Tuesday, January 31, 2012

String mania

Yesterday I began pulling strings out of my String Container to make a bundle to take on retreat this Thursday.  For no good reason I decided to cut them at 18", the length of my cutting board.

When I had a pile I couldn't just pack them up, I had to sew some together, of course.  And then some more.  And then some more.

Now I have 18" x 10 " panels in red, black, blue, green, and mixed colors.

Today I HAD TO cut a couple into 8.5" squares and then make HSTs, which came out 5.5".  And then, of course, I HAD TO sew a couple of blocks together.

But now I am STOPPING.  This is a project to take on retreat, not work on NOW.  I have other things to get ready.  I have to pack.  I have to make some treats to eat.  I have to be STRONG and walk away from those strings!

[I'll show what I accomplished on the retreat next Monday.]

Sara, in GR, MI

G'Day from Australia

Hi everyone. My name is Shay and I live in Australia. We’re that huge country at the bottom of the earth where people talk funny and eat Vegemite. My little piece of blogland is called Quilting in My Pyjamas and I’d love for you to pop over and visit sometime.

I’ve been in love with string quilts since I started quilting around 4 years ago and I’ve made at least one every year since.  There’s something very satisfying about making a quilt from scraps and the possibilities with string quilts are endless. It’s like getting a quilt for free! And I love that you don’t quite know how a string quilt will really look like until you put it all together and stand back to admire your work.

This is my all time  favourite string quilt . It gets dragged around the house, dumped on my bed in winter and snuggled under with my grandson , Little P .

That’s Mordecai is who is the self appointed  quilt inspector in my house. I also have two dogs the size of horses who like to help  by charging over the top of laid out quilt tops that I'm auditioning before I sew them together.

I’ve been collecting selvages for a few years and last year I decided I had enough to at least start a quilt in 2012.  A string quilt seemed like a perfect plan ! I put a shout out on my blog because you can never have enough selvages and strings  and people from all over the world contributed selvages to the cause. As selvages started arriving I couldn’t help myself and I started making blocks between other projects.

The current state of play :

I have about 30 blocks finished (ok -some still need to be trimmed up )  and I need 144. It looks like I better get cracking!

I’m looking forward to being part of this group and seeing what you’re all doing. And if you want to try Vegemite please let me know....

Hello, my name is Cathy, and I live in Southern Ontario. I have a blog called Eagles' Wings Quilts. Brenda left a comment on my Design wall Monday post yesterday, which had a picture of my string piecing almost finished project, telling me about the beginnings of this blog, and inviting me to play along, and show what I've been working on with my pile of strings. Considering that I am always happy to talk quilts with anyone who is willing to listen, I willingly agreed.
It is a quilt pattern called Endless Chain, by Emilie Richards. I first saw a picture of this quilt on the cover of the novel of the same name. I fell in love with the picture of the quilt, and sent away for the pattern for it. By the way, if you've never read any of her books, I would highly recommend them. Anyway, to continue the story of the quilt, the fabric used for the coloured section of the quilt squares in the pattern was a stripe, but I decided to make my own stripes instead, using my very large supply of scraps and strings. I copied out a blank pattern piece for the coloured wedges, and divided it into sections, and then photocopied a seemingly endless amount of them to use as a guide for string piecing. I wanted a uniformity to the size of the strings, rather than random.  They were then trimmed  and sewn onto the navy blue background pieces, and  a hexagon took shape.Fast forward almost 2 years.  According to my blog, I started this quilt on March 3, 2010, and today  the last stitches were taken, and the last threads were cut, and there is now a finished quilt top.This is big enough to fit a double bed. I have deliberately not counted the number of pieces of fabric in here. But, it is 9 rows wide, with 9 hexagons in each row....... 81 hexagons. That's a lot of "Y" seams. I think for my next string project, which I haven't chosen yet, I'll do something a little easier. LOL!! Right now, I'm thinking a combination of strings, incorporated into a regular pattern, like the centers of stars, or something like that, which I can do a few of at a time. Hmmmmmm............. Any other suggestions?

Monday, January 30, 2012

Signing on from southern Ontario

My name is Joanne and I have great fun playing with my scraps and my strings. Currently I have been making "lasagna" style string quilts with 1 1/2" strings. After I have the quilt to the 8 1/2" width I then cut blocks to use to construct a more manageable size and shape quilt. Should be able to get a photo in the next day or so if the sun comes out. Joanne

edited to add this photo. I made a very long string of green 1 1/2" strips. This is put together much like the popular jelly roll race quilts. You make a long string, then fold it back on itself and stitch the long side. Repeat and repeat. This gives you a long piece that is 8 strips wide. I then cut that strip in three and joined the resulting segments to make a rectangular shape. Joanne

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Strings Galore!

I told Brenda when I signed up for this that I was "drowning in strings."  I have enough 5.5" blocks already made to make 2 king-sized quilts.  Now my string boxes are overflowing again, and I'm going to need to take a couple of days and make some more blocks.

I'll be donating the first two quilt tops to my guild's community service program - someone else can sandwich, quilt, and bind them!

The most recent batch, ready to be trimmed

Nice and neat

The first batch, sewn into 4-piece blocks

Ready for Strings!

After I signed up for the String Along, I was in my Orphan Box and found I already HAVE a pile of string blocks.  They were even labelled: "41 neutral string blocks that will finish 8 inches".

Clearly I need to now work with my COLORED strings.

I am going on a retreat next week, so that is one project I should organize to take with me.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Welcome to the string thing along

I've set up a group blog for the string along,
where we'll be playing with our strings and posting our progress.
 You can grab the button from the sidebar
for your own blog.
If you'd like to post to this blog,
send me a message at strings[at]mts[dot]net
and I'll send you an invitation.

What's a string? A string is any long piece of fabric that's not necessarily a strip
which means it could be a strip, but it could also be the piece that you cut
when you square off your fabric.

The challenge is to start playing with your strings
to make a project before June 30.
Post your process and final result.
Let's get that string thing going!