Sunday, October 10, 2010

Quilt Starts

Birth of a handstitched scrappy hex quilt made with commercial prints, layered lace and my own hand-painted and hand-dyed fabrics.

I have started a couple of quilt tops. I'm not quite sure yet if I want to try to make everyone a quilt top for their christmas gift this year or something else. I've thought about making sets of dish scrubbies made from scratchy acrylic yarn or maybe cans of dulce de leche and including a recipe for use. Not sure yet. I would like to make either handstitched quilts or quilt tops for the shop. I'm not so sure there would be a demand for something like that, though, especially seeing as they take a lot of time and I'm not willing to not pay myself for making something like that so they would be pricey. Most of the jewelry and little things are just something I do to have something to do other than sewing and embroidering for a bit and I don't take them nearly as seriously. Stitching is different. Sure I sit at my machine or in front of stacks of fabrics making similar decisions about what to place where, and the other things do still take time, but I put much more of myself into sewn and stitched things than anything else I make right now even if from the outside it looks like I am cutting fabrics haphazardly and just running them through the machine. This may possibly change once I get access to a kiln and can start throwing pots again, but until that happens it's stitch.

Speaking of the shop, I haven't been adding items as regularly as I maybe should. I have some crafting/needlepoint/quilting books to list, a couple of ceramics pieces I can bear to part with, some homemade jellies and more earrings ready to be listed. I just haven't had the patience lately that is required to properly photograph them all. I am in no way a photographer, but I do want my items to be shown to the best of my ability. And writing up the descriptions takes a pretty piece of time as well. After the St Louis trip and then being sick, I just don't feel like sitting still any more than I have to.  But it needs to get done and I'm the only one to do it so I suppose a deadline must be imposed. Come Wednesday, I will post here photos of some things that will soon be listed in my Etsy storefront. I'll give y'all a couple days to look things over while I write up all the descriptions and if any of you would like to purchase any of the items I'll send you my PayPal info and you can purchase them sans shipping charges. Then on Friday I will post to Etsy.

Here are a few pics of the very, very beginnings of a couple of quilts. No matter what I decide about putting quilts or quilt tops in the shop, the hexes seen here and the resulting quilt will not be for sale. That quilt top will either be kept or given as a gift to some lovely friend or family member, in the best of the make-do-and-mend tradition. The hex templates have 1 inch sides and since I began I have switched to cardstock templates instead of regular weight printer paper so they hold up longer and are harder to accidentally stitch through when joining pieces.

Threads, floss, fabric bits, lace, scissors, hoops, buttons, beads and other sundries. Learning how to do paper-pieced hexagons by hand; beginnings of a new quilt top.  

Box of hex templates and hex-stitching supplies including threads and needlebook.

Did you know that metal templates exist for hexes and other quilting shapes? I did not until I saw a post by Karen Ruane over at Contemporary Embroidery. Have you been to visit her? She makes the most gorgeous hand stitched and embroidered buttons, bags and other loveliness. I'm always happy to see a new post by her. I asked her about the template she was using in the comments to that post and she replied with a link to a place to purchase some very nice, quality metal shape templates for quilting and applique. It's a British site, but I haven't found a suitable similar product via a US company as of yet. If you know of one please let me know in comments or send me an email, ok?

I don't really 'like' the colors and patterns here, but they were all from scraps and if I continue doing so for the entirety of the quilt top I'm hoping the weird-ness of the color combinations and vast differences between fabrics will even each other out once it get to large scale.

Below is the start of a quilt top using wonky log cabin blocks. Eventually they will be trimmed to a certain size using the rotary cutter, but until they get large enough to do that the individual pieces that add up to each block are just eye-balled for relative size. Mine will probably be more even than some I have seen as I dislike cutting rectangles lately. Actually, I've always disliked cutting rectangles now that I think of it. I much prefer snipping a selvage and tearing the woven cloth instead. It's very satisfying, especially when tearing sizable lengths, and then I don't feel like I have to zigzag stitch all of my pieces on the machine to prevent them from fraying before I stitch them together.

A stack of wonky log cabin starts atop another fabric being auditioned for possible inclusion. I had plans for the fish and flower stamps when I first got them, but I haven't used them for that yet and it's been almost a year since. If I un-focus my eyes they read about the same colors and density as the other print I have there already. I think they might work out alright here. What do you think?

1 comment:

  1. Great start. Looks like you've got all the tools too!


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