I probably should have kept notes on what happened in the last two+ months. The ‘too long, didn’t read’ answer would be: lots of work and QuiltCon. QuiltCon was a whirling dervish of activity. I arrived at my hotel in Austin after midnight Thursday night/Friday morning and didn’t slow down until the flight back Sunday evening. QuiltCon should really be a post of its own but the short version is that I volunteered a lot, met many online friends, and I got to see the best quilt show I’ve ever attended. I’m very proud of the MQG for hosting such a spectacular event.
On the quilting front: as of yesterday I’ve put away the denims/chambrays/Essex linens I’ve been working with for MONTHS. There’s a fat quarter bundle that’s been sitting on a shelf in my sewing room since January 2014 that’s now the center of my next quilt top. I’ll share more about that later. Below are the last four quilt tops I constructed on my denim/Essex bender. The design of each one flowed from a previous one. My original idea was to make a large strip quilt. I nixed that plan and first finished this quilt I blogged about in January:
Afterwards I pieced this smaller version of my original strip quilt idea:
Now I had extra denim strip blocks from when the quilt was going to be huge plus cut Essex strips from the first quilt shown. The result of those two things was this:
This top went through a handful of different designs before I ended up with this simple cross.
Next came this top which is primarily made from scraps from the January top. By primarily I mean that I ran out of scraps but I liked the look enough that I pieced faux scrap blocks. Yes, piecing fake scrap blocks kinda defeats the purpose of making a scrap quilt to get rid of your scraps. Don’t judge me.
After finishing a substantial number of the blocks I noticed that this quilt top looks like a sideways version of Carolyn Friedlander’s Aerial. I took a paper piecing class last year that used the Aerial pattern so I’m sure I was subconsciously inspired by Carolyn’s design.
Last, but not least (to me) is this other improvisational top.
The sun was quickly setting and it was windy so the colors on this photo are kinda washed out.
The last two quilts are improvisational but there’s also planning to their designs. There’s a lot of blocks that didn’t make the final design of the Aerial-esque quilt top; after I achieved a look I liked and I ran out of ‘real’ scraps I pieced blocks that matched the look I wanted. Cheryl Arkison calls it improv with intent. The story of the final top is that it started with a block for my Aerial-esque quilt top. I really liked it but it didn’t match the other blocks. I thought it would look good multiplied and turned on its axis.
That’s it for now. I’m not sure how long the next top will take with tax season taking up most of my time but I’m really excited to work on it when I can. After tax season I’ll start quilting the stack of tops.