Posts Tagged block swap
A word to the wise. When you accumulate a lot of ‘stuff’ the day might come when you need to reduce the amount of ‘stuff’ you can keep and I am here to tell you that getting rid of that ‘stuff’ is no easy task.
We are going to be moving from around 300 square metres into 150 square metres and, as I have a knack of expanding into the space available to me, something (or lots of things) will have to give.
Our furniture doesn’t owe us anything. We’ve had most of it for a long time and some of it was vintage/antique when we got it so that’s not so bad. It’s the ‘stuff’ that will be the problem. My ‘workroom’ is bigger than any of the bedrooms will be in the new house and Mr. T has an industrial sewing machine and rolls of leather as well as all the usual power tools, gardening equipment, etc. but at least he will have a large garage in which to disport himself.
Selling things is time consuming and annoying and giving things away is almost as time consuming and more annoying as there are more takers but the demands on your time are just the same. We only have one or two charity type shops and, soon, they will probably ban me. Mr. T and I take turns in our different cars so that they don’t realise it’s all coming from the same place. The déchetterie (rubbish dump) is complicated and everything has to be separated into categories – I leave those visits to Mr. T.
Anyway, more on that as things progress and, just to show that I am doing things other than trying to keep the house clean and tidy in case of viewings (few and far between in the current ‘situation’) and fretting about the sheer logistics of the whole thing, these are the blocks I did for Kate’s turn in the F2F block swap.
She asked for greys with pops of colour. I didn’t have much grey so, as it was for Kate, I ordered some special Indonesian batiks in dove grey and paper pieced all three blocks as paper piecing is a great way to put everything else out of your mind while you concentrate. Plus, I am much better at paper piecing than regular piecing for some strange reason.
So here are the three I made for Kate.
Are you worried about the amount of ‘stuff’ you have and what you – or whoever has to clear out your house should you unexpectedly drop dead – will do with it all? Or are you one of those enviable people who can keep a rein on their crafting supplies, crafting outcomes, pictures, clothes, shoes, bags, collections of ———–(insert whatever it is you might collect), etc. etc. I think I’m actually going to find the downsizing process quite liberating (she says hopefully) and, in future, will never acquire anything without thinking about how easy it will be to dispose of it in the future.
The 2018/2019 Footsquare Freestyle (hereafter known as F2F3) has come to end with organiser Kate’s blocks for February being sent, received or in production.
I haven’t been showing you the three 12 inch patchwork blocks I made each month to send to the nine far flung participants in the colours they chose so I’ve picked my favourite one from each month to show you.
I was drawn out of the hat to receive blocks first and made one of my foundation paper pieced (or FPP) Hedgehogs as one of my own three blocks towards the quilt I will eventually make from all the blocks in my chosen colours.
Sue wanted blue and white and I made her an FPP banded star.
A Nell’s Star (or Charleston) block for Claire
A special request from Nanette for a hedgehog.
A Nova for Moira.
(A pattern designed by one of our participants, Esther.)
A Circle of Geese for Robin.
The only traditionally pieced block in this selection was for Esther.
Everyone, after the first couple of months, got a Zeppelin and this one was for Kathy.
Finally, Kate’s turn came and I stretched my paper piecing skills with this unicorn just for something a bit different.
I can’t tell you how much this block swap has once more challenged and encouraged me to do more patchwork. Working with colours I perhaps wouldn’t normally have thought of using and indulging in my new found love of FPP – it’s been a blast!
It looks like we might be going to do it all again for 2019/2020. If you’re interested, let Kate know in a comment on her blog here. Not sure? Have a look at the website she has set up especially for the F2F swaps – Footsquare Freestyle – 3 x 12 inch square finished blocks in whatever design you want just as long as it’s in the participant’s chosen colours. We need a minimum of 9 people – Kate and I are definitely in so another 7 and we’re off.
p.s. I’ve just realised my title sounds slightly ‘off colour’ but only if you say it slowly and, why would you?
Firstly, please accept my apologies if I haven’t commented on your blogs for the past week or so but we drove down into Spain/Catalonia for a break while my daughters house/dog/cat sat and, as one daughter doesn’t live here permanently, we’ve also been having some family time and I’ve been keeping off the screen and sewing machine as much as possible. Mlle. Tialys the Elder is here for another week but I just dropped in quickly with an update on the F2F third block swap organised by Kate.
During the 2016/2017 swap, I discovered the pattern for Elizabeth Hartman’s Fancy Forest quilt and made a couple of blocks featuring her foxes and also two hedgehogs because they were easily made into the correct size for the finished blocks (12 inches) that this block swap calls for simply by adding a border. It was interesting matching the colours they had chosen for their quilts to the pieces of hedgehog and each one is unique – I can guarantee you won’t see any of these in the wild.
So, in 2016, Susan over in Texas got this one –
and Claire in France got this one
I couldn’t resist revisiting this pattern for this year’s swap and – bearing in mind the participants who have already received one and the fact that not everybody might like a hedgehog in their quilt (although I can’t imagine why not 😉 ) – I made this blue and white one for Sue over in Washington as one of her three blocks for July.
I’d never made one for myself so, not to be left out, I made one in the neutral colour palette I’d selected as my colour choice this time round.
Plus, a paper pieced favourite of mine called ‘Banded Star’ – a pattern you can find free on Craftsy here.
With the receipt of these brilliantly executed (though not brilliantly photographed) blocks from Moira …….
and these lovelies from Nanette………
I now have all my blocks here and ready to be assembled into one big beautiful quilt or, quite possibly, two smaller fabulous throws. I chose a neutral palette so that I could display them in the living areas of the house more easily so two smaller ones would make sense.
As usual, with sampler quilts, I will probably QAYG (quilt as you go) and might even have a go at hand quilting this time so you probably won’t see the finished article any time soon but it’s time I tried to improve my quilting skills and this will be an ideal project to do so. Expect minimalism!
I mentioned my tentative foray into block swapping in an earlier post. It has been organised by Kate over at Tall Tales From Chiconia and Sue From The Magpies Nest and involves twelve people from all over the World. It’s called Foot²Freestyle because each block will have a finished size of 12 inches or a foot, clever eh? Every month it is the turn of one of the twelve participants to receive three blocks from each of the other eleven participants so there will be eleven parcels to open. It’s my turn in October – I’m excited! I also have to make three blocks of my own, making 36 big blocks with which to make a 72 inch square quilt.
Bearing in mind the year long fabric fast I have just started, it is lucky that everybody chose their colours right at the beginning of the swap so I think I have enough fabric to make all the remaining blocks between now June 2016.
I have made the blocks for Miss September which is Sue, one of the organisers, she’s asked for black and white with a ‘hot’ colour of our choice, but I can’t show photographs of them yet as it will spoil the surprise when she opens her package.
I’ve made the three for my own quilt so I’ll show the photos of those instead. The colours I chose were dark grey, with light grey, white, turquoise and touches of coral or orange. Rabbits not obligatory!
I said earlier that I made a ‘tentative foray’ into the world of block swaps and that is because, although I’ve been doing patchwork on and off for years, some of the others have made it into an art form and seem to make a quilt a week. Therefore, I decided to concentrate on colours and fabrics and keep the designs simple. Mind you, even then, I seem to cut off points and go ‘wonky’ from time to time. I’ll never win any prizes but I’m enjoying it. The bug jar above is a fun design, I think and bottling rabbits is a little different to the usual spiders, etc.
Some years ago I made a faux ‘crazy’ quilt using this block. It’s supposed to look as if it’s been randomly pieced but actually there are three pieces cut with a template and the rest by measurement and they are then joined together to make a block. In this way, you can achieve a random looking quilt by mixing up the fabrics used for each piece and turning the block around so that the total effect looks ‘crazy’.
I like the anvil block because it has points, but not too many, and I’ve been making a few of these so I’m managing to keep more of the points in the actual design now! The grey patterned fabric in the background will be featuring quite heavily in the near future and the reason for that will be revealed in a future post. However, the words ‘I’m never bothering to make a dress again’ might give you a clue what the subject matter will be.
Do you like the colours I’ve chosen? I was inspired partly by the Riley Blake fabric below from Sew Scrumptious Fabrics where I am always tempted by the beautiful range. Note the coral coloured feet and eyes – a contrast I have made more of in my colour scheme. I meant to buy this fabric to incorporate into my blocks but didn’t get round to it and now, because of my fabric fast, I can’t 😦
Actually, now I’m looking again, I think those little feet are pink but you get my drift.
I keep meaning to tell you about the blockfest I’m a part of which has been organised by Kate over at Tall Tales From Chiconia and Sue From The Magpies Nest and involves twelve people from all over the World. It’s called Foot²Freestyle because each block will have a finished size of 12 inches or a foot, get it?. Every month, one of the twelve participants is ‘the one’ and the other eleven participants make three blocks and send them to ‘the one’ so there will be eleven parcels to open, each holding three patchwork blocks in colours asked for at the beginning of the swap. I do love a parcel – it’s my turn in October. Then, the recipient will make three blocks of her own, making 36 big blocks with which to make a 72 inch square quilt or whatever else you would like to do with twelve patchwork blocks (no rude suggestions please).
The first month, June, belonged to Esther from the Netherlands and her colour choices were backgrounds of white/light grey/cream and main colours of mustard, jadeite/minty blueish greens, coral.
Many of the participants are habitual block swappers if their blogs are anything to go by. I am not – this is my first and I was only tempted because it is being organised by Kate who has just won first prize and a best in show rosette for her beautiful hexagon quilt called ‘Worldwide Friends’ made, in part, using fabric sent to her from her readers and adorned on the back with some Haiku poetry some of which was also contributed by some of her readers. I’m afraid, in the company of such talent, I have kept my blocks simple and concentrated on the colours and getting the finished size correct. I don’t want to disappoint too much with wonky edges and non-matching points – although I’m sure everybody will be very polite about things, it is forcing me to be much more careful and accurate than I would be if I was just making for myself. Which is a good thing, right?
Esther has now received her blocks so I can show you what I sent her.
A Daisy with a touch of French in the centre.
A Bug Jar
and, my favourite, an Anvil
They are not perfect by any means but I’ve kept well to her colour choices and hope she’ll be able to use them in the quilt or even for a coordinating cushion.
Next month is Annett’s turn from Germany and her colour scheme is a white background with orange, turquoise and green.
Easy with the postage so far but there are participants from farther afield – Australia and the U.S. for instance but the three blocks fit in a nice small package and will go letter post so not too bad.
Any suggestions for 12 inch blocks that are interesting but not too difficult (i.e. not too many points!!) would be welcome.