Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Now for some triangles

Well I have had a productive morning.

Over the weekend, when in theory I do no piecing, I put together three more sun blocks, so today I was ready to roll.  When I started the floor looked like this:

and I had another sun in reserve.  I think I will end up making more, but today I wanted to have go at working out what was going to happen between the birds and the suns.  

I had a notion that I wanted to use triangles, but cut a few squares and sewed up a couple of flying geese so that I could see what I thought.  I also considered HSTs, but didn't sew any (just folded my squares along the diagonal).

Neither of these was quite hitting the spot for me, but I thought maybe I'd go with the geese.  As I was cutting a pile of rectangles it occurred to me to mix it up a bit more and I did this.

and then this.

I'm being cautious about how much I sew together at this stage, as I still think I'm heading for a 'not-quite-a-medallion' sort of thing, but you can see here how the next chunk might look.  If I get too carried away I'll just end up with some sort of horrific piecing challenge trying to put it all together!

And that is where I left it.  Much as I wish I could sew all day without stopping, I have come to realise that mostly I can only do 3 or 4 hours before my brain seizes up and rather than carrying on and making bad decisions (or just making elementary errors like sewing things on backwards/upside down) I have to stop.  But I'm feeling pretty happy about this right now.  

Sunday, 15 January 2017

It's Sunday, I'm slow

But nonetheless I am making good progress and the end of this quilt, while not exactly imminent, is definitely within sight.  I am working my way around the outer edges now, and know from experience that the closer I get to the finish, the more hours I will put in.  I can't go faster, so I have to do more; sort of impatient patient stitching!

After a bit of a break I am linking up with Kathy today for Slow Sunday Stitching.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Never say never again

At the end of my last post I was muttering about triangles, thinking that they would probably be the next step in this quilt.  They may well still make an appearance but I have been side-tracked a bit.  

Last night I was browsing the Amitie Textiles website and saw on their blog a picture of this, by Carolyn Friedlander.  I had already done a couple of little drawings  which added circles in with my yellow bird blocks, and talked myself out of doing anything with them, but this time I couldn't resist. So this morning I made my own, hand-drawn, haphazard and decidedly irregular version of these blocks.

Obviously they are a bit fiddly so I've only managed two so far.

Here's the first one I did alongside a couple of bird bits.

Clearly I can't draw a decent quarter circle to save my life, but I rather like these and think I can make this work.  

Linking up today with My Quilt Infatuation for NTT Thursday.

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Yellow birds taking off

A bit more progress: here's where I got to today:

It's pretty obvious which bits are sewn together already; nothing else is carved in stone, which is to say that I am moving these chunks about all the time, so what is on the left now may end up on the right, what is at the top now may end up at the bottom.  

I started off thinking of this as a quilt to be made in columns (I've done that before, but things always veer off at some point).  Last time, looking at this collection of bits and half-bits I started wondering whether I might make a central block with all these and then use that as the centre for a more medallion-based quilt.  

Now I'm somewhere between these two ideas, so we'll see where that takes me. I have to work out next what goes between these columns of birds - triangles maybe.  

Friday, 6 January 2017

New Year, new quilt and about time too!

I cannot tell you how good it felt to be sewing again this morning.  In the course of the last week, my brain and fingers itching to get back to my own sewing I have instead produce two very makeshift rag dolls (as in, can you do this in half an hour and can it please look like a Ninjago character please) and a blanket to keep Mr Sew Slowly's legs warm while he's fishing. This was not as simple as you might think, as he wanted fish appliqued on (even bought his own fabric from Spoonflower) and three layers, two of army blanket and one of wadding, all quilted together.  

Anyhow,  after all that, and before someone thinks to ask me for a circus tent or a pair of trousers decorated with balloons or any such nonsense, I have been back to my own stuff.

Remember this pile of fabric? Where to start?  Ok, so I had only the vaguest of thoughts about this, which was pretty much 'something with rectangles'.  So I kicked off by cutting up the yellow fabric with birds on.  This was the scariest one to cut into, but I reckon it's a good idea to get the worst over first.  I ended up with this:

and a pile of spare bits without birds.  

The next thing that caught my eye happened to be a  shirt pocket, which yielded two squares once I sliced off the seams.  I added a third. 

At this point I started to think in columns, so the next thing was to start adding bits to build vertically.

As usual I am cutting willy nilly then adding bits on if something is a bit small.

When I take a shirt to pieces I habitually take off cuffs, collars, plackets etc, but I don't throw them away and at some point in the scheme of things I wondered, in the spirit of Modern Utility, whether I might just include them.  Here's a train of thought picture of that stage.

Of course this is very early days, and I am still pretty much just playing: putting stuff down and seeing what I like, but some of these bits have already made it in there.

In a nutshell, today was mostly about getting a feel for the fabrics, seeing which ones I liked next to each other (or not), and starting to put together some chunks that work for me. Where they end up in relation to each other and what else will find its way in, I have literally no idea as yet, but it's a start! 

Saturday, 31 December 2016