Saturday, July 9, 2016

New Project: Nine Patch in Reds

I've been reading more quilting blogs that use scraps and taking note of the way they organize their scraps and keep them ready to use.

One thing a lot of people do is cut them to set sizes. That way your pieces are ready to use and manageable and basically you make yourself some precuts.

Recently, I took a bunch of my scraps that weren't in big enough chunks to use for much else and cut them into 1.5", 2" and 2.5" strips. There are lots of patterns to show how to use strips to make all sorts of quilt designs.

And smaller pieces, I cut into 2.5" squares. Here a few leftover from the Nocturne Star quilt (which was made from a lot of leftovers itself):
I've also picked up a few mini charm packs (also known as "candy"):
Mini charms (or "candy") are 2.5" squares.
Charm packs are 5" squares, hence the mini-charm.
They are hard to resist at only $4-$5 each. (I bought the first one (top right) because I thought it might be helpful in my Farm Girl Vintage quilt but I never ended up using it. But once I had one, others were quick to follow.) They give a good variety of fabric, but all from one fabric line so they will coordinate.

In reading some quilting blogs I saw a nine-patch design that piqued my interest. I can't find it now but it was mostly nine-patches with a larger feature block in the top middle of the quilt. The main point is that it got my mind going and I decided finally to do a "red" quilt.

I have been collecting red fabrics (fat quarters and half yard pieces) since I've been buying quilting fabric. It always catches my eye and I find it hard to resist. I've always had in mind to combine it with other colours and either do some type of wash from light to dark or hold the red constant while running the other colours through the rainbow. Anyway, obviously just a general idea right now.

But I decided to start. So I took out my box of red fabrics and went through them all and cut mini-charms from almost all of them:
They are roughly sorted into light, light-medium, medium-dark, and dark piles. I got seven squares from most of the fabrics. Some I cut double that amount depending how much I liked the fabric or if it was a tone that I thought I needed more of. But there are also true scraps in there where I only had enough fabric for one square. I'm still deciding if I will keep matching fabric together as much as possible or if I will mix them all up.

I will be bringing all of these mini-charm squares with me on a trip and we will see how I start to put them together. That will be all hand sewing since I'll be on the road. But I'm sure I'll sew some of them on the machine as well. (It would make a good "leader and ender" project. That's where you sew pieces for a project like this at the beginning and end of your chain piecing of another project.)

My mind is always churning with these ideas. It's nice to try some of them out!

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