Thursday, August 11, 2011

Sewing Machine

I have sworn off all forms of virtual bees, swaps, and quilt alongs for 2011.  Most of you reading probably already know this.  Over the past couple years, I have found that those types of activities suck all the fun right out of sewing.  It goes back to that quilting with obligation thing, no?

But, I’m a sucker for plain-old, straight-up, old-fashioned patchwork.  Especially if it's made of cute little squares.  If it's cute little squares, I’m there.

Which is how I find myself in a contradiction. 

I’m sure you’ve seen the 36-patch quilt-along over at Crazy Mom Quilts.  And you see how I might be enticed.  Those blocks are adorable.  Not only are they adorable, but they are also easy.  Strip-piecing?  Check.

Make no mistake: I am not quilting along.  So let’s just get that straight.  I am, however, making 36-patch blocks because they are cute.  I’m not going to stay on any kind of schedule or add photos to the flickr group, because those are the things about quilt-alongs that stress me out.  Instead, I’m going to be inspired by Amanda Jean’s idea and I’m going to make some sweet, traditional patchwork blocks.

Now that’s out of the way.

I am strip piecing these blocks using fabric from my stash: one neutral and one print.  As of now, I am at a standstill because I am out of neutral fabrics!  That’s really too bad, considering I was on a roll; so far, I’ve got 37 blocks complete, and that’s after only three (four?) sewing sessions. 

I used the Robert Kaufman QuiltCalc to figure out how much yardage I’ve used.  (It’s pretty easy to do this using the “pieces to yardage area” calculator.) 

Sessions one and two yielded a combined 10 blocks (six strips per block, 2.5” x 16.5”, 60 strips in all) and used a total of 2 1/8 yards of fabric from my stash.

Session three (and four?) spanned two days and yielded 27 blocks!  That eliminated another 5 5/8 yards of stash fabrics.

Total destruction?  7 ¾ yards of stash busted and I’m already nearly halfway to a queen-sized quilt top.

It’s okay; you can clap.


  1. i am so right there with you on the sew-alongs and bee & swaps! i always love the concept but then find it so utterly not fun along the way. too much pressure.. ;)

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