Sunday, November 3, 2013

Finishing What Has Been Started

I recently was introduced to a site in blogland, 2013 - A Lovely Year of Finishes, hosted by Melissa of Sew BitterSweet Designs and Shanna of Fiber of All Sorts.  (Thanks, Pauline, for the nudge!)

At the beginning of each month, you post about a project you will finish that month.  Mid-month, you are encouraged to post your progress, and then at the end of the month, you post about your finished project, a virtual show-and-tell, so to speak.  Prizes are included, but the most valuable prize of all is getting something FINISHED!!  (And check out their website for the definition of "project.")

Even though it is already November, I have decided to join the fun.  My first project to finish this month dates back to April 2010.  I went to AQS in Paducah that year, and I took a class to make a mystery quilt.  It was billed as having an afternoon of fun and creating a memory of Paducah.  Sewing machines were provided.  Fabric kits were also provided, with the fabric already cut to size.  All that was needed was to sew the pieces together.  I figured it would be a good way to create something to remind me of my first trip to Paducah.

Are you surprised it's not finished?  Well, I can be a bit picky in my quilt construction.  I like my 2-1/2" squares to be 2-1/2" square.  Alas, not all the pieces were cut to size accurately.  And then I was supposed to piece a border using strips cut cross grain?  I prefer to cut my borders on the straight of grain, if at all possible.  There is less stretch in the straight-of-grain pieces, and squaring up the finished project is easier.

During the afternoon, I did sew pieces together, but I was underwhelmed, so I was probably the least productive person in class.  First thing I did when I came home was to try to find additional material, particularly the border fabric, which I really liked.  I discovered the fabric was a few years old and could not find any additional fabric for sale.  What was I to do?

I finally decided I could reduce the size of each piece and have a smaller version of the original quilt.  So instead of a 60" x 70" quilt, I will have a quilt approximately 30" x 35".  If you start with a nine-patch made out of 2-1/2" squares, you can cut it down to make a new nine-patch out of 1-1/2" squares.  By carefully cutting, you end up with something like this that you have to then sew back together.

At this point, I've done all the cutting.  I just need to re-sew the blocks and assemble the quilt.  I will finish it in November 2013!

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