Black Windmill – All the Blocks

Black Windmill - all the blocks
Black Windmill – all the blocks

I worked over the weekend on getting the rest of the blocks made so I could start to sew the piece together.

I admit that some of the greys used as foreground (not-black) are too close in tone to the blacks to be true backgrounds. I am going to leave them to add to the mystery of the pattern, if there is a such a thing.

Another Windmill on the Wall

Black Windmill going up on the wall
Black Windmill going up on the wall

I haven’t worked on this piece since July, because Red Scribbles was on the wall and red thread (for the applique’) was in the machine. Now grey thread is back in the machine and I am putting the piece up on the design wall.

I am thinking of calling this Black Windmill. I don’t really like the name that much, but there are more than cool colors in the foreground, so Cool Windmill n.2 doesn’t work either. It is looking good, though I have a lot of rearranging work to do before I can start piecing.

Blue Improv Donation Top Start

Blue Improv Donation Top start
Blue Improv Donation Top start

After making the most recent journal cover, I continued piecing together my blue scraps. One good thing is that I am also unearthing more strips, so there may be another Blue Strip donation top in my future.

I haven’t yet made a blue improv donation top, so I decided to just go forward with that project rather than making another journal cover. I am sure I will have plenty of scraps to make another one when I am finished!

I am finding scraps from older projects, which is interesting. It is fun to contemplate what I was thinking when I bought and used those scraps. Some are a lot darker than the fabrics I buy now.

I am also finding (this drawer is STUFFED!!!, though getting better) some pieces that have already been pieced together, so those are also useful

Blue Improv Piecing

Blue Improv Piecing
Blue Improv Piecing

In between working on the applique’ for Red Scribbles, I have been piecing blue scraps in an improv style. I am vaguely thinking this is the start of the next Color Improv quilt, but we’ll see.

I am working very hard at not using a lot of strips that I can use for more of the strip blocks like I made for Blue Strips #2. It isn’t working 100% as I do resort to using some occasionally.

Black & White Quilt Progresses

I spent some time on Sunday working on the Black & White with Red quilt. I wasn’t sure what I would do, but I just started sewing rectangles together first.

Testing Bias Tape
Testing Bias Tape

Per my rule, Make Visual Decisions Visually, I pinned up some of the bias tape to see what the piece would look like with the bias tape applied.

I am not happy with the look of the bias as applied in the photo, but I do think putting a larger piece over the whole top is a good idea. I don’t want it to look like a giant *enis so I have to make sure about that.

When I pinned that long piece of bias tape on the top, I hadn’t done any sewing. Now I have sewed shorter pieces of bias tape to smaller sections and now I am much more confident and have a better idea of how the bias tape works.

Black & White quilt with some red
Black & White quilt with some red

I am really liking the bias tape. It is amazing how the curves work! I am getting much better at sewing them down flat and I am testing how tight I can make the curves. I think I have to do something else with curves. First I have to find my bias tape makers

Blue Strips #2 Donation Top Sashing

Blue Strips #2 top with some Sashing
Blue Strips #2 top with some Sashing

I cut up the fabric I found the other day into sashing strips and had been waiting for some miracle to sew them together. I found another piece of a similar colored batik and was able to move forward yesterday. I sewed sashing pieces to the tops of all of the blocks and am now sewing the blocks together into rows. I am not adding corner stones so I am not chunking.

Black & Red Quilt

Black Rectangles on design wall
Black Rectangles on design wall

This quilt does not yet have a name. Black & Red Quilt doesn’t seem useful or interesting, somehow.

This photo also does not seem interesting. Trust me, the piece looks a lot better on my design wall. Clearly, I need better lighting for photographing monochromatic quilts.

The shifts in fabric/tones & shades are subtle. This is more like a pushed neutral background than anything. There won’t be much of a foreground, however, as my idea is to use the 3,000 yards of bias tape I made in the January Challenge for the Mighty Lucky Quilting Club. My original idea was to applique a small strip to each rectangle at a different angle, then sew the rectangles together. The other night as I was going to sleep, I thought about sewing the bias tape to the quilt as one long piece in large arcs or swirls. I am eager to sew the rectangles together, but the new idea would mean maneuvering the large top around my sewing table rather than the smaller rectangles. I’ll get the red bias tape out and see what I think.

Plaid Top Finished

Plaid Top Complete
Plaid Top Complete

I spent some time working on sewing the plaid blocks together. I was able to finish the top with only a minimal amount of irritation. There are a few places where I would have changed the blocks if I had been able to see them on the design wall, but didn’t and am not unsewing.

In general, I am pretty pleased with how the piece looks. The yellow is pretty well distributed over the top, so it helps the eye to move around. Now on to back and binding!

More Plaid

6 Plaid Blocks
6 Plaid Blocks

I am well on my way to having the top of the Plaid Quilt finished.

I spent concentrated time last weekend sewing these blocks and finished all I need for the quilt top.

5 Plaid Blocks
5 Plaid Blocks

As mentioned, these blocks are quick to put together, but a binding and back also need to be done.

We’ll see how I do without a design wall. My felt is still in transit and will arrive next week.

More Plaid Blocks

Plaid Blocks - end of May 2020
Plaid Blocks – end of May 2020

I had 4 days off over the weekend and it was great to cross some things off my To Do list AND get some chores done. I have a number of bags and a swap gift on my to do list, but after 3 hours worth of video chats and an hour on the phone with the YM, I really only had time for the plaid blocks. I did press some new-ish fabric, though and found some pieces I’ll use for the swap gift.

I now have 25 blocks, so am definitely on the downward slope of block making for this piece. I ordered the felt for my design wall yesterday. I have little hope of it arriving today, but I am hopeful it will arrive int he coming week. I want to get these blocks up where I can see them all before I start sewing them together.

More Plaid Blocks

I consulted with a friend who said this block is called Block Party. I did a search and found some instructions on a guild community service site. The instructions are in PDF, which is handy. I wasn’t able to find anywhere else to confirm the name.

6 more Plaid Blocks
6 more Plaid Blocks

I added another few blocks to my total during the week and am now up to 15 blocks. My first plan is for 36, which means 21 more to go.

I cut up a few more fabrics so there are some new ones included. Since I am working without a design wall, mostly, I don’t know if I am duplicating layouts. I don’t think it likely, but I also don’t think it will matter if I am.

Warm Windmill n.2 Ready for Quilting

Warm Windmill n.2 ready for quilting
Warm Windmill n.2 ready for quilting

I had to get the Warm Windmill n.2 off the design wall by the end of the weekend. I sewed a little each day at lunchtime last week and also a little after work. I finished sewing the whole piece together on Saturday, including sewing around the outside edge.

I pulled fabrics for the back on Saturday evening, but didn’t do any sewing. After sleeping on it, I remembered to look at my back fabrics and found the leftovers of a#politicalwifery dress that formed the backbone of the back.

Warm Windmill n.2 back ready for quilting
Warm Windmill n.2 back ready for quilting

This is quilt #2 that is ready for Colleen.

I am going to make some bags and more face masks and some smaller projects while I work on a new design wall.

Warm Windmill n.2 Sewn

Warm Windmill n.2 - blocks sewn
Warm Windmill n.2 – blocks sewn

Well, at least the blocks are sewn together.

 I am working hard at making this a top not because I want a product, but because I need to free up the design wall. I am still being careful about the colors.

I spent several lunch hours and time after work sewing to get this done. From what you see in the photo, I need to finish sewing all the blocks together.

I found a GREAT binding fabric by chance and am excited about that.

Finishing Frolic! Top

Finished Frolic! Top
Finished Frolic! Top

Yes! I finished the Frolic! top. The borders were not painful. I was sure the top and bottom borders would cause me problems. I had to ease a bit more on the top and bottom than I did on the sides. Other than that they went on smoothly. I am really pleased.

I thought about adding another plain border, but decided I couldn’t face it.

Frolic! Back
Frolic! Back

I also made the back and the binding so the whole piece is ready to be quilted. For the moment, I am not planning on doing a drive-by at the moment, but we will see.

This quilt used about 11 yards of fabric, which put my total up. I am thrilled about that and thrilled that the piece is really for quilting. Really thrilled!

Frolic! Top finished- corner detail
Frolic! Top finished- corner detail

I can’t decide whether I like working on quilts for so long. I did other projects after I started this, but no quilts except donation tops. It is the second project I have worked on recently that took me ~5 months to piece. I am trying to decide if I like those types of projects. I definitely don’t mind the piecing. I think the problem is not having things to show at meetings, feeling like I am making progress and the process being slow. I have to find a balance between impressive, complex projects and speed.

Frolic! First Border

Frolic! with side borders
Frolic! with side borders

I spent part of my lunch hour working on the Frolic! borders yesterday. I also worked on it for awhile after work and after dinner.

I can’t tell you how fabulous it was! I got the side borders on the quilt, which meant taking the HST borders and sewing them together. They fit really well. I didn’t have to ease barely at all. I am thrilled. On to the top and bottom borders. The end is near!!!