While I am sitting at the computer and eating a late lunch, I shall report on my day yesterday. I was rather "done" by the time I finished, but it felt so good to sit and sew for the day. While I really love the machine quilting, I also enjoy the quilt making process too. And I realise I have missed time like this. So I have had my "creative" fix for now, but hopefully will fit more in sometime. As our group has an exhibition on in October, I am keen to make a dent in my PHD pile. So why, you may ask am I starting something new? I saw this range of fabrics some time ago on Michele Hill's blog, and then when the fabric rep was here recently I saw a pattern using these fabrics, so ordered them all. The pattern was also made up in other colours, which I am keen to explore also.
This pattern is Antelope Canyon by Laurie Shifrin Designs, and this is the version made with the Garden Delights fabric range. (I like the pattern made with the Texture Graphics range also, which are blacks through to grey and taupe. There are other coloured versions being made by members of our group, so will have more to show soon. Val came yesterday to sort her fabrics and start cutting strips, which I will show you further down, and this mornings report is that she is busy cutting into lengths and start sewing.
This is the Garden Delights range from "In The Beginning fabrics" and is 2 jelly rolls.
I was fortunate that this design had been made with these fabrics, and I had good diagrams of what fabric to use where. The other girls don't have that and need to choose fabrics of their own, which makes the process slower.
I started this about 5pm on Tuesday afternoon when I had turned Max off for the day. It was an impulsive decision to take the next day off. I cut until 10.30 that night, and this is my 2 1/2" strips cut into lengths, and marked with their numbers. (They do recommend plastic bags labelled, but I was not going anywhere with my fabrics, and intended to sew them quick, so laid them out on a cutting mat.)
I was back in the studio by 7am Wednesday morning, after having done the washing and tidied the kitchen, and lit the fire. (But the bed was unmade, and the floor not swept!)
The pattern called for some 1 1/2" strips, so I needed to cut the jelly roll strips down. They instructed to cut off 1/2" and then cut 1 1/2" and discard the remainder, and I did that for the first one. You can see one in the next photo. I know I am not going to run out of fabric any time soon, but I could not just throw those bits away!!??
I discovered that the serrated edges did not count in the 2 1/2" of the strip, so I carefully cut them off, cut my 1 1/2" strip and then a 1" and then the trimmed the serrations on the other side, and felt much better. Now don't ask me what I am going to do with all those 1" leftover bits, but I felt like it was a waste to have 2 smaller pieces???
And it's not really a good idea to wear black when you are doing that task!
Now I had a neat little pile of 1 1/2" and 1" strips.
And these all needed to be cut to exact lengths with numbers as well. There were MM's and PP's and Y's and EE's etc, so you had to be careful to mind your P's and Q's!!
And then there was the background, which is cream. I cut this from a bolt, so did not have to use the jelly roll pieces. And then they needed to be cut into lengths, and labelled.
Then it was time to clean the fluff from my machine (which was not much as it doesn't get much sewing time), put in a new needle and wind some bobbins. By this time it was 9.50am and I started reading the instructions for block assembly.
It did take a little bit of working out, but once you started, it all made sense. The centres of my first 4 blocks. There are only 4 blocks in this quilt.
And this is where I was by 1pm.
Val had arrived as I started sewing about 10am, and she had tubs of fabrics from which to choose. Then it was over to the ironing table to press. You can see her colours are a lot more vibrant.
She chose a background and proceeded to cut her 2 1/2" and 1 1/2" strips, and then into lengths and labelled. As she was going home, these were all placed into labelled bags.
I must be getting somewhere, as all my strips now fitted into this space on one cutting mat.
I had to join my coloureds to the background of the relevant numbers as in the instructions. When I was joining my CC's and BB's, I had one background spare, which meant I was short of a coloured piece. I searched everywhere, and went to the leftover bits, to see if I could find another piece, even if I had to join ends, but to no avail. So I thought don't stress, I will just put another piece in! Not long after, and thankfully before I needed to use it, I found the lost piece, on the floor under the table!
More progress, taken about 7pm. (I know the times of these, because my phone tells me what time the photo was taken!!)
By 10.20 I had 3 blocks finished, and the other still had 3 rows to be stitched. Can I finish it, or not?? I was so close, but thought I might had a cuppa and a snack, it would keep me going.
3 rows to go on the last block.
And here is the time when I had done the last block and sewn them all together and was done! And I will add here, that those bobbins that I wound earlier, lasted until all 4 blocks were made, and I ran out while I was sewing the blocks together!
Not sure why, but these little pieces were left on the table still?
And I am finding those sticky labels, all over the place today, even in the kitchen.
This is what's left from 2 jelly rolls.
And this is what I made on my "midweek distraction".
Probably not a bad result, and I am pleased with it. I will say again, that it cut a lot of time by being able to look at the picture for colour placement. And I don't pin, (except when I was sewing the 4 blocks together). I did not press until I had sewn about 2 or 3 borders on each block, so that made things much faster. It was important to have your 1/4" seam accurate, as all the lengths had been cut, so if they did not fit, you knew. After my first centre, I got that right, and did not sew a "scant" seam as instructed. And it is pretty flat, and all 4 blocks fitted together well.
All in all, I really enjoyed my day, it was as good as therapy. Thank you all for your lovely comments easing my guilt in taking a day off. I just have to hope that my quilter will be able to fit this into her schedule "sometime". And I am thinking about another one in different colours, etc.
Back to Max, who is being very patient, and thanks for listening.
Blessings, From Jude