This quilt is a very different kind of quilt for me. But I have enjoyed the challenge of using these BIG blocks.
Gudrun Erla made this pattern available last winter for free some time as a way to join people together during the virus lockdowns. I liked the movement of the slashes that run through each block. I stood back and watched Bonnie Hunter take off with this project, then I dove into it.
I had fun just pulling these vivid pieces of fabric out of my stash and just letting everything roll along from row to row. Obviously, this quilt is a huge stash buster.
I pieced the backing, but it is mostly this purple fabric below. The rest of the backing is a coordinating magenta that you can see in the above picture in the second from the last row to the right. The big sun quilting doodling I did came from the backing fabric.
I really enjoyed this quilting. It was relaxing and fun—which is not usually the case for me as longarm quilting is my least favorite part of the quilting process.
I think this block would lend itself to coordinating fabrics—and I am especially thinking of baby quilt fabrics that I have in my stash. So don’t be surprised to see this block show up on this blog again.
There is a fat quarter version, and here is Gudrun’s web site and links to this pattern. She has a special ruler as well as instructions for not using the ruler—which I did.
Like many of you, I’ve been spending LOTS of time at home. Ha! But I’ve been deep cleaning, culling “stuff,” repairing broken things, washing winter coats and sweaters, getting out spring clothes and storing winter ones, sewing, spending time connecting with people via internet, and on and on. My life is, actually, pretty full.
Spring is coming in slowly this year. The new raspberry and blueberry plants arrived Thursday. I planted them all yesterday—which was a BIG job made moreso by having to plant the 5 blueberry bushes into soil that had quite a few rocks embedded. It was warm in the sun, and I really enjoyed being outside with some outdoor work to do.
The raspberry canes are in the dark soil—and the box they came in will keep the center weed-free. The cold frame is FULL of delicious looking lettuce. I keep it covered until each day warms, then cover it at night as our temps are still dropping too low at night for tender plants.
These raspberry canes fruit on the second year growth, so the canes will spend this summer getting established and growing new canes.
Here’s the cold frame—taken a few days ago. The lettuce is now filling out the box as the plants are getting much larger.
Here’s where the blueberry bushes went in: 3 varieties that will pollinate with the two bushes I have in the back yard. Research says mixed varieties is a good idea. (You can see our leaves have not yet started to pop out.)
I decided last year some time that the current raspberries on the hill in front of the house were a bad idea: too hard to get to, the whole bed there was a weed-infested mess, etc. So, I dug them out, got some help with the weeding and pruning, and things are looking MUCH better. That hill is just too steep for me to manage safely now.
Here’s where the blueberry bushes went. Each needs about 3 feet of space.
Inside, my sewing has been a bit slower as I’ve had other jobs that needed my attention—to include a daily long outing with my boyfriend, AC Slater.
But, here is the “Elvira” quilt top finished—from a design by Erla Gudrun released by her free for a one-day quilt-along online. I was drawn in by the movement with the slashes, but I’ve never done BIG blocks like this block, and they are really way out of my comfort zone. Still, the project used up a lot of stash and the quilt will be a sturdy, functional lap quilt.
The “Gumdrops” top, designed by Tara Faughnan for Sewtopia’s The Color Collective, is finished. I took this picture with another quilt underneath, so it looks a bit “bumpy” on the design wall.
Papers will come out now, and I’ll layer it. It will be a wall hanging. I’m thinking of matchstick quilting it on the domestic machine up and down with a pale grey thread. Maybe a color here and there? Don’t know… The fabrics will all lay flat with the templates out. (We learned how to make templates with card stock run through a printer for the pattern.)
Here’s the quilt underneath—a mini Galactic block with which I’m playing.
I have no idea what shape this quilt will take. I have lots of fabric from the big Galactic project (which is layered and ready to hand quilt now), so will just see where this idea goes…
I am RESISTING starting anything else new until I clean up the ongoing projects: there are 2 dresses cut out, a knit top pattern copied and ready to use up some leftover knit fabric, four quilts now ready to quilt, and pieces for an improv quilt prepped and ready to make. And, Sugaridoo’s row 7 to make before row 8 arrives in May.
I am doing fine. Here are some recent pics from recent days.
I finished these two knit tops—the fabric was bought last spring and has been sitting in the garment pile. The brown sweater is the Sew House Seven Toaster Sweater, version 2. I made several tops from an earlier Simplicity pattern, 8529, that is this same idea. Sew House, though, incorporated some really nice finishing touches, which makes the “boat” top much nicer. The sleeve is more sleek in that it does not have a cuff. BUT, the brown version was not as long as the Simplicity, and I liked that longer length. So, I made the blue version longer and dramatically longer in the back. It fits like a dream.
This knit dress is next in line and ready to go. It’s the Caroline Out and About Knit dress from Sew Caroline. My first version was made in a grey jersey—and I did some altering where the bodice meets the skirt. I’ve incorporated that knowledge into the pattern—along with raising the location of the pockets. We’ll see how this goes. I love the grey dress, so suspect I’ll love this one too.
If the above project goes well, then I’ll cut into this EXPENSIVE organic cotton and repeat the dress there.
Finishing the olive knit dress will leave one more garment to make. A summer rayon batik dress. Then I WILL BE CAUGHT UP on purchased garment fabrics. I am wondering if I can get a summer knit top with leftovers from the brown or blue strips. But…that will be play.
Here are quilts all ready to be quilted. The box of thread is Wonderfil’s GalMour, which is a rayon metallic thread that should just be wonderful in the top quilt, Galactic. I started down that path after seeing what this quilt’s designer used—Tara Faughnan for The Color Collective.
Here’s the design wall at the moment. The right hand project is Gudrun Erla’s quilt project, Elvira. I’ve never made a quilt with BIG pieces of fabric, and I have no idea if I will like or dislike or finish this one. There is something catchy about it though, and it is certainly a stash buster. Bonnie Hunter did a version which you can see on her blog. Getting the diagonal line installed was easy after all the 60 degree long cabin blocks I’ve been making with The Color Collective projects, as in the smaller ones on the left of the design wall. The middle project is “Gumdrops” from The Color Collective, an English Paper Piecing project.
AC and I have been out every day. Here are some recent videos of a walk in some nearby woods. Listen for the wind in the trees—it was just roaring yesterday.