Monday, February 12, 2018

Another Day, Another Quilt in the Hoop

Chunky Crossroads is the current quilt in the hoop. I started it sometime in April of 2016 as an effort to play with improv. and maybe challenge myself color-wise. This color palette does not come naturally to me and it still amazes me how very much fun I've had working with it. Even now, getting it in the hoop, I am delighting in the mixture of colors staring back at me!
Chunky Crossroads getting some hand quilting on the border!
The entire middle of the quilt was machine quilted in a very simple wavy line crosshatch. Yep. I have zero originality when it comes to machine work. Love how it emphasizes the crossroads blocks though. This was one of those quilts where I grimaced a lot and worried that my feeble skills had ruined everything.  That's because I was an idiot and mixed in a small strip of cotton/poly with the rest of the backing and well, it caused a lot of puckering issues. Lo and behold poly/cotton does not stretch quite the same as the cottons.*sigh  Will I ever learn that using up just for the sake of getting rid of fabric {and not buying new}, is not always the best case scenario? Whatever. I used my trusty seam ripper and ripped out the worst of the puckering and then decided to let the other minor ones be. 

Yeah. Not showing you the back of this particular quilt, but my oldest daughter assures me that what's left looks sort of like it's been done on purpose. I guess us older folks would call it a mild shirring effect? The funny thing is that once I gave up on fixing the back and turned my mind to hand quilting the front, it's all perfectly okay again. I don't even care anymore and honestly, most people wouldn't even notice. The simple echo {hand quilting} is working wonders to pull all the applique elements together with the center of the quilt and I'm loving the whole thing again. No. That applique border was not overkill like I worried about and no, I didn't waste my time doing it. Sometimes it does cross my mind that I might be taking my applique love a little too far....
Trying to decide on colors
Which leads me to the next quilt I've been working on like a mad woman. There are so many projects that need some hand work done around here. To keep myself from starting the next couple that I'm itching to work on, I decided that at the very least, the foundation of this basket quilt HAD to be done first. No excuses! 
Playing with a vertical repeat as opposed to a horizontal one
After all the lattice applique was stitched down, then I needed to make a decision about the little 'button's. I had to figure out what colors and then how to do the repeats. You can see from the top picture which fabrics will potentially be used in the flowers, stems and leaves. I didn't want the little buttons on the lattice to compete too much with the flowers, but it seemed boring to not bring another color in to play.
And looking at all the basket after all the hand stitching is done!
So now the foundation is done, all except for the top horizontal row for the basket. And that can't be stitched down until the flower stems are put into place. My daughters had a young friend visiting yesterday evening while I was stitching down the last several buttons. She never said a word, but she definitely looked at my quilt like it was a foreign object. Maybe she's never been around quilt making before? This has been such an interesting project, watching it grow and change through every design decision. Sure, there's been some delays while I mulled and contemplated how to move forward, but never any regrets. Crossing my fingers the flowers will come together as well as planned and I can convince everything to stay in proper proportion....

14 comments:

  1. You're obviously keeping really busy with quilting, and your Chunky Crossroads is looking good!!

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  2. Two more beauties. I have some crossroads blocks cis that need to be put together, too.

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  3. The crossroads is so beautiful, I like the colors and pattern. The basket comes along nice, the buttons look good.

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  4. I'm glad you let the back "be"- Let it be just came to my mind, now I'm singing! Funny how that happens!
    Love your foreign objects!! LOL

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  5. You actually sew - for fun?? Lol! I love your big basket. The addition of the buttons is brilliant. Chunky crossroads is looking good - it is a bright, fun quilt.

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  6. I too have added mixed cotton fabrics and regretted it. Hopefully I will learn when to USE UP and when NOT to. :) LOVE everything you do.

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  7. I really like your Chunky Crossroads quilt and the applique on the border is the perfect touch. I love how you add a little applique to everything. It makes the quilt unique. The design looks like the Old Italian block which I was playing around with recently. It's so fun to make that I would love to make a quilt with it. I just have so many quilts in progress already. But like you, I am itching to start another.

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  8. Chunky crossroads is very playful. Glad the quilting has worked out. Can't wait to see what the baskets will hold.

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  9. Lovely quilts a coming along. I really like the chunky crossroads.

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  10. No such thing as taking your love for applique too far!! LOL
    Enjoy your stitching!

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  11. Your quilts always have wonderful and interesting stories. Their paths are never straight but end up in a beautiful spot.

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  12. Chunky Crossroads is a favourite of mine. I love that pattern, and your colours and border are wonderful. And that big basket is looking awesome!

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  13. I like Chunky Crossroads and I'm enjoying watching your progress on the big basket. Interesting!

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  14. You are not the only one delighted by the colours in Chunky Crossroads. Big Basket is coming along too - those buttons are the sort of clever touch I've come to expect from you.

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