Saturday, May 05, 2012

Shadow study 2

Shadow study 2 by marie watterlond
Shadow study 2, a photo by marie watterlond on Flickr.

As in, part 2 of the previous post. This quilt was a lot of fun to do: except for the background, which is stars, the fabrics are all batiks or hand-dyed. I loved making the little bitty squares. The shadow strips are almost as big as they are!

All three of these quilts are coming to Asilomar with me for another class, this one in machine quilting. It's been a long time since I was able to do any quilting to speak of; I have some tops, from classes, which I've been rounding up and finishing up, but nothing quilted. Hence my recent quilt-by-check spree! But now I'll have five days to practice, get comfortable with the machine again, and hopefully learn some new techniques. Hard to believe it's been ten years since I last taught machine quilting!

Shadow study 1

Shadow study 1 by marie watterlond
Shadow study 1, a photo by marie watterlond on Flickr.

This is the first quilt that was the source for scraps for the Woven Ribbons. I've realized that my tendency, when I take a class like this--I did it again this year--is to start by tackling a relatively simple project,. to get the technique down and work through any problems. Then, with (in this case) one quilt top done, I can tackle something more complicated. I'll do another post with the second quilt in this series.

What I Did Today

Here it is--today's project, a Woven Ribbons quilt. Of course there's a story to this!

Remember  how, last month, I went to an Empty Spools Seminar at Asilomar? In choosing fabrics to bring, I ran across a little roll of batik strips wrapped around what looked like more strips. So I threw it in my fabric box.

When I started my project, I thought I'd use some of the outside fabric--a really dark, almost black batik with little hints of deep blue in it. Imagine my surprise when I unrolled it, and there were a whole LOT of little squares, all neatly pressed and cut to size. Hmmm. Worst part was, I had absolutely no idea what they were or how they had gotten there. Figuring I could always sew them into  something, even if I couldn't remember what they were originally meant for, I re-rolled them and set them aside.

Memory is a funny thing. As I worked on my Mariner's Compass, an idea of a quilt came to  me...and with a little digging (I had a whole bunch of stuff with me that had no relationship to what I was going to do, which is a story for another time and will probably not surprise anyone who knows  me) I came up with the book and  the project they'd been cut for. Victory!

Flash forward to yesterday. I'd been sewing  binding on the six quilts that have come back from the longarm quilter, and thinking about this project. So, once all the quilts had binding around them, I got out the book and the squares and got ready to sew.

 Ooops. I realized that there was a pattern to this, and that it required a certain number of each type of square. So, I laid them out and counted them. Rats. Now I remembered why this project had been rolled up and put away. I was short one square. I had enough to do the quilt IF I only had one. more. yellow. square. Back into the roll it all went.
 But I have fabric, and I had some scraps of the yellows left over, so I pieced another one. It didn't quite match, but you know what they say about the 10-foot rule. So I started putting this guy together.
Yes, I had lots of help from the four-footed ones. They have appointed themselves Quilt Overseers, and they take their duties seriously. So, I sewed. Row by row. Normally on something like this, I'd lay it all out, make neat stacks and then chain piece it. Today I wasn't trusting myself--another long boring story. So I kept the diagram nearby and referred to it frequently. I even put a post-it over the row I was sewing to help me keep it straight.
 There was one black square left over, and a few of the various colors. I wound up with about a foot of extra border fabric. Back in 2007 (when this was cut out) I was really making the most of all my scraps. Because these are the scraps left over from my "dimensional" quilts, in class with Colleen Wise.
So, Colleen, here's my scrappy pieces finally put together into a quilt top! The border isn't really as wavy as it looks in the picture--I just don't bend well enough to really straighten it out for its portrait.  (And I've just spotted an oopsy in it. Guess Jack-the-(seam)ripper and I have a date!

And then... it's on to finish more UFOs. I really do seem to be on a roll with this! Heck, maybe I'll even blog about the rest of my projects!

But please, don't hold your breath...