Saturday, April 20, 2013

Craftsy BOM 2013 - Old VS New April edition

If you have visited this blog you know that each month my granddaughter Jana and I do the Craftsy 2013 BOM. She is using modern fabrics and making a hip and sassy quilt. Grandmother, that's me, is doing the old fashion, old-school  style quilt and using mostly reproduction fabrics. Reproduction fabrics really aren't my thing.  But we decided to go in different directions to see for ourselves how much difference fabric makes in a quilt. It should not be a surprise that my granddaughter chose the modern fabrics.

April's block taught us how to make curved seams.  During last years BOM we made Dresden Plates. These where not Jana's favorite and when she saw the fan block, she wasn't a fan. But we watched the video and learned that the construction was very different. and we would learned a few new tricks. This was the first time she had heard of using freezer paper. It was the first time for either of us to used heat-n-bond. It was also our first time using our blanket stitch, stitch selection on our machines. Our blanket stitches are slightly different,  so it did give us the opportunity to try another new skill.

Grandma's Old School fan block

Jana learned to make a template from freezer paper, reuse this for each cut by ironing it on the fabric and use her seam to center the template. We had to redo our template after a while as it seemed to get shorter on one side.
Using a freezer paper template.

Trimming the edge of the template.

The block went together in quarters. This is the first quarter. I found it surprising easy to sew the curved seams as demonstrated in the video. I admit that I had to help Jana with this section. I think she could have done it, but she was a little unsure.
Is this colorful enough!

The block went together nicely. Once again her color choices worked. "Grandma you just have to give things a chance. You might not think it works but you might like it, you never know," says the wise old eleven year old Jana.

Jana's new style block.

During the construction of this block Jana discovered something. She is crazy for Kaffe Fassett!
These are some of the fabrics she shopped from my stash. I wasn't surprised by her choices, but as she was putting this block together I realized the fabric was familiar and similar. A closer look and we knew why. They where by the same designer. I went to my old Quilt magazine and showed her Kaffee's picture and article. She started to laugh. "Hey I am a fan of his and I didn't even know who he was", said Jana. "His fabric is fun to use and it's very creative. I love it".

Kaffee Fassett fabrics

I think Jana has something about trying new things. When I bought this fabric I loved it, but I had no idea what I was going to do with it. I am, after all is said and done, a big picture person. Jana could see the details and color and was able to come up with other fabrics that complemented this fabric. The Moda fabric below is more colorful in person and she picked up right from the start that all the colors in the Moda fabric where found in her more colorful fabric.
Here she matched a Moda and Fassett fabric.

She accomplish the same with this combination. The very graphic and colorful Fassett fabric was match with
a totally unexpected fabric that matched the teals.

So April BOM is done. Here are the blocks to compare.

New and sassy versus old school reproduction
Our finished blocks.
Here is Jana and her pride and joy

Oh yes, and lastly..Here is grandma, who hates her picture taken, but had to give in after "Grandma every week you make an excuse. You say you are tired, your hair is a mess, you have no make up, just let me take your picture with your block". Okay Jana today you win, my hair is a mess, I have no makeup on, I have bags under my eyes. But you worked hard, tried new things, so you can take my picture and I will put in on our blog. Oh yeah. One day we have to clean out the non sewing side so we can get some nice pictures.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Bonnie Hunter-Lazy Sunday-Part 2

It was hard to wait, but I finally have the Quiltmaker magazine with Part 2. I have been busily cutting fabrics as directed.  I decided to start with the X block because it only needed the two purple squares and units from Part 1 to complete the block. They went together pretty easily. The benefit of doing this first is I realized that the pink might be a dominate color in the quilt so I rethought some of my pink fabric selections.

 I realized I had too much variation in value. My pinks where all over the place.  I had this problem in Easy Street. I love that quilt, but after it was together I realized there was a lot of range in the value of my greens. The squares where lovely, but some of the pattern did not show as well as it would have if they where closer in value.  I know Bonnie showed us how to use paint chips and match scraps to those color ranges. That lesson went right over my head. I gleefully picked all these lovely greens I had been collecting. One fabric had all the green colors in it, so it made perfect sense at the time to use them all. Forget that lesson on value. Notice that the purple and teals work well together. Actually that was just a happy accident. I am being more thoughtful in how I approach Lazy Sunday.

Notice how I lose the pattern as I moved from lime green to dark green.

  So although I am sometimes slow to learn, I do learn. I am using different fabrics than Bonnie, but I tried  to keep an eye on the value of my fabric. I made a  conscious decision to use the lighter purple in the corners of the X block.. I originally was going to use the same purple in the four patch. These fabrics are actually the same pattern, but two different colors. I laid it out, but felt the dark purple was too strong. I want a soft summery look for this quilt, so I went with the lighter. Only time will tell if this works, as I have figured out that these mystery quilts can be tricky. 

24 X blocks. all done!

There are two other units to make. And lots of each to do.  I only needed four of the unit with the green. Easy enough, those are done. However I need 92 of the pink and white unit....still working. I don't know if this unit has a name. But I realized that we used this in Easy Street. I looked at Easy Street to see if I could get some clues about how this might go together, but no luck. I picked this fabric with the pink and yellow because it went well with the pink batik I used in the four patch units. Also as you see below I substituted yellow for the orange, so this seems to bring it all together.

So here in my last unit for this part. You can see my yellow rather than orange. It's a stonehenge fabric.It just says Summer to me.I have decided that my Lazy Sunday will happen in the summer with some sweet tea!  Even if this won't be done by this summer.  I hope we get to use even more of the yellow.. This unit was also easy to put together. I think I am getting the hang of this.

Unit 10 - need 96

So the mystery deepens. All that is left from Part I is this lonely little unit.

Unit 2-148 of them.
We still have not touched our blue fabric. Bonnie used teals. I chose a hydrangea blue fabric. It looks lovely with the yellow. It remains to be seen if they will be playing together or not.  So back to the sewing machine only 180 units to go before this baby goes back in the bin to wait for Part III.

I want to add that I recently join Quilt With Us, an online site sponsored by Connecting Threads. There's a group on the site that is working on this quilt. It is so much fun to see what others are doing and just chat about how our quilts are coming together. 

I have to close with a "all right" moment. I was reading the blog from BH on Jared Takes A Wife. I looked at that block and all of a sudden I started seeing the components of the block. I recognized some of the sections as units I have done in mystery quilts.Yes! This was super cool as my granddaughter says. I feel like I am really growing as a quilter. I follow another blogger ( who subtitles her blog "or how I learned to quilt on the internet". It is true. You really can learn to quilt on the internet. And as we learn we are quilting together. How cool.

Sometimes what you think you know is not right.

Well I have been moving along and making progress on the St. Augustine quilt. Last blog I was convinced that my cottage fabric would not work. I only saw the big picture. Sometimes that works great. When I'm at work, planning my garden and sometimes planning a quilt, I like to see the big picture and then work out the details. That is why Mystery Quilts are so good for me. It forces me to look at the small part and put the big picture at the end. I can't believe how much I have learned about block construction by doing mystery quilts. So today's lesson learned is don't look at the big piece of fabric.Instead block off sections as big as your block piece and see what interesting details in the fabric shows themselves.

I practiced this and discovered all kind of neat components to the cottage fabric. So I am back to the original plan. And I shopped my stash a little more and found the perfect fabric to frame the cottage blocks.

I have put one block together just to get an idea if the look. As you can see there is some trimming to do. I do think cutting the larger cottage fabric worked well.

For the immediate future this quilt is being put aside. I really want, and have a compulsive need to get the second step of Bonnie Hunter's Lazy Sunday Mystery done. There is a lot to do and I don't want to get behind.

My granddaughter is now eleven! This is her birthday weekend, so she isn't coming, so Craftsy April block is also on the back burner too, just till next weekend.. .

So Bonnie, this is your weekend.Oh yes and if that isn't enough to make me crazy. I am thinking about starting one of Bonnie's free quilt patterns. It a toss between Sister's Choice and  I think... Pineapple Blossom.