Thursday, 14 November 2019

Butterflies and flowers, done for now

It takes a while, but I get there in the end. I actually got to this point on Monday.  I wasn't sure if I wanted to go one round longer but the photos, which of course stretch things out, weren't at all helpful. Since we were in the middle of quite phenomenal rain, the washing line wasn't an option so I decided to hold out for better weather.
 Yesterday there was finally a day without a deluge so I nipped out and hung it up.  I didn't hang about though, since the grass was still soaking.
I think I'm stopping here, though am still not absolutely sure.

I am happy with the results of eking out my dark blue floral: in some places I just replaced it with one of the darkest blue shirtings and in others I used my tiniest scraps to piece squares that are partly dark blue and partly something else.  Most of these have ended up in the top right corner.  

In fact I am generally pretty happy with this (despite that tiny lingering doubt about the length).  It's not at all what I set out expecting to make but I love how it turned out.  In fact I'm wondering about doing something else along these lines.  

First though, I need to take a breath and get back to my sadly neglected quilting.

Monday, 4 November 2019

I've reached the bottom but not the far side

I am back to sewing after an unexpected break, caused by events outside my control.  I am keen now to push on a bit with this one, not because I'm in a big hurry per se but just to help me regain some momentum before Christmas looms and I lose it all again.
This picture seems a bit blurry and I'm not sure why, but you get the gist of things anyway.  I know from the comments that the pink strips are not always equally easy to see, but they show up much better in real life.  I think once I get the whole top pieced and take pictures on the washing line (always seems to get the best light) then they will be clearer.

I think this is full length now but I am planning to take the width over past those little red squares you can see in the top right corner.  As always, fabric shortage becomes an issue at this point.  I have loads of blue shirting, so that's not a problem but am down to the last scraps of the dark blue.  That's a shame, but I am continue to break up the diagonals here and there and to try, randomly, a range of alternatives.  So far I think I am getting away with it!

Wednesday, 16 October 2019

Up and down and up and down

I have been playing around with my dark blue squares, seeing what happens if I send them in different directions.
 I quite liked this, but for the moment have gone back to working through the orginal plan, building out the top right hand part.  As I work down from here, those blues may go down again, or they may keep going up. 
Piecing is a bit easier now as I have reached a straight edge across the bottom, so I'm going to make one more big piece and then join them, instead of dragging the whole thing to the machine every time I need to add a couple of squares.  

Saturday, 12 October 2019

When in doubt, blog

Many thanks to all the commenters on my last post who suggested this could be asymmetrical.  Why that hadn't occurred to me, I don't know, but it hadn't.  As soon as the suggestion was made, though, I knew that was the answer.  That's the beauty of blogging - when your brain isn't working as well as it could, someone else can pick up the slack and give you the perfect answer.
I haven't unpicked anything, but decided that what you now see is the top left corner and filled it in accordingly.  I realise looking at this photo that you can't necessarily telling I am going for asymmetry, but hopefully by next time it will be more obvious.

There are a lot  more pink strips now.  They are entirely practical - just helping match things up when I need it.  Cutting the squares freehand means that the tiny discrepancies in size mount up over a bigger area of piecing.  I could trim more but I kind of like the way the strips chart the construction of the quilt - a bit like visible mending on your clothes.

Monday, 7 October 2019

The pitfalls of not planning

I'm moving happily along with this flowery trip-around-the world-ish top.  Very happily, in fact.  However, I have been focusing on the bottom half and working my way slowly up the sides but pretty much ignoring the top.  The logic has been that I will keep moving up and eventually everything will come together nicely.

To be fair, I think that is the case.  What I hadn't given any thought to until today was what size that was going to give me. If you figure each floor tile as being 13", that already gives me a length of 60" and more.  
Looks like this might be quite big by the time it's done!

On another note, you will see I have added in a couple more big squares of the red birds and that I am letting them interrupt the flow of the diagonals.  

This is now pieced into several biggish chunks.  I thought I would sew them all together but I might hold off, in case I need to lose some length somehow.  Mind you I like what I've done, so it would have to be a last resort.

Monday, 30 September 2019

Quick update and a bit of musing

This is growing nicely now, but I find myself thinking again what a strange thing the improv process is.  

I could have decided to make a Trip around the World, planned it all out and not had to bother with umpteen partial seams.  I could have done it in a matter of days without checking and rechecking to make sure my blue and red diagonals were going to meet up properly.  And yet I know that if I had planned it that way it would never have been made.  

I also know that still finding a way to sneak in my blue pansy rectangles  pleases me, as does that skinny pink strip which is sorting things out when my hand cut squares differ too much in size.  
I like that in one or two places I can use a butterfly block with the dark blue fabric, which just slightly interrupts the perfect diagonals.  And I like that this musing makes me wonder whether I might want to stop counting and just let those diagonals wander off in their own directions.

Wednesday, 25 September 2019

Sometimes simpler is better

I'm not a pick fan of unpicking but sometimes there's really no other option.  Well actually you can always get your rotary cutter and slice straight down the offending seam, but that's a bad habit I am trying to break.  

However, going right back to the beginning seems to have worked.  I have jettisoned a couple of fabrics and added in a couple of new ones, including a lovely red bird design. I have also decided to take the dark blue fabric and make it an anchor for everything else, to try and impose some much needed structure.  

Here's my first thought, as it looked laid out on the floor.
I liked that so I kept going.  How about this?
 This is where I got to before I stopped.  
Much simpler than my first attempt but I like it a whole lot more.  I'm not sure whether I'll keep going or let it melt into something else around the edges but I guess I'll see when I get there.