Making it easy on myself…

Sometimes I’m not too smart. I’m trying to use up my stash with the text fabrics and work improvisationally, of course. So I start in on those big, curvy pieces and the plan is to have more curves. My mind is thinking in terms of curvy strip sets and putting blocks together with more curvy strips….WHOA, NELLIE!!!

All of those curves take extra time. No quick multiples, every seam an individual special cut. This is supposed to use up the stash, not become a long-term project. So I asked myself if perhaps I might remember how to use straight line cutting and sewing and stacking fabric. C’mon, Kathy…this is going to be a full size quilt, not a little artsy number. Be realistic.

So I went with some of my standard improv blocks.

Print quilt 5

A few cross-cut blocks, but I tried to complicate things again and use 4 fabrics for each block instead of just one. No, no, no…simplify!

Going with one of the easiest, quickest blocks…

Print quilt 4

the wacky nine-patch. It will look good with those bigger blocks.

Here’s the start of block one…

Print quilt 6

…and how they finish up. It’s funny how the corners meet up so closely when you don’t want them to!

Print quilt 7

Still a lot of fabric on the table, including a bundle of fat eighths. Aha! Connecting strips made with those low-volume prints.

I’ll answer your question before you ask it…yes, these can be made ‘production style’ with chain piecing. (I know you were wondering that!) The secret is just consistency in stacking and sewing the pieces.

Print quilt 8

If you keep them all in the piles they started with, it’s no different than chain piecing 2″ squares for four patches. This is a stack of 11 fabrics, just over 6″ high. When sewn, I’ll trim them even and cut into 3″ wide strips, so I’ll have plenty to edge those large blocks. That’s as far as I got today, with planning and with sewing.

The next step will be to get what I have constructed so far onto the design wall and begin finalizing the layout. I have more red that I would like to incorporate and quite a bit of a particular black/white that I want to use as a unifying fabric.

Sometimes you need to apply a little common sense to your own work! Using up the stash is the goal and simple, quick sewing will accomplish that. Make it easy on yourself, especally if it’s a quilt whose planned life is to sit on the couch and warm me up on cold winter days! I need it done before the snow flies again!