Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Blue Medallion Cardigan

Of course, some knitting is still going on! I finished another version of the Medallion Cardigan, this time in Cotton Classic, color 3806, which has been sadly discontinued. I used 7 skeins, size 8 needles, and put 3 rows of single crochet around the whole thing. When I got to the end, I was going to put a button on, but somehow this looked messy, so in the end I crocheted together the top 4 inches, which serves to close the top but preserve a cardigan feel. I'm liking this a lot! It is cool and easy to wear.

Leafy Nights part 3

I finally finished making 36 of the 4X4 blocks, and had a lot of fun arranging the colors and shades. Then I sewed them together in groups of 4 like this:
You can see how this makes a large blue X in the middle. Given that I want a queen-sized quilt, I need an array of 6X6 small blocks, which turns into a grid of 3X3 larger blocks. When I put together two large blocks, another secondary pattern emerges, like this: So this arrangement turns into Xs and Os. I'm enjoying playing with the blocks, but I think I want to arrange them so the Xs aren't so prominent. I think this will involve sewing 6 big blocks, and then single small blocks on the sides. After that, I'll have to consider borders and quilting...but first I have to clean my studio to have room to lay out all of the blocks!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Leafy Nights part 2

So now I'm in the making blocks mode. It is very relaxing and fun to design and sew all of these blocks. I have to be mindful of all of the possibilities, as I want to scatter the colors around the final quilt, so I need to see all the ones I've already made and try not to repeat color placements. So far I've made 17 blocks. Here they are pinned up on the design wall in the same orientation. This might be a fun arrangement, but I'd probably use this design on point if I were to use it. However it is a bit static. Once I have all 36 blocks made, then I'll have fun arranging them. Looking forward to that is a nice motivator. Chain piecing these makes it easier to keep track of the squares.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Leafy Nights part 1

Sometimes you just have to make a quilt. As someone who has collected fabric since childhood, I have a lot to choose from, but sometimes that makes it difficult to get started. There is always fabric that is new or better or somehow different, yet I find the same things call to me over time. I decided to make a blue and green bed quilt, as I happen to have a lot of fabric on hand, and those are my favorite colors.I wanted something that would be complex, but not too complex, large, easy and fast, relatively speaking. Something I could enjoy working on without too much frustration, but interesting enough to allow for delight; a block quilt that didn't look like blocks. Sometimes finding a good pattern is the most difficult part of getting started. Making something big is a challenge to handle, so I wanted it to be broken up into squares to make it easier to sew.

I had long admired a quilt called Interwoven by Barbara Graham ( ) from the 2004 Quilt Art Engagement Calendar, which was a two color 4x4 patch block pattern, and thought that would be a perfect design. I started cutting 4 inch strips of my favorite blue and light green batiks:

I then cut half- square triangles from each strip and paired them to make unique triangle squares:

Then I cut more blue strips, and then into 4" squares, to make a block:

Now I will make 36 of these, and see what happens. I'm trying to use as many unique combinations as I can, so it is a bit like playing concentration, trying to vary the fabrics chosen in each position of the grid. And keeping the cats from lying on top of them, of course! Back to sewing.