Friday, February 23, 2024

SAHRR 24 Border 5

Today’s border for the Stay at Home Round Robin (SAHRR) is brought to you by the prompt from Quilting Gail, who put this whole quilt along together, with lots of prompting input from her quilting friends. Her prompt is “4.” Anything we want as long as it somehow relates to 4.

I had been thinking for awhile of doing something with piano keys and did a mock-up of a design, but it seemed to overwhelm the rest of the quilt. (The keys would have been 2 by 4 inches.) Not wishing to abandon the idea completely, I settled on a row of 2-inch squares. To get the element of 4 in, I separated groups of 4 colorful squares with a white square. I needed something as a buffer between the current border and the last one, so I used the little print that I used on the first border. It’s 2 inches wide, so at this point the border is 4 inches wide.

Now this may have seemed a simple process. But on Tuesday I felt a cold coming on. Sensing that it was only going to get worse, I worked like crazy to get this made before I wouldn’t feel like it. The borders went on easily, but I still had to figure out the corner. (I left a bit of the seam open, so I could add the corner block in.) By yesterday, my cold had hit hard, but I was determined to finish this up. I had some ideas for the corner, including a four patch and several versions of the signature block I had made in Border 1. I spent several hours moving fabric around and photographing to see what it would look like. (Sorry, I'm too tired to organize them to show here.) I was still bothered by the light gray print and how it was kind of low contrast with my other prints, but anything darker jumped out too much. So in the end I chose a block that echoed the one in the upper left corner of the quilt. It only took another hour to put it together (yes, you read that right). I had to make an HST patch twice because of errors in sizing and trimming. Clearly I should not have been trusted with even the simplest sewing. 

I had one more element I wanted to add. My original plan with this quilt was to make 6-inch borders, and I wanted to add more of the black and white floral to bring the border to at least that size. I had some strips that I could use that were actually wide enough to make a 4-inch border. Given the prompt for this week, I thought that was neat. But I ran out of steam before I could make the border. It would have required piecing together three pieces of fabric for one of the sides and then sewing two long seams to attach the borders. Overwhelming, and I was really worried that with my foggy thinking, I’d ruin it. So here’s a preview of how it will look when I get my energy back. I’m giving myself some sewing time off, so I can recover enough to finish up Border 6 next week.

Be sure to go to the Linky Party at Gail’s website to see how the other SAHRR quilts are coming along. I’ll go, too. It seems like the perfect couch activity while I kick this cold to the curb.

(Just a reminder: I'm not affiliated with any company, so when I mention products, services, or stores, I'm just documenting what I used or liked.) 

Thursday, February 15, 2024

SAHRR 24 Border 4

This week's border in the SAHRR (Stay at Home Round Robin hosted by Quilting Gail) is my response to the prompt from Brenda at Songbird Designs: "square in a square or an on point block." Well, wouldn't you know it, I did a square in a square block last week in my third round. I even mentioned to someone that I enjoyed making that block so much I could see making a whole quilt full of it. I felt like I needed to resist a squirrel. So this week I got to make more without chasing a squirrel after all. 

I started by making another identical SQ in SQ block with black points (rotating it for a mirror image of the fabrics). In my Quiltography designing software I made a whole bunch more with the same coloration, but it felt like the block was taking over the quilt, so I toned it all down and used white prints from the scrap bin to surround some of the lighter colors in the quilt. Because I wanted a border 6 inches wide, I added coping strips in the same fabrics as in the second round but reversed the order. (Coping strips. That is a term I learned during this SAHRR. I always referred to those as "skinny borders." Now I know the technical term.) I messed around with the placement for a bit before deciding to add sashing strips between the SQ in SQ blocks to keep the border light and airy. That took a little doing, too, because I first tried to line them up with the SQ in SQ I made last week, but with 2 inch sashing strips, I ended up with a block chopped in half at the top and left edges. (I did need to use a 1-inch coping sash in the lower right corner before using 2-inch ones in the rest of the border to make the strip of blocks long enough.) The borders are symmetrical, so I think it works okay that the SQ in SQs don't line up with last week's. My photo is a little off due to dark room conditions (snowing off and on) and dark green carpet shining through, so the sashes look kind of gray. All of the background is various prints and a few solids, with colors ranging from white to ivory. I used up a fair amount of white prints from my scrap bin.

This is how my plan looked. It took a lot of fussing around to get to this final plan, but that really kept me from wasting fabric and sewing time to figure things out. 

Oops, I see that I forgot to flip the top right block

My SQ in SQ blocks finish at 4 inches. I used the same 2 by 4 inch flying geese foundation paper patterns as in my migrating geese border from last week (freebie by Fresh Lemon Quilts), but combined them to make the SQ in SQ by taping two pattern pieces together on the seam lines. So easy. Everything came out exactly to the dimensions I planned. The quilt now measures 40 1/2 inches square with seam allowance (up from 34 1/2--forgot to include the size last week) My miter of the black striped fabric was a lot more fiddly to get in place this week (I don't know why), but I put it together the same way, sewing about an inch of each coping strip on at the corner and then hand basting the miter to make sure the stripes met accurately before sewing it by machine. Then I sewed the remaining edges of the coping strips. 

Yippee for a matched miter!

Thanks to Brenda for giving a prompt that scratched an itch for more Squares in Squares without having to chase a squirrel! If you want to see more of what everyone made this week go over to Songbird Designs for the party. Thanks to Gail for hosting this SAHRR. I never knew a QAL could be so much fun.

(Just a reminder: I'm not affiliated with any company, so when I mention products, services, or stores, I'm just documenting what I used or liked.)


Thursday, February 8, 2024

SAHRR 24 Border 3

This week's border in the Stay at Home Round Robin (hosted by Quilting Gail) is brought to you by the prompt from Emily of The Darling Dogwood: Triangles. I hoped at some point in this project to include some flying geese, so I jumped at this opportunity. 

Sorry about poor lighting. The sun shone all day until I was ready to photograph.

I thought at first of making long strings of them with foundation paper piecing. I love that technique, connecting all the geese in one process. Making geese to finish at 2 by 4 inches seemed right to keep the proportions similar to other parts of the quilt. But to do that I might need to add some borders to bring up the total width of the round to 6 inches (my plan for this quilt), and I didn't really want to make more plain borders this week. So I decided to make migrating geese instead. That would mean making individual geese, but oh well. 

I printed out free patterns for the geese from Fresh Lemons Quilts.

It's been awhile since I've done sew-through-the paper piecing, and I forgot to cut my smaller fabric triangles generously before sewing them, so I had to really take care to get the seam allowances right. It took lots of time to sew them all up, but it was so satisfying. My points were precise and my sizing stayed accurate. 

I needed to come up with some way to turn the corner, so I brought some black back in and some of the prints from my first border and made a square in square with some flying geese around it.

I found a lot of the white geese bits in my scrap bins--even triangle shaped scraps-- and was thrilled to find some of the fabric that is in the background of my starting block: that gray abstract sun print. 

Here's how the back looks with the foundations. I plan to leave them in at least until I attach the next border to keep everything stable. 

I've only taken a glimpse of what the rest of you have made for this round, but I did notice some of what I call "Peaky and Spike" triangles, named by a quilter whose name I no longer remember who is sadly no longer with us. It will be fun to see what others have done with that kind of triangle, as I haven't used them often myself but have always admired them. Be sure to check out the linky party at Emily's website (The Darling Dogwood) to see what everyone is up to, and link back from that to see other rounds. 

Until next week, happy quilting. 

(Just a reminder: I'm not affiliated with any company, so when I mention products, services, or stores, I'm just documenting what I used or liked.)