Saturday, February 25, 2017

Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without....

that's an old saying I remember seeing on a dear friend's wall long ago... good advice that I'm sure harkens all the way back from the depression era...

this is my 4th year participating in RSC- and I've loved every month of it! I have a suitcase of 3" squares, and I've pieced many, many quilts from those colorful squares. it seems every quilt had a leftover block or two or three... (and no matter how many quilts I make, the squares never seem to get less...)
 
Angie gave us the kick in the pants challenge to finish some of our languishing RSC projects. I have quite a few in the works, *hangs head in shame* so that was just the motivation I needed. (who doesn't love a good linky party?!) I had a goodly pile of those orphan blocks, and you can see the first tentative layout here, where I asked for some help... I took (most) of the generously and kindly offered advice, and came up with the quilt below.
 
if you peruse the tabs at the top of my page - RSC14, RSC15 and RSC16, you just might be able to spot some of the original quilts that these orphan blocks came from. (and if you don't want to take the time to do that, and I don't hardly blame you, just take my word for it that these squares represent a minimum of 12 completed quilts...)


I will say that that is one advantage of consistently using the same size square in much of my piecing: the orphan blocks will all fit together with a minimum of jiggling around.
 
while I won't say that this is the most beautiful or creative quilt I've ever made, it's certainly colorful. it's also carefully and sturdily pieced, and for the new life that is planned for this quilt, it's perfect!

 
a young girl from our church is going on a mission trip to an orphanage in Honduras next month; she plans to take this quilt along. that's why it's being tied (shown here being worked on at our monthly church sewing group) instead of quilted.

I'm excited to send this quilt along with A, and if I get any pictures, i'll be sure to share!

Friday, February 24, 2017

One giant leap!

over at Patchwork Times, Judy pulled #9 for the February UFOChallenge 2017. I had planned on using up some of my charm packs. I've been holding on to quite a few for a bit too long, so it's time that they were used...


I ended up using/passing along/repurposing 9 charm packs! 2 charm packs went into the above and below quilts- (can't remember the name of them right now.) they'll be for a baby at church upon their dedication.


same for the quilt below-  I used 2 charm packs of Nature's Chorus. I've had these two charm packs for a few years now, and figured I'd better use them before they got any more outdated! I just randomly put the squares up on my design board, and then sewed them together. I'm happy with how it turned out, and always end up wondering why we (I) end up making stuff more complicated than they need to be....



2 funky charm packs from our local Ben Franklin were cut up into 4" squares and passed along to a church friend for our church sewing, Scraps To Wraps. a final (amy butler) charm pack is on my design wall; I'm thinking a rainbow-y stroller quilt for my granddaughter will be just the ticket for that one...

you can see my final 2 charm packs in action if you scroll down to the post below....

What box?

there are several UFO challenges going on this year, but I'm participating in the one Judy is hosting. #9 was drawn for the month of February- and for me, that was a challenge to use up some of my hoarded many charm packs.


I managed to use/piece and or share 9 charm packs this month! woo-hoo! (and no, that didn't leave me with a shortage! I still have a few left, and that's a good thing, since #8 in the UFO challenge for me is ALSO charm packs!)
 
this quilt was a late comer to the party- I didn't even start it until late last week. this pattern is Pocket Change, and I used 2 of the little gatherings charm packs from moda.
 
I'm not a  huge fan of pre-cuts, and now I remember why. despite carful cutting and piecing, the squares did not come out the size they were "supposed" to. it did all work out in the end; I just squared up the individual blocks before piecing them into the quilt, and it's fine.
 

as a matter of fact, I'd say this is one of my favorite quilts. but I'm pretty sure I say that about lots (most? all?) of my quilts.


daisy wandered over to the pasture fence, since she saw a quilt, and figured she'd get a treat. (she did)

perhaps you're wondering about the title of this post? "What box?" it's just a humorous reference to the box that I thought so far out of, that it's not even there! when I contemplated making this quilt, my first inclination was to use red; that would go nicely with the blacks, tans, creams and whites that were in these charm packs. my next thought was that everybody (and their brother) would choose red. so what about green? hunter/forest green seemed a good choice, but again: too predictable. I liked the green idea, and thought what about skewing the color wheel- waaayyyy off- to avocado! ( I loved the idea of a purple/regal/midnight, but didn't' want the quilt to be too feminine.)

so Kona avocado it was, and is. and I love it!

Thursday, February 09, 2017

one square at a time...

there are a few colors that I would consider to be woefully lacking in my stash- sea green is one of them...
 
but if (as Angela suggested) we expand that palette to include the scraps that play well with neither blue nor green, we all seem to have more than we thought! a plethora of delightful hues and colors have appeared right before our eyes!


what is it about those low volume squares? don't know... but they're fun to work with. above a 5X5 layout with a LV plus in the middle. (those + are pretty popular and fun, too!)


4 more 16 patches have joined their purple sisters from last month.

be sure to go see what everyone else has been working on- I promise it will be an inspiring click!

Saturday, February 04, 2017

good thing it's a short month....

look at me all tech savvy- I made a "month marker" for instagram... woohoo! (I had no idea I even knew how to make one of these little gadgets... but it wasn't really that hard, and only took about 20 min. yay me!) feel free to grab the picture if you want to use it, too. and you can follow me on instagram as jlcap69. (I worked really hard to come up with such and original and clever name. ha!

 
 
this month's color is sea green. unfortunately, I (literally ) only have one piece of fabric that is sea green: Kona's sour apple. (and maybe that can't even technically be considered sea green either....)
 


first up for me this month was making my 16 patches with the Kona Indigo. above is mint, sour apple, breakers and turquoise. I love the way these colors work together.
 
last month I was singing the praises of the Kona indigo. and can I just say again that it's a fantastic color? it really makes these simple 16 patches something special. I'm pretty sure that this completed quilt will stay at my house when it's done...


these blocks actually look terrible in the picture; i'll probably take another... the colors are plum, pickle, (a super cool green color that really looks like a pickle!) cyan and teal.


I happened to do some more work on my pinwheel quilt this week (formerly known as my zig-zag quilt) and one of the colors that I did was the teal, so I get to show them off today, too! piecing the pinwheel quilt is actually one of my UFOs for 2017 projects. (#7) January seemed like a long month, so I had a few evenings to work on stuff before the new color was called for February.
 
be sure to click back to so scrappy to see all the other wonderful  projects from this week!
 

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

help! i've fallen and can't get up...

I'm faithfully working on completing some of the MANY tops/blocks that I've started with my RSC piecing- from RSC14, RSC15 and RSC16. I love the soothing repetition of sewing, sewing, sewing blocks together... so the limited focus of one color a month really works for me.
 
many of my quilts have been pieced from my suitcase of squares, and I have ALOT of blocks left over. since they've all been pieced from 3" squares, they should play together nicely.


I put some of them up on my design wall, and the (pleasing) image that I had in my head is not what I'm seeing on my design wall...

tell me what you think... any suggestions?

should I toss out the plus blocks in the middle? the next round out is the 4 patch blocks, then various 9 patches... they probably need a spacer (solid white? low volume?) in-between each round, right? should I piece this quilt much like a round robin, with a solid/resting place between each round? I'd like to use most, if not all of these blocks. and: if it helps, I'm planning on it being a donation quilt, so it it's a bit crazy and bright, that's all the better...


I have a nice little stack of more (mostly) monochromatic 4 patches...


and a stack of 12+ red 9 patches, and a few odd-ball colors, too.

so: chime in with your suggestions: I'd like these blocks to go to a happy home, rather than sitting in my drawer!

PS: I hope you don't kick me out for "cheating" - I know the quilt is not finished, but I'd really like it to be!

Friday, January 27, 2017

pretty purples, pleasing as punch...

I've been busy trying to get 2 new dresses sewn for my girls this week, so not as much time piecing on the purples to show for this week....
 
somewhere I saw that one of the RSC quilters was making a 5X5 block, with the low volume plus in the middle. ( I made a low volume plus quilt last year, too, and really love it...) my suitcase of 3"squares is not getting any less stuffed with colorful squares, so I decided to add this block to my RSC17 line up.


for RSC15 one of my projects was to use my 2½" strips to make a zig-zag quilt. I've since changed my mind, and plan to make a pinwheel quilt instead. (free pattern here)

 
 
I plan on piecing this quilt on-point, and making the setting triangles with some of my neutral (low volume!) 2½" strips. if there are any little parts left over, I might make a lap size zig-zag quilt after all...
 
it's been a long month, and I'm all done with my purple RSC17 sewing (is that a first, or what?!) so I'm looking forward to see what the new color is for February...
 
be sure to stop by angela's at soscrappy to see what everyone else has been sewing on this week!


they always say the third time's the charm....

this is Judy's 3rd (but not consecutive) year of doing a UFO challenge. I've participated all 3 years now, and love the camaraderie and extra motivation to get some long neglected UFOs completed.
 
this 9 patch TATW quilt has gone through a few variations after making it onto the 2011 UFO list, (#12) and the 2012 UFO list. (#9)

this quilt-in-progress even made it into my (sole) linkup of Design Wall Monday way back in 2014! it's always been my intention to actually get it done, obviously!

 
BUT: the good new is: it's done! I've actually had the blocks pieced for ages, and just needed the final motivation of the end of the month creeping up on us all, to get it done.


it's a whopper of a quilt- it finished at 97" X 107". yikes! the pattern is a 9 patch- 5 different homespuns (3½" squares) and 3 constant background squares. this quilt goes off to the quilters this morning; we plan to send it to one of the MCC auctions later this year.  
 
can't wait to see what number Judy picks for February!
 
 

Saturday, January 14, 2017

insert clever and witty title here...

I had some time to work on my purple projects this week- it's relaxing (and soothing) to be in the sewing room steadily piecing away...


it's interesting how the fabrics look purple by themselves, but when you put them all together, they can look blue, red OR brown. I have one more color family of purples to piece this week, and then that's it for the 6" crumb blocks for this month.


I'm a Kona snob, and it's showing! I just love the 16 patches- I've done them for a couple years now, and was seeing them pop up on other RSC17 project lists. originally, I thought that I'd do some more 16 patches this year with grey- but my RSC16 column along is using the Kona grey (I'm piecing that in solids as well, and will catch up and complete it as Angela calls each color this year.) and white is such a predictable choice, so: INDIGO it is!

can I just say I'm LOVING it? I know some of the purples lean heavily towards pink, but I had lots of purples/pink cut (3" square) for my granddaughter's plus quilt.


speaking of Kona and grandchildren: above and below are my two little grands- baby C and baby E. Kona cotton solids for both of their baby quilts, and I love them all. (the babies AND the quilts!) they were born 6 days apart, and I'm LOVING being a grandma!

I love, too, how the mommies are using their quilts in the monthly see-how-I-grew shots!

 

Saturday, January 07, 2017

And they're off!

I got a bit of a slow start on RSC17 this year, but I think I'm finally ready... purple is the color of the month, and I've had a pleasant infusion of purple scraps the last couple months, so I'm happy to work with some new fabrics...


a new project for me this year will be some modified 16 patches, using my 3" squares. ( I can't remember where I saw another RSCer doing these blocks. if I figure it out, or if you give me a shout-out, I'll be happy to link back to you!)
 
there is only 1 (or maybe 2?) repeat in the above purples, I believe. I plan to make as many blocks as necessary each month to use *almost* all my different squares in each color of the month. the low volumes will continue to be scrappy. (they're left over from previous RSC years that I pieced a low volume plus quilt, as well as many 9 patches and 16 patches...)


(sorry for the sideways picture...) I'll continue to piece my crumb blocks (6½" unfinished) and add them to the pile from RSC16.  I particularly enjoy piecing the crumb blocks- and they make a pretty cool looking quilt when they're done, too! I've made several crumb quilts, using wildly different layouts and they're some of my favorites!
 
my other projects for RSC17:
  • complete the RSC16 column-along
  • piece 16 patches in Kona solids (COM) and grey
  • finish piecing the RSC16 tops: pinwheels, 16 patches, granny squares, 4 patches, ect...
 
and a big SHOUT-OUT and HAPPY WELCOME to you if you're new to RSC17! we're glad to have you! this is my 4th year participating in RSC, and I've loved having the camaraderie, direction and accountability for the monthly sewing. I get lots done- and I'm happy to share all the quilts with my family and MCC.
 
also: don't let the RAINBOWY-NESS throw you off! we don't all make quilts that are ALWAYS IN RAINBOW ORDER! I know that can get a bit tiring sometimes.... it's just so nice to have ONE COLOR to focus on each month, and have a nice, colorful and scrappy pile of blocks at the end of the year. RSC has worked really well for me, and I hope it will for you, too!
 
click back to angie's  blog to see more beautiful quilts, and get LOTS of inspiration!
 
 

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