Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Ojibwe Revisited

I am super motivated to finish up some of my old UFO's before it gets warm enough to go play outside.  Monday I go this quilt sandwiched, pinned, and all the ditch-stitching done.
This quilt was originally designed as a wedding quilt inspired by Ojibwe bead work, but done in the favorite colors of the bride to be.  There are several reasons this got set aside.  Which in a way is good as my FMQ is finally good enough to make this look the way I had imagined.

I bought black batting for this quilt about 7 or 8 years ago when I started it.  I sure wish I would have thought to use it for the last black quilt that I made.  No tufting of the batting, or if it is, you can't see it.

Hoping to do the quilting detail on the applique over the next several evenings, but will need to wait for a bright sunny day to attempt anything on the black background.  I keep changing my mind if I'm going to use black or red thread for the fill.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Evolution Finish

So, this is a rather long post as it was quite a journey of quilt learning for me.

 This project started with some blue and green triangle pieces that were given to me by my friend Emily when I was working on the Turquoise Double Wedding ring.

I added the green floral which was a dress that I made, the apple green from the Big Ass Cat, and the yellow plaid which was a second-hand sheet I used for the back of a quilt.

I arranged the HST blocks on a piece of flannel.

This much hung on the wall from July 2015 until January 2016.

One evening, it occurred to me that I should extend the blue line and square idea out.

I started auditioning scraps.

And I found some orphan blocks and a Spoonflower sample fabric.

And " Evolution" evolved.

With some things I liked, and others that I just tolerated.

Improv piecing can be fun, but doesn't always have the outcome I'd imagined.

Then I realized that it looked much different when viewed from a different angle.

I added dark frames until I ran out of fabrics.

I wanted it to be larger, but 60" x 74" makes a decent lap quilt.

The quilting started out well, especially after I found this square flower by Lori Kennedy.   After the second design of hers that I randomly picked from a google search of designs, I started following her at The Inbox Jaunt.

I have a strange Love/Hate relationship with variegated thread.  I Love how it looks on the spool.  I Hate how it looks on the quilt. ( with the rare exception of match stick quilting, which I rarely do.)  I make a post about how much I hate it about every 6 months.  So my goal was to use all this crap up.

Mission accomplished.
5 spools gone and 2 more skinnyfied.
(There are still 5 spools in the stash in other colors so there will be more complaining on this topic. )

I had a few rare moments when every stitch turned out exactly the way I imagined it to look.  Perfect feathers!  The right shape, even stitch length. Wow!

A zen moment when I actually felt like I was a really good machine quilter.

Balanced by the Drunk Feathers.  There was actually a section worse than this that had to be un-stitched following an evening of Cabernet.  (Apparently, too much of a good thing is too much.)

I was testing some design ideas for another UFO quilt.  Borrowing from ZenTangles.

After washing.
Another borrowed design was this 3 or 5 petal flower.  Which when I was spontaneously stitching, turned out like this.  I could argue that it's a leaf not a flower.  It was easy and forgiving as any weird wiggles just make it better.  And the echo makes it cohesive.

After washing view.  Did not pre-wash to get max shrinkage.

And the best part?  It's done!  Linking to the Finish-along.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Evolution Quilting

I'm quite pleased with my FMQ progress on Evolution.  I made dark blue narrow stripes by eye.  I think this will have even better texture after washing.   The center square flower I found on line and am happy to give credit to Lori Kennedy.  She even has a free tutorial at this link.   It was fun to make and I love how it turned out.  I like it so well that I used it in different colors on all the 4" to 6" squares in the quilt.

I tried a swirl with pebbles and feathers on a set of squares before I found the flower.

I tried a variety of fills on one of the corners.  Only one I like much is the feathers, but it is on a wider strip than most of the area I need to fill, but I am leaning toward feathers for the medium colored sections in the first photo.

I have been using up some varegated green thread.  I discovered a while ago that I'm not that keen on it for most quilting motifs that I do as the dark/light can make it's own odd, unpredictable patterns.

Back to the sewing room for me.  (After a glass of wine and looking for a design for the large square I need to fill.)

Friday, January 29, 2016

Evolution Framed

I was hoping to make this quilt a little bigger but I'm out of dark fabric scraps and I think adding the medium/light greens that I do have would detract from the overall look.  I'll stop here with the piecing at 60" x 74".  My goal is to make the backing and sandwich it tonight after work, quilting over the weekend.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Evolution Tipped

While this project sat completely ignored since July ( see that post at this link), I have rapidly made progress, mostly this week (progression post here).  I finished what I had been considering the "bottom" corners (now the left corners from this view) this evening and took this shot on the floor after evening up the edges.

At this point I briefly considered extending the outer box that appears from this angle.  But then I decided to simply be done.  I've added a narrow border of the medium blue all the way around and was in the process of adding a 6" blue strip and a 6" dark green strip on what would be the top and bottom of this view to widen that direction when I ran out of bobbin and declared today's session over.  The version in the photo is about 46" x 70".

I have some ideas for quilting this that I am looking forward to trying, so hopefully I will get to that point sometime this weekend.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Sunday Stuff

I spent the morning working on bits and pieces of UFO / WIPs.  This is my temperature quilt representing the first 3 weeks of January.  It's folded upon itself in this photo to get a feel for the color distribution.

The daytime high is 2" wide strip and the low a 1" strip.  Our temps have ranged 0 to 50 degrees over the past 2 weeks, with most 30-40

This quilt will finish about 80 x 102.

I wasn't ready to tackle the popsicle quilt and decided to start on something that takes less thought.
Evolution is some improv piecing taking off from a HST set on the right of the picture.  I found a couple orphan blocks (bottom) and a free sample of a dragonfly camo material that I got free from Spoonflower as a promotion.

Filling in with some neutral colors went pretty quickly.

I decided to cut one of the orphan blocks in half.  Here's me playing with some placement options.

Here is where I'm going to leave this project for the day.

Not hating it.

Not loving it.

Like using up bits.

And now to watch football and crocheting the cardigan.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Crochet cardi

I started crocheting a cardigan on our Christmas road trip to Arizona. Unfortunately, I didn't have a ruler with me on that trip, so I just had to trust that the stitch scale in the pattern was right. It has been a particularly long process since the yarn is super fine,  much of it was done in a car or in poor light,  and I haven't crocheted in years.   I was able to finish the sleeve sections this weekend while hanging out with a good friend, watching football in our PJ's.   
It's been a good take-along project since you work it in square/triangles then sew it together.  Working on the lower section (peplum) now, so have hope it will actually be a sweater someday soon.