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Sunday, February 22, 2015

PQ: 6.4 Unchained Heart (The clock is ticking)

Whew! That was close.  Two minutes to spare on this week's challenge. I'll be fixing this post as soon as I catch my breath....  (OK, a few details finally added!)

Well, that was a challenge! I know, it is supposed to be a challenge, but I don't think I've ever cut it as close as this one.

I decided on Sunday what I wanted to make.  I made this quilt  several years ago.  My mom asked to have it so, of course I gave it to her.  She then turned around and gave it to my niece for her wedding present.  Apparently they've had a thing about hearts forever and ever.  Sneaky mom!  I always loved that quilt and wanted to do something to replace it.  So for this challenge I was bound and determined to make a quilt that used similar elements.  Tick.  Tock.

But I dithered around forever and ever on it.  Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock.   My first plan was to do a quilt as you go piece. It would have the hearts in the middle and each block would be surrounded by the red blocks.  It was all good until I started thinking about the edges.  I was going to have to do something funky with the number of blocks.  Probably not an issue but it hurt my head.  Tick.  Tock.  Tuesday.

So I thought about the quilt I made for the spuds' teacher when she retired.  I like the Irish Chain pattern.  It i one of my favorites. I figured it would work for the project.  But then I had to decide how best to do it.  I did not want to cut individual blocks.  I thought about it and finally came up with a plan. But then it was Wednesday (Tick, Tock, Tickety, Tock) and the quilt was going to be too big to finish in the remaining time.  So I pondered for a bit longer about plan B.  There was no plan B.  Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick.

Late Wednesday night I pulled all of my red fabrics, selected 20 and cut strips.  About the time I cut the last wee bit of red with white hearts wonky, I gave up and went to bed.  There was no point in messing up anything else.  Tick. Tock.  Ticktockticktockzzzzzzzz........

Thursday I started in with the white fabric.  All 20 strips were cut.  Then I cut each WOF strip in half.  In order to make sure my nine patches would come out right, I figured that I would sew three pairs (red to white) and then add the third to each before moving on.  Two would get another red.  One would get another white.  Worked!  I ended up with exactly the right number of strip sets.  Well, except for the wonky heart strip which only made on set and I had to pull one more fabric and cut one more strip.  


The next question that deserved a long session of pondering was how to iron the seam so it would all work out.  (Tickety. Tockety Tick.) Of course, any experienced quilter would immediately know that you press them all to the red and it will be fine.  Took me a while to get that worked out.  But they were ironed and ready to cut.  

If you don't have this June Tailor shape cutter ruler, you need one.  It is the best.  You line up your strip set and then cut several at one time.  No moving the ruler.  It is big enough that it doesn't shift.  It is great for squaring up HST and QST blocks as well.  

Strip sets cut, blocks made.  More challenges with the rotary cutter.  Who knew it would be so hard to cut 60 - 6.5 inch blocks of plain white fabric.  Give up and start again on Friday. OK.  It wasn't really that simple.  I gave up after I realized that I just cut through one of my finished blocks and had a major panic about whether or not I would have enough blocks to make the quilt AND after another futile search for plan B.  Finished piecing on Friday night.  (Ticktockticktockticktock)

Tock. Tick. Tick. Tock.  Where ever did Saturday go?  Mostly done but OH My it is 2:39 am! Ticktockticktockticktock...

 Brrrrrrrring!  10 am!?!!  Tick. Tick. Tick. Two hours to finish.  Tock. Tick. Tock. Tick.
 11:26 am.  TOCK.  Where is the camera?  What? No charger?  Just enough battery for a couple pictures.  TICK.  EEP.  Too windy.  Quilt moved.  TOCK.   WHAT????  TICK.  Processing?  TOCK.  Who set the camera on raw format? TICK. TICK.  Where is the phone?  TOCK.  Email. Refresh.  TICK. REFRESH!!!! TOCK.  Upload. TICK TICK TICK.  Posted!  TOCK.  LINK.  Done. 11:58.  Breathe. 

The details:  This quilt measures 60 by 72 inches, machine pieced of quilter's cotton,  It as a polyester blend batting and is machine quilted with walking foot and embroidery unit.  There are precisely 12 hearts! Not saying there won't be more in the future, but I kind of like the band of hearts across the top!  The binding is machine sewn.

This quilt is my entry for the Project Quilting Season 6, challenge Have Heart.  Project quilting is the brain child of Kim Lapacek who blogs at Persimon Dreams.  The challenges come from the strange brain of her mother-in-law Diane.  You can view all of the quilts on here and follow along on the Challenge Quilts Facebook Page. 

Saturday, February 7, 2015

I Do Not Like This Sam I Am. I Do Not Like This Pillow Sham.

I do not like this Sam I am
I do not like this pillow sham
I made it from a scrap of stash
I made it in a great big dash
I did not applique it with a fox
I think I'll put it in a box
I think I'll put it on the floor
I'll do better with challenge four.

I did not like this week's Project Quilting Challenge. It was Orphan blocks and WIPs.  I have long maintained that WIPs are WIPs for a reason.  Mine are that way, not because I don't like them or I am bored with them.  They are WIPs because I have a vision but I don't have the knowledge or skill to complete that vision.  And I am unwilling to compromise that vision.  So I set it aside and mull it over for however long it takes until the quilt speaks.  Or until my skills are up to the challenge.

So I wondered through my stash of WIPs and my very few orphan blocks.  And I rejected them all.  I knew I couldn't complete the wonky house quilt and did not want to break out the tree blocks for something else.  I'm still not sure how to finish the ruffled quilt.   I don't feel like squaring up the rest of the halloween blocks.  My quilt club blocks are samples of a wide variety of techniques and I want to be able to refer to them.  And on and and on

So I started through my scrap bag.  I vaguely recalled that there were some orphans in there.  I didn't find any orphans but I did find this strip set. It was from an unfinished project.  On that I did not start with a vision but with a vague goal of making money... that is a long story for another day.  Needless to say you can quilt for love but not for money.  The strip set was free for me to mess with.

Thus is born the completely unnecessary pillow sham.  It has an envelope back from the red fabric in the picture.  It is some what loosey goosey in the picture because I don't have a pillow form that fits it.

I am sure I will love it on the porch for the 4th of July but for now... I do not like this!  Oh well.  It is a finished quilted project.

Project Quilting is the brain child of Kim Lapacek of Persimon Dreams.  The weekly challenges come from the evil genius of her mother-in-law Diane.  You can see all of the projects HERE.  If you vote for mine, it will be a mercy vote and completely undeserved.  But you should go visit and see all of the amazing quilty goodness that have appeared over the course of the week.