Monday, January 30, 2017

Fancy four-patches

A stack of 4-inch squares came to hand and the thought crossed my mind that I should USE them instead of simply shuffling them to another place.  Since the group is working on 4-patch projects right now, that seemed an obvious place to start.  What if I made big blocks out of them and set them all together with some kind of sashing?

Cursory play in Electric Quilt gave me a general layout 
and number of blocks to achieve a useful size.  
Looked simple enough!
Things got a bit complicated, however, when I began putting my fabrics up on the wall.  I chose to add a 4th value.  And this meant I had two different kinds of blocks, plus the natural issues that come with using scraps and not wanting adjacent pieces matching, etc.

I had trouble keeping my diagonal set lined up nicely on the wall!
 I found a vintage piece of orange-y rust that makes a nice complement to the blues.  I like the way those narrow rust lines tie the design together.  But this was what I would call a "nasty" fabric -- not 100% cotton and rather hard to handle.  It required me to approach cautiously with the iron and in spite of being a bit stiff it wasn't very stable on either the horizontal or the vertical grain.  (Once the top was completed I was pleased to drop the last few scraps of this one into the trash!)

Diagonally set quilts always have a tendency to skew out of shape.  I spent the best part of an afternoon measuring, cutting, and pinning to get those borders on the way I wanted them.  And even so I can see a couple of spots that will require some attention during the quilting to ensure a nice flat end product.

I am very pleased with the completed top.

And did this project use up that original pile of squares?  Of course not!  Some of those pieces were the wrong colour or wrong value.  Actually that pile is now larger than when I began --  with the addition of pieces from other fabrics that were auditioned and didn't make the cut!

Monday, January 16, 2017

A couple of scrappy finishes

While it is exciting to start something new I do find that seeing something finished has its own kind of satisfaction!  Over the last little while two scrappy projects have been completed, all the way to the binding.

The Plaid ZigZag quilt has borders, quilting, binding.  I'm glad I decided to use multiple fabrics for the light triangles, and the green inner border that I waffled about seems to be just fine.

Inspired by Bonnie Hunter's design that she calls Narragansett Blues.  Started, as usual, thinking it would "use up" some scraps.  None of the fabric piles seem any lower, but I had lots of fun!  This lap-sized quilt is also completely complete and has found its way to its new home.