Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Lots of (slow) Quilting Going On

It's been a long time since I posted anything, but lots of stuff has been happening.

I'm still hand quilting the Florabunda quilt.  I've completed the center (27") square and am working on the checkerboard sashing.

I do all my hand quilting on a Grace Hoop similar to this  and love how easy it is to manipulate to a comfortable position, how sturdy it is and how easy it is to take apart and store when I'm done.

I'm making progress on this and am aiming to have it done by the end of the year.  Once fall comes around, I will have more quiet evenings to stitch.  For now, I'm trying to use this as my 15-minute per day sewing time.  Some days I get more, some days not at all.

I had completed (quilted and bound) the maple leaf quilt to put in my guild's show in May, but I still wanted to do some quilting on the outer border.  I completed that this weekend and washed the quilt.  I like the machined feather on the border and I love the look of a crinkled, washed quilt.  I think I just have to put a permanent label on this one to call it entirely done.

Since the last two small hand projects (the small hand pieced maple leaves in the quilt above and all the applique on the Florabunda quilt), I needed a new small project I could tote around with me. Perhaps a year ago I started hearing about Klosjes.   Klosje is the Dutch work for spool.  It seems that there was a movement for Klosje Saturday - that you would make small spool blocks on Saturday and report in to some central location or blog, or something.  I kept seeing these small spool blocks and resulting quilts popping up all over the place and I was enchanted.  But, I put it off because I was doing these small maple leaf blocks and the applique.   Now that they're nearing completion, I felt free to play with these spools.  So, I drafted up a pattern and started cutting fabrics.  I've never made a charm quilt and decided to make each of the blocks with different fabrics.  I'm using either white or off-white for the backgrounds and am not worried about duplicating them, but each of the spools will be different fabrics Though one of my guild friends says it's not technically a charm quilt since each block has 3 pieces of identical fabric.  I told her it was my quilt with my rules and I could modify my rules as I see fit, I'm happy with this.

I've got 15 blocks done so far, and 50 more cut and prepared.  I got that many cut out to take on a long cross-country plane trip, but found myself too tired and the plane too crowded to sew.

My other hand sewing project is the one below.  I bought templates from a favorite vendor at the Vermont Quilt Festival in July. Ardco makes terrific metal templates.  They are aluminum, have a rough surface on one side so it doesn't slide on the fabric, and is cut out on the inside to let you mark accurate 1/4" allowances.   Some of the templates are large enough to use a rotary cutter to slice around.  I bought their Tea Leaves template set because I love the pattern.  I was torn between the 6" block and 12" block.  I figured I could use all kinds of scraps in the 6" block and bought that size.  I've gotten this far on one block and I'm not sure I want to continue.  They surely are small pieces and not very forgiving if you're off by a little.

It's probably time to set it aside for a while and play with the spools.

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