Finished Small Works

I wanted to write a post called “The End of Creativity.” But I decided to NOT be a drama queen. That’s just how I’ve felt for the last week or so. All the moving, cleaning, sorting, and building (okay, I’m not building, but there’s someone here ALL THE TIME,) has just sapped any original ideas from my mind. And then there’s that whole thing about all my STUFF not being available (its all packed up in the storage shed until the studio is finished.)

Anyway, last week, I went through the pile of finished/almost finished quilts on the chair in my bedroom (I will be so happy to have a dedicated closet to keep these in.) And I found quite a few small quilts that only needed the binding or a few last quilting stitches to complete them.

The little 7X10 SAQA quilt received a tradition binding edge. Because I measured like 20 times, double checked the entry paperwork, and then cut it 7X10. Only I had wanted to put a facing edge on it, and that would have required leaving a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Aaagh.

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These next two little pieces (both about 12 inches square) I don’t exactly remember what I was trying to accomplish. Just experimenting, I think. I spent quite a bit of time on them for experimental work.

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These next two quilts are in the “Psalms” series. Both of them are about 18″X24″. I really enjoy working on these quilts–choosing the fabrics, figuring out where to place them, and then choosing a verse for them, and adding some hand-stitching. I hope to get back to these as soon as the studio is finished.

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I used a variegated brown thread for the lettering on this quilt. It really fades out on the darker background at the top. I think I’ll re-do those words.

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This next quilt has a crazy amount of hand-stitching on it! And I let it sit like that–almost finished- for I think almost two years! I’ll tell you the story of this quilt in another post. Its also about 18″X24″.

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It felt good to get all these little pieces finished. It only took a couple of days. Well, two years and a couple of days : ))

 

 

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Almost finished!

I put the last embroidery stitches on last night, and added the machine quilting this morning. Now I just have to decide if I want to cut it down to the 7X 10 size constraints for the SAQA exhibition, or if I want to make another smaller one for SAQA. Either way, I think I will make another of these. I enjoyed the process, and the size, and like the outcome.

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New Work

New work–in more ways than one! The studio is progressing rapidly. This time I wrote a post over on my other blog. You can click here to see the latest pictures of the construction and progress.

And in the midst of all the cleaning and clearing, I decided I had time to start a small piece for a SAQA exhibit. It is only supposed to be 7″X10″. Surely I can finish that before January 31st?

Well, almost all of my fabric had been organized and put out in the storage shed. There was just one last pile to organize and clear up, and as I went through those fabrics, I put aside a small pile that I thought might work for this piece.

In the end, I decided to do another in the “Signature of Jesus” series, combining the cross with the kantha embroidered circles that everyone loves so much. When I went out to the storage shed to see if I could find my thread, it was the first container I saw, right inside the door! I think that’s providential.

One of the hardest things was to figure out how to make sure it was only 7X10. I made the top, and then cut it down a little, and then I marked that black line at 8X11, so even if there is a little shrinking with the stitching, I at least have a guideline to know where the quilt will end.

This is the first time I included words within the circle stitches. I like it very much. I have a lot more embroidery to do, and then some more quilting. But I think its doable, don’t you?

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It makes me happy to have little moments of creativity in the midst of the building and cleaning havoc.

Studio Update!

Things are moving along so quickly with the studio, I can hardly believe it! In spite of starting the work right before two of the biggest holidays of the year, the contractor has continued to work steadily, and here is what it looks like today.

While browsing the local antique shops for a piece to place my grandpa’s cupboard on, I ran across this desk. It seemed just right for a multi-purpose cutting/ironing table and desk. And it was in great condition and was real wood (white oak,) instead of the laminate I was considering. After thinking about it over the New Year, and checking on the ideal height for me for cutting/ironing, I went back to the store to look at it. It was exactly the right height, and I even got a discount on it. It took a bit of doing, but we fit it in the back of my car and it came home with me.

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Then the contractor and I had to carry it up this little ramp and across the studio space to the deck to store it until the room is finished. I said it was like a circus act, carrying that heavy desk up a little ramp like that!

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Here’s the view of the room from the deck-side doorway. You can see the closet partition now.

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And here is a view from the outside with the siding and the windows in place already!

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We talked again about outlets and lighting, and he put all the wiring in so that on Monday he can start on the insulation and drywall!!

While I was out I went to the paint store. Do you know how many colors of white there are???

On the Way to Organization

While emptying out my grandpa’s cupboard (where I keep the majority of my stash,) I came across a pile of squares and circles.

"Grandpa's cupboard"

“Grandpa’s cupboard”

The squares were left over from the recent baby quilt I made for a niece, and the circles were from an abandoned project (I think.) I also save the circles that I cut out of the background fabric when I zig zag circles on top.

(back of quilt top, showing the circles trimmed out.)

(back of quilt top, showing the circles trimmed out.)

Anyway, they were right near the leftovers of a cute print that I had used for the back of my niece’s baby quilt. Hmmm. I wonder if I could make something out of these? I have another niece who is pregnant, so need to be fair and make her a quilt too. And wouldn’t it be fun for these baby cousins to have similar (but different!) quilts.

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This project was so fun. I sewed the squares into four patches. I cut rectangles from the print to add to the four patches. There was just enough of the print to cut out two squares the size of the four patches. And two four patches that did not have the print added to them. Then I started zig zagging the circles on top. As I cut the back out of the circles (to minimize bulk,) I saved those circles to be used in other squares.

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After all the pieces had enough circles attached, I figured out how I could fit these squares and rectangles together evenly, and sewed them into strips, and then joined the strips into a small quilt top. I refused to put it on the design wall–just joined them together as they looked good on the sewing table. I love the way it looks. Its only 36″ square, so I plan to get some solids that match and cut 2 1/2″ strips to add borders all around. And of course, I still have a few circles to add to the borders. I will say that zig zagging pieces is a lot easier when you are just adding them to a block instead of a whole quilt top.

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Studio update: I have windows! And the huge organization/purge continues. I filled 6 grocery sacks with good fabric to give to my crafty sister and nieces! Don’t worry, I have plenty of fabric left for my own use…

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