crying like a small child and ready to throw something.

    Say it with me! This is the YEAR OF FUN!!!

  2. sorry to hear about your failed block. I know now when I start on my Swoon blocks to be really careful – maybe I should read the directions ahead? I plan to make mine totally scrappy (my scrap bin is having issues with lid fitment!)

  3. Oof, that's painful! And it was to be such a sweet block! I had read that you have to be very careful to get the cuts out of FQs, so I read the pattern several times over before I started cutting. I figured that if there was an error to be made, I'd make it!

  4. Oh honey, I've been there. Not with that particular block but definitely those moments that go something like this: "Oh no. Did I just…no. Please don't tell me I just did what I think I just did. I did. I can't believe I did. I HATE LIFE…." etc. etc.

    Glad the morning gave you some perspective!

  5. I feel your angst! I have had a few of these and when I can't muddle through I give them to charity knowing a quilter will find them and take them home and figure out what I couldn't!

  6. What a pain! Geese often do my head in, I have to follw a tutorial each time I start them afresh. Your BRR fabrics look lovely in the Swoon though!

  7. Oh my what a nightmare. I must be the only person not swooning along and you know now I've read this I'm really glad because I would just waste fabric and end up giving up sewing I think!

  8. Thanks for sharing this. I'm glad the "fit" was only temporary. If you are going to be creative, it's bound to happen. Anyway, I'm just picking fabric for my Swoonalong, so your epic fail may have saved me from my own epic fail…

  9. It sort of makes me feel good to know that I'm not the only one who does those things. (sorry!)I'm sure you'll come up with something equally swoon worthy though.
    It's amazing what a good night s sleep will do isn't it?

  10. It's a pain when that happens! Glad you're sharing this, would like to give this pattern a shot as well, so it's a warning 🙂 Looks great, though, anyways!

  11. ha ha 🙂 I completely sympathise with this feeling!! usually what it would result in with me is a scream/sob of frustration, a bundle of fabric being scrunched up and thrown across the room, and my partner rushing in to check that I haven't sewn across my finger! 🙂

    Don't give up! it will be worth it in the end, the swoon quilt is beautiful. Perhaps the 'swag' block could go on the back of the quilt? preserved for posterity.

  12. I'm so sorry about your block! I know how it feels when you realize you've made a mistake! I just recently posted about one of my own so don't feel alone! I'm sure you will come up with a plan!

  13. It's not so bad, the rest of the pieces seem to be simple squares and rectangles, trim them down to match the flying geese etc and while your block will be smaller than it's supposed to be you can still use it for a cushion or little table topper or something! Never admit to a mistake, it is simply a unique design modification 🙂

  14. I haven't sewn one of these blocks yet, but good to know to read carefully. I love your color scheme for this one and look forward to seeing the lemonade you have created.

  15. And you DID nail the directionals. See that had you all distracted from the actual easy part. Or maybe it was the cute Polar Bear scrambling your brain? Either way, will look forward to that lemonade. It'll be good!

  16. ok, I'm really sorry about what happened, but I did have a bit of a chuckle at this. It's nice to know the math genius and perfectionist supreme makes mistakes too! 🙂 Love ya honey and I know you will turn this into something fab, even if it doesn't swoon!

  17. It's such a bummer when things go wrong! My first Swoon blog went terribly wrong too. So upsetting when you work so hard to get things just so, and then you can't fix it.
    You fabrics are lovely, tho, if it's any consolation. 😉

  18. Oh and you were dong such a great job with the directional fabric. Thank you for sharing as it is really refereshing to see a bo-bo owned up to on a blog :o) I am now a little scared to start my first block tho! Love to see what you turn it into tho :o) Sending a cyber hug

  19. I am so, so sorry but really appreciate your candid post. It makes you much more of a real person to me to know that amidst all the amazing projects that you share, there are ones that do not meet your expectations. I hope your lemonade is as tasty as ever.

  20. Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing. It is are relief to know that I am not alone in having this problem. I keep planning to put s poster up in my sewing room as follows: READ THE DIRECTIONS. READ THE DIRECTIONS COMPLETELY, START TO FINISH. READ THE DIRECTIONS AGAIN COMPLETELY. NOW YOU MAY CUT! Maybe I will now. Have a great day.

  21. Who knows what brilliance you will make out of all those little pieces. Maybe something for the back?

    Thank you for sharing though as I am also joining in on the Swoon a long and haven't started cutting or sewing yet. Just think, you've likely helped me to not make the same mistake! Seriously, thanks!!!!

  22. As you see Angela, you are not alone in this (and yes, I'm including my self) I have a quilt teacher that I absolutely adore and she brings into classes, her own "epic fails". We learn so much from that. Thanks for taking the time to share yours…. it's always a learning experience. Darn when it happens with our favorite material tho.

  23. Oh dear, sorry about the mini disaster! (Just think, you could have had all 4 blocks worth brought to that stage rather than 1…) I'm sure divine inspiration will strike and it'll all come right in some form of block!

  24. i'm sure you'll come up with something great that we'll all swoon over regardless! the fabric is super cute, and you did such a bang-up job with the directionals, too! and, it's good to know that i'm not the only one who has such epic fails.

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