Monday, June 10, 2013

A Week Of Sewing

I spent last week at a quilt retreat on the northern coast of California. We were on a bluff overlooking Bodega Bay, seven sewing machines and a surger lined up in front of a bank of picture windows. Here's a peek of our view:

I was the sole traditionalist in a group whose work ran the gamut from contemporary to avante garde, art quilts, clothing, and sculpture. It was both exciting and inspiring to watch these talented women work and to gain insight into their process - while I humbly sewed my little squares and triangles together.

I have to say, I got a lot done! While I didn't actually complete anything, I moved significantly forward on five projects, familiarizing myself with a couple new tools and techniques along the way (more about that later.)

I completed 25 Farmers Wife blocks that I had cut and prepped a few weeks ago. Remember my freezer paper tip?

I'm already seeing at least one that may have to be culled. No worries, I have many more to make.

I'm not sure yet how I will set them, but am considering a strippy option.

Isn't this gorgeous?? I found it at The Quilted Angel in Petaluma. My friend coaxed me into buying a semi-large hunk of it, as opposed to my typical 1/3 yard cut. It was something like twelve bucks a yard, but I bit the bullet and got 2 1/2 yds, enough for the strippy (if I choose to go that way) or a border for another project.

I completed all the blocks for my "jelly roll" quilt, which is going in next year's auction, and sewed them together last night. The pattern is Edyta Sitar's "Mosaic Quilt" from her book, Friendship Triangles.

Those black triangles in the middle? Don't ask. I was working from a charm pack, and figured they'd all "go". In retrospect, I wish I hadn't used them. But I was too lazy to unsew and take them out, so I arranged them in the center hoping it would make some sense. It might still, but I need to carry some black out to the edges.  Any suggestions?

Yes, the outside edges of the setting triangles are on the bias. It was either that, or the sashing around the pinwheels, in order for the stripes not to clash. The fabric is all unwashed, so maybe not as stretchy as it might be otherwise? At any rate, I'll have to run a stitch around the edge before proceeding with the border(s).

 I had a pile of triangle squares left over, and am considering a sawtooth border. I'd need to make another 50 or so. This might be the place to add some more of the black toile?

All the while I was constructing these blocks, I had my next leader-ender project going:

I made a big stack of brown and tan triangle squares, which turned into roughly 100 or so hourglass blocks.

By now I was ready for something pure fun. My previous leader/ender bits lent themselves perfectly to the Chinese Coins pattern.

At one point when things got a bit raucous upstairs (read: liberal amounts of wine and disco music) I went downstairs and basted my "Blended Romantic 9-patch".

We also went on hikes every day, and I took lots of pix but I won't bore you with those at the moment. Suffice it to say, nature is very inspiring.

Which leads me to my muse of the day: in nature's palette, nothing ever clashes. What can we learn from this?

Well that's it for today.

Stay tuned for a blurb on a couple of new (to me) tools and techniques for making triangle squares, aka half-square-triangles.


No comments:

Post a Comment