Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Where have I been and where am I going?

Oh my goodness dear reader/followers (both of you!)... I visited my blog at lunchtime today and realized that I haven't posted in a week!  So belated happy Valentine's Day, and I'll try to be more current.

Last posting I wrote about making sample blocks and what I do with all those 'oprhans'.  I made another one last night (no pic, sorry).  I saw the quilts my aunt and cousins brought back from the quilt retreat last fall and wanted to see if I could figure it out.  It was called 39 And Counting.  You can see a picture of it in the fall 2011 newsletter for Quinessential Quilts in Reedsburg, here:  QQuilts Reedsburg Newsletters

I took my paper and pencils down to the sewing studio (basement) and did a little drawing.  I started with a two color four patch from a light print and a dark print.  Easy, no challenge there.  Then I put skinny 'logs' in what looks like a solid color on opposite sides and trimmed them until they looked right. 

Now I do not have a pattern for this, but I did examine Amy's quilt last Friday so I have a pretty good picture in my head!  We'll see if I'm close!

After pressing, I went back and measured the pieces of the almost solid, and wrote that down on my drawing.  I took the two prints and cut them long enough to cover half the resulting block size plus a half inch.sewed the strips together on the short sides using a quarter inch seam allowance.  I sewed these on the opposite sides first, lining up the center seams as well as possible with the center four patch.  I pressed and trimmed.  Then I measured those pieces and wrote that on the drawing too.

The last step was to repeat the process for the two remaining sides.  Now I measured the block.  Hey, 9 1/2 inches!!  Cool.  I started with 2 1/2 inch strips, because I have a whole bin full of those, and the solid frame around the four patch was cut down to 1 1/4 inches. 

The colors I used were dark green, a tone on tone of pale green, and a bright lime green.  It's a totally different look than what the cousins made at the retreat -- they used black & white prints and either one color or many solid colors for the frames.  But I have LOTS of green fabric.  Tons.  And I never saw anything that didn't go with green.

Knowing the sizes of strips and squares I need, I'm going to make a kit for this pattern and make 30 of these squares for an actual quilt.  I haven't decided what color scheme to use yet.  I think I have to look at this green square for a while to see if any inspiration comes to me.  Or maybe I need to make one more with different colors.  I was thinking maybe greens with a black frame, or blues with another color.  Or red and white??  Hmmm.

This is the part of sewing or actually any craft that I like the best.  Picking the materials, choosing color combinations, planning it in my head.  I actually have too many ideas sometimes, they get jumbled in my head and I lose track of them.  I try to stay organized, kitting things up in baggies or plastic bins.  My DD bought me a label gun for Christmas one year, and I use it!  But this year I committed to actually finishing some of those projects.

The winter quilt retreat starts this Friday.  I'll be packing up my project kits and traveling tomorrow afternoon.  There IS that bargello quilt that's being taught and that's all cut and ready to go.  But I'm taking along a few other things, in case I get bored.  That's one of my problems, and why lots of things go on the five year plan.  Unless there's a deadline. 

I did finish the quilt top I did after the last retreat I attended a couple of years ago.  It's a beautiful top, lovingly pieced and complete with borders.  Maybe one of these days it will actually become a quilt!!

Keep on stitching!

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