Wednesday, January 20, 2016

WIP Wednesday - Stalled

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

I'm linking up with WiP Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced.

I'm stalled.

On Black Friday, Mom and Gracie and I visited Tiny Stitches in Marietta to shop the sale and spend some of the awesome gift certificates I had received. I fell in love with some gorgeous flannels, and decided to whip up a quilt for my father-in-law. I made him a quilt for his 60th birthday, but it's a wall hanging. He is frequently cold, so I wanted to make him something cozy.

These navy and gold and white flannels were perfect. I knew I could piece a quick Disappearing Nine Patch in no time flat and, hopefully, have Lene quilt it for me in time for Christmas.

And then I stalled. This happens so often and is the reason for my many UFOs. (We won't go into how many. Ahem.) The top is finished and, though maybe a little muddier palette than I originally imagined, looks great. The flannels are so soft and warm. Lene had time in her schedule. So what stopped me?

Piecing the back.

Now that the top is done, I've done some calculations and realized I don't have enough fabric for the back. I don't know if the fabric shrunk that much when I pre-washed it or if my 6:30 AM Black Friday brain did bad math, but there's just not enough.

I have some extra squares of the other flannels that I could piece in, but I'm completely stuck trying to wrap my brain around the best way to do it.

I'll bet that for each of my UFOs I could name one stumbling block that brought work completely to a halt on a perfectly good quilt. I just need to sit down and sketch it out so that this one isn't added to the pile!

What causes you to stall? How do you get over it?

***Edited to add: I had this entire post written and set to automatically post when I read this AWESOME solution by Diane Knott over at Butterfly Threads last night. It's like she read my mind. Thank you Diane!!

Friday, January 1, 2016

Royal Squares or Christmas Wishes

Happy 2016

I'm so happy to be blogging again and hope not to disappear on you again. More on that later, but first I wanted to show you my latest finished quilt!

I started it on retreat back in August when none of the projects I had brought with me were going well. I found this antique jelly roll of Legacy by Howard Marcus that I had picked up at Sweet Home Quilt Shop back in 2009.

A quick search found this perfect pattern for free over on Craftsy - it's called Royal Squares by Emily McClendon. I didn't have a suitable background fabric with me and contemplated a run to the fabric store, but one of my retreat mates generously offered me two yards of this fantastic white-on-white dandelion print that she had just picked up. I was able to get almost all of the blocks together on retreat before I ran out of white - it turns out the the two yards was almost certainly only one and a half. A search for more ensued, and luckily we were able to find enough for me to finish the quilt and replace the two yards from my friend's stash.

Several people asked what the quilt would be for, and I honestly didn't know. It occurred to me that the quilt might make a nice Christmas gift for My Middle Child's girlfriend. They've been dating for over two years now, and we absolutely love her.

When searching for the back I stumbled across another dandelion print in Minky that was perfect. I wouldn't have to piece the back, and the quilt would be so cozy. I decided not to add batting, and to quilt it in this gorgeous, pale blue thread from Aurifil called Mint Ice (2800). I just did a random meander with some loops and hearts thrown in. It's not my best quilting ever, but it sinks into the Minky so beautifully and crinkled up exactly how I was hoping.

I wasn't sure how to bind the quilt. When I made Gracie's Minky quilt, I used satin blanket binding which, quite frankly, was a huge pain. While searching for possible solutions I ran across this tutorial by Pam of Hip to Be a Square Podcast way back from her episode 4! I still had a few questions after reading the tutorial, so I re-listened to the episode. It was so fun to hear Pam and Zapper again! But Pam's method worked perfectly, even though I wanted a much more narrow binding than she used.

Although it wasn't finished by Christmas, it is done while the kids are still home for Christmas break. I'm calling that a win. I am calling the quilt "Christmas Wishes" and hope that all of this sweet girl's wishes come true.

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