Workroom Refresh Storage

Boxes in the YM's room
Boxes in the YM’s room

Boxes and boxes are filling up the YM’s room. There are a lot, because they are small and filled with books. I used all of our CSA boxes that we have not been able to return due to the pandemic. They turned out to be a good size for books. I ran out eventually and had to scrounge random amazon and other boxes. Eventually, my mom bought me some boxes from Home Depot and that was the last of what I needed.

The YM is coming for a visit in a week and I need to get all of these boxes out of his room

Yellow Improv Grows

Yellow Improv Donation Top in Progress
Yellow Improv Donation Top in Progress

Slowly but surely this piece is growing. The top section, which I think of as the main piece, is about 20×20 now. I am working on growing the bottom piece to fit on to the top piece. At the moment the bottom piece is  made up of 3 different pieces.

I find that I need triangles in these pieces to add interest. The additional, non-yellow, colors add interest, but I find that if I have too many squares and rectangles the eye doesn’t move around as much. In this piece, however, there isn’t much contrast and that helps the eye not linger on the squares and rectangles.

I learned this from the Green Thing, the first top in this series. Those bars, which aren’t even really green, provide a focal point, but I find that the focal point takes away from the rest of the quilt. Good thing I’ll have enough green scraps to make another!

More of the Workroom Refresh

View west
View west

I spent last Saturday doing the final clear out of my workroom. It is kind of horrifying to do something like this. It shows how much stuff I have. I don’t feel bad about it, but I need to use it. I produce a lot, but I need to produce more. Now that I have a better idea of what I have, I can use more of it. I am also going to be more careful about what comes into my workroom going forward.

View south
View south

The other thing is the dust. There are places that are inaccessible so the dust bunnies are large.

The view in the photo, right, doesn’t look like much, but I moved a lot of random stuff out of that corner. I had organized everything I could, but it was still kind of a jumble of projects and other random stuff. There is still some project boxes and my thread box there, but the corner next to my design wall is a lot more clear.

View east
View east

I am getting rid of some ugly pieces of furniture. That brown bookcase in the corner is out of the room as I write this and will be leaving my house soon. It is too short and too ugly for the future. I hope to bring in some fresh white bookcases. I haven’t picked them out yet, but I will.

Boxes of fabric
Boxes of fabric

Clearing out the last bits from my workroom is a big drag. It has to be done, but is a big drag. It’s like moving. Stuff that has always been in a  spot has to be moved. A lot of it has to be wrapped up, you need boxes. Bleah. It’s just a lot of work. I keep thinking of the end result.

I had a pile of just pressed fabric and a pile of fabric waiting to be pressed. I decided to put them all in boxes. It was a good opportunity to check out some fabrics I hadn’t seen in awhile. I picked out another group of fabrics for a different quilt. Stay tuned for that post.

The removal of everything gives me two opportunities to go through my stuff. I am donating a lot of books. I also threw out a bunch of stuff I didn’t need to keep around. I hope to go for another round when I put everything back.

 

Ends n.10

Pop Parade Ends (n.10)
Pop Parade Ends (n.10)

In a way the sewing I am doing at the moment is all about getting stuff off the floor so I can move it out of my workroom before the painting starts.

The other day I organized bits of batting and the edges that came back from my quilter after she quilted a quilt. I have at least one more quilt to make from ends.

This one is the fourth quilt I have made from the Pop Parade fabric. Most of it is not Pop Parade, but you can see the Pop Parade clearly.

I also used some Dit Dot Evolution fabric for the background. I bought the fabric online and it is the wrong color. I was going to give it away, then I thought I could just use it for donation quilts, so I did. I prefer clear white, but I prefer to use fabric rather than just give it away. Someone will like this quilt. It isn’t at all ugly even if I didn’t use my preferred fabric.

I have to make a back, which I would like to do before I go to the next Sew Day.

Block Blast from the Past

Pre-Blog block
Pre-Blog block

In the course of cleaning out my workroom, I found this block. It was crumpled up and dusty in the bottom of a bag I haven’t used in a long time.

I made this block in my second quiltmaking class. That class was focused on drafting blocks. None of the blocks were straightforward, so drafting and making templates was the only way to get them made. I drafted the pattern for this block before making the templates and piecing it.

In my early days of the quiltmaking, I primarily used solids. I did have a wild streak that you can see in the border. I fussy cut all of those pieces so that it looked like the block had a special border. I didn’t do a spectacular job on the fussy cutting, but considering it was one of the first dozen blocks I ever made, I am pretty proud of it.

Tim’s Improv Donation Top

Tim's Donation Top
Tim’s Donation Top

I finally got to work on Tim’s donation top. I can’t believe it was May when I worked on it last. Fortunately, it was only a week before that I started working on the piece.  Time is flying by.

I don’t think this is my best work. there are a lot of disparate elements. Somehow it works. It kind of looks like buildings surrounding a park to me.

I struggled with this piece, because of the green and orange. I don’t sincerely dislike green, but I don’t make it a main color in any of my quilts except the Improv Color quilts.  I also like orange, but somehow this was a struggle on which to work.

Tim's Improv Donation Back
Tim’s Improv Donation Back

The back went relatively fast. I took both pieces to Sew Day and gave them to Peggy and the team for quilting.

Missouri Star Block

Double Missouri Star
Double Missouri Star

I talked about one of the Triple Play Missouri Star videos in a recent Various & Sundry post. In this video, Jenny, Natalie and Misty take the same block pattern and make different quilts. I really liked what Natalie did with her version and I decided to try it out myself.

I thought it would be a quick test. Then I thought that I know how those quick “tests” go and started surfing around the Internet for fabric, thinking I would make an entire quilt. Fortunately, I got myself under control and decided to make one block with the True Kisses fabric I have and go from there. Cotton Cure still has packs of yardage.

I stopped and started the video as I followed along with the Missouri Star directions. Unlike other shows, Jenny and the gang tell viewers what sizes to cut, show you how to sew and press so you can follow along and make the block or quilt just from watching a free video. I like this about them.

Double Missouri Star center
Double Missouri Star center

The Missouri Star is a block they use for their logo. In this video they redid it. Jenny shrank the block and made a quilt from smaller versions. This version provided the directions for the center of Natalie’s block (above).

I didn’t choose good fabrics from the True Kisses line. There wasn’t enough contrast in the legs. Unfortunately I succumbed to the lure of those fabrics and the desire to just make something.

Trimming alternative
Trimming alternative

In the video, they show how to use the Clearly Perfect Trimmer**. I didn’t have that ruler so I tried their alternative method of using a regular ruler and it absolutely didn’t work. I should have saved myself the trouble and just squared up the various pieces the normal way.

My pieces were all the wrong size. Since I followed the Missouri Star method for making HSTs, all of my edges were on the bias. The small center block looked awful. I took the whole block apart, trimmed and put it back together again. I was reminded of how bias can work against me. I also think I didn’t completely understand the alternative method of trimming.

Using the Clearly Perfect Trimmer
Using the Clearly Perfect Trimmer

I did end buying the Clearly Perfect Trimmer**. I had never heard of this ruler and I was curious to try it out. I can’t really tell if it was any better than trimming the regular way. The one difference was that you only make two cuts vs making two cuts, turning your piece and making two more cuts.

I haven’t read all of the directions for this set of rulers, but I am interested in learning how to use more of its capabilities.

Despite all of the ripping, I am pretty pleased with the way the block came out. I won’t be making a whole quilt, however.

 

 

 

 

 

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Color Ideas

As I have said, my workroom is also my office and yoga studio. When I am laying on the floor at the end of my yoga session, I sometimes see my fabric in a different way, which is what happened the other day.

Fabric Combination
Fabric Combination

I had pressed some fabric in anticipation of cutting it up when I saw a combination I hadn’t considered before. The prints go really well together even if they clash when put right next to each other. I think the solids (some solids I bought at QuiltCon, I think.

This isn’t the final number of fabric. The group definitely needs some turquoise and I have a solid turquoise I can use as well as a lot of print turquoises. I like the combination of the two prints, especially the slight differences.

I also have no idea what I am going to make with the group.

More I Spys

All the I Spy Pouches
All the I Spy Pouches

I used some of the Anna Maria Horner fabrics I received in the Quilty Box to finish some of the more recent I Spy Pouches. Once I finished the two large ones, I got all the pouches out and rearranged my templates.

I know it seems kind of ridiculous to make pouches for templates. On one hand, I like having them organized. I also like the fabric and enjoy using the coneflower print for something I am going to keep. Finally, the I Spy pouches are quick to make, so rather satisfying.

New Large I Spy Pouches
New Large I Spy Pouches

The two newest pouches are quite wild. I used a couple of the Bright Eyes prints. I didn’t really realize how exuberant the pouches would be using those fabrics. The fabrics clash a little with the coneflowers, unfortunately. Still, I like them and the coneflowers will show up when I put some templates inside.

I have a number of template sets that are too big for these pouches. I can use the same directions to make larger pouches. I just haven’t been up for that lately.

Quilty Box

Quilty Box arrived
Quilty Box arrived

I subscribed for 3 months to Quilty Box. Anna Maria Horner’s Bright Eyes fabric line was included in this first box. I wanted to subscribe because of the AMH fabrics. I didn’t buy any Bright Eyes when I was in Oregon & Washington, so getting some in the mail was good.

Quilty Box open
Quilty Box open

I was excited to receive the box. I didn’t know exactly what was in it. The picture (right) is exactly what I saw when I opened the box. They wrapped it pretty nicely, if simply.

The booklet has a couple of projects inside as well as a Q&A with Anna Maria Horner.

The fabric, of course, was the main attraction. There were, however, other items in the box as well. The items included a label, a spool of thread, and a needle threader.

Quilty Box Fabrics
Quilty Box Fabrics

I liked the fabric, but I didn’t really like the amounts. They provide the amounts needed to make the quilt on the front of the booklet. I would have liked some more of the poppy fabric and less of the plaid. I have no plans to make the quilt top, so I started using the fabric already.

I know I seem like I am never happy with these boxes. I guess I just need to shop for myself!

Rock Star Test

My class is designing circle quilts. I decided that I had better try some of the rulers I have been suggesting my students try.

Rock Star Block Finished
Rock Star Block Finished

I tried out one of the new blocks using the Wonder Curve ruler. This is one of the blocks from their recent sew along. Sadly, they do not have a photo of the finished quilt in their IG feed. I think it will probably be a pattern sometime in the future. I wasn’t super enamored of their sampler, but I did like this block. I did think it would be a good test of the ruler, so I made one over the weekend.

I am still liking the blue and red-violet combination that I used in Frolic!. This blue is more turquoise than the blue-violet I used in Frolic!, however the combination is interesting. Also, the fabrics were handy and I didn’t have to rummage.

This is the first Sew Kind of Wonderful project I have made since Metroscape and Mod Lights. As I mentioned when I made those projects, I really liked the Quick Curve ruler and the mini Quick Curve ruler. The Wonder Curve ruler does those nice petal shapes, but I didn’t feel the love quite as much with this ruler. It could be that it was new to me and I only had a block pattern for directions. I didn’t watch the Live demos.

I am interested in seeing what patterns the SKOW team produces. I wouldn’t make or put the Rock the Block sampler together like they did. I didn’t think the design worked, though the individual blocks were appealing. You see the sampler top finished in a video at minute 5:30.

Rock Star block in process
Rock Star block in process

This block, after cutting the petals and putting the individual units together is a regular 9 patch. I thought about making a quilt with these blocks, but it doesn’t have enough appeal at the moment to make me do it. I do like the way the center layout makes the block look woven.

I am pretty impressed with SKOW, in general. Their rulers work well.

Busy Quilt

LFL's Busy Quilt - front
LFL’s Busy Quilt – front

Lindsay sent me a picture of the ‘Busy Quilt’ she made for her toddler (my baby friend). What a great idea! It’s a really good idea for a baby gift if you want to make a gift for later – or you don’t get around to the gift until the baby is one.

It also reminded me of the Fidget Quilts that BAM made for people with Alzheimer’s. Lindsay’s, of course, is much more vibrant. The Tula Pink fabrics make the piece visually interesting.

There are also some differences. In the middle, there are clips to move around that section. This is something to watch out for when making it for a patient or a toddler. Nobody wants the recipient to choke. I am sure Lindsay knows Baby A well enough to put the clips on when she is old enough.

The bottom middle has woven yarn or string with beads and buttons to move over the yarn. There are also laces, which make me think of the Dressy Bessy-update pattern I bought. I never made it for my niece. Now, perhaps, I should make it for Baby A?

LFL's Busy Quilt - front excite
LFL’s Busy Quilt – front excite

Lindsay also used mesh to good effect. The bobbles are a great choice as are the Curiouser and Curiouser faces.

I am so fortunate to have such talented friends.

Pop Parade Donation Top/Back

Pop Parade Improv Donation quilt
Pop Parade Improv Donation quilt

This is the THIRD quilt I have made from the bundle I bought a million years ago!

This top came about because I cleaned off every horizontal surface in my workroom holding fabric or projects. I found some random pieces sewn together as well as some Pop Parade yardage. I wanted it all gone except a blue (not shown). I started sewing pieces together randomly, using already pieced sections where I could. I had only two unused blocks from the X quilt, which was  a shame, design-wise, but ok. I know that someone will like this quilt once it is finished and off to its new owner.

Pop Parade Improv Donation quilt back
Pop Parade Improv Donation quilt back

My bonus is that I don’t have any random pieces of Pop Parade laying around. I did like the motifs, but didn’t like the colors chosen. I’d love it if they would reprint this fabric in clearer colors. I often think that.

We are now handing in donation quilts at Sew Days, so I will give this to Peggy the next time we meet.