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

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

String Sewalong ~ Blue Baskets, Cheddar Handles

Hello on another gloomy day! May has arrived,  and she is  looking a lot like dumpy, dismal April. The bad weather let me get my string blocks caught up, and almost finished, for Lori's sewalong.

These are March, not completed in time last month.

A few became very scrappy when my black sprigged shirt got all used up.

I think the scrappyness is okay; using the plaid strings is scrappy and humble anyway so it works for me.
I am very fond of horseshoes and tucked this tiny bit in. [How I wish I d bought yardage of this, sigh. It was just a charm swatch from a friend.]

My no-more-sprig dilemma was kindly addressed by Nancy at Joy for Grace blog. She sent me wonderfully deconstructed sleeves for my April blocks, below,

and for my May blocks, unfinished. FYI each sleeve can eke out three sets of background fabric. Here I had tried a few blocks in all turquoise. I decided I like them

Here's a close up. These really are shirts, so awesome. The shirting is very soft and fine, and as with the plaids, at time quite a bit of starch had to be utilized.

I also made two pastel plaid Baskets for my someday ''improv'' quilt. The plan is to scatter real blocks among the random strips-and-blob blocks of improv. Though I'm pretty sure I am incapable of truly doing random or improv, but at least this gets me started on the idea. And yes, I know there's lots of books and blogs and YouTube vids on how to do improv, but to me that is counterintuitive: why do improvisational piecing that follows someone else's rules or design? I think I need to rely on myself  instead.

Here are March and April laid out on my bed.

And here are all 21 blocks made so far.

The layout has me baffled, I can't even explain what concerns me. I know I dislike zigzag edges and blocks that float in their ground like a hand of solitaire.

After much internet search it seems I should aim for  possibly  a 5/4/5/4/5 layout [totaling 23] which means I need two more blocks:

The sashing is added to each block, making them essentially 12" blocks [no cornerstones wanted].

To keep the quilt from being enormous, I think I'll use a narrow ''stop'' border in white sprig, like 1" finished and cheddar binding; the other, original choice is a 1.5" cheddar sashing then a wider white border, but again, even that may be too big.

As mentioned the layout has me so confused! I may need more blocks or different blocks. I have four more blue basket bases made, so that can easily be done. I'd love to have this top off to my quilter by June 1, but that may be too ambitious, as I have been ''commissioned'' [unpaid] to make make a t-shirt quilt for a best friend's adult daughter. I was excited about that at first but on reflection, she/ they may be very hard to please, so now I'm stressed, fingers crossed.

edit: the layout seems wrong! I think the correct layout is 4/3/4/3/4/3/4 =25 as I originally planned. So my May goal will be to finish 25 blocks  and at least estimate how to do the sashing. The sashing confusion wouldn't be an issue except I am very limited in yardage and there's no room for cutting extra/ or errors.

Another darling April finish, "Hare" from A Year in the Country. The handwork is saved for beach days, as is the embroidery. I can't seem to be willing or able to follow Spargo's suggested prim colors for the grounds! The green apron's remnant's just snuck right in, saying, ''Hi! It's fun, it's Spring!''  You know how I love color, how could I possible make a brown plaid block for April?

I' looking forward to my pineapple strings though I don't machine sew in the summer unless it rains. The sewalong runs through I think November? Such a fun project, string quilts are a bit addicting, aren't they? May Basket quilts on next post, come back and visit if you're just here from the HQ Linky HERE

rainy day puggy



gone to the beach...