Sometimes, it just doesn’t work out …

I have a tendency to NOT really follow a pattern or have the whole plan for a new quilt, and most of the time, I think it works out, more or less. Granted, this approach often means that I’m making adjustments throughout the course of construction, and sometimes things aren’t exactly the way I envisioned them, but it’s my process, and I’m comfortable with it. It’s how I work, and it really isn’t all that different from a garment sewist who uses a dress form to pin and/or drape fabric to get their start on a new project that they have imagined.

But sometimes, even the best intentions don’t work out. Case in point, I decided a few weeks ago that I’d really like to have a patriotic quilt to use for the months of June & July (or at least through the 4th of July). I pulled out several red, blue and cream colored fabrics and began planning my layout. I thought that maybe a log cabin would be nice, but when I put together the test blocks, I just didn’t like it much. So then I decided that maybe I would do a rail fence type block. I put together a few small test blocks and decided that it looked good, so I got down to business making more blocks.

I put the blocks on the design wall and played around with them a bit, then decided on a layout and put it together, sashing blocks as I went. Once I got it together and put the whole top on the wall, I saw the problem. It’s a pretty big problem. The entire quilt looks like rows of swastikas … I’m not impressed with it, nor myself at this point. I could take it apart and redo it, but right now, I’m just disgusted and irritated with it, so it’ll go on a shelf or in a basket as a UFO. Maybe I’ll pick it up this winter and fix it but for now, I’m done with it.

So, to soothe my psyche for now, I’ve turned back to the Wishes Block of the Month from last year. I know it was supposed to be done in 2014, but I had other things going on and I never got around to it. I did get five blocks done last year, so that means I have seven more to go. Well, six, actually, because I got one block done earlier this week. I was showing my Mom the five blocks I had finished when she was over on the 4th of July, and she really liked it, so it inspired me to complete it. I told her that my intention was to sash the blocks in white, but she thinks that would be a mistake. She thinks yellow, grey or black would look better. She may have a point, and I am considering using a light grey for sashing. My design wall is light grey, so what do you think? Forgive the angled look of the photo – it’s not the picture, it’s the positioning of the blocks on the wall!

Wishes BOM in progress

Wishes BOM in progress

Obviously, this isn’t the final lay out I’ll use, because there are six more blocks to be made. I’m really hoping to get the quilt top done this month, so that maybe I can finish the quilt and use it as a Christmas present for someone this year.

And on that note, I suppose I should move on for now. I do know I need to get better at blogging, so I’m setting myself some reminders to write more often.

See ya soon!

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This and that

I’ve noticed that after I finish a project, I usually want to take some time away from the studio. Sometimes, it’s only a few days; other times, it can be months. This time, it’s been about a month.

I finished the motorcycle quilt that I was working on for Chris. Overall, I”m pretty happy with the way it turned out, though if I had it to do over again, I would of course, do it somewhat differently. For instance, I wouldn’t cut the motorcycle fabric squares half an inch too small, then have to sash them! But for the most part, I’m satisfied with it.

Motorcycle quilt

Motorcycle quilt

I really enjoyed working on this one. I really enjoyed doing the motorcycle embroidery along the borders …

Vroom vroom!

Vroom vroom!

So after it was done, I decided to take a little break. Like I said, that’s my process. I think about sewing, but I don’t actually sew much during a break.

Then my grandmother passed away on the 9th of June. She hasn’t been well since January, when she had to have some heart surgery, and she just really never recovered. She meant a lot to me – I spent most of my summers as a teen with her.

Betty Reaid, 1923 - 2015

Betty Reaid, 1923 – 2015

She was 91 years old last December. Even though she wasn’t doing well when this photo was taken in April, she looked fabulous didn’t she? It’s like a piece of my heart has been stolen away from me.

But her passing awakened my need to be busy, and so I started a new quilt. I’ve been wanting to make a patriotic log cabin for a long time now. I once made a very small one and gave it to my former mother-in-law many years ago, but I wanted a big one for myself. This is the prototype square.

Prototype square for patriotic log cabin quilt

Prototype square for patriotic log cabin quilt

At first, I wasn’t too pleased with it, but it’s growing on me. I think it’s going to look really nice once I’ve got a few of these done. Of course, there will also be some blue in there as well. I’m hoping to have this quilt finished by July 4th, but I wouldn’t hold my breath if I were you.

After this, who knows? Maybe I’ll actually tackle that applique quilt I want to do, or make myself some new clothing or something. That reminds me, I have been working on making myself a bra, but that is a post for another time.

In closing, just let me say – if you don’t spend much time with the older generations of your family, do it now. Ask them to tell you about their lives, and what things were like growing up. Because trust me, you don’t get a second chance.