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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

halfway there

Hi everybody, I hope you're coping with the hot hot HOT weather without any problems - I went out for awhile Saturday and I was dragging when I came back inside.  Cooler today though!

I've been working on my slashed african 9-patches and I'm happy to report I'm halfway done - no dragging there!
This is a pile of 10 slashed 9-patches.  I decided on a 4x5 layout for this quilt, with each block trimmed down to 12-1/2 inches.

You know there always has to be one oddball in the group, and here it is:

When I made my first slash on this one, I made a mistake and slashed it top-to-side, rather than top-to-bottom.  To make it large enough, I had to add another slash and I was *this* close to tossing it out!  But look...

Trimmed down, it doesn't look too-too bad, right?  I think it's a keeper!

Here are six of the blocks on my design wall, just to see what they look like as a group:

For maximum variety I wanted some blocks to have two slashes, and some three.  I'll need to do some twisting, turning, and fancy shuffling when I do my final layout, but I think this will work as a throw!  It's different, anyway.

So that's 10 down, 10 more to go.  I'll make border decisions after they're all done, something with a small-scale pattern maybe?  We'll see.

I hope you've all been enjoying the Red, White and Blue blog hop, there are some great blocks being posted!  You can find the daily list on Jane's blog - http://janesfabrics.blogspot.com/    And here's the master list:  http://janesfabrics.blogspot.com/2012/05/redwhiteblue-blog-hop-schedule.html   Go forth and enjoy!

Sew forth and sew on

Thursday, July 5, 2012

a cut and a test

Three things to be happy about:
(1) flags proudly flying
(2) neighborhood get-togethers
(3) extra pickles on the side

Well, we survived the 4th!  Now if I can just make it through the next week and a half, the fireworks will be over...  I hope.  I have no objection to people shooting off fireworks at a reasonable hour, but in my opinion,12:30 at night is not a reasonable hour.  Besides, they're supposed to be illegal in the District.

Yesterday while I was NOT on the mall waiting for the fireworks, I pieced not-quite-a-dozen nine patches from the African squares I was cutting.  I still need to cut more squares and piece a few more blocks - I figure I'll need 20 total - but these went together so fast it'll be a snap!  My next step will be to slash them and add 2-3 white pieces per block and they'll be ready to assemble into a quilt top.

When I was getting ready to take these pictures I noticed some of the blocks look rather dull because the color distribution isn't all it could be; notice the center portion of the block on the right.  But on the other hand once they're slashed and shot through with the white, it might not be noticeable.  Especially when so many blocks are mushed together into the top!

And then there was that one piece that had over-large pink and aqua circles painted on the surface. I figured if I pieced the painted side to the inside it wouldn't matter... BUT when I pressed it, a bit of it stuck to my iron.  In the back of my mind I was thinking the paint would react the same way gold does, but not sew!  So, the rest of that particular piece will be cut out around the painted areas; there's enough unpainted surface left to feed into my scrap and/or crumb tubs.

Now here's a little cutie I tested and it definitely gets a thumbs-up!  This paper pieced pattern is Sharon's creation and she was kind enough to share it with me - I love it!

I've been saying for two years that I'll make quilts for my great-niece and -nephew (my sister's grandkids)... meanwhile time is passing and they're getting older - they'll be three in October!  Where did the time go??

So I'm having to rethink the kind of quilt I intended to make for them since they're older now.  I realize I can still make baby-type quilts and it would be okay, but I've decided to go ahead and make a "big-boy" quilt for Jamiyl using this pattern, and African fabrics.  His sister will get a Sunbonnet Sue-type quilt ... I think.  One thing I do know is, no matter what I do they'll love it - how can they not   :o)

Well, that's it for today; try to stay cool, drink lots of water, sew forth and sew on

Monday, July 2, 2012

cutting it up

Three things to be happy about:
(1) swimming all day
(2) fresh berries for pies
(3) beach towels drying in the sun

Well, it's been so hot hot hot, I wish I could swim all day like these good folks:
This picture is from Atlantic City, I have no idea when it was taken but it looks rather dated.  But still...

The storm Friday night wiped out a lot of people but we didn't lose electricity in my immediate area.  Still, it's been too hot to sew because my sewing room is upstairs at the back of my house, and the AC back there isn't working - just blows out regular air, yuck!  Time to get another one, duh!

But I did cut some African fabrics to make the slashed 9-patch I tried out last week, I think it's a winner.  And I just remembered to dig out those great scraps I got last August from the dressmaker!  There were some prime pieces in that group.

I intend to make a throw size quilt, so I estimate I'll need a 4x5 arrangement of 9-patches, maybe 180 squares of African fabrics.  Then there's the 2" white strips I'll used in the slashes, a different number for each block. 

That's what I'm up to today, if I can ride out this heat wave I'll be a happy camper.

Be sure and visit all the blogs on the Red White and Blue blog hop, there are some pretty blocks on parade!  Here's the pinterest link:

Have a great Monday, sew forth and sew on