Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Charming New Project

Hello Friends. :- ) I'm feeling reasonably well this morning so I figured I'd better take advantage of it. I even have a brand new project to share with you!

I was surprised and delighted to find an unexpected gift in my mailbox one day recently. Timeless Treasures sent one of their mini treat charm packs to express their appreciation for the quilt I'd made for a victim of Hurricane Sandy. Timeless Treasures used their warehouse space to collect and store the quilts until they could be distributed. Many of their employees and family members live and work in the affected areas.

I received the Lemon-Poppy set of charm squares:


While the yellows in the pack made me happy the other colors weren't necessarily the hues I would choose to work with. Time for some stretching exercises!

My criteria for this project were to use all the charm squares (if possible) and avoid buying additional fabric. I browsed through my collection of patterns and ideas, and did some online research into patterns for charm squares. There are a couple of tempting patterns in the Moda Bake Shop. One of them was the inspiration for my project; I may yet go back and try out the others someday.

I soon discovered that with only one charm pack it was going to be a challenge to make something more than a wall hanging, no matter how many patches I cut from the charm squares themselves. The wide range of values in this pack created another challenge: how to incorporate both the light, bright charms and the very dark charms?

Because my physical and mental energies are so limited these days I was looking for a simple plan. Minimal cutting and piecing, minimal room for errors!

It was the Road to Tennessee quilt plan in the Moda Bake Shop that caught my eye. Take a moment to click on the link and have a look. I'll wait. ;- )

I had to try out several batiks in my stash to find something that would work with all the charm squares. It helped that I figured I would need at least a yard. That eliminated most of my stash. Of the options I was left with most were printed with patterns that were too bold or busy. They fought with the prints in the charm squares. But I had a generous yard and a half of a wonderful mottled red that has small spatters and squiggles of yellow-to-gold-to-tan and greens. Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

By this time I knew I wanted to try alternate squares between the charm squares. I cut 2" and 5" patches from my wonderful red batik. The 2" squares were pieced onto opposite corners of the charm squares to make the hexagonal shapes. This is the first layout I tried after the piecing was done:


Not bad, but I tweaked the placement of a couple of the hexagons.


This layout gives me a quilt top that can be turned into a lap quilt for ADCS and there are only four charm squares that don't get used. But what if I turn the charms in every other row?


Oooo, I like it! But maybe that yellow is too potent in the middle of the quilt...?

What if we do this instead?


What do you think? I'm thinking I like this the best. Unless I take it a step further and mix up the other hexagons more... (Don't forget you can double click on the pictures to see more detail.)

A person could play like this forever and never actually get a quilt made!

5 comments:

Barbara C said...

Great job with your charm square pack. The design really takes off when you turned the blocks. Nice job.

Quiltdivajulie said...

Love that last layout!!!

Cher said...

yep, last layout is my fave too! this is a great easy pattern to make too...good job!

Carol said...

I really like what you did with the hexagons. Spreading the yellows out is better. You are so gifted! Love ya! Carol

roccagal said...

I like the final arrangement best!