In my previous post I shared a photo of all 60 of my Quilter’s Color Quest Bear Paw blocks up on my design wall. After three days of walking past them and looking back at the photo I picked out two blocks that weren’t quite working for me.
Saturday is long gone so I won’t even pretend to make this post a regular Saturday Quilting Bring & Share but, never fear, at the end of the post there are some links into the quilty goodness shared by our Worldwide Quilting Community.
My blog posting schedule slipped as we welcomed family guests and enjoyed celebrating birthdays (two of our children have their special day in the same week!). Nothing makes me happier than having all three of our children together with us 🙂 Monday was a Bank Holiday for most of the UK so that made for a relaxing long weekend.
Now I’m trying to get my head round today being Wednesday. I finished converting the guest room back into my sewing room first thing this morning (a video on my Facebook page shows what the room looks like ‘mid-morph’). I haven’t been putting everything back into place though: I’m having a bit of a de-stash following on from the Quilter’s Color Quest stash challenges. I spent yesterday afternoon out in the garden photographing fabric – conditions were ideal, hazy sunshine and hardly any breeze 🙂 Check out my Etsy shop, AllisonsPatchworks for the latest de-stash items.
Back to my sewing room…. First up on the re-hung design wall are the Bear Paw blocks made as I followed the Quilter’s Color Quest QAL.
I’ve put all sixty up in no particular order and will just leave them to settle, waiting to see if any are too dominant or distracting. It’s such a scrappy mix I figure most, if not all, will be fine. I am considering adding sashing between the blocks to give the eye a bit of a rest as it travels over the quilt top. What do you think? Rachel Hauser gives instructions for different layouts including ‘Flower Pod’ and ‘Modular’ which both involve grouping and separating the Bear Paw blocks with additional fabric. But these alternative arrangements are not on-point and I do like the blocks on point… Plenty to ponder.
Here are the promised links into just a little of what has been shared by our Worldwide Quilting Community:
I wonder how many Hoffman Dream Big panels are languishing in ‘must get round to that’ piles? The panels are available in many attractive colourways. Carole has been at work on two of the panels. In this blog post she shares her quilting plan for the second of her panels and shows us, with lots of clear photographs, how she executed the plan. The quilt is now hanging in a local quilt shop and makes a stunning display.
Christa Watson shares her method for creating wavy line quilting patterns in a video tutorial. She is also offering a free download of her patchwork pattern, Puzzle Box.
Re. The Quilter’s Color Quest, JanineMarie has written a lovely post describing what she has learned about her stash through the final couple of Challenges. Her Bear Paw blocks look great – she has given a lot of thought to her fabric choices.
Often times ‘simple is best’. Patty has used a Charm Pack and some background fabric to make a lovely quilt to welcome her neighbour’s new baby. It’s a great gift and can be made in double quick time… It makes me want to rummage through my stash for a charm pack!
The Quilter’s Color Quest is drawing to a close and I have a bit of catching up to do! The Challenges set in August by Rachel Hauser of Stitched in Color revolve around stash fabrics. The final chapter in her book , The Quilter’s Field Guide to Color, is all about ‘Working in Cloth’. There’s a wealth of thought provoking advice about evaluating a stash of fabric and how to categorise fabrics by style which helps identify personal preferences as well as how to destash unhelpful fabrics and how to build a stash that will be ready to use when the creative urge stirs.
The first part of the stash challenge is to distinguish between helpful fabrics (simple pattern, one colour, tone-on-tone or solid) and limiting fabrics (multicoloured, large scale or novelty print).
I had a sort through my scrap boxes , selecting nine fabrics that to my eye meet the criteria for being ‘limiting’ fabrics.
Next I had another rummage and found helpful fabrics to sit along side the limiting fabrics. (I realised too late that I’d turned the Challenge on it’s head as I should have been selecting fabrics and proving them to be ‘helpful’ by pairing them with tricky limiting fabrics!)… Anyhow these are the pairings I made:
The Quilter’s Color Quest has been such a boon for me through all this pandemic craziness: A series of short, absorbing tasks; learning about colour whilst handling lots of fabric :-); with the promise of a super scrappy Bear Paw quilt at the end.
Picking up the August Challenge today has been a bit of life-saver. Well! ‘Life-saver’ is an exaggeration, maybe ‘mood-saver’ would be more to scale. I’ve read posts by other quilty bloggers who have struggled with the pro-longed social restrictions and found their creativity dwindling. For some reason that’s the place I’ve landed in just lately. This was brought home to me this morning when I pinched my thumb nail between two hard surfaces – ouch! Tears sprang to my eyes. Then I started to cry. I realised the tears and the crumpling of my face had nothing to do with my thumb hurting and everything to do with all the emotions swirling around in my head through this strangest of years. So, I had a cup of tea (as we Brits do!) and disappeared into the sewing room to sort out fabrics for the Quest Challenge! I also put away the FMQ quilting project that wasn’t working – no point testing my resilience at this point, we know it would end in tears and/or rude words!
There is a popular hashtag on Instagram that I often use: #quiltingismytherapy I can truly say patchwork quilting has been a great restorative therapy for me today.
Having worked on the Color Quest Challenge and made some Bear Paw blocks I am ending the day feeling far better than I did at the start. Helped in no small part by my daughter’s prayers and a loaded phrase that pops up in the Bible with reassuring frequency, ‘But God…’ We try so hard to sort things out, plotting and planning events with a particular purpose in mind, forgetting or ignoring the fact we are not in charge! Today I read Paul’s speech to the Jews in Antioch,
Though they found no proper ground for a death sentence, they asked Pilate to have him executed. When they had carried out all that was written about him, they took him down from the tree and laid him in a tomb. But God raised him from the dead…. We tell you the good news: What God promised our fathers he has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising up Jesus…
There is no promise in the Bible that we will not have to face great hardships, maybe injustices too. Joseph certainly experienced some deep lows in his life, spoiled by his father, his brothers plotted his murder before selling him as a slave, he rose to a position of trust only to be falsely accused and imprisoned. Eventually he become Pharaoh’s right hand man, all so that he could give aid to his family in time of famine, saying to his brothers, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” (The history of Joseph is given in Chapters 37-50 of Genesis.)
I hope you are not struggling at the moment. If you are then don’t lose heart. If at all possible take a little step towards creativity – the simpler the project the better 🙂 I do believe creativity is a core part of our being – we are made in the image of a creator God – we function better when we have a creative ‘outlet’, even more so if we can share our creativity with other people.
Challenge number 10 of the Quilter’s Color Quest: Use colour and fabrics to tell a story. This must be a great way to choose the colours for a quilt – a quilt that will instantly evoke memories and meaning for the maker and maybe for the recipient too.
I had a think… And decided to tell the story of witnessing the 2012 Olympics. We were very fortunate to go to two events held in the Olympic Park; Basketball and Hockey and to have seats in the Stadium for a session of the Paralympics.
The colours that come to mind when I think back to our family outings to the Olympic Park are the bright pink of the banners and a teal green (which I think may have been more dominant in the Paralympics) along with the striking black and white elongated triangles on the outside of the Stadium.