I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, April 20, 2018

April Quilting

Good rainy Thursday, my friends! Oh the dreariness of a frigid day in April, a bright January day would be an improvement.  April is two/thirds over already, not getting as much done as I had hoped and planned. The focal project of the month was to be Silent Night,below, all those tedious  dark blue and white stars, yawn. [more on it later.]

The April SG block from Barbara Brackman is an 8-pointed Friendship Star. Very intriguing and fun to think about! A challenge that totally distracted me from my planned project.

Points like this are sewed by what is called  Y seams or set in seams. I don't mind them at all, much easier than getting a bunch of points to match.

The secret is a precision  pattern, none of that EQ [Electric Quilt, a computer pattern thing] how-to copy and print to scale stuff for me. I drafted both the 12" and 9" Stars.

Pattern templates: I am maybe the only person left in the world who uses scissors and who makes cardboard templates for hand drawn pattern. But hey, it works for me!

Blue, 12", was first.

Somehow I got sidetracked and had the notion that pansies would be appropriate:  Pensees is their French name, meaning ''thoughts'', and they were, in Victorian times, a symbol of remembrance of school friends, and so on. I forgot the quilt design predates that idea but I like them anyway.
[*LOL, I typed school FIENDS instead of friends! Yeah we all went to school with mean girls, right?]

I wanted to use the pansies from this bluework print, taken from the idea of rework embroidery a fad that began around 1880 and ran through about 1930, blue dating later than red. It was hard to cut into this small piece, a fat quarter I guess.

This worked so well I immediately began 9 '' Hideous the next day.

Garish purple and poison green with badly chosen red corners. The value is wrong and hides the star shape. Frolicking goats for the center circle. It was that or the kid smoking a crack pipe, lower right.

I love the purple toile and actually thought about using it as the setting fabric too. Too bad I didn't check out the motifs before I decided to fussy cut,


Next up is a  vintage quilt top I found on a fun new FB selling page. I actually won an auction there!
[Happy Vintage Linens and Sheets?].

Plaids like this can be brand new, made last week, or date from anywhere back to the late 1800s. This top is probably from 1920-1940. The fabrics are not rough or thick like modern ''homespun'', a term quilters use for wovens* like this. [*The design is woven with colored threads, not printed on or dyed.]

The half square triangles are BIG, I think 5" --- bigger than the palm of your hand. A subtle autumn feeling.

I also loved the poverty blocks, where the triangles are carefully pieced, not cut from a whole.

I'm airing it out, it's a bit musty, and auditioning backing. This assortment came from Connecting  Threads. Clementine's Bonnet HERE  Their fabric, while not inexpensive, is less costly than regular online quilt fabrics.

These are the two front runners:

the tomato red is pretty, but I adore the duck egg blue. I want yardage of this print, it is sooooo beautiful, color, sheen/ hand/ the tiny dots on the background , called  picotage.

The meandering Oak Leaves and Acorns on the left is intriguing too.

Again beautifully engraved printing. But it reads beige/ boring from a few feet away. I like my backings to pop or do something, anything.

[so that makes three quilts soon for the quilter, the queue is getting too long! Discouraging in a way.]


And then--back to Silent Night.  It's a quilt I'm making because I want a blue Christmas / Winter quilt with a snowman on it, not because I think it's fun to make.

This is not an entertaining project, it's quite tedious.

I am very glad I laid out the blocks today for photos. It gave me a sudden glimpse of the finished size of the quilt. Jan Patek has a way of designing HUGE quilts. I had already planned to remove one horizontal row to make the quilt square, but now I am gong to remove another horizontal row and  a vertical row. I'll reassess at that point but I think that will be plenty big for my queen bed; I don't like quilts to hang all down to the floor, do you? And size is money, a smaller quilt will cost less to quilt later on.

So now I must make 25 white stars; ten are done so far. That's 100 Flying geese blocks that must be absolutely 2/1/2 " x 4 1/2" or the Stars won't go together. That's a lotta not-fun Geese,  not at all like the wild and crazy random Geese on my When the Wild Geese Fly quilt, made last winter.

I also cut the ''sky'' cornerstones XL. You can see where they are hanging over the at the ends, untrimmed.  The blocks get trimmed to exactly 8 1/2".  I have 10 made so far, plus the appliqued alternates.

For some reason it's not a good start-and-stop pattern: I keep forgetting how to make it and also have cut the blocks wrong at least twice!
This is a wonderful photo from Weather Bug. Inspiration for a Star and moon quilt, isn't it beautiful.


In Mo-Land, Mo has been naughty. He had a tantrum, tossed all the sofa cushions and throw pillows down and around. Then he dragged his blanky over to make a nest. Then he threw up. I sat in it of course, in nice clothes, when I got home. What a freakin' mess. Mo was bored, I suppose, he seemed quite pleased as he sat on the other, clean sofa and smirked while I cleaned.

have a good weekend. No snow, right? Please....



gone to the beach......