Monday, August 17, 2015

On My Design Wall... Last week....

I started this post to publish last week. . . then I got sidetracked with finishing this flimsy. . . then our internet went down. . . after a trip to the store, a new modem and a few choice words it is back up. The flimsy is finished and can be seen here. As promised, a post flimsy finish break down of how  the blocks came together!

I am obsessed. I have to get all of those items checked off my Q3 FAL list! I am seeing the ingeniousness of setting goals and publishing them for the whole world to see! I have three down, four to go. . . now I know one of those is going to roll over, even said that in the post but I'm starting to think that the first six might actually get finished!

This is a process post, not a finish post. I spent hours, no days really, looking at the Doe fat quarter bundle I have for Jason's quilt (#6 on my list). When this line came out, I had to have it. I even pre-ordered it! I have never done that before. . . and I waited. And Waited. And finally I got it in my hot little hands. . . immediately pulled the bundle apart and inspected every piece. . . and I did not like it. Really did not like it. And I was sad. Don't hate on me. I know this is not a popular stance and that much love has been shown all over the internet for this line. I just was not feeling it. So I put it in a drawer. . . True. Didn't even put on my fabric shelves. I kinda didn't want to look at it. Every now and again I would pull it out and look at it again. And put it back in the drawer. And wonder if I would ever use it.The thing is, it is perfect for a masculine quilt. So I bit the bullet and started searching for the perfect pattern.

That process took awhile. . . then I saw this post from Cindy over at Hyacinth Quilt Designs. I had saved it in my Bloglovin feed. Oh yeah! Cindy's blocks were made with 3.5" x 6.5" rectangles for the print, 3.5" squares for the background and 1" x 3.5" rectangles for the middle strip. The finished block is 6.5" x 7". You know me and 'small' blocks. . . I made a test block using 4.5" x 8.5" rectangles, 4.5" squares for the background and 1" x 4.5" rectangles for the middle strip. That worked out well:
I have NO idea why this picture decided to upload horizontal.... Yup, four bonus HSTs for every block... Umm, that's a LOT of HSTs!
Then I decided that the best use of the FQ was to do 5" x 10" rectangles, 5" squares and 1" x 5" rectangles for the middle strip. Those of you math geniuses out there know this is a recipe for a block that is not going to work out so well. . . the middle strip was not long enough. . . I should have put a little more thought into that huh? BUT not only was it not long enough, I could see if I made the background strip and the print strip the same length, it was not going to line up right. . . WTF? Why? Why when the dimensions are reduced to whole numbers instead of half, does it change the halfsies rule for the middle strip?? I don't know the answer to that question. I just know it is. So I went with it. My blocks are made with 5" x 10" rectangles from the print fabric. 5" squares from the background fabric. 1" x 5" rectangles of print fabric and 1" x 5.5" rectangles from the background fabric.

Here's the rub. . . before I made my first block. . . yeah, I cut ALL of the pieces I needed out of the background fabric and my rectangles were cut at 1" x 5". . . Note to self, test block again when changing dimensions. . . oh well. The other thing is that my blocks turned out square. 10" x 10" unfinished. This opened up a whole new world of opportunities for layouts :)

Sewing the block together went relatively quickly. I ironed all of my 5" squares of background fabric in half on the diagonal. It is now that I am wishing I took some photos of this process. . . darn it! Then I placed them on my 5" x 10" rectangles - lined them up perfectly - both diagonal lines should slant the same way on the rectangle - one rectangle should have ironed horizontal line going right to left / and the other should have the ironed horizontal left to right \. Clear as mud? :) After sewing the first line, I sewed a second seam on all of them so that when I cut the corners off. . . I'd have HSTs! . . . and of course I could use them somehow in the quilt right? . . . No. LOL They will become a quilt themselves. . . there are 200 of them!! I'm not really excited about this - I'm still not even in like with this fabric line. I was hoping as I worked with it I would change my mind. Nope. Not happening. :)

OK, back to these blocks. I pinned. Yeah, me, I pinned. It really does just look better if the joins meet in the right place :) I did not pin anything when I made that first block. And it turned out perfectly. . . beginner's luck! I needed 49 blocks, 7 x 7 layout and then I figured I would put a row of HSTs at the top and the bottom of the quilt to make it not square. . . but when I put the HSTs up on the design wall, no. That didn't look good at.all. So I put a 4" strip of the background on the top and on the bottom. That works :)

After getting them all sewn together I started playing with layouts. If you read my flimsy finish post on this quilt you know there was an alternate layout that my #1 Fan was rather partial to. . . This was his vote:
I have to admit, I really like this layout. . . but I like the one I went with better :)
Sewing the blocks together was accomplished with more pinning. . . A couple not so great matches but not many - which is good enough for me!

I really like this block. I may do it again. In solids. I'm thinking one could get some pretty cool 3D effects with this block. . . but that is for another day. And this is also for another day:
200 HSTs that will square up to 4". . . someone want to volunteer for that job? :D
Quilting has commenced. My practical side won. I'm straight line quilting it and I have yet to go completely crazy with it. . . Notice I said yet! :)

So there you have it. If you have any questions about my less than stellar explanation of how these blocks are made, please leave me a comment or shoot me an email. I'm happy to explain further! Linking up this week with DWM over at Patchwork Times. A week late. . . better late than never right? :)

Until next time, keep on quilting!
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  1. Not volunteering for that job, nope. I checked your #1 fan's preference, checked the final flimsy, went back to #1, back to the ff, and finally the penny dropped as to the difference. Oh yeah, sorry #1 fan, but I agree with Judy, this final flimsy is it. What a cool block. Love it in the greens and blues on Cindy's page you linked to. Is it her pattern or someone else's? And I followed you (and I, too, don't get why the math changes and one 1X5" log has to be a 1/2" longer) on your instructions. ;-)

  2. I am not a huge fan of any full fabric line, to be honest. I think the beauty of Carolyn's prints are that they coordinate so well with her older lines and you can get great color stories by grouping them together now. At least, that is what I am currently enjoying. :) I am so glad that the link up and accountability is fueling your sewjo; that is awesome and you are really rocking it!

  3. I've only bought 2 full fabric lines - a fat quarter bundle of V & Co.'s Color Me Happy and two bundles of Carolyn Friedlander's Botanics. Lots of great prints in each that blend well with other fabrics. There are certainly some prints (especially the flowery ones) that don't appeal to me, but I think I'll be able to find a place for them.

  4. I LOVE your block! This is a smashing quilt! Those little 'thumbnails' on Judy's design wall Monday blog? Well, I only click on a handful of them every week. Yours intrigued me enough to take a look--and I'm glad I did! I've bought a couple of fat-quarter towers I HAD to have and loved them while I was making the first quilt but I had a lot left over that I didn't want to work with again. Oh, well. Keep making your own beautiful quilts!

  5. I did enough of my own hst trimming, so I'll pass on that job. I have never bought a fabric line as I don't like all the fabrics in a line. I tend to mix and match.

  6. Straight line quilting sounds perfect for it - looking forward to hearing how you've resisted the urge to quilt more!

  7. I think your number one fan is going to love his quilt, even if it wasn't the layout he had picked. Layout number two just rocks! Love the block pattern and how the flimsy turned out. Those fabrics ended up being great eh?
    I see no one volunteered for the HST trimming, LOL.

  8. It's sad when a long awaited fabric line disappoints. I'm glad you managed to use it though so it's not a waste. I very rarely purchase a precut stack of a full range as there are always a load of the fabric I don't like.

  9. Use your BlocLock ruler-you have one right? If not I will help you spend your money again!!

  10. Oh Judy, you crack me up! This was such a fun post to read and made me laugh. I too thought I was in love with the Doe line, but for some reason I can't bring myself to buy it. Our LQS has it sitting on a table by the checkout - I pick it up and fan through it every time I'm in the store and I always walk out without it. Your quilt is quite lovely, and looks really good in these prints. Straight line quilting will be perfect!

  11. It's lovely to hear about other people's creative processes - and things that don't go so well aswell!! Sometimes things I am sure are going to work (and I did higher level maths and engineering) don't and for the love of me I can't explain - I blame the 1/4" seams!! Will look forward to the straight quilting or the craziness that may yet evolve.

  12. Looks like you made the best of a non-ideal situation. Those blocks look fabulous.

  13. I just saw this quilt and found your blog. I absolutely love this quilt. Is there a pattern somewhere that i can purchase or did you create it yourself? Should I just read and follow your blog. It is a very unique and wild quilt design but so much fun. I can hardly wait to try it out.


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