I thought I would give you all an update on the improvisationally free-form log cabin block style pieced quilt I’ve been working on since January 2020 – Seattle Scrappy. I last updated you on this piece in my March post – Update on Seattle Scrappy (though I think here and there in the Postscript section of later posts I provided a brief update…maybe).
The quilt began as a pile of scraps that my friend Dana let me play with when I attended a quilt retreat in Poulsbo, Washington in January 2020 (see posts Mini Quilt Retreat, January 2020 and A Jaunt About Poulsbo, WA). I pieced these scraps into free form log cabin blocks (no measuring, just “eye-balling” and trimming to make fit):
I made a lot of blocks and when I returned home I arranged them into this quilt top:
I decided to name the piece: Seattle Scrappy.
For the past 7 or so months, I’ve been hand stitching the quilt.
Update on “Seattle Scrappy”
In my mind I am doing something like Kantha hand stitching but actually what I am doing should be called “Drunken Kantha” (no I am not drinking while stitching – that could be disastrous since I am a “light-weight” when it comes to alcohol consumption, I would impale my finger…constantly…with the needle) as, well…it sort of looks…sloppy…
Let’s get this over with – let me show you the photos – I am nearly 1/3rd done on stitching this quilt which measures approximately 60 inches by 60 inches:
If you are gasping or just shaking your head at this point as you look at the nonuniform stitching, I have an artistic design “excuse” for the stitching. It is a weak excuse but here goes: As it frequently rains in Seattle, Washington, I wanted the stitching to capture the feeling of a rainstorm (with the wind blowing the rain sideways…).
There. That sounds quite reasonable – it was just my artistic design, not that I am a terrible Kantha-stitcherist! (smile).
But seriously, I am hopeful it will look acceptable once I get the whole thing stitched, and then trim off the excess batting and backing, do a whole lot of ironing, and bind the edges in some manner (either a traditional quilt binding or the art quilt technique of putting a “facing” on the back edges of the quilt).
I cannot believe how long it takes to hand quilt a lap sized quilt. I’ve hand quilted smaller pieces before (see post What’s on My Lap) and I found it very meditative. I think in the future I will reserve hand quilting only for smaller pieces, it was a bit too ambitious an undertaking (for a slopping hand quilter) to hand quilt Seattle Scrappy!
Till the next update, Seattle Scrappy will continue to sit on the edge of my chair in the living room, waiting for the next set of haphazard stitches!
Hopefully I did not visually traumatize you with images of my hand stitching.
If I have, I would like to undo the damage by referring you to look at the website of one of my extremely talented blogging buddies – Mariss the Quilter: Fabrications – who is a masterful Kantha stitcher. Check out her post On Hand Stitching to see some amazing Kantha stitching!
Someday…maybe…I can get my stitching to a “less scary point”. I am not aiming for her level of talent, just not to scare myself or others – ha! I did recently actually invest in a book on Kantha stitching. So perhaps there is hope…
Yes, this blog is called “tierneycreates” and Tierney should probably discuss…well…doing some creating…instead of her random rambles about her Minimalism Journey (Part II of her ramble will continue in the next post).
I am participating in Sherri Lynn Wood’s (author of The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters) recycled quilt challenge: Make Do Quilt Challenge – #makedoquilt. You can read about this challenge on Sherri Lynn’s blog – dainty time.net; or you can read a wonderful post by Kris R. about this challenge and “the skinny on trashing textiles” on one of the wonderful blogs I follow, Coloring Outside the Lines:
The Made Do Quilt Challenge asks you make a quilt out of recycled textiles using one of the “Scores” that Sherri Lynn Wood discusses in her book The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters (for more about this book, see my postCreative Inspiration: Books I Own).
In her book, she helps guide the quilter, new to improvisational piecing, by providing “scores” to suggest the creation of an improv quilt. Ms. Wood likens these score to “musical scores” and shares the following:
In creating a musical score, a composer is making a record of how the music is to be performed. Yet each performance of the score will be unique. – Sherri Lynn Wood
For my challenge quilt, I am using the “Score” called Floating Squares. The score suggests to limit yourself to three fabrics (two used in small amounts and one used to “float” the improv squares). I am using 5 fabrics but treating four of the fabrics as pairs as they are loosely (very loosely) in the sort of same color way.
My fabrics are:
A recycled table runner from a thrift shop that is in stripped orange, greens, reds and purples.
Recycled orange corduroy pants (I only have a tiny bit left and it is the companion fabric to the #1 fabric above)
A recycled tweed jumper
Gold-ish recycled home decor fabric scraps (this is the companion fabric paired with the tweed in #3 – yes of course brown tweed and deep gold lame-ish fabric are in the same color way – ha!)
I began with cutting up squares with scissors (Sherri Lynn Wood is all about ruler free design) and ended up with these squares on my design wall:
Here is my “pile-o-denim” scraps on the floor to float my squares in:
And here is where I am with the piece so far:
I am very interested to see how it comes out. I am just making sections and when I feel I am ready, I will figure out the layout (the initial layout you see above may have nothing to do with the final piece).
So that is my current Tierney-creating!
Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer has taken a short hiatus from her SchnauzerSnips blog page but she will return soon with her story of “The Herd” (recently we babysat two other schnauzers for 5 days).
In my post,Seattle Public Utilities’ Portable Works Collection, I shared my elation of the piece Abandoned Water Structure (designed and pieced by myself and quilted by Guadalupe Designs) being purchased by the City of Seattle for its Seattle Public Utilities Portable Art Collection. Yesterday I mailed it off the framer in Seattle and I wanted to share the custom label I made for the back of the piece – I included the photo of the structure that inspired my creation of the piece:
I of course have more random rambles, but I am trying not to make my posts too long (so you do not fall asleep while reading!). More next time!
Feature image photo credit: Charles Novaes, free images.com
My next post was going to be about the cool projects other quilters were working on at the retreat (tuffets!) I attended last weekend. However, I do not want to lose the momentum from the project discussed in my Thursday 08/11/16 post –What’s on the Design Wall (Need Your Help).
I so appreciate all the enthusiastic responses, votes, and ideas. I have to tell those of you who commented: You made a MESS of my studio (smile)!
You should have seen my little studio – various fabrics pulled out from my stash in many different colors, from your suggestions, strewn about everywhere. It was like a tornado of fabric options had blown through.
Reading all the comments was very fun – it was like you all were crammed into my tiny studio (where would I fit you all?!??!) and we were looking through my stash together and throwing around ideas (and fabric).
Of course, I would have to plan a snack and beverage for all my studio guests crammed into the tiny room…but where would I set out the plates and cups? (Maybe I could go scavenge some more fruit from my neighborhood to serve as snacks…but that is an upcoming post: Fruits of My Neighborhood Part III!)
This project began with a bag of colorful Batik scraps (that I embarrassinglyactually purchased…in a moment of weakness from the Stitchin’ Postquilt shop’s basket of scrap bags for sale..that shop is loaded with temptation!)
I turned many of those scraps into 24 6′ x 6″ blocks:
I presented four (4) options for the layout on the blocks and here are the votes by Option:
OPTION 1A – Float the blocks individually in a neutral background: 2 Votes
OPTION 1B – Group the blocks together and then float the whole grouping in a neutral background: 0 Votes
OPTION 2A – Float the blocks individually in a gray background: 4 Votes
OPTION 2B – Group the blocks together and then float the whole grouping in a gray background: 2 Votes
In addition to voting on options I presented, many of you in your comments suggested different options(I hope I captured the essence of all the comments to date, my apologies if I left a summary of your comment out below):
Group them together on a neutral background not trying to make them perfectly square, use Misty Fuse to attach them
Stitch the blocks together, use a pieced binding to enclose them, they speak so well on their own!
Group them together on the grey but make sure all blue sides are facing opposite of the grey fabric and placed up against another block rather than up against the grey fabric not allowing a blue side to but up against another blue.
Float each block individually, with a PURPLE or RED background- keep the color going! And maybe put a yellowsquare at each “intersection”
Golden brown would be nice also (to float blocks).
I agree with some others are dark brown, plum, dark red, I’d be inclined to try them on different ones and see which calls loudest.I start to wonder if it’s be even better on the dark brown.
I think a chocolate brown would be so cool.
I would make more blocks, group them without sashing or a border, and bind with a pieced binding (NOTE: I did make more blocks, see below!)
If you do want separation, don’t set them straight, in rows and columns. Use your separator in more random sizing — perhaps framing each one with the same fabric but in wonky widths. It might be easiest to pull off with a fabric that has some pattern so the seams between newly framed blocks disappear a bit.
If you really want to set them apart on a different background, what about looking at either a gold dupionior a deep purple dupioni?
(from a text to my phone, not posted to the blog) What came to mind was floating blocks in a round of neutral logs then a round of gray logs – maybe alternate with the reverse – round of gray first then neutral – then you float and have blocks side by side – and I’m thinking of a neutral acid yellow or lime greenor maybe an acid yellow orange – a crisp bright marigold color – all would look good with the blocks and gray.
Option Z: I love love love the blocks, but am partial to flashy colorsmounted on a white background. I also like sashing between the blocks because it makes each one pop.
While I like both versions of placing all the blocks together and placing with sashing, I would need to try the sashing version using a variety of sizes and different shades of either the light or the grey.
One fellow blogger, Melanie @ Catbird Quilt Studio was kind enough to e-mail me a photo of one of her lovely scrappy log cabin quilts, “Broken Pains” as an example of a layout she used:
In addition to showing you the scraps I started with, in the previous post I shared the pile of scraps I had left over from trimming the original set of blocks down to a 6″ x 6″ size:
In the evening on Friday and Saturday, I turned the trimmings from those scraps and some of the remaining scraps into 23 more 6″ x 6″ blocks:
I now have scraps left over from trimming the latest blocks and the remaining original scraps that started it all…and yes, I am going to make more blocks out of them! (Besides 47, 24 + 23, is an usual odd number of blocks. )
I tried out many of your color suggestions. To save time, I had a “pocket full of scrappy blocks” as I experimented. I never imagined walking around my house with a pocket full of quilt blocks!
Now, try and use your imagination as you look at my experiments. Although I tried to put strong lighting on the design wall, if you have been following my blog for a while, you know I am not the best photographer (if I tried to make photography a career I would be very hungry).
I provide two layouts on each test background fabric: 1) floated and 2) grouped together with a border.
More disclaimers (soon you will be frightened to even scroll down and look…): I did not iron the fabric I used as the test background and I randomly selected the blocks to go onto the test fabric. (If this were a real quilt layout, I would have given more thought to the block placement and order.)
Thank you so much for all the great ideas. I also appreciated all the layout and general design ideas.
My decision is as follows:
Make more blocks, trying to use up nearly all the remaining scraps.
Do not make a quilt with these blocks, instead make a SERIES of artsy table runners for my tierneycreates Etsy shop using various combinationsand layouts of these blocks and my favorites of the backgrounds above (red, marigold, gold, purple, dark brown, and lime/acid green).
Thanks for coming with me on this color and design adventure! I will update you all as I complete the table runners!
Continuing my series on What’s on the Design Wall: Projects in Progress…
Terry the Quilting Husband, fresh from his sale of two of his quilts during the 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, is eagerly working on a new piece (maybe for the 2017 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show?).
Terry is using our new temporary “giant design wall” that I discuss in the post Whole House Crafting. Until we get the interior walls of our house repainted (someday) we are just using a package of Warm & Natural batting on one of our hallway walls. A future house project is to build a nice large design wall on this side of the one hallway in our little home.
Terry likes to work from parameters I start him off with and he does not like quilt patterns of any kind. I tried to help him learn how to follow quilt patterns, but he strongly prefers to work intuitively.
I had a stack of 2.5 inch strips from an old kit (for a very ugly table runner) that I was never going to make. After sewing sections of the strips together, he is going to inset denim between them some how. All his concept – I only gave him the strips.
Here is my stash of recycle denim he is looking through to complete his design:
Continuing my series of blog posts of photos and experiences from attending the annual Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show on Saturday July 9, 2016.
Tierney’s SOQS Quilts
Part of the fun (or challenge) of putting quilts in the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (SOQS) is finding where they are hung in the show.
In addition to the quilt, Recycled Doors, I had in the Central Oregon SAQA Doors Exhibit (see post 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show Part II) I had 5 other quilts. I was only able to locate 2 of the 5 other quilts at the show.
Terry the Quilting Husband and I stumbled upon one of my quilts in an awesome location – in front of The Nest Design Studio. The aesthetic of my quilt hung outside a home design studio was exquisite. I am honored that the SOQS staff selected that location to hang my quilt.
I discovered a crowd of people looking at the quilt and I could not resist: I introduced myself as as “the artist”, answered questions and posed for photos with the quilt.
I also loitered around the quilt for about 5 minutes to introduce myself again to the next group of people admiring the quilt. I got to chat with several lovely individuals, posed for a couple more photos with the quilt, and got some new tierneycreates blog readers!
Alas, the quilt did not sell. I might have priced it too high and it was not bed size as I had originally intended (for that story, please see the 5/1/16 post The Downsized Quilt). However, I am happy to have it back at home. It now rests on the back of the chair in my cozy reading nook.
Terry the Quilting Husband’s SOQS Quilts
The 2016 SOQS was Terry’s first time showing his quilts. He was part of the Special Exhibit: Made by Men. Here is a link to the Bend Bulletin article on the Made by Men Exhibit, which featured 27 quilts made by male quilters from 4 different states:
Terry tried to play it off but I could tell he was pretty proud having his five (5) quilts hanging in the special exhibit.
I dragged him over to several groups of people who were admiring his quilts and introduced him as “the quilter”. It was very endearing to listen to him answer questions on how a quilt was made and his design process!
Two (2) of his quilts sold – Cozy Flannel Shirts and Charming You. He already has two quilts in queue for the 2017 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show!
I continue to listen to and enjoy the excellent audiobook – Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseveranceby Angela Duckworth (2016), read by the author, first mentioned in my 07/02/16 post Grit.
The author discusses the famous “Bricklayer Parable” in regards to “job” vs. “career” vs. “calling“. Here is a paraphrasing of that parable:
A man comes upon three men laying bricks for a church being built.
He asks the first man: ‘What are you doing?’ The first man replies: ‘I am taking bricks and piling them one on top of the other and putting cement in between them.’
He asks the second man: ‘What are you doing?’ The second man replies: ‘I’m building a wall that will form the outside structure of a large building.’
Finally he asked the third man: ‘What are you doing?’ The third man replies: ‘I am building a house of God.’
All three men are performing the same job but they all have different perspectives on that task – “a job” vs. “a career” vs. “a calling”.
So far (and I am over 1/2 way through) this is, in my opinion, a truly inspirational five (5) star audiobook.
Once upon a time there was a quilter who was also married to a quilter. The quilter and her husband-the-quilter decided to each put five (5) quilts into the 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, for a total of ten (10) quilts. They finished their 10 quilts and had them all back from the magical long-arm quilter by April 2016. The quilts needed to be labeled and ready for the show by June 24, 2016.
The quilter and her husband knew they had plenty of time to get those labels on the quilts…
I think this tale will have a happy ending, but right now I am in the “moral lesson” part of the tale. Like in the “Ant and the Grasshopper ” from Aesop’s Fables (the ant spent the summer planning for winter and the grasshopper spent the summer goofing off and we know how that ended…).
We have a stack of 10 quilts needing labels (see photo above!) and Terry the Quilting Husband does not hand sew (he actually hates needles and has no desire to hand stitch anything). So I need to get all the labels on by 06/23/16 to deliver the quilts on 06/24/16 to the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show Office.
“P” is not just for Procrastination. “P” is for PANIC.
There is song from the 1980s by a British heavy metal rock band Judas Priest titled “Breaking the Law” where in the song, they repeatedly sing the chorus: “Breaking the law, breaking the law, breaking the law, breaking the law.”
When I lived in Seattle my friend Michele and I would enjoy singing choruses of this very campy 1980s song under our breath or at the top of lungs when we were not following standard rules of behavior or etiquette, etc.
This song was played my head when I made the decision to do a traditional quilt binding instead of a “facing”on the back of my art quilt Recycled Doors for the upcoming Central Oregon SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Art Quilt Associates) exhibit at the 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show. Please see my post Update: Recycled Door for more information on this piece.
(If you are unfamiliar with “facing a quilt”, here is a link to the Quilting Daily’s page on Finishing a Quilt with a Facing. Facing creates clean edges to the quilt with no edge binding.)
Facing the back of an art quilt to create a smooth edge appears to be the expected and acceptable standard and is what I have always done in the past on any quilt I want to be classified as an “art quilt”.
I feel feeling very rebellious after talking to my friend Wendy who suggested, as an option to finishing the quilt, a binding to bring out the orange in the center of the piece. I was reading to do some “law breaking” and did a traditional binding instead of facing the quilt.
It felt good to be a rebel, ha!
Every act of rebellion expresses a nostalgia for innocence and an appeal to the essence of being. – Albert Camus
You may notice my new blog template – quite different from the previous one. I really enjoyed the Chalkboard Template, but after reading that article on making blog pages easy for all readers to read and the feedback you all provided, I am going to try this new format for a while.
Have you ever just randomly cracked yourself up laughing? Maybe it is a joke no one would understand but you?
Well I was cleaning up my quilt studio and rearranging it to make it more cozy and less cluttered feeling, and I found this in a corner under a table:
What is this? Well if you refer to my post, We Will Not Be Discarded’s Debut, you will see it is a leftover scrap from another quilters project (their discard, headed for the trash) that I trimmed into a triangle. It’s other “friends” became the piece We Will Not Be Discarded! (that I sold at the Twigs Gallery Show in March – April 2016).
I began laughing at this sly piece hidden away that did not make it into the art quilt. I now have to make a tiny art quilt called – I Will Not Be Discarded!– or maybe just a potholder with it. I cannot bring myself to throw it away.
I got rid of one of the tables in my studio, even though I will have to now iron and cut on the same table (I have a removable wide ironing top). It felt like the room was way too clutter.
Instead of the table, I moved a comfy old chair into the room and I can sit and watch TV in the room while sewing down binding if I like. My TV is both a computer monitor and TV (so I can also watch “Tiny House Living” videos – my secret obsession).
I am headed off to the Stitchin’ Post in Sisters, Oregon this am for a day long class on appliqué.
In my post, Creative Inspiration: Stories My Father Told Me, I share how I would like to do a series of art quilts based on stories my father told me growing up. Well I want to brush up my appliqué skills (okay I want to obtain some decent appliqué skills) so that I have more options in creating these quilts which would lend themselves to appliqué.
Check out Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer’s page Schnauzer Snips for her latest musings (and a new homemade dog biscuit recipe!)
This is an update to my 04/07/16 post, What’s on the…Table. I am making progress with my piece “Ohio” and still using the table to design it rather than the design wall (the mini recycled silk log cabin blocks were not sticking well on the design wall).
I have sewn all the 2.5″ x 2.5″ recycled silk blocks together. I decided to “float” them in a piece of taupe/tweed looking recycled silk (it has a beautiful texture, it is a tweed like woven silk).
I am still deciding what I want to do with the little 2″ x 2″ blocks I made; and how I want to float the blocks in the lovely tweed-like recycled silk.
I cannot wait to complete the piece and give it to Betty Anne to work her quilting magic/artistry!
I have some scraps left over, and we’ll see if Betty Anne is up to the challenge to try and make a third small piece from the tiny scraps! (My piece in progress, Ohio, is made from her scraps from Ohio Star, which was made from my original piecing disaster Ohio Star!)
As I continue on my journey to scale back my material possessions and focus on the important things in life, I realize I have donated a lot of stuff I no longer need to charity organizations but I have not given any of my handmade items.
It feels like I have not been really giving, as I have only given purchased items I no longer want in my life.
Giving seems more like truegiving, if you give something that is not as easy to part with – like a quilt (or two)!
So I decided to donate a couple small flannel quilts/baby quilts to Project Linus. I had them listed on my tierneycreates Etsy shop and I am taking down their listings and giving them away instead.
If you are not familiar with Project Linus is a non-profit organization that provides homemade “blankets” to children in need. I am getting together with a couple of friends at the end of this month that have worked with Project Linus in the past and they are going to help me donate my quilts.
It feels like this donation is more meaningful donation than a load of unused kitchen gadgets to Goodwill.
Check out Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer’s blog page Schnauzer Snips for her latest musings.
Quilt in Progress
Terry the Quilting Husband has been hard at work finishing another quilt for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show in July 2016, hoping to get into the Male Quilter exhibit (in the upcoming weeks he will submit his entries to the selection committee).
Over the past couple of months he made 82 9.5 inch blocks from my flannel scraps using the log jam method (see previous posts on “log jamming”) and sewed them into 9 rows of 9 blocks each:
If you do the math – 9 rows with 9 block each equals a 81 block quilt. So what became of the 82nd block? I was wondering about that also and went into Terry’s “studio” (he uses the guest bedroom as his sewing studio) to discover the fate of the extra block.
Here is what I found: he kept one of the blocks that had a schnauzer in the center (from a flannel dog fabric scrap with different breeds) and displayed it in his sewing area:
Note: our guest room is extremely dog themed. You would not want to stay at our house if you do not like dogs – ha!
The one block displayed made me smile and I wanted to make it into something more permanent for him, so I made a quick little throw pillow for him with the block.
Now he is focused on sewing the rows together so we can get it to the long-arm quilter.
I suspect when the quilt is quilted, we are going to struggle with wanting to part with it if we decided to put it for sale at the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show!
My collaborative partner on The Wardrobe Meets the Wall, Betty Anne Guadalupe and I have been fascinated with the idea of “Rescuing Blocks” that other quilters have discarded and we have an ongoing obsession with fabric scraps given to us by other quilters.
A quilting friend of ours (we think it was our friend Judy?) gave Betty Anne “Trimmed Block Discards” a while back (a couple years ago at a quilt retreat?).
What do I mean by by “Trimmed Block Discards”? I mean the ends of sections or blocks pieced for a quilt that trimmed off to make the quilt fit together. These are usually tossed in the trash by quilters (except those pathologically obsessed with scraps).
Betty Anne recently gave me these discards and challenged me to make an art quilt piece out of them. I could not turn down such a challenge: The ends of someone else’s blocks meant for the trash – recycled into a quilt!
I have already named the piece: “We Will Not Be Discarded!”
I started with figuring out a uniform way to make the discards work. I decided to float them in a coordinating solid:
Trimming the discards into triangle shapes:
The discards all trimmed into various sizes triangles and ready for the design wall:
On the Design Wall – waiting for what happens next…
To be continued…
Here are several other posts on playing with rescued blocks and discards from other quilters:
If you have followed my blog for awhile, then you know about my addiction to fabric scraps. This addiction seems to be incompatible with my desire to downsize and minimize my possessions.
The fabric scrap addiction began innocently enough – friends would give me their fabric scraps at quilting retreats. I would go for a “sew day” at a fellow quilter’s house and leave with some of her fabric scraps. As if that was not enough, I began to actually BUY scraps.
Yes, BUY FABRIC SCRAPS, you read correctly. There is a wonderful quilt shop in Central Oregon called The Stitchin’ Post and occasionally they would sell scraps bags of their beautiful high-end quilting fabrics. I bought numerous bags from them.
Beautiful scraps or not, still I was buying fabric scraps.
In my post “Creative Inspiration: Organization???” I shared my new organization of my favorite fabric scraps by color. Although I had organized scraps by color I still had a GIANT box of remaining fabric scraps.
I knew I had to do something. I needed to let go of the fabric scraps I did not completely and absolutely love. However, I did not want to throw them away or try to convince another quilter to adopt them.
So I packaged them up into 30 bags and organized them into two baskets and DONATED them to our local Humane Society Thrift Store to sell! (How do I know that the Humane Society Thrift Store sells fabric scraps? Do you want to take a guess? Yes, because I have bought fabric scraps also from several thrift stores include the Humane Society Thrift Store in the past).
The Humane Society Thrift Store Volunteer accepting my donation seemed pleased that I had packaged them up for sale. I like to imagine if they sell each bag for a couple dollars or more each that could be over $90 – $150+ profit for a wonderful local animal shelter! Some of the bags are packaged by color and some are random – so many options for the Humane Society Thrift Shops’ customers!
When I buy fabric from quilt shops in the future, it will be actual whole fabric (fat quarters or yardage). I still have plenty of fabric scraps and my fabric scrap collection contains only scraps I truly love and plan to use…eventually.
I am still working through the lessons from the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo that I discussed in the post “The Space in Which We Live“.
Terry, the “Quilting Husband” really got into making “log jam” style free form log cabin blocks. He ended up making over 100+ 6.5 inch x 6.5 inch blocks. We set them in 10 x 10 rows to create a quilt top. Betty Anne Guadalupe of Guadalupe Designs professionally quilted the top.
The plan was to list it on the tierneycreates Etsy Shop but I fell in love with it and decided – IT’S A KEEPER! So now it is displayed on our dining room wall.
I have pieced many 6.5 inch by 6.5 inch log jam blocks myself (they are a fun and meditative way to use up fabric scraps) and I am thinking of making a Queen size (yikes) quilt with them for sale at the 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show. First I will have to see how many I have done and then do some math (yikes, again) to figure out how many I will need (hint: 100 blocks only made a lap size quilt…).
I am not sure how it happened, but my previous post Because Nice Matters, was my 100th blog post! I remember when I started the tierneycreates blog in October 2013, I did not imagine getting to my 100th post (I was just happy to be at 5 posts!). It has been so fun so far connecting with other bloggers and I so appreciate my readers and followers!
Recently, the name for this piece came to me – “The Tree Outside My Window” as I completed 15 blocks to create this art quilt.
As you will see in the photos below, this piece has FIVE images of trees in it (the post “What’s on the Design Wall: Fabric Surface Design Experimentation” discusses how these trees were created) but “The Trees Outside My Window” did not sound right on my tongue. I believe when naming a piece, it has to sound right to you when you say the name aloud.
After creating fifteen 12.5 inch by 12.5 inch blocks from: 1) 4 inch – 10 inch blocks originally pieced by a friend (“Rescued Blocks”): 2) scraps from my friend; and 3) five printed trees from a surface design workshop, I decided to piece the blocks into 3 columns of 5 blocks each.
Now I am deciding what I want to do next with my design. I am leaning towards putting a strip of solid (or solid like) fabric in between each row and then floating it in the same color as a border. Originally I was going to use a cream batik but it did not look right. Next I thought: “Ah a brown batik with texture would work”, but alas, I only had brown batik scraps in my stash.
Then my fabric stash spoke to me (which is good because I did not want to go out and buy more fabric as I am trying to use my stash)! I spotted the perfect fabric – mono color textured design yardage from my collection of Marcia Derse Riverwoods Collection from Troy Corporation. (At one point I was addicted to this amazing collection and tried to be a sample of all fabrics in this line from The Stitchin’ Post in Central Oregon.)
I am going to leave it a mystery for now which fabric from this beautiful collection I selected for the strips between the three rows and the border. You have to wait until the next post on this piece!
Here are photos from my design wall to include some close-ups:
Finally, I finished binding all 5 quilts back from the long-arm quilter! I have listed 4 of them for sale on the tierneycreates Etsy shop.
I still need to master photographing quilts as they are much prettier in person than my photos seem to reveal.
Designed by Tierney Hogan, pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe
Designed and pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe
Designed by Tierney Hogan, pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe
Designed and pieced by Terry and Tierney Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe
The 5th one, the “Ugly Sunflower Fabric Quilt” I wavered on and was going to keep, then was going to sell on Etsy, and now I am completely undecided.
I might just hold onto it until the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show entry time next year to decide.
Perhaps I will put the sunflower quilt in the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show as I am guessing bed size quilts are easier to sell at the show than lap size quilts (of the 5 quilts I had in the 2015 Sisters Outdoor Show, only the bed size quilt sold).
The plan is for next year’s Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, I put in 5 quilts again and Terry “The Quilting Husband” put in 5 of his quilts!
Continuing my series of posts on what is on the design wall…
THE QUILTING HUSBAND IS BUSY AGAIN
I had some of my blocks up on the design wall and Terry “The Quilting Husband” was getting impatient. He kept giving me subtle hints (and not too subtle hints) about moving my stuff off the design wall so he can put his blocks up on the design wall (we have a small house and can only make 1 shared design wall work).
The Quilting Husband is working on a new “Log Jam” quilt (see my other posts on “Log Jamming” and “Log Jams” which are free form pieced log cabin style blocks) made with flannel scraps. I have a large box of flannel scraps from making flannel quilts and flannel quilt backs, and Terry came up with the idea of trying to use of the scraps making flannel log jam quilts.
As his confidence grows as a quilter, he gets comfortable with making his own design decisions. He found a stash of dog and cat themed flannel scraps and used them as the center so each block would feature a dog and/or cat face. Very creative!
Terry, loaded with a box of color coordinated scraps I pre-selected, made endless 6 1/2 inch log jam blocks (120+) and put a dent in my scraps (a small dent but any dent is appreciated!).
Then he took a 100 of the 6 1/2 inch block and created a 10 x 10 quilt. It was a collaborative process as he completed ten – 10 block rows, and I did the final sewing of the ten rows together to make the quilt top. Terry, The Quilting Husband, is not much for matching seams to sew rows together, but that is okay – look at how much he accomplished!
Now I am working on putting the back of the quilt together so it can go to the long-arm quilter!
Then comes the decision – keep it or list it on the Etsy site for sale. We will likely list it for sale…we’ll see…
I love sunflowers and years ago (maybe 10) I bought some sunflower fabric I found on sale. I never used this fabric and it ended up in the back of my stash, forgotten.
A couple of months ago I was purging the fabric that I no longer loved to donate to a charity thrift store (see blog post The Fabric Purge!) and came across the sunflower fabric again. I do not have a photo of the original fabric, but 10 years later, looking at it I thought “what was I thinking?!?!?”
It was…well…quite ugly fabric. Little sunflower images with a very cheesy looking patterns and other images surrounding the sunflowers. No wonder it had been on sale 10 years ago!
A quilter friend of mine suggested a Challenge: Don’t get rid of the fabric – cut out the sunflowers and use them as centers in a log cabin style quilt. She offered to give me some coordinating fabric that she was purging from her stash!
I took on the challenge and made the quilt! I just gave to my long-arm quilter the 88″ x 66″ quilt top made with just the sunflower sections of the ugly fabric and coordinating fabric from a friend’s stash! I set the 9.5″ by 9.5″ inch blocks in a Moda paper bag colored fabric. I cannot wait to see what it looks like quilted!
Continuing my series of posts on sources of Creative Inspiration…
HOW ORGANIZING MY SCRAPS GOT ME INSPIRED
Sounds like a testimonial, right?
“At first my life was empty of direction and meaning and then I organized my fabric scraps and suddenly everything was much much much better!” – Anonymous Scrap Hoarder
Not exactly. However organizing my fabric scraps last evening did inspire my creativity!
I love fabric scraps and I have quite a collection. I have several blog posts about my love of scraps. My fabric scraps were getting out of control and were in two fairly large boxes. I enjoy the “hunt” for the right fabric scraps when creating a scrappy quilt, but found I grew irritated with not being able to easily find the colors I want.
So I decided to organize my fabric scraps in two ways, to give me flexibility of how I create with fabric scraps:
All thrown in a box (random)
This new system allows me to create fabric scrap pieces (quilts, pillows, wallhanging, table runners, etc.) based on my “creative mood”. I might want to work on a piece that it focused on oranges, yellows and reds; or I might want to work on a piece that is very scrappy and more random. Now I have two options!
I am interested in working on some pieces in the future that are more monochromatic but with fabric of different patterns and textures in the same general color. Having fabric scraps organized by color will make this design process easier.
As I was organizing my fabric scraps I got very excited as ideas for new pieces ran wildly through my head!