I'm so happy with this flimsy! This was one of the items on my NETY list. The intention was to take the fabrics for it (which I'd washed in August), iron them, and cut it all out so it would be at the neatly kitted stage, ready to pull out at a future time when I could give it UFO attention.
Well, this was a kit I'd bought in something like 2011. I was driving home alone from St. Louis to Niceville, FL, and made a fun-stop in Vicksburg, MS to check out a quilt store. I remember "Stitch-n-Frame" being quite a delightful store. I got two kits there. This one, and another that's still on the NETY list (that would be "Minky Stripes"). This was named Pick-A-B #3 from the book Turning Twenty Book 7. I'd seen it made up and hanging in the store, and at the time I was really wanting to get in on the turquoise-and-red fad.
I decided I just didn't want to make this with the kit's mix and exactly to the pattern. The non-symmetry of the even number of block columns bothered me. And while I love scrappy quilts, something about this rendition seemed too frenetic to me. Also, the border fabric had a much different blue than those of the FQs - it was a muted earthy aqua-y blue, while the FQs had bright turquoises and strong robin's egg colors.
So I went shopping in my stash. I wanted a softer mix for the sashing areas, so I stuck with the not-stark white-background florals, greens, and creams that were there, and pulled these fabrics out of the kit,
and then added the bottom row of this pic from stash to create this mix (it's a shame that the camera washes out the lighter blues - they're actually stronger than they appear here):
I decided to feature only reds in the "rounds" and make my stitchery panels be squares instead of rectangles. I did wish my reds had white-based prints in all of them to soften them a bit, but I'm on stash-only restriction, so that's what there was. Quilting strategies might help with that.
I couldn't picture what color I'd want the stitcheries done up in (which will be teacup vignettes), so I decided those would be stitched after the quilt was assembled.
Next I figured out how to change up the pattern. Going with a 3x3 block arrangement, I'd have a fantastic sofa size, which is what I preferred for this project, anyway. I didn't want the pattern of the sashing trellis work to be interrupted in the outside banding, so those red squares were changed into HST treatments. And on the four corners of that banding, I wanted to "lop" the red square into an HST with the border fabric. Also, Then I decided I wanted to drop the outer red cornerstones and then be meticulous with the floral border and go with mitered corners on a fussy cut of the fabric to keep the dominant bunches in a line together all the way around. Also, I **really** didn't want to go with the fabric waste that using the tool method for the turning twenty portions of the blocks would yield. It was significant. So I decided I'd just paper piece those using copies of the template.
I made so many changes in details that I didn't trust even careful notes would be sufficient to make my intentions clear to myself two years from now. So I decided I would just sew it all up right then and there (this past weekend). Which I did.
I'm super happy with my fabric change outs. Because of the teacups I'll stitch in [to be done in red], and the way I changed fabrics and pattern details, I renamed this quilt top "How Do You Take Your Tea?" [I want to do plate motifs in the red rounds, and this is a reminder that when it's all finished, I want to stage a fun deck-side tea party photo op with it]
One of the turquoises is still a bit wild in the blend, but that's OK. In some lighting I'm 100% in love with this quilt top. In others, I'm 85% in love. And that's plenty good enough for me. My 21yo is completely taken with it, and Rocky Raccoon just wants to know, please, when is tea going to be served?
I was on such a roll, I even cut out the binding and sewed up the backing already! The leftovers of the border fabric that came in the kit and the yardage pieces I'd pulled in from my stash were just sufficient to do this.
I measured how much I had left in what shapes, pulled up my EQ6, and used its borders function and my calculator to find band widths that would work with what I had.
When I was finished, I only had between 8 and 15 sq.in. of each of those fabrics left! Way to clear out some stash yardage. :D I did need to raid the leftovers of one FQ to get that outer band finished. And it's good that I quilt on a domestic machine, because there's only 1" clearance on each side. By experience, I know that I can do this with my carefullest pin-basting. I'm also keeping one of the kit's original FQs with the binding so I can make a teacup label with it when all is said and done.
It was a good bit of unexpected work and a nice edit to the NETY list! For reference - the hours spent doing this equals about the amount of time spent tracing, cutting, placing, cutting, and fusing a single block from "Wind in the Whiskers" . . .
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