Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Stringing Together!

While I was deep into the neutral zone on my side of the table, Mona was digging into a new project with a rainbow of strings from my ever flowing blue bin.

EVERYTHING goes into that blue bin, it lives at the end of the cutting table, and as I am trimming up fabrics I will toss anything that is at least 3/4’’ up to about 2’’ that I don’t want to cut into Scrap User’s System measurements into the bin as I go.

The bin holds a wonderful array of EVERYTHING.

While at home I tend to separate strings by color family for ease of use, I’ve done the opposite here – mixed it all together and I have more ideas in my head for wonderful string quilt possibilities than I have time to sew them.

I have this theory.  EVERYTHING –Every project you make – leave STRIPS left over.  And if you aren’t going to save them in Scrap User’s System sizes, at least start a string bin.  You’ll be amazed at how quickly they accumulate, and at all of the wondrous things you can do with them.

And if string quilting isn’t your thing, just save them and gift them to someone who will be eternally grateful for the bits and bobs that brighten up their own stash.  Take them in a big ziplock bag to guild and put them on the donation table.  Your gift will be manna to the masses of us who love VARIETY in our quilts.


The bottomless blue bin!


Mona’s progress!

She needed a new project and I was happy to get her started on String X from the Free Patterns Tab  in a queen size for her guest room bed.  She’s painted the walls a soft olive green, and this is going to look WONDERFUL.  We don’t even have the background fabric picked out yet, but she’s got plenty of stitching to do until we get to that point.

Ttrimming pages covered with strings.

In the String X pattern, it says that the foundations should be cut at 4 1/2’’ x 10 1/2’’ – but when measuring the phone books we were using as foundation we found that if we extended the margin 1/4’’ beyond the paper as we pieced across the page, we could get TWO widths from 1 sheet of paper, enabling Mona to stitch with longer strips and making the job be even quicker. 

And she sewed and she sewed and we laughed and talked and enjoyed the day so much!


Trimming corners!

As per the pattern directions, I cut a paper square in half and taped it to my ruler and trimmed the corners off one of her rectangles just so we could get a better view of how this was going to work.  LOVING it!  And isn’t that turkey fabric crazy?  LOL!  EVERYTHING goes in!


Paper removed!

Remember when you are stitching through a paper foundation that you need to set your stitch length much smaller than with normal sewing.  1.5 on a digital machine, or 14 to 16 stitches per inch on a vintage machine is just about right.  Small stitches makes the paper really easy to remove.

it is also my preference to remove my paper from my units as soon as I have trimmed them to size.  The most heinous job on the planet is picking little fussy bits of paper out from seam allowances when seams have crossed seams after sewing paper lined pieces together.  Once the unit has been trimmed, the paper has done its job and can come off easily, and then the corner triangles can be added.  From this point on its no different than sewing regular patchwork together.

I do this with “paper pieced” blocks where I am sewing on the line on the paper as well.  I don’t like paper in my seams, and I remove all paper after trimming the units and before sewing units to each other.  It’s just so much easier!


The neutral side of things!

All of my small blocks are done, and now I’m on to my big ones.  I’m going to have to leave them here though, today is a going home day and they will just have to wait for me to come back up at the weekend.


How many of you remember THIS sweet print?


Leaving a very rainy mountain!

But before I go, I wanted to leave you with a little heads up on my Wanderlust Course with Craft U!

Wanderlust: Scrap Quilting Basics from Beginnings to Bindings became available in November and is going strong!  The comments have been so positive and I’m having a wonderful time interacting with my students and seeing their progress.

You can still save 15% off the price of this course by entering the code WANDER15  CLICK HERE to redeem!

Tell your family that THIS is what you would like for Christmas or for Hanukkah or your birthday,  anniversary, or JUST BECAUSE THEY LOVE YOU!

You will get indepth training on how to use the Essential Triangle Tool and it will help you with the upcoming steps in our En Provence Mystery VERY SOON.

Every day I hope to receive a phone call that the tools have arrived at Yellow Freight so we can haul the trailer over there, pick up all 4,000 of them and get them out the door to you.  I am as anxious as you are for you to hold them in your hot little hands!  They will be WORTH THE WAIT!


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

Vintage pinwheel quilt shared by Kevin H.

When I remember those early days of first apartments, hopes and dreams and scrambling to make ends meet I smile!

We really didn't think we had it that bad at the time, yet we would never want to go back!

Grateful for every step of the way.

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  1. Great quote today!!!

  2. Oh yes, great quote to remind me how far I've come!!! I had days where there wasn't enough food to go around...so thankful for all I have.

  3. What a joyful post, Bonnie. Thank you. I've taken a moment to reflect on my life's journey up to now. England to Australia to NC and all the amazing things I have done on the way....and continue to do. I'm where my heart calls HOME.

    Have a safe trip down the mountain.

  4. I recently made your String X quilt for a friends new baby. I got a Babylock Tiara III delivered and set up today! The String X quilt will be the first one that I try to quilt on it. I can't wait. Thank you Bonnie for the free pattern!

  5. I also want to call 571-209-9595 and see who that number belongs too :-)

  6. Love strip piecing too. This year is my first mystery & first to use tri recs also first to use your BH ruler. Working on clue #2 and listening to the wind howl. It's a full blown blizzard here. I grew up sewing scrappy and it's my favorite type of quilting. Thanks for your great instructions, your free patterns and all of your time you spend with us in the quilting world.

  7. Sweet memories. I used that little rosebud print to make smocked dresses for my girls - who are all grown up now! Thanks for bringing those days to mind.

  8. Too funny!! I have about 2 yards of that sweet little print! Some of it has already may it's way into my MQ as a neutral. Thank you Bonnie, I'm really enjoying all you do for us!

  9. Tonight as I put a new liner in the garbage can, I thought of how lucky I was that my paper, plastic bins are full. I remember my mother always worrying about having enough paper towels till grocery day. And I gave thanks!

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  11. Cindy, I don't know where you live, but if it is any where near Needville, Texas, I will gladly share mine when it comes in!

  12. Bonnie:
    Great Quote!
    I Do Not know about being grateful for every step of the way, but I can certainly respect the process.
    I am Happy about being where I am both physically and spiritually. Yes, there are parts I wish I hadn't of had to go through, but the Dear Lord knew what he was doing, and what I needed to do and learn along the way. He knew what I would need to get where I am now!

    Bonnie said that if you have the Companion Angle and Easy Angle, like we have used in past mystery's you can use them. Make sure you watch the tutorials if you have not watched them before.

    Thank You Bonnie for this Wonderful Mystery! Ready to start sewing Clue #2 tomorrow.

    Kasilof, AK

  13. Hey! I have that beautiful rose bud with dotted circles fabric too! Made a half recipe of almond Roca, but with toasted hazelnuts instead today while I watched your latest quilt cam. And now watching the first season of Gilmore Girls, that you recommended. WOW!

    Sorted the fabric that had built up too, and got them into appropriate bins, as well as the strings from recent purchases into their bin for a spider-web quilt. Thank you for your blog, and quilt cam!


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