Sharing fabric cuttings with my worldwide friends

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Block 5 New Jersey - Suffrage Pioneer

If it's not one thing, it's another.

Having lived in New Jersey I felt more of a sense of urgency to get this block completed on a timely basis than last weeks visit to Kansas.

I was very excited this morning to choose my fabrics but now it is done I am not sure if there is too much of the pale background fabric or not.

When piecing this I tried hard to be extremely accurate in my stitching. But at the end does it measure the correct size? That would be a no. It is slightly undersize.

And I left the New Zealand map in the box for this block and flipped to the New Jersey page. The Garden State is about more than the NJ Turnpike. The green (as well as being what I use every week!) speaks for all the gardens, trees and open space in that state.

But in explaining my opening sentence...I got the block photo posted on the group page on the flickr site but this week I just cannot seem to get it to appear on the discussion page no matter how often I cut and paste and use square brackets. So I'm heading back out to finish the errands and then I'll have another try later. Needless to say my TD is away from home this weekend.

(TD = Technical Director)

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Block 4 Kansas Sunflower

Gee, have you given up on me this week? Yes, this block had it's challenges didn't it.

To begin, a yellow sunflower was just not going to work in my color scheme of green, white and purple. And then there was the delay of  several days while I selected and deselected and reselected which fabrics were going to be used. And then the slow, and not quite steady, sewing. And the final angst over the center.

So this is a bright and cheery field of sunflowers, not quite in Kansas, but this was what I was going to have to achieve in purple, green and white.

 I pulled fabrics. I pulled patterns. I had my circle template out to see how fussy cuts would look.

 By day three this was how I was feeling about this block (the same field only 21 days later). Was it all hopeless and done for or was I going to be able to get this block done?

 With a concerted effort on Monday, I got fabric choices narrowed down and cut so I could not change my mind. And I began the slow process of joining the petals.  There is such a selection as a white sunflower I discovered so this vindicated my petal choice.

 And finally, yes, I took the last stitches this afternoon. There was a flurry of emails back and forth with RCCheryl and Kayellekiwi to "vote" on the final center fabrics.  Please be sure to notice the fussycut white petals - I'm not sure I would bother with that again! Oh, and if you look really closely you might notice a tiny speck of orange-yellow at the center of the violet  that is my "nod" to the Kansas Sunflower color.

I'm not really sure where in New Zealand they might grow sunflowers commercially so I just used this portion of the North Island to host block 4.

 But, I can now say, it is done.

p.s. I have just realized a coincidence. For my center I used fabric kindly sent to me by Cheryl (that pretty violet). For her center she used fabric that I had sent her. That's just another fun aspect of this project.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Block 3 - Union Square

So, this week did not work out quite as well in the colorways - if you look at the Grandmother's Choice blog you will see the full title this week is "Block 3 - Union Square - Red for Rebellion". Oops, I do not have red in my palette.

However, this block I have made is more in tune with what I had thought I was setting out to do; green and white with a touch of purple.  Of course since I make the rules I can break them too when I want.

 Again, no fussy cutting for me this week - it is all about the color.

And another thing for this week is that I have to stop taking so much time to agonize over my choices. Where to place this block on the map? The capital city of Wellington has not had a turn yet so here it is - albeit half hidden.

I have been out and about today as the weather was quite spectacular. This morning I was in a local park and saw my color scheme yet again in this scene - it's either a patch of weeds or a wildflower meadow; take your pick. I see purple, green and white.

The fabric collection has been growing this week. I think it's time to fire the acquisition manager before the budget is totally blown!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Block 2 - Amethyst - Suffragettes

This time my chosen color scheme works to my advantage as I have lots of purples in my fabric pile.

After some early unease with whether or not I had been able to print the pattern out correctly I set off for my all day Saturday Sewing event thinking I would (a) draft up the pattern myself and (b) let some of the early birds work out the kinks before I started my own block.

I had to leave hurriedly from the sewing event as a big storm was rolling in - indeed a tornado touched down within ten miles (no loss of life or serious damage thank goodness) . At home the lights kept flickering and we had several instances where we lost power for a few seconds so it was into the evening before I made a start on my block. Just as I was trying to upload the photo of the finished block onto the GC flickr site we had more flickering lights and I was afraid we would lose power altogether so shut down without writing this post.

We have no amethyst mining in New Zealand that I am aware of so I posed my block with the lower left corner in the vicinity of Hokitika which is the greenstone/jade capital of New Zealand. I know that's got nothing at all to do with the suffragette movement but with those big pieces of green fabric I thought there was a connection.

This block did have some challenges, the first one being printing out the pdf at the correct size. Everyone was worried about the Y seams but by marking the points and then stopping stitching right at the mark I was able to do the entire block without any reverse sewing! The other challenge was the large size of the pieces; I felt that interesting fabric patterns were called for to fill the space.  I auditioned a few options for the center and here are two:

 As you can see I decided to throw them overboard and they are now floating around offshore. Who knows, they might show up on the beach at some later stage and get used in another block.

There are some lovely blocks showing up on the flickr site and it is good fun to take inspiration from what others have done.

And now I think I just might head out...there's a fabric shop I haven't been to yet in my quest for chartreuse and red-violet fabrics with interest. There's a certain project for someone's birthday I need to source fabric for too. Well, that's my excuse anyway.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Block One - Grandmother's Choice

I have not exactly gotten off to a flying start! Yesterday, when I had expected to start sewing my block, turned into a day out (I went to a market day at The Chartreuse Life...but that's a whole other story) so I got no sewing done. Then today I had no internet connection until after 2pm so hello, another distraction.

After agonizing over fabric choices for a time I came to the conclusion that I might as well go ahead and make two blocks.

Initially I had a vague plan to make the blocks green and white and then incorporate the purple in the setting. So this was the block that went with that plan:

 In trying to be creative I thought I might photograph my blocks on a map of New Zealand since that is the particular suffrage movement I have chosen to focus on. My maternal Grandmother, who emigrated from England, settled in Christchurch (seen to the lower right side of the block). My paternal Grandmother, born in New Zealand, lived mostly around the greater Oamaru area (seen to the center lower edge of the block)

Then I wondered what the block would look like if it had some purple in it. This block is titled Grandmother's Choice so could well be the logo for the whole project and thus I felt it needed some pizzazz. The top right corner of this block points to where I spent my childhood in Waikiekie.

Now of course I am not sure which way is the way to go.

The greater challenge comes next for I must see if I can figure out how to post this in the discussion area of the flickr site...

 Well, that was easier said than done for me. I "think" I may have put a photo in the group pool and the discussion page but I'm not too sure. And if I did, will I know how to do it again?

I better go to the kitchen and get the dinner started - I do know how to do that!