Monday, April 23, 2018

Examining the possibilities


Over the weekend, I dug out a few pieces of fabric that might read as solids and that I had enough of for a wide border. Except for the blue-gray, all are things that were "gifted" or donated to me from someone else's stash.

I decided to lay them out and post pictures, thinking of getting help in deciding what to do next.

This is the first fabric I tried.

I was thinking it might be a bit too busy, but it looks a lot better than I thought and contrasts nicely with the black.



I could get a fairly wide inner border and maybe add a narrow outer border, or a pieced outer border that included the left-over black.










This is a mottled green that is in a rather large amount.

It seems a bit dark and doesn't seem to pick out the colors in the pieced blocks, bit might work with a light inner border.










This looks a bit darker in the picture, but is actually a very light bright turquoise.  It might make a good inner border for one of the darker fabrics. I do have a large solid in a similar color.

This is a blueish gray I bought long ago for another project and later changed my mind. It has one of the longest lives in the stash pile and wants some air-time.


I think it goes OK but doesn't add much and might need help from some of the other selections.














This is the fabric I used in the center of the pieced blocks.

It would have been my first choice except that there is not enough to make more than a pieced one-inch strip.

If I did that, it wouldn't work with most of these other fabrics.









The flimsy is 59"x79".

A total border of five or six inches all around would put this at a useful size for a single bed.

As it is now, it would be fine for a futon.

When I look through quilting magazines, I find quite a variety of finished sizes. Maybe some re just intended to be hung on a wall or as a sofa throw, so it is hard to decide what the perfect size might be.

I suspect the quilter adjusts the size to accommodate the combination of blocks and borders to set it off. (which is basically the same thing I do). So ... this is how far the week has brought me.
Any suggestions or advice will be welcome. Meanwhile, I have a mending job to tackle while I mull it over. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

It's on the fence


Yesterday I sewed the last row in place.

It was gusty and growing dark, so I took a chance that the morning would be better for a photo shoot.

Well, it is still windy  ... especially the section of the fence with sunshine on it.

I decided the back fence would work better, even in the shade.

At this point, the size is 59" x 79".
I could hardly reach the top links of the fence to place the clips.
This could easily fit my bed without adding more ... but then, most people don't sleep on a semi-single futon.

Anyway, now I am thinking of what kind of border to add.

With all these one inch pieces, I am thinking the first border needs to be only one color and at least two inches wide.

I have been thinking of using some of the many 2x2 inch blocks with some of the leftover purplish-black mixed in, and then a solid outer border of the same as the first. My thinking is maybe purple or turquoise. I have yet to check my stash. Many of the fabrics came to me from friends or people leaving the country. Some scraps seem to have been chopped up with a purpose but that is a mystery to me. some have been sewed and then chopped into blocks.

Then, again, I look at this picture and think the border needs to be more calming to contain all these wild scraps. I really don't want to buy any fabric so that might be a challenge, though I might be able to piece a single color to get wider border strips.

Another challenge is ironing all those seams. Ironing one block sometimes un-irons the neighboring one. At least sewing by hand gives me a choice.....  I am not even thinking of the quilting part!

Monday, April 16, 2018

Bit by bit


Since I have no place to lay the rows out
(without adding much dog hair),
I pinned the sewn segment to the curtain behind the sofa.

After putting each row together, I need to get an idea of which setting triangles to use so that I won't have the same fabrics close together.

The shorter rows, I could piece on the train but now I am to the long diagonal and will need a bit more sofa time to get those joined.

Friday was taken up by planning and running my Cub Scout Pack meeting and Saturday was an Order of the Arrow event. Nikko and I took the car out to the scout area and I led the "Brotherhood walk". I use a trail that is not used for anything else so had to do the walk first with a saw and clippers to clear off fallen trees and branches that had been brought down by the snow.

Luckily the weather was not as windy as predicted so everything went well. Nikko was so tired that she fell asleep on the front car seat on the way home. I had to turn in right away too because the choir was to sing for the early service, meaning I had to have Nikko walked and fed and be out of the house before seven to get there in time.


Sunday I was invited to lunch with the rest of the guys in the bass and tenor section. I did the salad bar but it was all-you-can-eat thing with lots of kinds of meat being brought around and served up at each table. I could hardly even finish the salad, taking just a sampling of about half the things offered. I took one piece of chicken from the meat man but in the end, brought it home to use in a sandwich untouched.

THEN ... in the evening we had a nice family gathering to celebrate April birthdays ... well, including Leia whose birthday is at the end of March. Also what would have been Paul's 81st birthday, plus my wonderful SIL and Peter, my "Son-on-loan".

Two big meals out in one day was a bit much for me and my tummy did some massive complaining during the night, but I was able to get out at 4am for onigiri delivery and make it to school afterwards.

A lot of things going on tomorrow, so it may be Wednesday before I can get the lower half of the rows joined on. I still am thinking of what I will put in the border. I have a lot of 2x2 inch squares that might like to get out of their tin....

Friday, April 6, 2018

It's taken some time...


Finally I have assembled enough blocks that I think can be turned into a single bed size quilt.

35 crumb blocks and 24 setting blocks are done and ready to be joined together.

I laid them out on the empty apartment floor and moved them around, trying to get a balance of color without getting the same fabrics in nearby blocks.

Then I pinned numbers on each one so I know where they are to be sewed in strips.















meanwhile, I am sewing small blocks for the outer border. I will need 20 of these side squares and have finished four.

Next I will see if I have enough of the purplish-black to do the outside triangles.

I have a bit more fabric in the same color but with a streaked print instead of blotchy like I have used so far.

If it doesn't make enough, I have some solid black. I'll just take it one step at a time.

I don't think it will be hard to make some kind of scrappy border ... maybe something solid, then something scrappy followed by another solid or print. This is really a "Plan-as-you-go" kind of challenge. I am happy to say that my marked and cut 1x2 inch squares are significantly reduced in number. The one-inch bits will be used in the side squares and I still have plenty.

Meanwhile, I have a scouting event both this weekend and next ... but tomorrow it is supposed to rain and I am now dealing with a rather severe leaking roof. At this point I am dithering over going at all, as there are surely others who can do my tasks (and could probably use the experience.)

The grape hyacinth is now enjoying a bit of spring in the weed lot on the corner. This is where there was knee-high grass a few years back.
Two years ago I planted tulip bulbs along the fence but the "plant vandal" ripped off the flowers and they haven't done well since. Two came up among these flowers but they will not bloom. I may dig them out and move them to a different place.
When these are finished, I will plant salvias. They bloom all summer and into the fall with no care at all and now there are volunteers coming up from seed. Pink-headed knotweed covers a lot of the gravel and keeps the rain from washing the dirt out onto the road.
I still get yelled at by Mr. Mori, who lives in the apartment on the other side of the fence, for burglerizing the weeds so I only pull a few at a time as I walk by. I am not sure why he preferred the knee-high weeds catching garbage and animal poop and plastic that held water and gave mosquitoes a good start. The house-owners in the neighborhood are happy with the new look. (and the owner of that triangle of land is living somewhere else and doesn't seem to care).