There’s a new Challenge underway over at the 15 Minutes Play group (it’s open to everyone, so jump on in!). Victoria posted a simple block to use, or adapt and use, incorporating “made fabric” in some way to celebrate Spring.
I’ve got a plan and have made fast progress (otherwise known as avoiding something tedious on my desk by disappearing into the studio for most of the day).
My favorite part of this challenge is that it’s using some bonus HSTs left over from making Flying Geese blocks (I’ve got an entire small bin full of those, so nice to use a few of them!), and some pale blue HST blocks that I sewed up a long time back and then decided not to use in the project they’d originally headed for.
Lots of slicing and dicing, and new blocks of made-fabric blues are taking shape. It’s a messy process, but fun. I’ll be setting my blocks on-point. So far I’ve got a stack of half-blocks:
… and a growing heap of blue scrappy awesomeness, as seen above, to go with them.
Greens are next.
This cloud bit me, and I’ve got a bandaid on my thumb to prove it. (What really happened is I got my fingers too close to the moving parts, and a sharp corner of the FMQ foot took a teeny–teeny, folks, nothing serious!–divot out of the side of my thumb.)
This is just one of several projects not ready for prime-time viewing that have been keeping my machine busy and the blog neglected. The top was basted and ready to quilt at least a week ago, and has been sitting around waiting for me to get my brain around how to FMQ something that would look like a Chinese cloud motif. It had to be something that could be done in one continuous stitching line without much (or any, preferably) backtracking over a previously stitched line because doing that neatly is a skill I do not yet and may never have.
Several Google image searches and many balled up pieces of scrap paper later, and I’d sketched out something like this. These little clouds (this one’s maybe three inches long) are now stitched in gold metallic thread here and there over the background of the top. Next I’ll fill in around them with a thread that matches the background, in some kind of simple pattern I haven’t decided on yet.
This has been a fun project, and I’m loving how it’s turning out. More show and tell to come when Sherry Lynn Wood’s improv book comes out, but that’s a ways off yet.
Hang in there: I do have another finish to show off as soon as it’s photographed. (Which isn’t likely to be today, as it’s gloomy and rainy here and I’ve got to tear myself away from fabric play and get some desk-work done this week!)
2014 is off to a great start in the Finishes department: I’ve completed 4 projects so far, and aim to continue adding items to the “done” list as we get deeper into the year.
First up: a mini of my 2014 “word for the year.” It was a quick start and fast finish for the 15 Minutes Play group, where all the details are posted here.
Two other finishes, including the HSTs project — and a new WIP as well — will stay under wraps for a while, so I have nothing to share on those yet. Sorry, but that’s how it is and all I can do is hope you will like what you see a few months from now.
However, I can show off this completed wall-hanging, made for the “Tea Towel Challenge” also at the 15 Minutes Play group.
Never mind that the Challenge was issued a year ago and the deadline is long, long past. I couldn’t be happier to call this one done. Last you saw of this I was adding sequins to all the intersections on the center panel background. They don’t show up in the photo but are there and nicely sparkly.
I used a faced edge (rather than binding), and a loop-and-stick hanger, which you can read all about on the 15MP blog here.
Next up on the projects list is to update my sidebar with “2014″ finishes. If it still shows “2013″ over there it’s because I’m off delivering* two of my quilts for a show coming up at the Society for Kona’s Education & Art. Stop by Sat. or Sun. (early, show closes Sunday at 2pm) if you’re on the Kona side next weekend.
* I only have to drop them off at my LQS here in Hilo. Someone else will drive a carload of quilts over to the other side of the island later this week.
My walking foot has the hiccups. It stitches along just fine for a while, then gives a little pop and lurch — just like a hiccup — and as often as not leaves a little lurch in the seamline, too, and a sneeze of sooty dust on the quilt top. Not good. I hope my machine guy will be able to fix it. When I take the machine in for servicing, which can’t happen until I get at least one more project done.
Most urgent is to finish up the pretty HSTs, which have been sewn up lickety-split and are getting a leafy vine meander treatment. Not the original plan, but with a hiccuping walking foot and a sewing deadline I had to come up with something else.
Just pause your meander every few inches and make a swoop out and back and across the sewn line and around and back down again and presto: your meander just sprouted a leaf. Fun. I like this so much I will definitely use it again.
In the meantime, I’ve got hours of meandering still to go. This is one of those projects that will stay under wraps for a while, so these sneak peaks will have to do for now.
I’m making something pretty from summery florals and a posey of pastel solids. It starts with these: 144 half-square triangle units, almost ready to play with the other pieces.
First, though, every one of these 144 HST squares has to be trimmed and de-dog-eared. I’m not looking forward to that part.
*** update ***
I’m watching episode 1401 of TheQuiltShow right now, and at about minute 32 is a demonstration of trimming a Flying Geese unit with the BlocLoc gadget mentioned in the comments below. Now I really want one. In every size.