Thursday, June 16, 2016

Great Granny Squared and Done!

Sixty-four squares later, I have a quilt top! The 6" blocks were done in just a couple of days, and before adding the borders, I settled on an arrangement for the blocks and pieced them together.

Not too shabby, eh? Or IS it shabby...intentionally?! :) It's 48" square at this point.

I waffled between half a dozen border ideas before settling on flying geese, using the mango solid as the background. I wanted to get these flying geese done quickly, with little waste and still be scrappy, so I consulted my handy dandy All-In-One Quilter's Rererence Tool for the cutting sizes to do four flying geese at once. As much as I like the snowballing method of making them, this is a more efficient method for making a large stack of them. I spent an evening cutting, sewing and piecing them and used 24 different prints for the wings.

I love all the color! The part I tend to get the fussiest and most obsessive about is sewing the blocks together, because I don't want too much of the same color near each other. And if I somehow allowed the same prints to butt against each other? Lord, help me.

I'm not exaggerating when I say it took me an hour to settle on the above configuration before sewing them together. Ay yi yi. What a nut.

And there's the completed top! I'll quilt this one myself on my sewing machine. I've yet to use the Janome for quilting, so I'm excited to give it a go.

I also got a start on another new project, more on this one next time...

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

She Done Bloomed!

Ummmm...has it really been almost a month since I blogged? Ay yi yi! Truth is, I didn't have much in the way of quilting to share, so it potentially would have been a full page of "Ummm" and "Huh" and "I don't know." Nonetheless, I've got some bidness to discuss now!

The Bloom Sew-Along is my first sew-along. While it's been rewarding, it's also been a lesson in patience. I tend to dive right into projects and go, go, go till I'm done. I finished the actual blocks for the sew-along about two weeks ahead of time and did the block and row layout in order of completion. I wasn't too sure about this approach, as I'm definitely a newb to the applique game. My fear was that it would go from disaster at block one to pretty darn good by block twenty. But, that wasn't the case. They all came out, at the very least, good!

Don't you love my design wall? It looks remarkably like one's living room floor. Upper left is the first block, and lower right is the last. Not too bad, right? After sewing together the rows, I decided on a bright border print.

So bright and cheery! I've got one quilt at the long-armer right now, and once that one is done I'll take this one in for quilting. I don't mind doing the quilting myself, but this one's a little out of my size comfort zone. Like I said, doing one block a week was a real test of my patience and made the payoff feel like it was never going to happen. But it spades!

After that project, I wanted something relatively quick, so I opened up this book...

...and revisited some of the projects inside. I'd previously made a few pillows from it but never an actual quilt.

That's one of the pillow tops I made (minus the pillow form, obviously), and it's now on one of my armchairs with a coordinating one.

Tim was away this weekend, and that meant I was a pseudo-bachelor for a few days. And boy oh boy did I get wild while he was out! I quilted like a madman! Typically when I'm in a quilting zone, I go into survival mode, meaning I eat as quickly as I can so I can get back to piecing and cutting. I ate more than a few PB&J's during the weekend. With the steady chatter of Investigation Discovery playing in the background (I'm an addict), I was a workhorse! What did all that activity net me?

Sixy-four 6.5" great granny squares! I love the mango Robert Kaufman Kona Solids background color.

Those are a couple of my favorites, with fabrics from Ellis & Higgs, Lori Holt, Lecien and others I love. There's a whole lot of color in there, and I love it all.

The picture isn't the greatest quality, but I've sewn them together in quadrants and will piece them together tonight. I tossed around so many ideas on the border and, I must admit, most of them were borders that would be quick and easy. When I want it done, I want it done quickly. Ultimately I decided that I want even more colors, so I'm going to border it with scrappy four-patches. This one, I'll quilt myself; at a finished size of 56" square, it's easily manageable.

This week, I'm again linking up with Sew Fresh Quilts so check out all her quilty goodies!