Kaleidoscope Design and More

The November UFO project was to design a quilt to use these beautiful Jane Sassaman fabrics. Here’s my “final” decision on the layout. (“Final” in quotes because It isn’t over til it’s over).

My notebook wasn't big enough for the whole layout, but you get the idea!

My notebook wasn’t big enough for the whole layout, but you get the idea!

You can see paper mock-ups of my blocks showing the fabric HERE, but here are a couple of examples.  Of course, the one with 4 wedges would have 6 if this were the real blocks instead of a paper mock-up.

I think I have enough fabric to make 4 central patches with 6 wedges each, though I’ll check before I cut (one of my husband’s favorites is, “measure twice, cut once”). Then I’ll fit in as many of the 4-patch kaleidoscopes as seems reasonable while leaving adequate negative space.

The Back-up Plan (must have one!) is all 4-patch kaleidoscopes if it turns out I don’t have enough fabric for both the 6-wedge and the 4-patch designs.  That would be fine, too, though I like the variety of sizes in the design I’ve chosen.  (Will I like it as much when I’m trying to sash those varied shapes and sizes?)

I’m thinking I’ll use soft green fabric for the background; this seems to want to be a green quilt with pink and blue accents.  The background probably will be a solid fabric, since these blocks have a lot going on.

I’ve made two more projects this month, but they aren’t quilts.  One is a crib sheet from this fun arrow fabric by Maureen Cracknell.  The other is a changing pad cover in this “Indian Summer” fabric by Sarah Watson.

There are several places on the internet to get free patterns for crib sheets and changing pad covers, and they were easy to make.

And now, ON TO THE CHRISTMAS SEWING!!!

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November’s UFO

As you probably know, I’m playing along with Aunt Marti’s UFO Challenge for 2015. This month’s UFO is a group of gorgeous Jane Sassaman fabrics I’ve had for several years. I want to make a queen sized quilt, but I’ve been debating the design for a long time, since I want to make the most of these fabrics.

Need to design a quilt for this wonderful fabric

Need to design a quilt for this wonderful fabric

Luckily, a quilter who is a better designer than I came to visit this fall, and she helped me look at ways to make kaleidoscope blocks from these fabrics.  So November’s challenge is to come up with a design for the quilt.  I’m not even requiring myself to CUT any fabric, just decide on a design.Sassaman book

Jane Sassaman’s book suggests making paper copies of the fabrics to cut up in order to try designs.  I scanned the fabrics to my printer and made many copies, then cut them up to make either 4-part or 6-part kaleidoscope blocks.  Of course, that limits my trials to typing paper size pieces.Sassaman-papers

I printed at low resolution to save ink and still used up my color cartridge!  Here are a few of the trial blocks cut from paper and taped together:

Sassaman-10

Here are some blocks made from 4 squares

And here are some partial blocks made from 60 degree triangles:

Finally, here are all my trial blocks made of paper so far:Sassaman-group

Any suggestions for making the most of these prints, either with or without kaleidoscope blocks?

New Quilts from Old

This is a quilt I made a few years ago to practice cutting curves freehand. It never looked as good as I thought it should, for various reasons.

I loved the quilted leaves, but I thought the golds should have been more similar in value; the light ones stood out too much. It always bothered by husband that the curves didn’t line up from block to block. Anyway, it never got much use.

Then I decided I needed more placemats, and hit on the idea of cutting up this quilt into placemat size pieces (18″ x 12″).  So I trimmed off the binding…Placemat from quilt

And used my extra-big square to cut pieces 12″ x 18″.Placemat-8

Then it was time to search for binding.  Of course, I had no more of the fabrics that are in the quilt, since it was made several years ago.  Eventually, I decided on the second combination:

Here are a couple of the finished placemats:

Even some of the backs were interesting, and showed the quilting better:Placemat-13

There was only this much left over:Placemat-4

So, if you have a quilt that didn’t quit work out, maybe it would make good placemats!

Artsy Table Runner

YP1I’ve been looking at lots of beautiful pictures of art quilts. Also, the monthly challenge for the Modern Quilt Guild of Franklin (NC) was to make something including prairie points.

For years I’ve had Susan K. Cleveland’s Prairie Pointer, intending to make something with prairie points “any day now”. (Raise your hand if you DON’T know how THAT goes!)Susan KThe stars finally aligned, and here is my first crack at a table runner combining all of the above.

As expected, Susan’s Prairie Pointer tool worked beautifully. I’m a big fan of her techniques, and teach some of them in my classes.  The starting squares for the prairie points ranged from 1-1/2″ to 2-1/2″ in size, so they were all pretty small.

Prairie Points

Prairie Points

I like this runner pretty well, but I just KNOW I could do better! So here goes with another idea I’ve meant to try for some time: working in a series. I’ll keep you posted 🙂

What is a Liebster award?

liebsteraward-roses-tag_sewing1Turns out the Liebster award is a tag game for helping readers discover new and under-read blogs.  Wanda over at Wanda’s Life Sampler tagged me.  So thanks to Wanda, and I’ll be passing it on to some other bloggers. You can check them out at the end of this post.

Here are my answers to Wanda’s questions, but I changed some of them! The next folks in the chain might change them, too…

1. What one thing do you believe with your whole being?

It’s important to learn something new every day.  It may be positive or negative, but all knowledge is useful eventually.

Storm at Sea

I learned to make a sample block before cutting out the whole quilt!

2. What have you made lately?

I’m glad you asked that question!  This month’s finish is the top for a “Black and White and Red All Over” quilt for which I’ve been collecting fabrics for some time.

Lemon Pepper quilt pattern

This was made from a pattern called “Lemon Pepper”, but of course mine is more red pepper!

I also sent 5 donation quilts to the Cincinnati Ronald McDonald House.  Three were finished this month, 2 previously.  Here are some of them:

3. Are you a cat person or a dog person? Or neither?

Presently neither.  Though I do miss having a cat right in the middle of every project and cat hair everywhere 😉cat

4. Where do you hope to be in 10 years’ time?

Retired from my “day job” and in my quilt studio full time!

5. Favorite dessert?

German Chocolate Cake!!!!

6. What is one thing you wish you were better at?

Always saying the right thing.

7. Describe your Dream Vacation?

The next one!  But I did recently have a great trip with my husband to Clingman’s Dome in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

View from Clingman's Dome

View from Clingman’s Dome

8. Why do you blog?

To promote modern quilting, and North Carolina quilters in particular.  If you’re a North Carolina quilter and I haven’t featured your work yet, please contact me!

9. Your best sewing/quilting advice?

Do what you enjoy.  I used to make all my own clothes, but then I figured out it’s a lot easier to get a quilt to fit a bed than to get a garment to fit my frame!

10. What else is new?

Here’s a picture of Pat with her FINISHED table runner, started in a class I taught recently!

Improv table runner

Pat finished her runner in time to give it as a gift

And here are some bloggers I’m passing the “Liebster Award” on to.  I think you might enjoy them!

My Imperfect Life

The Accidental Hayseed

KnitNKwilt