Sunday, June 10, 2012

Christmas in June!

Look what I found when I opened the front door last night!  My friend Eileen said that she'd drop something off, and here it was!

Eileen is very creative and very good at anything she does.  She did a lot of sewing for a while, but has moved on to oil painting.  So she decided to gift me with a bag full of fabric!

 A few pieces were "re-gifted" and probably can't be used for quilting.  The two below on the left are upholstery fabric and the one on the right is a shiny cotton-poly blend.  I'm sure I'll find a way to use them, though!
 The rest was just too amazing!  Orange!  Purple!  Gold!  Blue! Red!

 Some pieces were just a couple of inches long and less that a fabric-width wide.  Others were a full yard!


 All the side edges were serged.  I don't know where Eileen got the fabrics, but I suspect she serged them herself.  Even around the corners!

Some fabrics just cry out to be used in an art quilt.  I can imagine using a metallic thread to quilt around the trees and leaves in these fabrics.  Of course, for the time being, imagining is all that's going to happen!

My favorite quilting blogger, Bonnie Hunter, has come up with a whole system for cutting small pieces of fabric into sized scraps so that they are ready to use in a scrappy quilt.  I've finally gotten far enough along to have a fair amount of scraps, so I'd spent the day trimming and sorting.

 Eileen had been making a landscape quilt, so little pieces were missing from many of the fabrics.
The only way to go was to trim up the fabrics into larger pieces and then to cut the remainder into smaller squares and rectangles.  Step One was to trim off pieces that had already been cut into.
 Fortunately, there was some selvage on almost every piece, so I was able to line cut edges up along the grain.
 The next step was to square up the entire piece of fabric.  In this case, I had to use three rulers to get everything in order.  The little one on the left is lined up with the selvage edge.  The 12-1/2 inch ruler carries the square across the fabric and the third ruler is long enough to trim up the edge.
 As you can see,  there was still some squaring-up to be done.
 Finally, all the fabrics had been trimmed.  I cut the extra bits into strips, rectangles and squares.  Small pieces became squares, mostly 2-1/2".  Any pieces less than 12" long were sorted by width and then by value and stored as rectangles.  These might later be used as rectangles or cut down into squares, depending on what need arises.   Really small pieces just went into a bag to be used as leaders/enders when chain-piecing.  Pieces 12" or longer were considered strips, which could also be cut down, but might have additional uses, such as sashing or a pieced border or binding. 
  Sorting out the rectangles by width:
 Squares by the bag!

I think this effort will all have been worth it.  My big projects, like the Otsego Lake quilts, are all planned out, but for the Barrister's Block quilt-along I'm increasingly turning to a scrappy look.  There's certainly plenty to work with now!

No comments:

Post a Comment