Thursday, August 13, 2020

A Good Finish

Not getting very far with the paperwork, but at least there has been time spent there. Just like with quilting, I figure every little bit accomplished equals forward progress. In better news, there's a new quilt finish! This has been such a cheerful quilt to work on. Can't believe it didn't end up in the hoop much sooner. Totally sanity saving, believe me! Why do people tend to believe that yellow isn't a positive mood enhancer?
Sweet Tarts
Maybe it's the combination of yellow and pink that works all the charm? This was a quilt top that was maybe started back in 2018? Can't find the original post now and don't want to scroll through pages and pages to find it. The beginning was sparked by an attempt at improv., free-style cut baskets and one of those stacks of simmering fabrics that are always begging to be next in line.

The full quilt
I seem to remember struggling with the inside of the baskets. Flowers? Leaves? And then somehow that morphed into adding little baskets too. Why not do both? There was a rough drawn design at one time, but it didn't take long to figure out that all the other border ideas didn't quite belong in this particular quilt. There is generally always that point in sewing a quilt top together, where the whole thing just kind of shrieks at you to 'go away' and leave it alone. Pretty please and thank you, with a cherry on top.
Close up of the little baskets
I loved the idea of framing the little baskets in simple half-squared triangle borders and using the bright, intense cheddar fabric just made the most sense at the time. Been itching to use it for years! And that pink floral fabric was just pleading to be included too. Didn't really know the very best use, but finally settled on super easy blocks. I like how the floral acts more like a background fabric in these understated blocks. Sometimes this sort of simplicity feels a bit like 'cheating', but what's the use of pretty printed fabric if we can't enjoy it?

Loving these larger baskets
I hand quilted around the edges of the baskets in organic, radiating rows {like usual}, but left the inside area free this time. It looks a little bit rumpled in the pics, but looks great in person. It's interesting when there are areas not quite as heavily quilted as the surroundings. See how the fabric looks so much lighter inside the baskets? It must be the thread color I used that appears to darken the outer basket fabric. It's a variegated cream/tan/light brown thread that seems all but invisible, but apparently not!

So happy with the cheddar/pink mix
After I posted the picture of this quilt being 'next up in the hoop', an observant reader emailed me and let me know that the cheddar triangles frame {on the very bottom right little basket} had a row turned upside down {check the second picture in the post}. Super kind of her to give me a heads up before the quilting actually happened!

In the end I decided to leave it be, though you can bet that I considered it very seriously for well over a 24 hour period--pretty much the time frame where it would have been the easiest to start ripping things out. It's something that I find to be charming and whimsical in another persons quilt, so whats the point of being fussy in mine? And there you go. Sometimes the mistakes just have to become part of the quilt around here. I had this feeling that it would be something to regret if this quilt ended up looking a little too perfect. And you know that I sometimes rip things out. I do! And would have this time for sure if I thought it would be something to bother me forever.

Some quilts just need the hand quilting love...
So funny that I had actually never noticed this mistake until the exact moment that it was pointed out! This quilt didn't seem demanding at all about the binding and so I went ahead with the scrappy look that seems to be my fall-back these days. There were several orphaned binding pieces in various shades of pink to make up the needed length. One of them is probably a little bit on the 'too light' side to perfectly compliment the quilt, but does it really matter? This quilt is striking enough not to have to rely on binding color for needful spark. For the life of me, I cannot figure out why those two little totes never seem to run out...
This one might have to stay with me
You may have noticed the sweet vintage-look floral used as the backing fabric. It's something that was bought last year at a senior citizens rummage room sale. Love it so much! Totally made my day to use it so successfully, though it probably would have been a fun challenge to incorporate it into the front of a quilt too. I had to smile at one of my daughters when she first saw it. Her face! Apparently this floral is an acquired taste. And here I thought it was absolutely fantastic!

Spring Flowers
All 18 of the Spring Flower blocks are finished up now too. Once I started hand stitching the leaves to the background it went really fast. Of course it helped that I was stuck in a vehicle for most of two days traveling to and fro a family funeral. While this was a very sad occasion, it wasn't exactly unexpected as the health issues had been ongoing and/or progressing for a little over five years.

All orphaned 'cut-out' circles and scrap bin fabric leaves
Of course, there's never enough time with loved ones, and I don't have a clue what to say to my sister.that would be the least bit comforting. Losing a companion is heartbreaking under almost any circumstance. We were just relieved that the graveside services allowed accommodation for all of the family who wanted to attend. Even a month or two earlier, the numbers would have been severely limited which would have made a distressing situation even more traumatic. As it was, my sister had to make unhappy choices within the Covid safety rules and just do the very best she could within those boundaries.

As far as these quilt blocks are concerned, something needs to be done to wake them up. I'm completely rethinking the colors/ideas for alternate blocks. Right now the blocks look very soft and cozy close up, but absolutely boring from a distance. Am keeping them on the wall until something interesting floats through my brain. Not feeling especially creative right now, but the hand stitching and hand quilting feels super soothing. Gotta take the 'feel goods' where you find them these days. And the rare moments of inspiration too...
 

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

A Little Bit At A Time

Life has been very disjointed and moody lately. We have deadlines and 'have-to's' out the kazoo. Things happening that seem quite heavy. Or at least it seems that way. It could be that our get-up-and-go is feeling recalcitrant, and everything seems to take an extra dose of effort just to get done. Our kids and grandkids came to visit last weekend, so that was a wonderful window of good times. Nothing like the honest joy of little children to make everything seem just a little bit brighter for a moment or two!
Coronacrazy progress
Governor proclamations and mandates have been getting especially wearisome of late. It feels like we're at permanent pause regardless of any available, pertinent data. I have family grappling with the public school question and I'm very relieved not to have to be dealing with that dilemma myself! Feel so sorry for the kids who will have to wear masks all day and not get to have any positive social time with their friends. Definitely time to seriously consider home school options, but if too many do that here in our valley, the result will probably be that our community permanently loses the school itself.

Good time to pull out the Coronacrazy quilt out and make a stab at moving things forward--put my crazy towards something beneficial. Just too many things completely out of our control! This picture above represents three hours of auditioning the layered flower bits and then taking off the pieces not needing to be tucked 'under' the hills. I'm not very much in the mood to do this particular applique at present, but it is all prepped and ready for when the time arrives. Which it always does.
Binding for Sweet Tarts
Lovely to have had the binding all ready for Sweet Tarts! It's well on its way to a post of its own here on the blog, and I must say, it will be very bittersweet to be finished up with this particularly sunny project. It's been a great mood elevator during these past weeks of having it in my lap.
Applique border on Seedpods
The Seedpod quilt has the applique addition all cut out, very carefully fussy cut from the remnants of a single fat quarter. Stumbled upon this fabric when combing through the stash totes and it seemed so obvious that it was the perfect choice to help make this centerpiece shine! Amazing what a little fussy cutting can do! Crossing my fingers all the colors work as well as expected....
Time for a basket!
This has been in the works for a couple weeks. One day I was perusing the multiple stacks of fabric marinating throughout the quilt room. This stack of older blues and pinks didn't seem very inspiring, but mixed with a few reds and greens, just had this little glimmer of possibility. 
A make-do background
On that particular day, I must have been feeling fairly invincible, as it was not the least bit scary to just start cutting and throwing things at the wall. In no time at all, there was a substantial basket looking back at me. Easy as pie to add more width to the chosen background fabric and then, next thing I knew, the preparation for applique was well on its way too. Love when a project barrels along, gaining momentum with every single decision made!
Figuring out the applique
I'm enjoying the faintly Scandinavian look/color palette to the applique, but you probably need to know that all the cues for this flower arrangement were taken directly from the darkest blue fabric in the basket. Still not 100% sure about the white stem and leaves, but am willing to try it out and see. The basket handle still needs some fine tuning, but otherwise, all is ready for hand stitching there too.
Next up in the hoop!
Though we did have a lot of distractions over the weekend, there is generally always a brief window for hand quilting around here too. Thankfully Peachy Cameo was already sandwiched and pinned, ready to be popped into the hoop at a moments notice! I've been dreading working on this quilt for some ridiculous reason, but finally the time had come. No more excuses or procrastination allowed!
Closer look at Peachy Cameo
Now that I've stitched a hoop or two, it seems like a rather silly 'dread' and I'm left wondering why? It was probably the open areas in the applique border that seemed rather intimidating. Sometimes it takes getting a quilt into the hoop before those decisions can ever be satisfactorily addressed in our minds. Gotta go through instead of trying to weasel our way around a problem.
Full view
Up till today, I've not had a boat load of problems with the New Blogger. Little bit of a learning curve, but not too overwhelming. Today was a doozy and I eventually just had to delete an entire post and just start over. Why? Something to do with {accidentally} engaging the link button and then trying to type out the entire post while in that particular mode. Definitely. Do. Not. Recommend. I've been working on getting a post out today for more hours than I want to admit to. You'd think I would have quickly figured it out, but no.... I'm not techy smart and it took me forever to understand why all my defaults had suddenly went pyscho. {Head banging stuff.} Blogger, you picked a fine time to change things up and I sincerely hate you. The end.

So the paperwork has been piling up around here and I've been ignoring it best that I can. {For a long, long time actually!} Thinking... Hmm.. Surely I can put it off till a less stressful time? Yeah. Not happening any time soon. I finally bit the bullet and started getting things organized for a big push in the home office. Will still try to blog here and there, but cannot guarantee any regularity. Or perhaps I will post pictures and leave off the wordy ramblings? Whatever. Will figure it all out in due time. Thankfully I have lots and lots of hand work prepped and ready to go for when I need the down time. 

Am currently trying to get my hand work bag sorted out with applique projects organized in order of priority. lol  Order of importance? Or order of interest? You tell me which ones more important...


Monday, July 27, 2020

Working Through the Steps

It was great to see Antique Crows finally come together for a true blue finish! The hand quilting wasn't always the most fun as I was stitching on the inside of each of the 'points'. That's what I wanted for the look and texture though, so just kept slogging along regardless of extra layers of fabric. 
Antique Crows for the finish!

The backing is a bought-on-clearance, Kaffe, woven, stripe fabric. Makes for a great drape and feel and especially wonderful for summer! I'm already using this on our bed although it's a bit girly compared to the colors I usually prefer in our bedroom. Just. Could. Not. Resist.

Full view

This was a quilt where I really pushed myself to use busier prints than normal. It's a little frustrating to see fabrics stacking up in the totes and never quite feel comfortable enough to use them. I'd been wanting to make a New York Beauty quilt for years and that has always been just a little beyond my comfort zone as well. 

Love the mismatched circles....

Finally, in the year 2017, I admitted to myself that the New York Beauty was probably never gonna happen and instead decided to draft this more simplistic, chunkier-look block. Hey, why not? I started with cream quarter circle cut-outs from behind some other {previous} quilt and that was it, I was charmed into following my curiosity. This particular stack of fabric caught my eye and I was off and running. Catch me if you can!

Such a happy, fun look!

Like most everything else, it was a lot harder in my imagination than it was in reality. I'm so very glad that I made up my own block and ended up with this folksy, happy looking quilt! The colors may be a tad modern looking, but overall the vibe seems fairly cozy which of course is always my end goal. The added whimsy of the blocks coming together into a mismatched circle totally makes me smile. How could it get any better?

Spring Flowers

Lots of jumping around from project to project this past week. There are other things that I should be working on, but these flowers went ahead and pulled me in instead. At this point, I have all the stems and flowers stitched down and now just need to attack the leaves.

Seedpod Flower quilt

Uh huh. That seemed rather boring and so I changed directions altogether. This is an oldish project that I last worked on around this time last year. Well, that's not entirely true because I'm pretty sure that I cut some of the blocks out in December. It just never gained any real traction because of that border around the Seedpod flower. It has always been just a little bit wrong and thus, made the whole project rather confusing.

Starting to put the parts together

So I totally ignored this project in the hopes that it would somehow fix itself. But it didn't. Of course not! Why do some quilts always have to be so unreasonable? Having a rare, relatively empty house over the weekend tipped me over into the red zone as far as guilt goes, though. The centerpiece is just too good to abandon forever. Best get crack-a-lackin' and figure something out! 

The little blocks were oh-so-tedious to sew together. I think there's over 150 of them? I knew they needed to be available for auditioning purposes before making any serious decisions about moving forward. And I was right about needing to have the border attached, whether it was exactly how/what I envisioned or not. That's the point where I had stopped last August. More like froze in total indecision! The way this scrappy block {look} goes together, it seemed critical to have the width measurement for those little blocks in order to feel perfectly okay about moving forward. I do so hate to have an excess of wasted parts and too, I only have a finite amount of appropriate colored fabric to use in this quilt. What's a girl to do?

Why couldn't I just wing it like I do with everything else you ask? I don't know! Everything within resisted so strongly, there seemed to be no other option. If there's one thing I've learned through the years, it's to trust the quilt. Just had to keep tamping down the panic trying to rise up and take it one step at a time. By the time the quilt was at the stage you can see in the last picture, ideas were finally, finally starting to well up in my brain. There's something very palpable about the energy that builds when chain piecing and 'thinking' without really 'thinking' about a specific problem in a quilt. Then, when trying to lay different colored blocks out and balance appropriately with the various fabric strips? It all just sort of gelled. Thank goodness! What about this? How about that? Until all the working parts started making sense as a unit.

So that's where my time and attention has been for several days. I've finally got everything sewed up into rows and a serious applique plan for dealing with the blue border. It isn't very complicated after all, just fussy cutting from a rather small hunk of what used to be a fat quarter. And the width of the border remains exactly the same. No lost time and effort there after all!*sigh  Don't you love it when a difficult quilt starts cooperating?

Sunday, July 19, 2020

10 Years of Quilty Blogging

Well, it's been 10 years of quilty blogging! Funny how the very first post still holds true. Probably still be trying to talk to myself if it wasn't for all my blogging friends! Here's one of the first quilts that actually made it onto a post. I was super selective back in the early days, terrified of posting too many pics. It's an American Patchwork pattern that seemed pretty intimidating at the time. You know what that means, right? Yep. I was thrilled and feeling proud. Still hangs in my living room today!

I seriously debated whether or not to forge ahead on the anniversary of that first year. There were definitely things that I was struggling with, such as being able to respond easily to comments. {Which thankfully took eons to start rolling in.} They were so wonderfully scary. Hey! Someone commented on my post! People get me!

I've pretty much figured out how to handle that particular dilemma, but others {run on sentences?}, I've completely given up on. Laughing, laughing, laughing.... In fact, it's become a feature, not a bug. How else to write in a conversational tone? After a little bit of trial and error, I think I've finally found my writers voice...


Another thing that I worried about, just a little, was my exuberant quilting process. Transferring all the quilty journal-ling to the blog meant that I had choices to make. Would I continue to simply do an end-of-the-journey wrap up for each quilt?  Or would it be more interesting to write about process all along the way?

Uh huh. I leaned in. Over time, this blog has become even more about the process. Always with the goal of helping me to better understand how to get from A to Z, even if 'Z' isn't really all that clear at the onset. Taking pictures and writing about the creative journey absolutely helps to clarify important details. I tell myself that it helps some of you occasionally too. Maybe that's just justification for endlessly long posts? Whatever. The thing is, for the most part I've gotten way away from using patterns and find great joy in going my own direction. Letting the quilt tell me what it needs/wants, and trying to figure out how to best make that happen.

There has unquestionably been growing pains in the past 10 years. How could there not be? We're literally talking about a decade of quilty blogging adventures! One thing that is very sneaky, but oh-so-real, is the tendency for most of us to want to please others. It can make the most self confident among us want to self edit or try to make everything look good and shiny. 'Here's my amazing masterpiece. Don't you love how it came to be without any hiccups whatsoever?' Or perhaps we start making quilts in the same style that generate the most comments and likes. People are generally very kind, but criticism IS criticism. Bloggers who show the 'warts and all' need to develop a thick skin and learn not second guess every creative decision.

It's a trap, and will only steal our joy. It also leads to paralysis and excruciatingly boring quilts. You know that's the truth! Best to make quilts to please us first, and and then in doing so, we more regularly fill up the well. There starts to be an organic sort of 'flow' from quilt to quilt as we continue in our quest for answers. So much more fun and satisfying in the long term!

And if a few friends come along for the ride? All the better! My very favorite blogs are the ones where the quilters are generous, open and honest about how and where they got to where they were going. Or even more interesting, to where they ended up. Lets hear about the rough starts and missteps along with the cool moments of triumph and victory! Recognizing myself in others 'process' has undoubtedly helped me to become the quilter that I am today. Today's blog posts can be liken to yesteryear's quilting bees where it's easy to help others out just by being real.

Some 'aha' moments were unquestionably monumental in terms of my growth as a serious quilter. So valuable to read about things that didn't make sense in the beginning, but became clear when reading about them through the lens of another quilter. There were things that unnerved me or seemed time wasting. Other things that made me feel inadequate or especially unskilled, even lacking if I didn't share the enthusiasm to 'better' some specific area of my quilting. 

Sharing back and forth with other quilters has enormously helped in clearing up many of those unrealistic expectations and unreasonable 'rules' many of us start out with. Do you know how cheering it was when I realized that there are actually other quilters out there who honestly work better on shhh...., eight or ten open ended projects rather than only one? Huh? This doesn't have to be a guilty little secret?

The virtuous, feel-good crowd {less a problem today than ten years ago} would have you to believe that 'start one, finish one' is the absolute, number one, most rewarding way to do things. Good for you if that is your special zen, but that doesn't work so well for each and every one of us! I get bored almost into a coma and instead of finishing a dozen plus quilts a year, the outcome drops to a pitiful few. 

The funny thing is, many of these ideas have been rendered meaningless simply by admitting to them here on the blog. Or unexpectedly reading a quilter admit that perhaps she doesn't bury her threads. What??? When a few quilters react positively to these confessions, taking the time to say, 'Oh, I do that too', well... then we can shrug off the garbage and get down to the business of making our wonderfully amazing quilts in earnest. 


After a decade of copious {quilty} oversharing here at Quilty Folk, I'm can't say that I'm particularly immune to disagreements and general unhappiness concerning my creative choices. People do tell me once in a blue moon that they personally disagree with a point or two, and oh yeah, that they fear for my sanity. Well, maybe not the sanity part, but you know that is probably implied! 


If I truly want to succeed at making original looking quilts, then I am going to have to take a different path than others once in awhile. It might be hard to understand. It might even make you uncomfortable as to the direction my quilting journey is taking me these days. You might think that what I'm doing is flat out ugly or that I'm wasting my time trying to figure out the color green. That's just the way that it works and I need not take offense. I've stopped following many quilters myself through the years due to diverging interests, and I'm sure others have stopped coming to here for much the same reason. In that same vein, I've started following completely different quilters who maybe didn't resonate with me so much, many years before, but now they do. 

I've learned that the diligent pursuit of individual passions, obsessions and yes, even the rabbit trails of all these various quilting adventures are vital. They are important because they are the very things that lead to finding our true quilting voice. This time I'm speaking to the style, elements, vibe, personality and feel of our quilts. That voice. That almost magical thing that so definitively says, 'This quilt was made by me'. It's truly special and I doubt that I'll ever be able to take it for granted. It's just too hard earned.


It's amazing to look back 10 years and see so much progress. I can't even hardly put it into words! Starting out, it seemed like an almost unfathomable, practically unattainable goal! I'm not 100 percent satisfied, not in the least. Don't think that. There is still lots to learn and explore! I might not be in the 'It' crowd of quilting {some of us sort of float between the most popular genres}, but it has never been my intended destination, that popularity.

Over and over, I have self corrected by reminding myself that a great, robust creative process is absolutely about the DOING. Being present in the quilting room. Pursuing as many ideas that intrigue as possible. Participating in self-made challenges {and also, the occasional community challenge}. Definitely chasing after unique incorporation of many personally beloved quilting elements, whatever they may be. I intend to keep doing exactly that. AND, I want to keep encouraging others to gain confidence in their own creativity and originality. 

Ironically, this moment in time comes with a faint feeling of blogging fatigue. I'm not saying that I want to stop blogging. I think there's just too much crazy in the world for an introvert like me not to get overwhelmed once in awhile. It wears on me. Taking the time for quilty blogging these days feels like a luxury I can ill afford, and yet I thoroughly enjoy reading through other quilters posts every chance that I get. It's like taking a 'time out of time' in terms of current events. Yes, lets do continue to talk quilts and all the things that make us happy. And lets make good quilts. The more the merrier!

Friday, July 10, 2020

This Quilt Top is Done and I'm Calling it 'Glory Be'!

This was a great quilt project to work on the past week or two. The colors are perfect, the applique fairly simple, and this time around, I didn't even worry too much about getting the placement just right. A couple blocks ended up a touch more wonky than anticipated, but somehow I never could muster the enthusiasm to do the un-stitching and start over. Oh, who cares!
Name changed to 'Glory Be'
Once all the blocks were ready to roll, then it was time to decide layout. The original plan was for the 13 blocks to be set in three rows of three, with four other blocks in the in-between rows.Uh huh. Good plan. Except it looked terrible. Sort of squat and functional, but not at all exciting.
Another quilt top finish!
Can't be having that! You know me, I have to fiddle and fiddle until finally finding a solution that makes me all the way happy, if that's even possible. I considered making the quilt longer, but that would involve making five more blocks! Ugghh... What about dividing the blocks into two smaller quilts? And so on and so forth until the idea of working towards an asymmetrical layout began to appeal.
Loving the look of this quilt!
It totally makes some of you wince {and grumble}, but sometimes, part of a block just has to be sacrificed for the greater good. Once this decision was reached, there was no looking back! Then it was just a matter of puzzling the pieces and rows together. 
Solid color sashing working hard in this quilt
There are so many things to consider when adding sashing into a quilt, especially when the layout is 'on-point'. My brain has been so foggy lately, that I measured and then tripled measured before cutting out the setting triangles. I really wanted to ensure that all of the cornerstone pieces were included in the edges of the quilt, not cut in half like I would generally do. That was important partly due to the fact that I love the energy they add to this quilt, but also, it helped made sure that more of the chopped of tulip blocks were left intact.

Like always, just before cutting, I marked the potential outside edge, across the face of the blocks, with a fabric pen. {Use a washable one in the event you get the marking wrong!} After which, I stay stitched a seam {with the sewing machine} very close on the inside of that. Then, I laid everything perfectly flat on a mat, and using the rotary cutter, cut the straight edge of the quilt, leaving the stay stitching just to the inside intact. Don't want to cut that seam off! Does that make sense? The stay stitching is super important for stability both in cutting and then later, keeping everything from moving too much and/or fraying between now and total completion stage. Back in the day, I would try to do the stay stitching after the cutting was done. Uh uh. Much, much better to do it before! Makes for a significantly cleaner, less rippled looking edge of the quilt.
This tip corner was a bit tricky to get cut square

This red textured background fabric has been a lifesaver now on two different quilts. I love it! If it looks familiar to you, it was a fabric previously bought for a quilt backing and then the color ended up clashing horribly with the top side of the quilt. The first time using it, was for the Christmas Stars quilt where it added a lovely, velvety look to the quilt. This time around, it blends and plays off perfectly with the blue tones in the quilt and also seems to add a subtle richness to the quilt. I started this quilt without having the faintest idea what would happen in the setting triangles, so I'm thrilled with how wonderfully this fabric worked out!
The original sashing plan

Many of you have probably forgotten, but from the very start this quilt was supposed to have hourglass unit sashing. After getting all the pieces cut out, I took a few triangles, sewed up a set, and did a quick audition. I talked about my foggy brain earlier?  Yep! These were all cut way too small and once sewn together into a longer unit, will be too short! A few moments of the sads, but what do you do? Not going to spend forever cutting them all down to a smaller size and then having to make even more! My heart definitely wasn't in it.


So the hourglass plan was ditched in a hurry and on to the idea of a blue sashing? Okay. That should work. Thankfully I had enough of a couple different fabrics that blended quite well together. A little bit of wiffle waffling around about the width of sashing, but nothing time consuming at all. I quickly moved on to the setting triangle fabrics which was all decided in a jiffy too. Wowsers! That went so fast it almost made my head spin.! Ahh... Not going to mention cutting the corner setting triangles a little too small. Nope, almost like it never happened.*wink  But then there was this little cornerstone square dilemma. Important to get it just right!

I tried a much lighter blue, the white and red stripe in the top picture, then moved on to perky red print fabrics. No, no and more 'no'. Then I saw this red/white/blue fabric in one of the totes and started feeling that super interested buzz of excitement. Hmm... Lets try a different direction!

When I dug slightly deeper, this vintage-look floral fabric in the below pic caught my eye. After I got it up on the wall, I thought for sure it was THE ONE! Ooh, how it made my heart race with good vibes!

And it really was almost ' the one'. But.... me, being me, I had to dig all the way through to the bottom of the tote, just in case there was something incredible being overlooked.

Wallah! Wouldn't you know it was at the very bottom! If I would have had more time earlier in the week, these would have been posted for all of you to throw in your 32 cents too. I did actually spend a little bit of time contemplating between these last two before cutting into the fabric. Put one fabric up on the wall and step back. Then the other one. Then back to the first one. Pros and cons to both of course and I'm sure many of you would have chosen something altogether different! Isn't it amazing how all the little choices eventually add up to an end result like this? The very beginning of this quilt started out with not having enough of the right background fabric and having to come up with a make-do solution. And on and on till we come to this particular point. I like it a lot! It feels patriotic and spunky and maybe a little bit sweet too. Good stuff! 
The abandoned hourglass unit triangles

Speaking of which.... These hourglass pieces were completely heartbroken at the idea of going to waste. While working on the tulip quilt, these weighed heavily on my subconscious. I was thinking about them, but not really. It was all very background.
A color palette for the new quilt
Until finally it started to gel. Of course I had to nail it all down properly while the ideas were fresh! Still going to attempt an hourglass unit sashing in yet another tulip quilt. Are you just SO shocked? Gonna back up and take another run at that hill! hehe  This time around I'm going to use this tulip shape below, which was one of the mock-ups back when I was working on ideas for Autumnal Tulips. It just seemed meant to be, like maybe there was a series involved here all along.
The shape of tulip for the next quilt

Don't know whether this is inspired or boring, but I guess we'll find out eventually. Tulips are definitely my thing so I'm willing to try! For now, the applique list is very long and these are decidedly not at the front of that line. There is plenty of time to work on chain piecing the hourglass blocks here and there, and.... maybe even change my mind if so desired? As most of you are well aware, there is nothing, and I mean NOTHING set in stone in regards to any of the quilting projects around here.... 

Linking up to Wendy's Peacock Party. On a side note, what do you think is the right thing to do in regards to linky party etiquette? Should we comment on everybody's post who bothers to link up? Or only the ones we really admire? Or the ones that are loaded at the time when we link up? Do any of you go back and check out the new links the next day or two after your own post is linked? I usually forget to do that. Love that Wendy seems very relaxed about the commenting herself. Helps take the pressure off ! I know what I like to do when it's my own Linky party, but I'm curious what the standard is for linking up to others. Never felt very clear about the 'rules'!