No, you're not lost!
I'm working out of my comfort zone,
and trying a more traditional design.
I have to chuckle to myself because I have succumbed to quilter's peer pressure. At last weekend's retreat, I watched as my friends picked up fabric in the stores. Not just what they bought, but what they needed to touch. It was not necessarily what I would have chosen, or in my color palette or style. I normally choose brighter hues, and silky smooth fabrics like Art Gallery and Michael Miller solids are glorious to me. But I saw fingers touching wovens, flannels, and fabric printed to resemble burlap. (Burlap=chills!, and I am allergic to all jute products.) Texture is a big deal for me, and I started wondering if I avoided more traditional fabrics because I associated them with certain textures.
With that in mind, the Eerie Nights Blog Hop start October 20th, and I am one of the last bloggers who will be posting. (What better time to start a project than when the hop is a week away! I am a bit behind.) Halloween is big for a lot of people, but I am past wanting to put tombstones and stuffed monsters in my yard. I want simple, and I also want something that bridges the transition from Halloween to Thanksgiving. Could I design something that would do all these things, and still work on a #BraveQuilter project of sewing out of my comfort zone? I think so.
I started by playing with EQ7. I am not proficient with it, but friends keep telling me to plug away. I pulled up a simple HST block, and started looking through my stash. I had very few traditional looking fabrics, but I did have a small pile of wovens. I bought them thinking I would do a fall project last year, and found out they were hard to work with. I made one block, was very unhappy with it, and put them away.
It bothers me to see plaid used without regard to the design, and is a very flimsy fabric easy to lose its shape. So I fought taking the easy route, pulled my plaid wovens, and designed a project around them. I could work through this as a #BraveQuilter.
My cutting and ironing table is messy. It is big enough that there are usually multiple projects on it, and sometimes I steal fabric from one adding it to the other--like here.
Two basics I own a lot of are RK Quilter's Linen and Moda Grunge. They work with all styles of fabric, and here I paired them with some vintage fabric.
I will admit I am not a fan of HST's, but mostly because of the time involved. I know there are some excellent methods of creating many in a short time, but I was not sure my fabric choices were right.
I did my best at pairing up fabrics that really provided some good contrast. There are multiple pale yellows with the dark chocolate for a scrappy look, but only one gold with the barn red Moda Grunge. I added a fairly straight strip of plaid woven by starching the heck out of it, and then a larger modern print.
Smaller HST are easier than larger for me. I added a piece of painter's tape to my sewing machine stage, lined up the furthest point with a line on my foot, and then just watched that the end point followed the tape across the stage.
I do not have an acrylic table for my machine, but I know many have similar markings on them. For a cheap cheat, I simply add painter's tape as explained above. Spend a few minutes on testing scraps, then see how fast you can zip through chain stitching your HST pairs. There is no tedious marking of lines with this method, but it is really best for smaller HST.
An EQ7 basic block print out looks like this. You can add your
own colors to it, but I chose to just print it as it was.
I wanted you to see that even if the values on your pattern show one thing, you have to consider the overall color scheme of your quilt. The printed pattern shows a dark square within a square in it at the corner. I switched my corner values to be in reverse. Light in dark on the corner, and dark in light on the inside.
I auditioned lots of fabrics, but only a few made the cut.
My design wall is 8' green insulation board from our local home store, and I hot glue cheap batting to it. When I need to audition fabrics, I slap up my whole chunk of fabric, and pin through it. It holds it all.
Now for the center. What to do? What to do?
I solicited advice from friends about the center, and they had lots of good input. I like applique, but I was thinking a pumpkin would be passe. Probably, but what if it was made like no one had ever seen before? I looked at literally hundreds of pumpkin quilts, and went to bed without a good idea. At 2 AM, I was up and on EQ7 again trying to modify a block many of us have already made.
Since I had woken my husband up while getting up myself, I had someone to bounce ideas off of! I liked squat, flat pumpkins, but the X's did not come out symmetrically. And, according to my husband, pumpkins are round. Another family member chimed in that pumpkins are not actually round, and this is 'stylized.' Let us all agree they are pumpkins here, and not the Eye of Sauron as another suggested.
Trying on stems. That one did not make the cut.
Short-haired Minnie needs a furry blanket
since the temperatures have dropped!
I will be busy finishing off this wall hanging for Eerie Nights Blog Hop, but don't wait for me! There are prizes to be won by visiting the hop every day starting October 20th, and running through the 28th. The button stays in my sidebar, but I'll be posting the hop schedule here, too.
Come on, Doxie girls.
Lets go sew.
P.S. Did any of you notice I snuck some pink into this quilt?
Confessions of a Fabric Addict
Fort Worth Fabric Friday
Off the Wall
Crazy Mom Quilts
My Quilt Infatuation