Wanda Gene's Musings on Life, Love and Loving the Quilting Life!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Piecing Goes On...

Hi Y'all,

On Friday I finished the last of 30 blocks for JTAW (Jared Takes a Wife).  Boy do I need a new name for my version of this quilt.  After all, I don't even know this Jared guy.  I must give this some thought.

Friday afternoon I took some time off and got a haircut and ran some errands.  Then the next day I went to a party...my friend Linda's 30th anniversity in business at her quilt shop in Woodland Hills, The Quilt Emporium.  She had yummy refreshments and 30 (get it--30)% off on everything in the shop.

I had to smile as I overheard a quilter say, "You can't have too much cheddar or chrome yellow."  I hope that she's right because the quilt I'm working on will have plenty of chrome yellow!

The shop was packed with eager quilters and Linda and her four helpers were cutting and cashiering as just as fast as they could go.  I bought a few basics for my stash like some Civil War double pink and a great shirting print with a tiny geometric design.  I also snagged a grab bag for $5 that appeared to have at least twice that in fabric value.

Then back to work.  The red that I finally decided upon for my cornerstones is sort of a darkish red, somewhere between true red and burgundy.  Here's what it looks like:

Composing as I Sew!

Now, most of time I use a design wall to arrange all the blocks in a quilt before I start sewing them together.  But I just don't feel like doing that for this quilt.  A few reasons:   1)  This quilt is bigger than my design wall or available floor space, and 2)  The scrappy parts of my blocks have a high level of variety so the chances of too much yellow or green, for example, has little chance of all ending up concentrated in one area of the quilt, 3) Compose-as-I-sew sounds easier and a whole lot more fun.  And if the same print shows up in two side-by-side blocks, I will not be unhappy, in fact, I will embrace it!  My quilts do not have to please anyone but me!


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Piecing Faster Than the Speed of Sound!

Hello Dear Quilters and Other Readers,

I may not break any sound barriers while piecing at my beloved Erie Mae (Bernina 1230) like the great Chuck Yeager did with his jet plane, but I surely am going like gangbusters with my Blackford's Beauty blocks started in Bonnie Hunter's "Jared Takes a Wife" class last month.  I have 22 blocks and finishing more as I speak.

Blocks--All Scrappy except for Constant Fabric in Large and Small Star Points

I came so close to running out of the black print used for the large star points...would you believe just what a little bit was left?

FIVE INCHES by the Width of the Fabric!!

That is about 1/8 of a yard!  But do you know what?  I wasn't the least bit worried because I remembered what a quilter of olden times did when she ran out of a fabric.  Ladies out on the prairie (or in the case of my family, down in the holler) just substituted something on hand that was pleasing.  No desperate online searches or notices placed in quilt guild newsletters begging for the sought-after fabric.

I have always thought that it gave those antique quilts a special flair that could not be achieved by design, only by happenstance and letting go of rigid ideas about how it "has" to be.  It is good to do our best work up to a point (but if we ever achieved perfection, how boring would that be!

I have started to think about sashing strip fabric!  After auditioning several, I found a chrome yellow with red and black printing that I really like with my blocks.  I'm not really sure but I may have bought this length of  old fabric (maybe 30+ years old!) at a thrift store while on a road trip.

So Far, My Front-Runner for Sashing

I tried some prints for cornerstone squares, but nothing worked.  I finally realized that all the prints were too busy and the cornerstone squares needed to provide a resting place for the eye.  I plan to use solid burgundy for these squares.


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Feelin' Mighty Poorly......

Hi Y'all,

Well, this has been a lost week...in bed with the flu, oh, yes, DEFINITELY, it's the flu.  And Jerry can"t take care of me because we came down with it on the same day.  No appetite,  weak as the proverbial kittens, slight fever on and off, cough and congestion, ugh, ugh, ugh!

We have been in Tucson seeing all our doctors to get ready for our next big RV trip somewhere in the USA.
No decision yet on where we go or even when we start.  We do have some work planned on the Simi Valley house soon that has to be finished first.  Before our trip to death's door, it was fun to consider various destinations, such as New England or the Pacific Northwest. 

Maybe tomorrow will be a little better.