Saturday, February 02, 2008

Yesterday I was very focussed, and spent many hours on one of my oldest UFOs, started in 1984. It's from that same McCalls magazine that I took the Night and Noon from. There's four or five more quilts in that magazine that I want to make; it was a great issue.
This project has had a long, hard life; there are 41 pieces in each block, and I don't think I ever managed to hand piece one in a single day. It took forever to do each block, and I had almost no fabrics that I deemed suitable for an 'antique' look. There are old clothes and op-shop finds in the first blocks, but by the time I did the final ones I was using reproduction vintage fabrics from America. Times certainly changed while I worked on them.

They suffered various indignities; cats and kids were fascinated by the pieces and the fluttery qualities of the stack of blocks. I ran out of the horrid unbleached calico (muslin) for the background and sashing twice, and had to substitute others. The original, accurate cardboard templates degenerated into ragged shapes as I traced around them repeatedly, and the replacement ones I made were just not the same. The final blocks were a nightmare of ill-fitting pieces, even though the new fabric was wonderful.

The worst thing was an accident that befell the blocks and the partly pieced top 15 years ago, which involved most of them getting saturated and requiring a bath. The magazine suffered too, and is in bits now, but I won't ever throw that away. I rescued it all, but I just never seemed to have enough courage to tackle the job of getting them put together.

Look at those seams! My heart quailed at the prospect of making them all lay flat and tidy again.
But I'm nothing if not stubborn. I made my quilt using only 30 blocks instead of the 36 in the magazine. It's quite big enough, and will fit the bed nicely. I think it will have a cotton batting and some heavy quilting to disguise the mis-shapen bits and crooked piecing. I'm so very, very grateful to have this thing done at last.For the first time in ages I felt like hand sewing, so I'm working on my Periwinkle quilt; only four seams to go and that's another UFO off the list. I'm so amazed that I've finished all these things to the quilting stage; it's most unlike me.
Today has been random; I'm jumping around from one thing to another. Several of these blocks have been sewn together, and 4 of these shopping bags cut out. I am so sick of those horrid green bags, so I am replacing them with these lovely ones made from printed duck. And you thought I only bought stash fabric at Spotlight! There's some skirts to be made next.....

13 comments:

Tazzie 11:44 PM  

You're inspirational Keryn, I can't believe how much you get done. Don't you love those magazines with lots of projects that you have to make. They're few and far between lately. I have one from 1998, and it's very tattered.
*hugs*
Tazzie
:-)

tirane93 5:51 AM  

24 years in the making and that top is just precious! i think the different styles of fabric give the "scrappy" look a good deal more authenticity. and it must make you feel like superman getting a ufo that old off your shelf!

Paula 7:22 AM  

Your Flying Geese Quilt is gorgeous, and more appreciated because of the storms it weathered. You have inspired me to keep on with old UFO's knowing the are beautiful quilts just waiting to be finished. Great job! And I love the blue block!

Anonymous,  7:22 AM  

Thank-you for taking the time to detail the trials and tribulations with the big quilt. I so very much needed that inspiration today, as I'm working on a difficult quilt of my own. Canadian Gail

Dawn 1:50 PM  

Oh I LOVE that wild goose chase quilt! That one is so me! What issue is that from? I wonder if I still can get it or if they are sold out?

Anonymous,  3:14 PM  

Good job on getting down to your UFOs Keryn! I think this year it's time for all of us to get organized and more productive.

Come to my website where you will find my blog and podcast, Quilting Stash, to see and hear what I've been saying about organizing my quilting workspace and more.

Happy Quilting,

Annie Smith

Mary 7:13 PM  

It's so nice when a book or magazine provides inspiration for multiple quilts. I really like this top and congrats for your soon to be finished UFO. Feels good doesn't it?

meggie 9:07 PM  

You have really got your groove going! Good for you.
I am sure mine will turn up one of these days! haha.

Floss 12:41 PM  

I have one magazine like that, it's only a couple of years old, and I am already on my second project from it, and I knew there will be more to come.

julieQ 6:44 PM  

Wow! You sure have got a lot done. Now to the Statler and quilt them! I so enjoy your work...

Fiona @ Dragonfly-Crafts 3:38 AM  

Love that blue block, very effective and I just love your bag. So much nicer then the green bags. Love how the handles are all the way around the bottom.

Natalie 10:35 AM  

I love that tote bag you have. It's adorable!

bingo~bonnie 8:42 AM  

ooough la-LA! I love this quilt. I've always been a big fan of flying geese and these blocks are beautiful! Congratulations for getting one of your oldest UFO's into a top at last!

Love from Texas! ~bonnie

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