VOWIP

We–or maybe just I?–need a new acronym. Very Old Work In Progress. Only because So Old I’m Embarrassed To Admit It Work In Progress is too cumbersome. I don’t even know how I’d pronounce SOIETAIWIP, so VOWIP it is.

Anyhoo. My best guess at the age of this WIP is eight years. It might be as much as ten. Yikes! These blocks were originally destined to be a quilt that would coordinate with the eggplant-colored sofas of a best friend.

Paper-pieced designs from Carol Doak's "40 Bright & Bold Paper-Pieced Blocks."

Paper-pieced designs from Carol Doak’s “40 Bright & Bold Paper-Pieced Blocks.”

Before I could finish, she met her Mr. Right. When they moved in together, he “made” her get rid of the purple sofas (too feminine), she “made” him get rid of the nasty-gross thing he’d been sitting on, and they bought something they both liked. Lovely for them, but bad for me–the new sofa was not going to look good with these fabrics. So the whole thing got sidelined.

Fast-forward to a couple months ago, and a comment by my mom provided me with an idea to re-purpose these into a gift for one of my aunts. She did all of the printing for my wedding in 2012 and would not let me pay for any of it. An incredible gift, right? Right!

So, I grabbed the blocks and all the fabric I’d stored with them and made two moreΒ  on Saturday for a total of nine.005 004Then I spent much of Sunday (more than three movies!) removing the paper backing from each one. BTW, does anyone else despise this part of the paper-piecing process? I love the end result, but egads! I detest that stage.

While doing that, I discovered some incredibly scant seams hiding under all that paper.

Yowza! I still have plenty of that green fabric left over, so I have no clue why I didn't just cut larger pieces!  :P

Yowza! I still have plenty of that green fabric left over, so I have no clue why I didn’t just cut larger pieces! πŸ˜›

Here’s what I decided to do to reinforce those seams.

I very, very narrowly top-stitched around the scant triangles.

I very, very narrowly top-stitched around the scant triangles.

Here’s a good tip from Lily’s Quilts if you have to fix one yourself. I skipped the interfacing this time because I felt I had just enough fabric that it wasn’t necessary.

Monday I cut setting squares and began stitching them together with the pieced blocks and finished this much of the flimsy yesterday.

This is more traditional than most things I make these days, and the only sampler quilt I've made to date.

This is more traditional than most things I make these days, and the only sampler quilt I’ve made to date.

Now I’m trying to decide whether to add borders. I kind of dig it like this, but my aunt’s tastes are more traditional (thus the reason this was perfect for her), and I feel like she might see it as “missing something.” Opinions?

Also since last Wednesday’s post, I got all of my Beanstalk strip sets sewn together. Now I’m just waiting for more of the background fabric to arrive in the mail. Heh. Bit of a mistake caused the need for that, but you’ll keep my secret, right?002

As always, I’m linking up with Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday. (Never mind! Lee’s on vacation! Good for her!) May all your WIP’s and VOWIP’s become finishes!WIP Wednesday

WIP Wednesday: Beanstalks

I had Monday off from work, so this happened:014I mean, why work on other WIPs when you can start a new one? But none of my other WIPs were inspiring me on Monday, and these colors are so cheerful that I couldn’t resist. Already I have a number of strip sets sewn together….002And here are the rest of the strips, queued up and ready for the next chain-piecing session:001Ultimately these are destined to become the “flowers” (?) in the Beanstalks pattern from the book Quilts from the House of Tula Pink.

Since my last post, I also managed to finish the MIL quilt top and back and get it to my quilter. I even managed to get it out in the sunlight first, with the hope of snapping some truer-color photographs. Voila.

You be the judge--does this qualify as "deep teal" and "true red?" (I know, I've leaned toward aqua in a few places, but variety was necessary!)  :)

You be the judge–does this qualify as “deep teal” and “true red?” (I know, I’ve leaned toward aqua in a few places, but variety was necessary!) πŸ™‚

Most of my points matched up beautifully. Thank you, Julie Herman, for creating such great tools and patterns!

Most of my points matched up beautifully. Thank you, Julie Herman, for creating such great tools and patterns!

 

One of my favorite blocks, made from a who-knows-how-old fat quarter. I love the way the subtle stripes radiate out from the center.

One of my favorite blocks, made from a who-knows-how-old fat quarter. I love the way the subtle stripes radiate out from the center.

And that wraps up my recent quilting efforts. I hope your day is a good one–whether you get to quilt or not.

Linking up to Freshly Pieced–I’m glad Lee likes to post pics of her Aviatrix Medallion quilt, because I love looking at them!WIP Wednesday

WIP Wednesday: MIL Quilt

I really have to start brainstorming a “real” name for this quilt. “The MIL Quilt” just won’t do at all. It is coming together rather quickly, though. The triangle blocks are large enough that, once they’ve been assembled, the rest goes lickety-split.

I had to pay close attention as I sewed, otherwise I had a tendency to stitch bits onto the wrong edge.

I had to pay close attention as I sewed, otherwise I had a tendency to stitch bits onto the wrong edge.

While none of the points came out badly, I certainly improved in the "matching up department" as I went along.

While none of the points came out badly, they certainly improved as I went along. I achieved a “top speed” of four blocks per 30 minutes. Even with chain piecing, I was back & forth between the ironing board and sewing machine A LOT.

I really love the secodary pattern created by the inner triangles. I'd like to try this pattern again using different colors to really enhance that aspect.

I really love the secodary pattern created by the inner triangles. I’d like to try this pattern again using different colors to enhance that aspect of the design.

Like I said--this one grows quickly!

Like I said–this one grows quickly! All of the blocks are complete.

I am finding that the reds are difficult to photograph. Do you have any tips for me? I’m hoping my problems will be solved once I can get it outside in the natural light, but the sky has poured rain each day I’ve worked on it thus far, so a “design floor” near the window is as good as it gets for now.

Linking to Freshly Pieced, where WIP Wednesday is being guest-hosted by Lindsey. WIP Wednesday

 

I think I can, I think I can

Deadline, shmeadline. I can do this!

Sugar Snow in blue

Sugar Snow in blue

Each of the participants in this retirement gift project got their blocks to me with plenty of time to get them stitched up with the solid background fabric. I have to say I was pretty impressed with the quality of the blocks, considering the wide range of sewing experience in the group. A couple blocks ended up with the locations of the green & white fabrics swapped, and a couple others have the pinwheel turning in the opposite direction, but without those little differences it wouldn’t look like the collaborative effort that it is. πŸ™‚ I delivered it to the long-armer yesterday morning. By the time I get it back I may have to do an all-night binding session in order to be ready to gift it at the party next week, but let’s hope not. If I pretend that I possess time-management skills and have my binding ready to go before I pick it up, I’ll be golden. πŸ˜‰

Once I delivered that to the quilter, I began cutting out the pieces for my MIL’s quilt. I’m using Julie Herman‘s Lotus pattern, as I think it will appeal to my MIL and show off the contrast in her “true red and deep teal” color scheme. Plus it’s just a beautiful pattern.

The first jewel shapes. The Daylilies fabric had been in my stash for awhile, just waiting for the perfect project.

The first jewel shapes. The Daylilies fabric had been in my stash for awhile, just waiting for the perfect project.

By next week I should have a finish, and (I hope) some significant progress on this quilt to share. Her birthday is at the end of August, so I’m setting myself another deadline.

Joining the link-up at Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday.WIP Wednesday

 

My First Hexies

If any of you has read me more than once, you may be getting sick of the Soy Amado blocks. But as one commenter pointed out, they are addictive. Plus, I still haven’t managed to demolish my scrap pile the way I’d hoped. AND they are a really, really great way to experiment with new techniques. This week I decided to tackle hexagons. I know, I am late to this party. No one really seems to be doing them right now, but I was busy with other projects last year when everyone else was making hexies, so here I am. πŸ˜€

At first I was feeling unsure, so I chickened out and made a wonky-hexy-cabin.001Then I got irritated with myself–I stitched more complicated seams back in my garment-sewing days, why am I hesitant about this? So I joined three and appliqued them on a background. And I was right to be irritated with me. The prints may make it hard to see, but that Y-seam looks fabulous, and lays perfectly flat.004I shouldn’t have been so cocky. The first attempt at an entire block was only mostly successful.005The poor bunnies are puckered, and I have no idea what I was thinking when it came to the off-centered-ness of it all. If I wanted to let myself off the hook, I would say that I didn’t realize the hexagons weren’t quite exactly the same size, as they came from different sources. Some were swag from Portland SewDown, some were from a Simply Style Honeycomb pre-cut, and some I cut from scraps using the template that came with the pre-cuts. But I shouldn’t let myself off the hook, because pretty much every hexagon tutorial I’ve seen mentions how much easier this is if you are careful with your cutting. And since that applies to pretty much everything quilty, I know better!

Well, I learned from my mistake, with this lovely result:006I feel good enough about this to think I may actually tackle a larger hexagon project. (That is, after all, why I bought the Honeycomb in the first place, so it’s time to follow through!)

Linking up with Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday.WIP Wednesday

The White Rabbit

No time for writing today. Otherwise I’ll be chanting, “I’m late, I’m late, I’m late!” on my way to work. Instead you get pictures of a bunch more blocks for Soy Amado. I’m at nearly 50 now. I thought I was somewhere between 20 and 30. πŸ™‚ Most of these were created out of swag from Portland SewDown, with some bits of old and new thrown in to bring them up to size.

This is my favorite of the batch so far.

This is my favorite of the batch so far.

001 002 003 004 005 007 008

These little greenies just need their borders.

These little greenies just need their borders.

The only other thing I’m up to today is cutting block pieces for that retirement quilt I mentioned the other day. Another co-worker has volunteered to stitch one up, so less work for me. Yay!

Solid blue = Robert Kaufman Pure Organic Solids. Also here are a little Violet Craft (Waterfront Park), Joel Dewberry (Heirloom), Robert Kaufman (Fusions--this is several years old), and Bonnie Benn Stratton (Garden Botanica--this one is VERY old, but the color was right).

Solid blue = Robert Kaufman Pure Organic Solids. Also here are a little Violet Craft (Waterfront Park), Joel Dewberry (Heirloom), Robert Kaufman (Fusions–this is several years old), and Bonnie Benn Stratton (Garden Botanica–this one is VERY old, but the color was right).

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.WIP Wednesday

More, more, MORE!

Yes, I am still plugging away at the piles of scraps. My rate of progress has slowed significantly over recent days, however, as my MIL is coming for a visit. I must stow the mess away for a bit.Β  πŸ˜€ Below are the new blocks for Soy Amado since my post last week.

The animal print blocks got quilted and trimmed.

The animal print blocks got quilted and trimmed.

This FMQ pattern is based on Leah Day's Cartoon Trees design. I thought it evoked tiger stripes just as well.

This FMQ pattern is based on Leah Day’s Cartoon Trees design. I thought it evoked tiger stripes just as well.

I made these Easter weekend. The colors & fabrics seem very "spring" to me.

I made these Easter weekend. These are the best pinwheel points I have ever achieved. πŸ™‚

More animal print blocks.

More animal print blocks.

Some improv-ish batik blocks.

Some improv-ish batik blocks.

Playing with curved seams. Can't decide how to quilt it yet.

Playing with curved seams. Can’t decide how to quilt it yet.

And finally, the next block ready to be stitched together.

And finally, the next block ready to be stitched together.

Hope you’re all having a great week! Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.WIP Wednesday