Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Sewing Room Occupancy: 2

I haven't really had much new to write lately.  I finished Jacob's Ladder and labeled it (and washed it twice).  I finished the Spanish Treasure top and it is ready to go to Laura at Star City Stitchery.  I'll post photos after it comes back and is all quilted and bound.  I've picked up Dragonfly Summer, the hand appliqué project, in slow times. 

This past weekend, my Honey's daughters came for the Easter holiday.  On Friday night, sleepover plans for my 9 (almost 10)-year-old stepdaughter fell through so I said she could hang out with me.  I wondered if she wanted to revisit this:
Some time ago - maybe last summer - my stepdaughter had a playmate over when I wasn't home and my Honey called to ask me if they could play with some of my fabric to pick it out and "make" something with.  I thought that sounded harmless and directed him to my scraps drawer.  (Rule #1 - don't ever put anyone else in charge of what things kids can take from your stash.  There were project bags on top of the scraps drawer that I thought were pretty clear from the labeling and sealed nature were NOT scraps, but they had no supervision!  It was not pretty when I got home and all the scraps had to come back and be sorted through to rescue my project pieces!)  But my stepdaughter doesn't know how to sew and so this bag of scraps just sat there.

So we had an entire Friday evening and SD said she wanted to make a quilt.  A quilt?  Hm.  What kind of quilt?  She didn't know.  Did she want to hand sew or use a machine?  Didn't know.  I was worried, given her age, that if something wasn't fun or rewarding enough early in the process, she would give up on the entire concept ... not just the quilt project, but sewing altogether.  So I pulled out a cheapo purple kids' sewing machine my late MIL bought for her granddaughters years ago and got it all set up for SD.  I wasn't going to mess with the idea of seam allowances and so I thought foundation piecing might be the way to go.  I grabbed a nearby edition of Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks and flipped to a foundation pieced pattern that could be broken into simple segments.  I made four copies of a diamond-in-a-square pattern and taught her how to lay out fabrics on top to see if they'd be big enough.  She had fun doing this while we put "The Princess Bride" on the TV.

My stepdaughter is notoriously camera shy so I didn't take any photos during the process, but she said I could post pictures of her work to the blog.  I got the fabrics lined up on the paper, put them under the needle, she sewed on the line, I pressed and trimmed and placed the next piece.  The cheapo kids' machine was too troublesome to work with so I put it away and put Baron von Quilthausen, the Bernina, in action.  Even at half speed she liked pressing the pedal to the metal so the Baron was still kind to her work.

These are the four blocks she finished with the pattern that served as inspiration on the left - we used only the finished portion.  She has "themes" for each of her blocks and fabrics picked for several more, but we ran out of time before bedtime.  I suppose we'll have to resume in the summer when she is at our house again.

As for my own work, this is what I have stacked up right now:
It's the pieces for the border to the Civil War Chronicles quilt top.  I need to make 66 of these 6" Hovering Hawks suckers:
Once that is completed I'll take it to Laura for longarm basting at the same time I drop off Spanish Treasure.  It's a ginormous quilt and my Honey's eyes go wide as saucers when I talk about hand-quilting it, but it deserves it.

After that I need to take some time to do some non-quilting and even non-sewing work for a while.  I might still post some pictures if they relate to sewing or craftiness in general from time to time.

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