Tuesday, December 5, 2017

HST Medallion Progress and a Christmas Table Runner in the Works

I can't seem to get a straight photo of this quilt project, so here goes. This is the current state of my interpretation of an old HST Medallion quilt that caught my fancy. I always dread getting started on the next round of borders, but while working, generally find a renewal of determination to keep going.
Round #3 finished on the HST Medallion!
There's a lot of work involved as I'm not the most accurate of piecers. There are a couple things that are making things a bit easier for me though. Number one, it helps to cut out the units during the day time as my lighting is horrible in the quilting room at night and even the slightest of not-quite-right cuts snowball on me. Yeah, kind of a no-brainer, but you know me! I just tend to plow ahead and try to make things right after the fact! Also, I've spent a little time playing around with the needle position on my sewing machine. There is no single position that gets all the hsts to end up being perfect {again, I'm not perfectly precise with my sewing}, but there is one position that is definitely better than the others. And the last thing that I find to help is this: After I sew all the hsts into a long chain of 'pairs' of hsts, then the next sewing marathon involves flipping the hsts upside down and sewing from the opposite direction. This helps so that those long row of hsts don't have that funky arch from always sewing a little more narrow at the bottom of each seam--something I am terrible about doing when getting in that sewing zone! I'm sure none of you ever have that problem.

With this picture, you can see that I've just finished the third round of borders. Each round consists of a single black fabric border and then alternately, the blue or pink hst border. The last border was 72 hsts all by itself, something that makes me wonder how crazy one has be in order to continue on? The original quilt has 11 rounds of these hst borders and then two larger pieced borders to finish off the quilt. I already know that 11 rounds will make my quilt way too large, so at the moment, 10 rounds is the goal. We'll see about that! As the quilt grows, there will be more and more mixed fabrics in each round as I don't have a lot of large cuts of fabrics and want to shop straight from the stash. It's been especially fun to try and use these black fabrics that always seemed a bit too contemporary to play nice with so many of my other fabric choices.
Always a mistake or two
This is a project that involves keeping the seam ripper very handy and I've had to use it more times than not, even taking off one whole row of hsts to turn it the proper direction. Eventually I plan to deliberately let a row or two of hsts present in the wrong direction, but not just yet. Out of curiosity, I measured the entire quilt for accuracy and discovered that I'm 1/8th of an inch off on two sides. Waahh. For me, that's like, dead on accuracy! I'm telling you, making this quilt is the funniest mix of frustration and exhilaration that I've felt in quite a while....
Fabric pull for a baby quilt
Isn't it interesting how one project can so directly influence another? I quickly pulled some fabrics the other day for a potential baby quilt and hello? Aren't those the same colors I'm working on with the HST Medallion quilt?

But the little table runner below is totally different from everything I'm working on these days. Very Christmassy in all the fabric choices and hopefully the perfect size for a little end table in the living room.
Christmas table runner
My girls were lamenting the fact that all the little table runners had fall colors and what do you know. The very next day found me pulling old, languishing Christmas fabrics and thinking up a quick and easy design. Hopefully the little improv. strip blocks in the runner will look better with some Perle Cotton stitching. Right now the whole things looks a bit sad!

Linking up with Linda and Julie at Sew, Stich, Snap, SHARE!

23 comments:

  1. I LOVE your little end table Christmas-sy table topper..so evocative and olde timey. ;))))
    Your Medallion is coming so well--and, as far as precision piecing, well welcome to my club!;))) There is no needle position on my machine that is perfectly 1/4" but I've found one that I can use that I only have to shave a tidbit off...maybe this is why I can't like angles, ya think? I've tried every gismo on the market (I have a whole baggie full of them) and nothing works well. SO...
    I've just made the decision to go with what I have and so what if it's 3 3/16ths ...if they are all the same, what does it matter...
    S I G H ...
    As per usual I really enjoy your postings and your projects. Hugs from Rainy CT Julierose

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  2. More power to you on all those HSTs. The quilt looks very even. I really like your color placement.

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  3. HST's are not really my friend, precision piecing is a myth.Love the fabric pull for your baby quilt. Thank you for joining to Sew, Stitch, Snap, SHARE.

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  4. 1/8 inch is definitely dead-on accuracy in my book. I've heard there's such a thing as perfect piecing but I think that's a figment of the quilt police's imagination. I wish there was time to get out the Christmas fabric bin. Lots of ideas and absolutely no time.

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  5. precision piecing is a problem for me too - 1/4 inch off is really good in my book - I'm known to be as much as an inch off and wonder how the heck that happened.

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  6. Love the pink in your half square triangle quilt.

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  7. I just finished a quilt made up of all borders like your hst's. I found my friend was the floating borders between the pieced borders. They helped make strips fit and kept things square. Being off and 1/8" is perfect in my book. Great job!

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  8. I am getting ready to start a HST project of my own. I am like you, accuracy is not my strong suit! Love your piece so far!

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  9. The HST Medallion looks wonderful!

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  10. The HSTs look good, and I like the colors you use. The baby quilt will be lovely using those colors. Warm greetings

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  11. Just keep stitching . . . it will be marvelous!

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  12. Absolutely loving your HST Medallion. Really think the black strips make it perfect and the idea of alternating the gold & blue cornerstones was perfect. I laughed right out loud when I read that fabric group was for a baby quilt. I truly thought they were going to be the next rounds in the medallion! Hahaha! You are so right -- same colors! Keep up the beautiful work ... we're all watching to see what comes out of your creativity next!

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  13. What is in the air today? I just finished reading about Kyle's incredible medallion of HST's and Flying Geese and now this! I want to try something this "piecefully" challenging, but maybe after Christmas. Thanks for the inspiration!

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  14. I love the sleigh featured in the table runner that way - so festive! Great work on your Medallion quilt being so close to perfectly sized! Better than I'm getting with my dogtooth border right now. . . :D

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  15. I love the colors you chose for your medallion!

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  16. Well, I think that medallion is looking wonderful. Carry on! Sometimes precision piecing is overrated and not something to stress about. One of the reasons I like vintage quilts so much is because a lot of them aren't perfectly pieced. It's all a learning process and in my book quilting is supposed to be a stress reducer.

    Anyway...good luck on the other borders to be! I think the final quilt will be fantastic like that inspiration.

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  17. I wish I could stitch HSTs accurately enough to not have to trim them, but I just can't manage that. And I HATE trimming :(

    As for one project influencing another, yes! All the time! The scraps from one start to pile up next to some other pile and my brain starts to put them together. Or the process of filing away all the blue fabrics from one quilt get me looking harder at my blue stash. And, apparently, I'm on a cat-themed roll right now. Cat panels, cat piecing...I just finished the 3rd or 4th cat quilt in as many months.

    The fabric pull for your baby quilt is really pretty! Maybe it's time for me to get on a bird roll for a while :)

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  18. Your HST Medallion is looking wonderful! Love the colours. Good luck with the other borders, thanks for the tips on sewing long borders like this.

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  19. I love this quilt. That's easy; I love all your quilts. The black is particularly attracting me, especially when you wrote they don't go with much of your other fabrics. I have the same problem. And so glad you're getting a Christmassy table runner.

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  20. The medallion is looking great! I just love that colour of pink. :D

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  21. Looking good! Funnily, I think the blacks are perfect here as they keep things slightly edgy, which I like a lot. I'm very impressed with your accuracy too. :-)

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  22. I love the medallion and how it is coming together. I wish I could envisage a colour scheme to make one.

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