Saturday, February 4, 2012

Making Bee Blocks

Today, I decided to get some of my February Bee blocks made.  This one is for the Comfort Group Quilting Bee.  There are  ten members in this group.  The goal is for each person, when she is queen, to collect two blocks from the other members and make a quilt to give to someone who is really in need.  This bee was started by Angie at Summerfield Quilts.  My turn to be queen is in August.  I enjoyed making these blocks.  They helped me practice matching my points and corners.

This one is for Hive #1 at Stash Bee.  It is my second block for Hive #1.  I am also queen of Hive #2 this month, and people are making me some really beautiful strip pieced blocks in the colors of the rainbow.  There are 18 to 20 people in each hive.  Hive #3 has just started, so if you are interested, head over to Stash Bee and get signed up.  Sunni at Love Affair With My Brother started this bee. 
This block started out fine, then about half-way, I felt like I was getting lost.  I know some people paper-piece this pineapple block, but these instructions did not include paper piecing, so I tried it this way.  It is my first pineapple block, and once I figured out what I was doing, I enjoyed it.  The queens choice of red and black is very dramatic.  Unfortunately, I only had black solid.  Others are making blocks with various mostly black fabrics.  One thing that was reinforced for me today is that I really don't like working with black fabric any more than I like working with white.  My eyes are just not good enough any more to see what I am doing on the black.  Too bad, though, because I do love the dramatic effects.
I signed up for three bees and a round robin this year as part of my skill improvement plan.  These two blocks were great for that.  As an added bonus, I also got to practice my patience skills on the pineapple block.  I worry that my blocks will not be just what the queen is looking for, but for now, I will continue to do my best and hope it is good enough.
Joyful quilting, everyone.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Another finished top

I think the top is finished.  The working title is Quilt Provencal.  The very dark piece on the right is not as noticeable in real life, but I may have to change it out.  I learned many things in making this top. 
1. Triangle spike borders are not as difficult as I thought they would be.  Of course, I took the easy way out in the corners because I wanted to use more of that fabric, and I only had enough to do the corners.
2.  Allowing the process to be the most important thing helped me to focus on what I was doing at the time.  That helped me to work on skills development along the way.
3.  I shouldn't be afraid to play with colors in all their varieties.
4.  Paying attention to fabric patterns can be fun.
5.  It is okay to have fun and focus on only one project at a time, sometimes.
6.  It is good to challenge myself to continue to learn and grow, and jump outside my box.
I am very happy I took up this self-imposed color challenge.  I will continue to look for more.

This is Primitiva by Jane Dixon for Andover.  I fell in love with it when I first saw it at Intrepid Thread.  I started saving my pennies, then Julie put it on sale so I was able to get a fat quarter bundle of the entire collection.  I saw a quilt I thought would work great with this collection over at Michelle's.  I thought I would use the Primitiva for the scrappy blocks and an orange that Julie found for me as the snowball centers.  This one is going to be for Tom, and he approves of my color choice.  He needs another bright lap quilt to keep the beauty his sister made him company.  I don't think one can ever have too many quilts.  I plan on getting this one started after I finish up some small projects I need to do because they have deadlines.
I look forward to a weekend in the studio playing and enjoying the process.
Joyful quilting, everyone.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Still growing, and I still like it

This is what I got sewn together today.  I am always amazed by how long seemingly simple things take me.  Getting all these 2 1/2" squares together in a seemingly random pattern was harder than it should have been, I think.  Then, keeping them that way when I sewed them all together was another challenge.  It was worth it, however.  I really like the way this group of squares frames the triangle star in the center.

I think I am going to go with a triangle border.  The question is whether or not to add another red border first.  Tom and I both like it with the border best, but a final decision won't be made until tomorrow.  I am not sure I will get this done tomorrow, but I will give it a good shot.  I think this will be the last post about this quilt until the top is done.  I don't want to wear out its welcome.
I don't usually just work on one project at a time, but this quilt has really got my attention.  It must be the bright colors and the fact that I am making it up as I go along.  I always enjoy the process, but this one seems extra fun.
Until tomorrow, joyful quilting everyone.