This past fall I participated in the #30daysofquiltdesign challenge on Instagram. I really enjoyed sketching and playing with quilt design ideas both on paper and in EQ7. This block (above) was one of the blocks that I played with. I'm going to call it my "Jester star." My original sketch from August 2016 is shown below (and how odd that I sketched it in orange and turquoise - the colors of the challenge fabrics!).
Fast forward a few months: this spring I signed up for the Riley Blake fabric challenge through the Modern Quilt Guild. This spring, the fabric chosen for the challenge is Creative Rockstar for Riley Blake.
When I got the fat-eights for the challenge, I revisited my design notebook, and this block struck my fancy.
Before I cut in to the actual challenge fabric, I decided to do a test of the block. I grabbed two half-yard cuts from my give away pile, and a yard for background, and made a block. Then I decided that I liked the block. So I made another. And another. Then I figured out that I could cut some of the background for a boarder, and then still could eek out once last block. That made 4 blocks which make a quilt top! I laid the blocks out in an offset layout with one big partial seam in the middle.
I showed my sister the quilt top and she wanted it - so then I had to finish it. Right now I'm all about using stashed fabrics UP. Getting rid of fabrics. So for backing, I browsed through what I already had, and settled on this Hello Posy fabric by Aneela Hoey from a few years ago. I don't tend to hoard a lot of fabrics, at least not the usual ones, but I do like the older Aneela Hoey fabrics, so this was hard touch. I decided to use it tho.
When I finished this baby quilt, I felt confident enough to go back and use the Riley Blake challenge fabric to make something. The amount of fabric that we were given was limiting. Yes, I could have bought more, but I really didn't want to. The amount of fabric that we were given determined the design (the way I split up the background mainly). I made one 16" block and that used up most of the fabric. I scratched my head on how to finish it, and then had the idea to put it in a hoop. As an aside, several years ago I bought this 16" wooden hoop to use for hand-quilting. When I finally decided to try hand-quilting, I found that I didn't actually like quilting using a hoop, so it languished in a closet. Until now! My block happened to be just the right size. Here it is (top photo): my MQG challenge has been submitted and the quilt has been given to my sister. Win-win!
March was a big (losing) month for my fabric diet. I sewed some blocks for the traveling quilt group I'm in (see #IwishIcouldgotootravelingquiltbee), a commissioned baby quilt (see my Sunshine Plus blog post), and had a destash where I got rid of 94 yards of fabric. Check out @goosequiltsdestash for lots of fabric that is still availble for $5/yard or less.
This month, I did find myself down in Denver with an hour or so to kill. So what does a girl do? She goes to fabric shops: Fancy Tiger Crafts and Fabric Bliss. The photo above shows what I picked up from those two shops. Did I "need" this fabric? No. But I did try to look for fabrics that could be incorporated in projects for which I'm currently pulling fabric. I also have started buying 1/4 yard cuts when possible, in lieu of 1/2 yard cuts which used to be my go-to. I find that I am making scrappier quilts when I'm using prints, so 1/4 yard cuts should work. I'll let you know what I think in a few months.
Here's how the month ended up:
Fabric Purchases: 4 yards
Fabric Uses (and destash): 100 yards
Net for the month: -96 yards
Net for the year: -85.75 yards
April should be a big sewing month. I'm headed to Sewtopia - in Denver - and that should mean lots of sewing time! I'm really looking forward to it.