Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Mystery Quilt resurfaces

As I write this, it's 64 minutes until 2014 rolls around. So of course, it's time for a blog update.

I hadn't visited this quilt since back in April, when I kinda got stuck on the clues for that month. It was all about making endless Economy Patch blocks. That wasn't the problem though, because once you've got the cutting out of the way, they're really simple to put together.
Back to Square One - April
The part that got me stuck was having to have them an exact size afterwards. Which means trimming to size. And trimming up blocks is my absolute most unliked part of the whole quilting process.

And so, a couple of weeks ago, I looked at the pile of quilt centre/sewn blocks/cut pieces and thought, life's too short to stress about whether to finish a quilt that you're stuck on, so just add it all to the orphan block/scrap heap, and reuse it somewhere else. So I got it out, and then thought, hey, I actually still like this, why don't I give it one more go.

The pic above is with the medallion centre and one border, which I decided to mitre (the fabric is striped, so it made sense!), and half of the Economy Patch blocks.


Then I worked on the May clue (remember, it's a mystery quilt! It's now December, but I didn't peek ahead). This was where I had to join all those squares, and have the points match up. Matching up points is my second most unliked part of the whole quilting process. But I told myself not to be too nitpicky (I'm not trying to win any prizes with this quilt, after all), and just do my best. With the pressure off, I only had to redo two or three seams.
Back to Square One - May

 The June clue was fairly simple - add two borders; the aforementioned pieced border, and another dark brown plain border. I thought I'd have to mitre this one too, which had me mad at myself for doing the first one like that; but then I remembered I had more than one dark brown fabric to choose from (yay for scrappy quilts!).
Back to Square One - June

I'm really liking it now. Who would've thought pink and brown could work together?


And finally, the last three days has had me cutting and piecing endless (okay, just 24) Log Cabins. Truth be told, I've never made more that one Log Cabin at a time, as I've only ever made them as sampler patches.

When I laid them out for the photo, I finally realised why some quilters are so hooked on making them. I still prefer variety over repetition, but I have a new appreciation of the good ol' Log Cabin.
Back to Square One - July - 24 x 6.5" blocks

Monday, April 1, 2013

Square One on April One

Today's pic is of the March installment of the Back to Square One medallion mystery quilt.
It measures about 33" square. This will be my first ever medallion quilt, so I don't know what to expect, but I'm fairly certain that this is the centre of the quilt.

There's going to be a whole lot more brown, because the dark and medium browns are my main colours, blues next, with the pink being a highlight.

April's clue will be out in the next few hours. I can hardly wait to see what happens next!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Dresden Plate

This is the first time I've made a Dresden Plate block!

Dresden Plate

It's block 6 from the Quick as a Fox sew-along. I'm really pleased with the way this came out. I now predict many more Dresden plates in my future

The points aren't stitched down; I'm not sure if I'll do that in the quilting phase or just leave them loose. Each wedge has been ditch stitched - don't look too close, the stitches are visible! - but at least they all stayed on the right side of the ditch. The inner circle was needleturn appliqued down. The background I had to piece; I only had a small amount of the pale orange print, and it was in a strip, so... yeah, I pieced it. And I will confess to being a Fabric Miser, because I realised that about half this block is covering the background, and why should I waste my precious fabric on a part that isn't seen? Like I said, I don't have much of this print, and I've got 13* more blocks to do with this selection of fabric. So I used some calico scraps for underneath the plate...

a frugal background

* 3 blocks to go in the Quick as a Fox quilt, plus 10 blocks to go in the Quilt Doodle quilt; both made with the same fabric palette, because... well, just because I want more blocks for a bigger quilt.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Something out of nothing

Do you ever have that thing where you can't think of anything to write about?...

I haven't managed to do any sewing today yet. I have no new blocks to show, or progress to report. So will it be another Random Cat Picture Day? Or time to find an old photo I haven't written about yet? Or just a rant about nothing?

I hate writer's block. It's so... oh I can't even think of the right word for it, grrr. And so I've decided that instead, I'll have quilter's block. It sounds more fun. I mean, if somebody says to you, "I have writer's block", do you automatically visualise what that looks like? I do. It's a blank piece of paper. Actually, a blank piece of paper devoid of words (as opposed to a blank piece of paper devoid of drawings/doodles/designs/etc). So if that same person - or somebody else, it really doesn't matter - says "I have quilter's block", what is it you see, in your mind?

As I thought about this, I straightaway saw the most simplest of blocks:


A one-patch, a plain block, a square... what exactly is this block known as? Because if it doesn't have a name yet, I propose Quilter's Block.*

Excuse me while I go research this ...... ...... ....... ....... ...... ...... ......... ...... ........ ...... Okay, I'm back. I'm a lazy researcher, so only managed two pages of Google (which is pretty good for me, as I usually don't go past the first). I found a blog called Quilter's Block, several blog posts titled Quilter's Block - it seems I'm not the first and only one to have it - but no reference to it as an actual name for a block.

 Hey, did I just come up with something new?


* The fantastic thing about the Quilter's Block block is that you can make it any size you like. Yup. 'Cos it's just a square. You can use solids, prints, or a combination. It's just so darn versatile!