Thursday, July 5, 2007

Nose to the Grindstone (and if you believe that...)

I hope everyone had a safe and happy Fourth of July. It was actually sunny and dry here! That was some kind of a record! In honor of the Fourth (well, not really, but it does read as red, white, and blue so it seemed appropriate) I got out one of my really old UFO's and finished the top finally. I had taken it out about a year and a half ago after it sat maturing for several years. Sometimes we just need more experience before we can finish a quilt to our satisfaction! At that point I realized why I hadn't finished it yet and took off the borders that were causing the problem. Then I got interrrupted or put it away for some other reason until the other day. I found my notes on what I intended to do with it and just did it. Now it fits the bed the way I want it to and I only have to acquire the batting and buy or make a back for it. It's made entirely of flannels. My intention is to tie this one, probably with a red perle cotton, because that was what I envisioned from the beginning. (What you may not be able to see is that the borders are a solid navy blue. This pic was taken outside on our overgrown bed of creeping juniper.)

The bright orphan blocks were hanging around in the back of my mind, and so was my commitment to make a journal quilt for this month and a baby quilt for the next grandchild. I pulled the blocks out of my orphan drawer and started going through them. Lo and behold, there was a pieced bit leftover from one of my favorite quilts that was nearly the right size for a journal quilt, and it has the right greens in it! So I added some fabric to bring it up to size, basted it to the batting, and spent a good deal of time rummaging around in my stash o' stuff. I still don't have a theme or topic for this quilt, and that makes me uncomfortable, but the whole point of this exercise is to break the confines of my comfort zone. I found a machine made lace applique that has these cool circle elements to it, cut them apart, and sewed them onto my ground. I have an idea for a direction I could go with this but nothing is written in stone. We'll see how it develops...

As for the baby quilt: I put these blocks on the wall today. There are plenty more left to work with but this covers the size DD has requested. It won't have the full Orphan Train look to it but I think it will be a happy quilt in the end. The challenge now is to find the right fabric/print to use to frame up the smaller blocks. I really want to have just one fabric surrounding all of the blocks. I don't have the psychic energy right now to make a lot of decisions about what to put where. This needs to be a simple and quick project, not an ordeal. The Pinwheel blocks at the top and the bottom are leftovers from what was going to be my DD's first "big girl quilt." As it turned out, she never got that quilt. Eventually I made a Log Cabin variation for her when she was a teenager. The best of her Pinwheel blocks went into a quilt I made for her firstborn, but that's another story!


  1. Hi Sue, I love the new beginning of your journal quilt. The green is very soothing and restful. It will be fun to see what you decide to do after the circles.
    And I think those orphan blocks together works really well as a quilt for a little one. IT's a great way to carry the history of the blocks forward and make them useful after all. Great job! Hugs, Finn

  2. Your new journal quilt looks like such fun and those orphan blocks are going to make a fantastic baby quilt!

  3. Sue, I luv luv luv your log cabin quilt! And your orphan blocks put together could also be classified as a sampler too - yes I *do* love samplers :) I'm amazed at what people like you do with beads and other things. Looks like a lot of work but I can imagine the journey would be a soothing one.


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