Monday, 20 February 2017

If at first you don't succeed...

...give up and start again!

I should have been working on my yellow birds today, and got it all out only to realise that I had completely failed to print the one extra word I needed.  I had a whole week to get this done and somehow it had completely slipped my mind.  I was extremely ticked off with myself.  

However, tomorrow is a new day and in the meantime I thought I'd do an update on my attempt at the AHIQ Chinese Coins challenge.  Not straightforward here, either.  But the reason we take on challenges is to learn and grow, I tell myself, so here's what I learned.

After a week or so looking at the first coins I cut I decided they just weren't doing it for me.


Why?  Several reasons, first of which was the colours - with the benefit of a bit of reflection I think they were too same-y, sort of mid-tones, nothing stood out except the very strong pink, which was rather too much.  

The second thing wrong was that I had cut them all about the same size.  I know, I know, that's what you're supposed to do, but the way my brain works things just aren't meant to be all the same size. I love it when other people do it, but when it's staring up at me from the cutting mat I'm just not inspired.  I have to thank Sue for making me realise this.

So, back to the drawing board.  This time I pulled a load of shirts and then dug around in stash to see what I liked with them.  One of two of the original fabrics are still there, but most have gone back into their boxes for another day.  I can see that these fabrics too are similar in tone, though the checks/prints/solids maybe create a bit more variety but this time I like how they work together.  Go figure.


Next up, I have started cutting coins.  Bearing in mind that Ann is working with smaller sets, to give her more room for manoeuvre I am taking a leaf out of her book.  




The last aha moment for me was the realisation that I usually mix things up a bit more than this.  I read a great post on Barbara Brackman's Cloud of Quilt Patterns, on quilts that mixed up two blocks.  Inspired by this I have started making little pinwheels, to go in with the strips.  


This may not look like much, but in my head it has started to make sense, so I'm going to roll with it, give thanks for the connections the internet has helped me to make, and see where I get to.

14 comments:

  1. Oh, yes -- this is much more YOU and much more visually pleasing. (I've been saving my husband's older shirts to make a quilt for him when he retires in a year or so. He won't need the shirts then and I'll be free to cut up most of the rest of what is in HIS closet when he cleans it out for post-work life.)

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  2. p.s. I make my coins in shorter segments as well. MUCH easier to design and work with.

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  3. I'm glad you say coins don't need to be all the same widths lol
    because mine are turning out similar widths but skew whiffy in places - which is just how I like them.
    Really like your pin wheels in the mix too .... must post my own strips of coins and odd blocks!

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  4. I really like your quiet colors here and all the different widths. It feels so much more like your natural energy.:) And it's exactly where I've been getting bogged down too, to the point that I haven't even made the first cut!

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  5. Sometimes it takes some trials to find what really sings to you. I am glad you found your song. I like the new colors and combination too. Much more modern, interesting, and you.

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  6. This is going to a handsome quilt! (Don't you love my word?) I love the surprise of the little pinwheel blocks. They add a touch of whimsy. I agree with Audrey. This palette is closer to your sensibilities and feels more like your work.

    I've finished my own AHIQ quilt and plan to post it in a few days. It's an odd interpretation of several of the modern quilt books that I haven't put down since I got them at Christmas. Strangely, I have read and re-read them but can't seem to recreate the patterns. Instead everything has to have my twist and then ends up becoming something entirely different. lol I'm beginning to think that the quilts in my head have their own ideas.

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  7. Kaja, I am so happy that something I communicated helped someone else (esp. you) and I think you may have now unstuck me from my dilemma w/regard to my own piece. I agree with others (above) this is much more "like you" than your first start. This is a difficult challenge for me, therefore, a real one. I am inspired to see where I can take it. I've been having a hard time working on anything here, partly due to the way life has become a question of sitting indoors waiting for the rain to stop. Tomorrow morning I'm going to see what can be done to get my coins jingling again!

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  8. I loved this post... so great to read how you worked through this, and got to somewhere you are happy with. I like the bits of pink and those pinwheels really makes one stop & look!

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  9. This strikes me as a very relaxing group of colors and prints.

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  10. I like where your second try is heading. I especially like the larger checkered fabric - the red, navy, green, tans, and white. I was thinking my coin quilt is a bit boring right now.

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  11. The pinwheels are a great addition. What fun! Aloha, Hunter

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  12. I've been so excited to see this and it looks great - I think you made the right decision with a change of fabrics (for what it's worth). The shirts make it a much more individual interpretation, which is so much more you. I'm gutted may blog STILL isn't sorted, but if I can get it up and running again, I'll join in with AHIQ :) x

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  13. Those pinwheels are a superb addition. I love the change of directions they provide. And I love the shirt fabrics! :-)

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  14. I love how the shirts appear very similar before you cut them but show quite differently as coins while the fabric worked the opposite way. Go figure. My fabrics are doing the same - they are much more similar now that I've cut them. I like the bit of green you added vertically even though you may not use it. And of course, the pinwheels are great. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and progress.

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