Saturday, January 28, 2017

Joyful, Joyful Alliertare Revisited Complete

Last post I mentioned I was working on Allietare and had decided to make some design changes. Frankly I was just tired of piecing and could not face a few hundred half square triangles, so I replaced one pieced unit with a 3 1/2 inch square. I wasn't in the mood for setting triangles either so I decided to alternate the blocks rather than place them as Bonnie had in the pattern. I also made the quilt a square, rather than rectangle.  Oh, I was so I am very happy with the way it turned out. And I am so happy she does not mind us making the modifications to suit our needs. I'm calling my quilt Allietare Revisited.

Close up of blocks.
The transition was not without problems. Because of how I pressed my blocks (toward the dark) some of the seams did not nest. This left me with a few less than perfect points. Despite that I am really happy with how it turned out.

I debated one or two borders but decided on one red, basically because it was what I had the most of.  I plan on using  black as a binding, and have a neutral with black backing. I am so very pleased with how this little gamble turned out. I plan to gift this quilt and am sure the recipient will be tickled with it.

Finished top-to be quilted 
On another note, the doctors where successful in collecting stem cells for my stem cell transplant. I will be admitted on Feb 8th and be in the hospital two to three weeks.

I am hoping to get an appointment to quilt this week. Perhaps someone will no show or not need the entire day to quilt. Although I have three other quilts to be quilted this one is my priority and since I like to use simple quilt designs it should go pretty quick. If I can get it quilted and the binding machine sewn I can do the hand stitching as I recover. I am repeating myself, but this quilt is making me so happy. I think partly that is because I had the fabric but never got to start it because I was diagnosed with the Multiple Myeloma in 2015 right as the mystery started. It feels like a real accomplishment to have it done, and to get it quilted will be "better than sliced bread". It like this quilt and I have been on a journey together.

Although I will be out of commission for nearly a month I do have my fabric selected and set aside for my next project. Last post I showed some of my fabrics for Lady of Lake Erie. Here are a few new neutrals I purchased. I know I really did not NEED them. But I wanted the quilt fabrics to reflect Lake Erie and was delighted to find these fabrics.

Not sure about this one. It is kind of big, but might work in the border.

Don't you just love the nautical prints?

Here is another picture of the blues and the pattern.
May decide to leave out the grey.

It takes 100 blocks for the queen size of this quilt. I figured it will keep me busy and I can just do a block or two at a time as I recover. Even if I don't feel up to sewing when I get home I can cut or just pet my fabric till I feel better. 

Thanks for checking in and happy piecing.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

En Provence completed. Time to revisit Allietare.

It's done!  All the piecing is done anyway. Obviously it still needs to be quilted. It may be a few months before that happens. For now it is safely tucked away in it's bin. I am looking at backings. I am considering a lavender. I also like the dark purple, but worry a little about fading.

There is one quilt in front of En Provence. Once that is quilted En Provence will be completed. I need to rent time at the LQS and they have a pretty full calendar.

This is not the best picture, but I am loving this quilt pattern. I especially like that border of four patches. I would have never thought of that myself.

I admire how many of those doing the quilt made modifications to the pattern to suit themselves. This is not something I've done in the past. Oh I've changed colors, but never really changed the pattern. I was please to see Bonnie Hunter post on her blog that she is okay with that and that she enjoys seeing the ways quilters have modified her design. I kept that in mind as I got back to piecing Allietare.

I've been working on Allietare along with En Provence. I have to admit I need a break from complicated piecing so, inspired by other quilters, I decided to make some changes.

First let me share about the battle of the greys. Bonnie used a constant for her grey and I have been auditioning these for some time.
Battle of the greys
I finally decided on the solid grey because it was...well....solid. I thought it would keep the blocks from looking too busy.

However along the way I got tired. I kept looking at the pattern for the second block and decided I did not want to do all those half square triangles( a few hundred) I decided to use a 3 1/2 inch square in it's place. I auditioned both greys again and this time decided to go with the floral. I chose it for several reasons. First when I tried the solid grey it did not look very joyful to me. It fact it looked bland. I think the floral adds some movement and color. (as Bonnie's block was grey and white with black). This is what I came up with.

I also decided I did not want to layout the blocks on an angle, and no setting triangles. I guess the best way to explain it is I'm trying to keep it simple.

This is the new layout. Not all the blocks are pieced, but you can get an idea of what this should look like.
Allietare Revisted
I like how the floral blocks work in the quilt. I think the gold ties into the yellow/gold of the other blocks. Did you notice that another four patch forms where the blocks come together. Purely by accident. I still have seven blocks to completed before I layout the quilt and sew the blocks together. I am thinking of a thin red border and then a little wider black border.

I'm in no rush, so I have no idea when it will be finished. At this point I'm going through what they call mobilization.  This is a process to help me get ready for harvesting my stem cells for transplantation. Last time it was a bust, so hopefully things will go better this time.

Just taking it a day at a time. Happy piecing everyone.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

En Provence, Half Way There.

I have been taking it easy and trying to make as few mistakes as possible on this quilt. And when I make one I fix it. I am surely not the speediest, but I am getting there.

I want to thank whoever posted the idea of putting this quilt together in quarters. It really does make it easier to handle and there is a sense of accomplishment as each section comes together. I have completed half of the quilt and have the 3rd quarter together, with the exception of the borders.

Half finished except for outer border

I am saving the outside border until I have the entire quilt together. This is to be sure I have a nice balance in the neutrals. Many of the neutral blocks have a pearly lavender fabric and I want that to be distributed through out the quilt. Waiting till the end for the last border allows me to be sure that happens.

I have limited diversity in my greens, but I have fabric that has lots diversity in the design. This example illustrates what I mean.
One of my greens
As you can see when it's cut there are many options and from end to end it does not looks like the same fabric. I love this kind of fabric.  Although I had limited fabrics I am okay with how it turned out.
Using my greens

I also dug into my stash and found a few more neutrals to add. I had no idea I had this many neutrals, and I did not even touch the creamy neutrals. I loved the paw prints and the fur (second from top). I tried to use these with blocks that have cats.
new neutrals

Working with a quarter of the quilt really works with my process. I may have mentioned in the past, for the most part I don't do production sewing. I like to kit up sections and work through those, finishing one piece or section at a time. This is my 3rd quarter without the sashes. You know I even like this layout. Wouldn't they make neat old fashion Christmas ornaments?
3rd quarter of quilt
Next I kitted up the sashing units. I'll piece them together, attach them to the blocks, and then piece together the last four blocks together. Another quarter will be done.
sashing kits
Hopefully I'll have this all done before Bonnie's next link-up. I'm feeling pretty optimistic. My healthy and energy is holding up. I'm taking my time and doing pretty good; seams are nesting nicely and only a few pieces have been sewn upside down. I'm trying to do quality checks at each step so I can catch miss sews early, and correct them.

I'm am really enjoying this process and seeing what everyone else is doing. There are many interpretations of the quilts, as quilters added their own creativity to Bonnie's pattern. Check out the link to see everyone's posts.

My plan, which I always pursue lightly, is to have the quilt together by the weekend. Next week I will work on the outer border, and order wide backing. I'm not sure what color or pattern I want to use. I guess I'll have to do some browsing to find just the right fabric.

Last step is to schedule some time with the long arm machine at Loveland Quilt Studio.
My brain is already steps ahead. Allietare is still a work in progress. I have also had my eye on Crisscross Applesauce and Lady of Lady Erie, two other of Bonnie's patterns. That should keep me busy for a while, and reduce my stash a little too.