Sunday, September 09, 2007

Back to Quilting

Quilting is listed up in my banner but I don't talk much about it. Okay, I don't ever talk about it and previously didn't have a category for it. Well that ended in a big way when Claudia took us to Southampton Quilts and an armload of fabric followed me home!

In retrospect, I could see this coming. A few years ago Carolyn took us to Woodstock Quilt Supply. This was the first quilt shop I had been in since I finished my last quilt over fifteen years ago. I was flabbergasted by all of the new fangled notions and gorgeous hand dyed and batik fabrics.

I thought I'd start back with a couple of simple quilts using strip quilting. Because my quilting stash has dwindled into two plastic containers (and let's not forget it twenty years old!) I bought two bundles of precut 2.5" strips - each one a different fabric. That's not the most cost efficient way to buy fabric but most places have a 1/8 yard minimum cut.

The first bundle was mainly greens - big surprise, huh? This will give me a 16 block - 8" square. I started by sewing four strips together and then cutting them into 2.5" strips.

I cut everything out and laid it on the living room floor. I only needed to move a couple of blocks where the same fabric showed up to close together.

The colors in this shot are the closest to the actual fabrics.

I'm making two smaller crib quilts out of the second bundle of strips - all very colorful, playful prints. First I cut the strips into 4.5" blocks. I bought a very subtle white-on-white print for the smaller squares and the sashing. Then I just sat at the machine and slapped them together.

After I pressed the seams to one side I was tempted to fly them from the deck banister!

One of the quilts is laid out (above) and sewn (below).

Here's the second one laid out and ready to be sewn into strips. I have a really hard time with random. I forced myself not to change the two orange that are rather close together in the center of this one. One the first one I moved one, which forced me to move another, this went on for far to long. So random placement it is!

Note: What's really funny is that I haven't sewn this one together yet and after seeing the picture while editing this post I'm tempted to put it back down and play with it. Will I be strong enough to make a random quilt? Stay tuned.....

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Weaving Progress

The loom was finally warped and threaded and ready to go. I thought the variegated yarn would allow me to use several different weft colors. After sampling these five bobbins I found that although the colors matched they didn't do anything for the fabric.

I settled on a deep wine that I hadn't considered earlier, it's much richer than it shows on screen, and wove two towels.

I had nixed the idea of using black originally, but I'm happy with the way the black lets the warp show through. It also allows the structure (false damask) to move to the foreground.

I'm also kicking myself for changing the threading to even blocks. The first time I used false damask the block B was twice as wide as block A and I think it the contrasting sizes adding much to the total design. Oh well, live and learn. These, after all, towels! Like many others I can try out ideas on towel warps and still have something useful. I'll know better when I use this on a baby blanket.