Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Best Laid Plans .... or I lied.

I mentioned that when I finished the "Take 5" Teacups and Fancy Desserts top, I would take a break from piecing and work instead on the backlog of top/batting/backing bundles waiting to be quilted on Lizzie.  I had every intention of doing so.

Then I got waylaid.  :-)

I was putting away my recently completed tops when I came across a neatly packaged bundle of pieced blocks, components for pieced blocks and fabrics to make the pieced blocks.  I recognized the bundle as leftovers from a hand-pieced top I made during 2005 through 2009.

Digression: I don't particularly care for hand-piecing.  It takes too long and I have a LOT of quilts I want to make.  But, during DD#3's middle and high school years, she was involved in a historic re-enactment of an 1852 gold mining town.  Since she was a minor, she required on-prem chaperoning ... and that was Mr. Pirate and myself.  Everyone needed to be in appropriate costumes, so I made an outfit for everyone.  Whilst DD#3 was doing her re-enactment activities, I needed to find something era-appropriate for me to do.  What more appropriate than hand piecing?  So, for the several years (one weekend a year, no less!) that DD#3 was involved, I worked on this hand piecing project.  When she no longer participated, I put it away.  Fast forward to 2009, when I rediscovered the project and decided to finish it up as a twin sized top.  You can read all the gory details of this project on my web page, From the Diggin's, Columbia, CA

It was from that project that the leftover pieces belonged.  The bundle of leftover pieces was just taking up shelf space and now that I had rediscovered it, it was going to nag me. I decided that I would do SOMETHING with the blocks and fabric.

I had LOTS of hand pieced 4 patch blocks.  

I had 3 hand pieced columns of the 4 patches set on-point.

I did not want to replicate my Diggin's quilt and needed something else to use those on-point columns.  I remembered (vaguely) seeing a column quilt with 4 patch blocks on point and, to my delight, I was able to find it on my computer.  This quilt served as my inspiration.  My notes say that this quilt was an "Underground Railroad" quilt, a strippy scrap quilt that Sylvia discovers in her attic in "The Runaway Quilt".  This is a series of books authored by Jennifer Chiaverini.

However, I have not read the books nor could I find any reference to it when I Googled for it.  My notes don't say WHERE I found this picture, so I am at a loss for its origin.  (Note to self: take better notes.)

BUT .. it's simple enough to replicate, ESPECIALLY since I already had the light background columns!  So, my current pieced project is to make enough dark background columns to work with the 3 light background columns I already have. 

This layout is comprised of 2 columns: a light background and a dark background. 
* The light background column has scrappy 4-patch blocks set on-point with light setting triangles.  
* The dark background columns also have scrappy 4 patch blocks on point, but 2 of the patches are the background fabric from the light columns.  The 4 patch blocks are set so that the light patches are vertical.  The setting triangles are a dark fabric. 

So, here is my Work In Progress.  I have 2 columns of dark background fabric done, with 2 more to go.  (These will be put between the 2 light background columns on the right and another on the far right.)  I think that when I have all the columns sewn together, this top will be about 72"x89". 

In this particular top, the light background columns are hand pieced (because they are leftover from my previous project) but the dark background columns are machine pieced.  It doesn't bother me to mix the two construction methods in this top because I just want to get the top done!  I have no need to specifically make another all-hand-pieced top.

What is astonishing and demoralizing all at the same time, is that when I get done with this top, I will STILL HAVE lots of the 4 patch blocks leftover!  Fear not, I already haven another layout planned for them. :-)

Once I finish these 2 tops, I will ... I *will* ... honest, I will!!  ... work on get some tops quilted. :-)

1 comment:

  1. This is going to be an awesome quilt when finished. I have a bag of red and green four squares somewhere...mmmmm. Off to read about the original project.