Saturday 25 February 2017

Scrap Jar Flimsy

It's so good when something works out - especially when you're stuck and can't see a way forward.
I began this scrap jar stars quilt with the light grey background fabric in mind. I thought I had enough, so made up half a dozen stars. Then I realised I might not even have enough for nine stars (was heading for a dozen) when I realised that I didn't have enough fabric at all.

Enter wonderful friends - and their suggestions and fabric. The first friend who'd given me the fabric in a swap, sourced what scraps she could and that stretched it to the nine stars.

Then I auditioned various fabrics to figure what kind of border it needed - I thought it needed one not just binding. Again, friends to the rescue with opinions, trying their fabrics etc. We found one that was an olive green background but had strips of black, white and lime green. Yuk, not a great looking fabric, but those strips of black - they worked really well as a border.
So I added those, then tried again with the light grey fabric I had that was similar but not the same as the background I'd been using. Now, hurrah, it worked well because it had the border to break up the way the eye sees it.
So now on to quilt it (once I find something for the backing - the never ending quest to use up my stash!).
Looking forward to doing some ribbon candy around the squares that are formed where the blocks meet with their four colours. We'll see what else I think of as I go.

Until next time,

Sunday 19 February 2017

Scraps get quilted

While it's not completed, it feels good to have this one further along the way. I'm enjoying doing different quilting on each of the 35 blocks - hmm, few more patterns than I realised are required. I may repeat some. But it's also giving me the opportunity to practise my ribbon candy quilting.

I have the feeling that last time I created a quilt almost entirely from scraps I resolved to only do a whole pattern over the quilt, but they are great places to try out new patterns and get some new muscle memory skills developed.

I was also very pleased that all of this fabric came from my stash. The backing I had been 'saving' for when I next make an Autumn quilt, then I realised that I have quite a few fabrics that will go into an Autumn quilt very well and this piece may not suit once they're all together. So why save it and purchase more when I can just use this now? Anyway, there it is, with just an additional 6" strip down the centre and the last scrappy square in the centre.  
It's quite obvious from the backing that I haven't anywhere near completed the quilting (12 of the 35 blocks done so just over a third, plus the bits of ribbon candy). But it feels good to do some quilting when I realised I'd only done piecing for a few weeks. 
Still, that helps to add to the projects to show next time - hopefully!
Till next time,

Sunday 12 February 2017

Scraps on the way

I do enjoy working with scraps. There's something satisfying about taking small pieces of fabric, that I suspect others may reject (and I can't bear to part with), making them into a block and then piecing the blocks together to make a whole quilt.

So I'm currently working on two of these, the first I created some of the blocks late last year, but dug them out (thinking they were all put together) only to discover that I must have come to one of those 'Now what do I do?' points and set it aside. It never ceases to amaze me how coming fresh to something just helps to bring a new perspective and whatever stuck point we were in can be overcome more easily. Anyway, I moved a couple of blocks from where I had sewn them in, added some of the many beige/brown blocks I had, and presto, here is a flimsy now ready for quilting.

Its pretty windy here today, so I needed a couple of props to help keep it still while I tried to take a shot. Since you can't see the small pieces close up, here are a couple of my favourites: 
This has the deer in the centre which is from a quilt I made for my eldest son a year or two ago. See what I mean about not being able to throw small pieces away?
And then there's this one which has a piece of Christmas fabric that I must have used at some time - maybe in a runner or a gift for someone, I can't quite recall. But it makes me smile to see this little star: 

There are other little pieces of owl eyes, a small piece of music fabric and so on. Since my scrap quilts often go to the local hospice where one of my friends works, I like to think that maybe there's something that will recall a pleasant memory from life for those who may find it difficult to know what to say - either patients, family or carers. Sometimes a quilt or other item can just help to start a conversation. 

The second scrap quilt is a string cross that I need to add a final border to and then quilt, so I'll wait until the quilting is done to share that one.  Happy sewing!