Sunday, January 31, 2016

Catching Up!!!

These past couple of weeks have been very busy so it will take a bit to catch up on my blogs for sure!!  I had to put this picture up of a gorgeous sunset first even though it was not taken where the rest of the pictures were!  It is a sunset last Monday at Ft. Fisher and I was hurrying off to a quilt meeting but sensed it would be a beautiful sunset from what I could see.  The sun had actually gone down probably 20 minutes before I took this picture.

I spent the previous five days in Florida at my sister Gail's house.  She invited me down early so I could share some of my learning with her weekly quilting group,  My sister definitely overachieves in this department as each week she develops a pattern and then teaches these ladies how to make whatever project she is doing -- probably why she doesn't blog much anymore!!  So as two of the ladies are really beginners, I chose a "disappearing nine-patch" as that is an easy block that makes for a nice presentation.  We decided that we would do three blocks for a table runner.

This was my demonstration piece.  The nine-patch consisted of the purple marbled blocks in the corners, the yellow on the inside and the blue in the middle of the column and row.  My instructions were to three different values (my first mistake).  I chose a light value for the center, medium values for the middle sides and dark for the corners but you could do any combination.  However, all the ladies (including my sister) brought charm packs with 5 inch squares which was the right size and saved the cutting step.  Unfortunately, it was a bit difficult to sort out the light, medium and dark values.  I learned I shouldn't say values as that was not a term all the ladies were familiar with.  

We got our nine patches sewn but three of the ladies hadn't done chain piecing before and my sister was resisting....Being the older sister, I INSISTED she do it my way this once!!  So they learned chain piecing, nesting (seams turned opposite ways at intersections) and ironing.  It didn't take long for them to get their blocks finished.  Then we measured the center block (knowing that beginners don't always do a scant 1/4 inch seam) and took that measurement, divided in half and cut the blocks.  This all went relatively smoothly.

This was my sister's almost finished table runner.  She did well with her lights and darks and mediums and put them together in a nice scrappy composition.  It is hard to successfully pull off scrappy with only three  blocks.

This was March's and worked out really well I thought.  With these scrappy ones, we didn't sew the now four-patches together until we set them on the design wall to get good placement.

March overachieved and did four blocks and this was an alternate arrangement and an idea. of what it would look like as a scrap quilt.  If you put these  blocks on point and use a strong color for the center blocks, you get a really interesting arrangement (just turn your head sideways!!!).

These were Arliss's blocks and have yet to be arranged.  She chose some nice bright colors.

Donna's charm pack was the most difficult to arrange but she did very pleasing blocks with good contrast!

In the meantime and during times I wasn't looking out the window taking pictures of birds, I managed to complete the green quilt minus one block!!  Right now it measures 77 x 77 but I will add some borders to make it probably about 90 x 90 so it can fit on a king-sized bed.  I gave the book away as I never am going to make another of these!!  I will be quilting it in three parts so won't add the borders on until I am finished the quilting and have sewn it together -- much easier on the shoulders and arms.  

My sister has an awesome studio with lots of space, all windows facing out onto fields and woods with bird feeders in the backyard -- a lanai which she has pretty much taken over!!  It was a great space for teaching a small group.  It would give my friend Marcia's beautiful studio a run for its money (Gail doesn't have the storage though that Marcia has though!!).  Gail was giving me grief about how much fabric I had versus what she had. I pointed out that she has only been quilting for about four years and I have for 40 years -- she didn't much to say to that (she has collected quite a bit in four years!!)  She has a free pattern on the Hoffman website (Skyline Circle Quilt).  Her quilt was displayed at Market last fall and she received a nice collection of beautiful Hoffman fabrics for her efforts!!  

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