Sunday, January 22, 2017

why didn't I pay more attention in Geometry class???

Aren't  Angels and Angles the same thing??? LOL!

Why didn't I pay more attention in Geometry class in High School?? 
1. I didn't know I'd need it 45 years later
2. I did pay attention and made an "A" but learning for a test and learning how to use it are
     two different  things.   

My friend Mary told me her son who is in 11th grade, was told by his Math teacher to "show his work" when answering a Math problem.

I've spent the morning trying to draft a hexagon pattern myself with a star in the center. I saw one made, and the pattern was free, but I had to sign up for some daily feed to receive it. I am at my limit of daily notices online so that wasn't happening. I just want to do an interesting EPP ( hand piecing) pattern while watching TV in the evenings.

Snap! I'll draft one myself!

Which brings me to Geometry class, the trauma of angles, and "show your work"

Thing is... I often work on whim and intuition. I am not the "show your work" kind of gal. When I develop a technique that could be taught in a class, my process is

Figure out what I want to do
Figure out how to do that
Do that
Then go back and figure out the steps and measurements to create a pattern.

Sometimes I don't want to show the work, I just want to make it. Sometimes I'd like to know how I made it so I could make it again, or show others who will ask how to do it too. Sometimes I don't want others to do it too.

In this circumstance I am starting from an image someone else figured out and still making it hard on myself!

I have spent the morning exercising my brain cells, brushing the dust off the synapses, by "re-inventing the wheel"
I could involve my engineering husband (AKA Mr. Math) or just join yet another daily feed from which I can't extricate myself.

Or I can accept myself the way I am.
Do you take the easier way out or figure things like this out yourself? 


  1. Hi LeeAnna,
    Sometimes I enjoy a math challenge! It's good to use the brain in a different way once in a while!
    The other part you described sounds like a created by me recipe!
    Take care,

  2. I love design challenges. However, I tend to cheat and use the Electric Quilt software, rather than graph paper.

  3. Geometry was my favorite class and I still have to show my work sometimes, like figuring out the size to cut a side triangle. Or I ask my architect husband to draw it for me and print it on his big plotter!

  4. Like Libby, geometry was my favorite class - and little did I know that it could be subtitled "Quilter's Math". So I tend to figure things out for myself, just because it's more fun. (And because I'm incredibly stubborn, but there's no point going into that...)

  5. Use a compass, and a straight edge. Draw a circle, keep the compass open to that size. Now put the compass into the circle anywhere - swing the pencil to intersect with 2 places on the circle. Now move the compass to one of those spots and intersect one more time. Do that until you have 6 intersections. Draw from one to the next - Voila, a hexagon.
    I loved Geometry and I got good grades in it, too. Best part is it works for drafting quilt patterns.

  6. I was good at algebra but terrible at geometry/trig/calc. As far as now - if I can't figure it out after reasonable effort, I have to decide whether to ask the engineer to whom I'm married or simply change my plan. It just depends on how MUCH I want to do whatever it is.

  7. While reading your post, my mind was thinking back to high school. Then I was thinking, why do we have to learn this? I will never use it in my lifetime! I learned two things right then...1) NEVER say never and 2) Yes I will use it in my lifetime!
    Who'd have thought?

  8. So, LeeAnna, if Terri's suggestion doesn't work, sign up for the daily feed, get the pattern AND then unsubscribe from the feed. I know that's easier said than, because you get sucked in to yet another blog/website and it just keeps spiraling from there. Ask me how I know. If I spent less time online, I'd get more quilting done.

  9. Wish I could help but I'm no math student. Sadly my MO is to revise my inspiration. Good luck.

  10. I too struggle with the math side of things, but I like to give it a try first. Which doesn't always work I must admit!

  11. I was a terrible math studen. Not that I got bad grades--I learned well enough to do okay on tests. (And my dad was one of my math teachers!) I hated geometry because at that time, it was all about writing proofs. Yuck! My mantra for all math was "just give me the formula." Interestingly, I now like using geometry in a practical way. I do wing it when drafting quilts--but I like starting from a formula. Anyway, I hope you figured out what you wanted to do.

  12. I wasn't exactly a stellar math student, but ironically have spent a lot of time as an adult "using" math. I work with statistics and numbers every day. And I love figuring out for myself how to make a quilt block or a layout work. "Doing the math" for my quilting is actually fun.

  13. Maybe "exorcise" your brain cells? Out, out damned geometry! I like to figure it out myself. Buy a pattern? I think not!

  14. I hated math, still hate math!! It makes my brain hurt! I will say that having a project for the evenings is a must for me...math not so much!

  15. Sounds like you should make your star first, then inscribe the circle and draft the hexi as Teri suggested...unless the star is easier to draw!

  16. I was really good in Algebra, but not in Geometry; I, too, often wish I had "kept" what knowledge I learned back then.;0000
    I don't use math unless I have to and then it is a struggle--English was my love...and reading and writing and music.
    Maybe this is why I hate squares, they're something I can love...hugs, Julierose

  17. Absolutely, use Terri's method with the compass. From there you can draft any pattern you want that will fit within a hexagon. I so totally don't have a math brain (the only D I ever got was in algebra) but I aced geometry, which was all shapes and logic, theorems and proofs which totally made sense. I never realized back then how much I would use that kind of math now!

  18. I am a figure it out person - I love geometry and play around with resizing and combining! Sometimes though you just have to fudge it with fabric!

  19. Check this out: You can adjust it to your large hexagon. The secret is to have a small hex in the center. Looks like you did something similar in you photo. Karen explains how to put it together. I love how much math there is in quilting.

  20. Oh, quilty math! We have a love hate relationship. Mostly I just love to hate it! LOL

  21. Most of my quilts have been from seeing a photo and saying: that looks neat! I wanna make that. Then developing the pattern from the photo (never looking for a written pattern). I've spent a lot of time calculating the pattern, then figuring the yardage (which is usually my failure point). I feel your pain!

  22. Le Anna, you have some smart readers jumping in to help.YEA! Math is a workout for me brains and most of my grey matter seems to be on the other side. So is that why one of my legs is shorter and thinner than the other??? I look forward to seeing your solution.

  23. I love working things out for myself, though sometimes, when I'm struggling to draw an accurate hexagon on the computer, I do wonder if my time could be better spent if I just used someone else's!