30 January 2020

Hour-glasses: a modest start.

These hour-glass blocks were cut freehand, and then machine stitched with a quarter inch seam. The original squares which I cut into quarters were 2.5", 3.5" and 5.5". I didn't plan them that way, that's just how they came out of my green scrap bag. At the moment they aren't much, but I'm planning on making many more in these sizes, and making them fit!

As far as the colour goes at the moment I plan to stay with greens, and add blue, aqua and yellow in limited amounts, taking my cue from the small block lower left.. Of course this will probably change! It's improv after all!

Happy sewing

It is time ...

join in with the AHIQ group and get my quilt started with the theme being hourglass blocks. I have been so busy with other things that I have not spent time playing with the group and it is about time I do! I want to use scraps since that is a goal to use as many scraps as I can in 2020 so I pulled out my yellow and red bins
I found a piece of each color and roughly cut 10.5 " - 11" squares for no particular reason.
I layered the squares
free cut them corner to corner
then shuffled them into two blocks
I think cut free cutting was a bit too straight! Maybe I need to partake in a beverage or two in order to loosen up a bit! LOL!!! Anyway, these gray fabrics are going to be added in some way. I have a few ideas in my head.

29 January 2020

Copacetic Begins

This inspiration photo was saved years ago.

Maker unknown (NOT my work)

Combining that inspiration with 
the current Ad Hoc Improv Quilters 
hourglass block challenge . . .

Here is my fabric pull --
fabrics to the left for 6.5" squares
and fabrics to the right for hourglass units.

My goal is to cut one square from each fabric
to achieve an eclectic scrappy vibe.

(that bicycle print from the stash
will be used for the back)

Here's a closer look at the 
pairs of fabrics for hourglass blocks.

After trimming the hourglass blocks to 6.5"
this is what was left behind.

(I started with 8.5" squares)

Somehow, I messed up on the math and ended up
with half  as many hourglasses as were needed.

Back to the stash for fabric pull part two.

Leftover trimmings from the second 20 hourglasses.

First layout - to get them all up on the design wall.

(the colors are so much prettier in real life -
the mix of indoor and window light was not cooperating)

I'll do some tweaking
and maybe a bit of substituting
before I sew this together.

Target size 48" x 60"

And I've named this one Copacetic,
which means "completely satisfactory."

26 January 2020

Hourglass Blocks - Then and Now

This is the top of Retired (2017)
made using DH's former work shirts.

I used the Garden Windows design from 
Every Last Piece by Lynn Carson Harris.

This is the finished quilt in black and white.

And this is the finished quilt in color.

I'd forgotten that this one used hourglass blocks . . .

And this is my fabric pull to make
a quilt for the hourglass challenge.

I've named my project Copacetic - 
 which means "completely satisfactory."

23 January 2020

Ruby Snippets a finish for 2020

This quilt is titled Ruby Snippets. I have no idea why, that's just the only thing that I could come up with. Regardless, it about as improv as a quilt can be. I started with beige scraps and intended that would be the quilt. But just beige didn't work, it cried for some color.  So I relented.

And voila. I'm not sure I can explain my process. Mostly I have a short attention span, when I get tired of something, I make a change. In this case I added red. You remember the red challenge? Well, so did I. What better way to solve the blahs, right?

I do most of my deciding standing in front of the design wall. That was certainly true in this case. These pieces are just that, pieces. Big chunks of squares and rectangles--before I added the larger neutrals. I added those just as I would for HST, except I cut everything into rectangles about the same size. I drew diagonal lines and sewed on either side, then cut on the lines. In every case I pressed toward the solid piece.

The next feeling of "ahn, enough of this" I dug out some larger pieces of beige and used them to turn what was (for the most part) rectangles, into right triangles.

It was while I was trying to figure out how to arrange the new diagonals that I hit on creating these bold lines with the red pieces. In some ways it's meant to look like a log cabin on the diagonal. But I may be the only one to see that. 

I finished it just in time to enter it in the Gulf States Quilting Association's biennial show.

AHIQ Hourglass Finish

The free-hand hourglass quilt is quilted and bound although it took longer than expected. I plan on baby quilts taking about a week... That's the plan and we always know it can go sideways at any time.

Improv Hourglass quilt 

The hourglasses were cut using Sujata's instructions from Cultural Fusion Quilts - basically cutting small stacks of fabric with scissors. Windmills taught me cut mindfully; curves really decrease the size of the finished block. So these were cut as straight as I could eyeball them. Now I wish they had a bit more arc. {Some people are never satisfied.}

Sometimes improvisation leads us to new combinations. When the aqua and pink fabrics were chosen they seemed to have enough contrast; however, there was none by the time the hourglasses were sewn. It was a mess. Figuring out how to remedy the problem took the rest of my time but white and especially the black added the contrast and grounding.

Personally I like that the blocks are the last thing you see while the border makes the quilt. By adding sashing and the border this quilt did not need all the blocks so there is another in the works. {I wouldn't bother with a repeat except that baby quilts are the perfect place to use leftovers.}

My previous hourglasses used the blocks all over or just in the border but I've never sashed them. And for a change I've completed a prompt in the first month.


13 January 2020

Hour Glass Challenge Progress and a Little Color Obsession

Started with these blocks.

Current collection of units for the hourglass challenge.

Happy Monday!

This is the collection of units I've pieced so far, large and smaller hour glass blocks and improv units.
The yellow green is Kona Cotton Wasabi, one of my favorites. The dark brown is Espresso, fun in the mix. And yes, I know the name of the light grey, blue and the tan but I won't obsess over them.

I'm not ready to arrange yet, just piecing units for now.
Stop in at my blog to see what else I'm working on.

Have fun with your projects, I'll stop in to visit.

12 January 2020

Eamon's Mug Rug and Backing

I found more improv...My son asked for a large mug rug...or small table runner
He had gone thru my stash when he moved in to quilting room number three as his bedroom.
Piled in a special place I found these favorite fabrics of his...
When I went to visit my daughter in Portland, Oregon this fall,
I took the fabric with me to make his Christmas present.
Below is the cat batik for backing.
He was surprised and delighted...
I really appreciate the latest prompt...for I had all but forgotten
this blog... xo

11 January 2020

Green Improv Star

Because it is a new year, I have to start somewhere...
Voila, my improv star, from scraps..I found it while organizing.
This is not from this year and it does not follow the prompt.
I figured that if I did not get something out here....I might just
forget about the whole thing... Whew...here we are..

10 January 2020

I Guess This Will Be a 'Practice' Quilt For the New Prompt!

How funny that I was already in the middle of completing an hourglass quilt when the new prompt came out! It's a very simple throw quilt that was made to be used for the Christmas season, so already well in the works. Ann said that I should post it here, so why not! Hopefully there will be time to get it quilted and ready for use by next December.
A simple hourglass throw quilt
The colors were chosen based on some of these lighter greens that I've been attempting to use up and get out of the way. At first I thought to use a darker cream fabric, but together with some of these muddy looking greens, started looking very mushy together, even if only in a stack together. So glad that I found enough of these lighter white creams to use as they were probably the only color that would have made sense with these odd greens. 
Just a little bit of value change in the greens
As I said in the long, rambling blog post, it's probably good that the red border was added as well. Definitely helps make everything look a little more interesting! For this particular quilt, I just wanted a very, very easy way to use up a lot of the green and not be too cheesy holiday looking. Very happy with the overall simplicity and look to this quilt. Lots of ideas running through my brain for a good response to this latest challenge. I think it will take a while to narrow down and settle on one! Very simple block, but potentially, dozens and dozens of ways to implement this design into a quilt.....

08 January 2020

Crumby Hourglasses

The Hourglass prompt prompted me to try out some Crumby Hourglass blocks. 
They are about 11 inches unfinished. 
They will be made with crumbs of one color and a complementary solid. 
Will make 24 for a small donation quilt. 

More on a blog post at: 

I have some other Hourglass quilts in the works. 

07 January 2020

Starting the Timer

There have been more comments than expected about AHIQ and the latest prompt. Several have mourned the drop off of activity on this new blog. Yes, it was much easier to keep it moving when we had a linkup on our own blogs but... the linkups aren't very secure {and I resent being an easy mark for marketeers of porn, scams, and hackers. That's also why I quit using most social media sites.}

If you notice your traffic sources coming from unknown or odd sites, it's a good hint that someone has hacked your blog. The most common way is to substitute a link when you post one that is not https. Please don't include any active links unless they start with https - no matter how popular that quilter or photo is! Read my old post here.

Ok. A bit off track.

The beginning of the year abounds with QALs and we have a multitude of reasons to join: learning a skill, fulfilling a request, participating with a group of friends. Combining several challenges into one often leads to more creative results but the volume can easily overwhelm all our own ideas and plans. Photo-sharing apps actually seem to make it harder to find our own voice. At least they do for me.

Anyway, I'm thrilled so many of you are joining in the hourglass prompt. Janie already has some blocks finished and I do, too.

Despite my enthusiastic start on New Year's Day, these blocks are a mess. I had such high hopes for the original plan and feel like I cut up a lot of fabric that should have simply been a back. Time to  creatively dig out. It needs a huge shovel.

Improv hourglass blocks in pink and aqua
More discussion on my other blog but the current idea is to add some sashing.

Moving the blocks to add sashing

I moved the blocks apart and now am rooting through the stash for sashing possibilities.

This year I plan to write more frequently about whatever utility work I'm doing or have found in my reading. Hopefully this will encourage discussions. There are very few places for those of us who like to talk {or write} more than post photos so I need to put more effort into the reason for this blog.