I am doing a little bit at a time on clue 5. I cannot remember when I started this clue. It must have been before last week but then we were in Fresno so maybe the week before that? I don’t know. I haven’t done much.
I made a couple for kicks. Then I settled in on cutting. I know it would be really easy to cut strips and then sew them up until I get these 9-patches but I’m using up scraps. So I have a bunch of purple scraps (all colors really) but I pulled out the purple ones and cut out the bit of square I needed. I tossed a bunch of bits which make me happy. It takes longer to do it this way but I’m all about the process and using up my little scraps so this is how I do it. I’ve finished cutting all my smaller pieces and have pulled out the bigger pieces to use. Soon I’ll be done and will cut neutrals. the pinks have already been cut and set aside.
Finally! This clue has taken me forever to finish.
I had a guild workshop to take – maybe 2 workshops? I had Jan Krentz in January and Alex Anderson in February so those two classes threw in a couple of projects in the middle of this clue and I was only able to do a little bit each weekend. It was slow progress. Now it’s done and I’ll be out of the house this weekend and will not be able to touch my sewing machine until the first weekend in March. I will be doing a bunch of handwork so my hands will still be busy.
The first step was released the end of January. It took me awhile to get started. I had to pick and buy fabric (yay!) and pull out my light box.
I debated whether to piece the block first or do the embroidery and chose to do the embroidery first. Later as I was stitching the blanket stitch I decided I was all wrong. I should have pieced the block first so that I could do the embroidery exactly where I wanted it. Now I’m going to piece the block as is and if the embroidery is not quite right I would just have to be ok with it.
I say embroidery but all I’ve done so far is appliquéd the fabric pieces in and blanket stitched it. I used DMC perle cotton. I had it on hand and I wanted to use it. I don’t like stitching with it so I don’t know if I will continue to use it. Sometimes I like the look of the perle cotton and sometimes I don’t. I guess it just depends on what I’m feeling when I’m looking at it. For the embroidery part I plan to use dmc floss. I almost got sucked into buying Aurifil thread 28w or 12w just because and I am thankful my practical self was able to pull me away from the urge and close that website. Maybe one day I’ll check it out. I hope so. But not this time.
The second step comes out soon, 2/25, I believe, and I’ll be behind. but that’s ok. I enjoy the quiet slowness of hand stitching.
It’s been awhile since I’ve posted about this project. And less you think I have put this to the side since the reveal, I have not. I’m just not getting a lot done when I work on it. I saw the reveal and I love how it looks. I switched out my fabric so I’m curious to see how it will look with my fabric choices. I’m slowly working on Clue 4.
In a previous post, I listed all the quilts that I plan to quilt this year. There are 7 of them. In this post, I will list the quilts I’m working on and my plans to get them to the to be quilted stage….
Jan Krentz – Diamond Star quilt. I’m not sure what this one is called but I started this in December (yup, just this past December 2020) in a workshop and I’ve got the inner top finished. I still need to do the border and I’m planning on putting some appliqued pieces in the center to make it pop.
Bonnie Hunter’s 2020 Mystery Quilt, Grassy Creek – I’m currently working on Clue 4.
I need to figure out where I left on this project. I’m pretty sure I have a bunch of rows pieced together but I’m not sure if this top is done or not. I don’t think so but who knows… It’s been several months since I’ve pulled this project to look at.
Dancing with the Stars by Linda Ballard – I’m also not sure where I’m at here. I know I ran out of fabrics and I can’t make it a queen size quilt so I need to make a decision on what to do to move forward on this quilt.
Radiant Jewel Quilt by Kimberly Einmo – all the blocks are done and my plan was to get this up oh a design wall at a quilt retreat to figure out where the blocks will go and move forward on it. It looks like that quilt retreat will probably not be happening anytime soon so… we’ll see where we are at when this comes up in queue.
Gardenvale – started in 2020. I need to make a decision as to how I want to move forward on this. It’s been percolating and one of the ideas I’ve been playing with is doing traditional blocks around the new round in these fabrics. I need to do the math to figure out how big I want them to be and how many I will need to fill the round. I love these fabrics. 🙂
Allietare – Bonnie Hunter’s mystery quilt from 2015 – I pulled this out in 2020 to start working on this but I had such difficulty figuring out where I was in clue 1 that I set it aside. I need to put my big girl panties on and just move forward on this one. I did not do too many of these so if I have to start all over, I’m okay with that.
Area Three Mystery Quilt from 2012 SoCal Quilters Run – I actually pulled this out in 2020 to start working on as well but something about it wasn’t sitting well with me. I had a kit of beautiful batiks and about 10-12 instructions and every time I tried to get started, I just couldn’t. So I scrapped it. I pulled the fabric out and it’s now in my basket to pre-wash my fabrics. When that basket gets full it will all go in the wash.
Civil War Diary Quilt – started in 2017 – I’m putting this on the list.
Here are all the quilt tops I have ready to be quilted.
I still need to prepare backing and the batting.
Part of the hold up (other than being scared of the Q20, and moving, and 2020) was that I didn’t know what design I wanted to use with the Q20. So I dillied and dallied.
Back in the summer, I was given the opportunity to purchase some used quilting rulers. And they’ve been sitting here unused. After some thought and consternation, I decided to eff it all and stop thinking too hard on this. These are not show quilts nor are they the perfect quilts. I enjoyed working on them and love how they turned out. But I don’t need to have the perfect quilting motif.
So the plan for 2021 is to take each ruler and use it on these quilts. I’ll put some effort in that I’ll match what I feel is a good design with the quilt. But that’s it. I don’t want another year to go by before I get theses quilted.
Goal #1- Use the Q20 and get comfortable quilting with it.
Goal #2- Learn how to quilt with a ruler especially the rulers I have. I’d like to take a ruler class when we can do those again and learn tricks and techniques. Until then, I’ll check out YouTube for the tutorials.
So now that that’s been decided, I’m ready to move on to the next step. Prepare the backing.
And then prepare the batting. I have a roll of batt so I will do these all at once. Somewhere I have measurements on all these quilts. But rather than look for those measurements I’m just going to re-measure. And then add the necessary inches to all the sides and cut the batting. I like big quilts so this is not an easy thing to do. But necessary.
There is one extra quilt top not pictured here. I didn’t even piece this quilt. At one of the August treasure hunts my Quilt guild hosts, I purchased a finished top for something like $5. My intention at the time was to use the quilt to practice Free Motion Quilting. Life just got in the way and it sat. That quilt will be finished this year. 🙂
Goal #3- Basting – Settle in a technique that works for me. I haven’t had to baste in years. We’ll really baste. I basted Celtic Solstice some how. I don’t remember. But I’m sure I was on the floor pinning and so don’t want to do that anymore. I had been renting time in a long arm which meant I didn’t have to baste and other than Celtic Solstice all the other quilts ready to be quilted have been waiting. I tried spray basting a long time. And I saw some great YouTube tutorials. I’ll try it out and if I love how it turns out I’ll share the tutorial with you. Until then,
Last week, I was only able to do 1 set of clue 3 and I cut all the neutrals, half of my blue (red) and that was it. This weekend, I was able to cut all the necessary pieces for clue 3. But I was only able to complete another 3 sets and then I was done for the weekend. I did print clue 4 so I will have that ready to do when I finish clue 3.
I cut all my neutrals, half of the blues, and none of the purples.
This is the first year I selected different colors. I’ve never been confident about my color selection and in previous years, just took the easy way out and picked standard colors. For the few weeks between the intro and the first clue, I was talking to a bunch of guild mates and I kept saying how I’m not good at picking colors, etc. etc. and I just heard myself say all these negative things. Finally I picked myself up and said, I sound so pathetic, I’m going to challenge myself and pick different colors. I love purples, pinks and blues so those are my colors, in addition to Bonnie’s neutral and gray. I hope it all turns out and if it doesn’t, it’s okay. I’m sure someone will love it.
So for Clue 3, I spent much of my Saturday going through and pulling fabric. I don’t usually pull fabric before the clues are released. I use these mystery quilts as scrap busters and I like to go through my scrap system first before touching yardage. I went through all my neutrals and cut what I needed. Then I went through my blues and cut as long as I could. I really wanted to finish cutting the blues before calling it a night but I didn’t want to mess up and that’s what happens when I try to go on to long.
Sunday, my guild had our first zoom workshop and it was with Jan Krentz. Here’s a pic of my WIP…
Don’t mind the messy floor. I need to get a design wall set up but that’s going to be sometime from now so design floor it is.
It looks almost the same as last week but with the additional sets I needed to call it complete.
I also got a good start on Clue 2 –
And here is where I finished the weekend at:
I was able to get 1 set fully complete. 2 sets pressed but I still need to trim the dog ears off. a ton of the sets sewn but not pressed, and 3 left that still needed to be sewn.
I feel like the clues are a bit easier this year. A friend told me it might be that we have better tools and better skills which I think is part of it. But I also think the numbers that are being asked are not nearly the quantity that we used to have to do. I’m okay with that. I’m able to keep on track with everyone and that makes me happy.