Copyright Protection

Protected by Copyscape DMCA Takedown Notice Infringement Search Tool All content, including text and original photos are copyrighted and are property of the blog author, Julie Johnson

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Auditioning Blocks & Chopping "Un-charming" Charms

What would happen if....

I'd purchased a charm pack from a local quilt shop on a whim a few months ago. Each time I've pulled it out since then, I've found it to be less and less "charming." Oops! I don't want to offend anyone else who bought this line of fabric and still loves it. Perhaps you even made something out of it already.

For me, Bluebird Park by Kate and Birdie Paper Co. for Moda Fabrics, lost some of its charm by being cut into 5" squares. Some of the motifs needed a larger space, a bigger cut. Having bought the charm squares, I had a dilemna: what can I do with them to make up for what is no longer appealing?

I realized that these charms needed partners, and that perhaps Bluebird Park would become the support actors rather than the leads I thought they'd be in a future project. I chopped them into half square triangles, all of them. I didn't let any of them convince me to "spare" them. I combined each half square triangle with other fabrics, as well as allowing some to "play" and partner with some within their own line. Guess what happened? I fell in love with the resulting combinations and I purchased more of a few of the motifs in order to make more! What a surprise!! Have you ever had this happen??

Let the auditions begin!

I began with conventional pinwheels, which can be attractive, but in this case it left me feeling "Blah!":

Next I used a reference book of blocks and referred to any of them that used half square triangles. Now look what happened:

"Peace & Plenty block"
"Pieced Star block"
"Colorado block"

"Hourglass block"
"Mosaic #9 block"
"Yankee Puzzle block"
"Balkan Puzzle block"
"Dutchman's Puzzle block"
"Annie's Choice block"
There's more, but you get the idea. Each is different, with some subtle changes of arrangement. None of the combos are committed yet since I decided to purchase more of some of the fabrics and make more.


What I learned after playing with my stash

I discovered the following through this process:

  1. Take the plunge and cut them up!
  2. Combine the lackluster yardage/charm packs/mini charms/layer cakes/fat quarters (ones that have fallen "out of favor") with other fabrics to see what happens.
  3. I am lured by and purchase too many prints!! I don't have enough solids! BUY MORE SOLIDS!!
  4. I love the Painters Canvas fabrics by Laura Gunn for Michael Miller Fabrics, especially the interplay of the Teal and Lipstick colors. BUY MORE SOLIDS!!
  5. Play!!!

Dying to Dye Fabrics!

This Saturday I will be attending the fabulous Sisters Quilt Show in Oregon (for at least the 5th year in a row)! I'll travel with my husband, who enjoys looking at quilts for a little while (as compared to me, who doesn't tire of looking, photographing, dissecting quilts, etc.), and meet up with my sister (SewCraftyChick) and nieces (and one niece's husband). We'll stay at a resort in the area for 3 nights.

Prior to the Show, I decided to take a class on Friday taught by Lynn Koolish called "Direct Application Dyeing". I've been wanting to dye for a long time, so this will allow me to sample the process and consider whether I truly want to invest time, money, and effort into this aspect of creativity.

More later! :)

Linking up with creative others like YOU!
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced       AND       Sew Fresh Quilts

21 comments:

  1. Love what you've done with the HSTs .Enjoy yourself at the quilt show xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you can now see some photos from the quilt show on my blog :)

      Delete
  2. Playing around with those hst's has turned things right around! Love the combinations you have come up with - both in pairing up the prints to make the hst's and the arrangements to make them into blocks. This is going to be fabulous! Hope you have a wonderful time at the dyeing class and hanging out at the quilt show with your family!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was fun to see how they were transformed. They will be fun to use, & I'll write something about the quilt show, I'm sure!

      Delete
  3. Looks like you had fun playing with your stash :) you know what they say - if it's still ugly you didn't cut it small enough!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Elaine, I'd never heard that saying, but I'll try to remember it--it totally makes sense!!

      Delete
    2. I think I'll be cutting some of my hand-dyes small :) Again, I appreciate the tip!

      Delete
  4. Bluebird Park is one of my favourite lines of all time, but I had a charm pack too and wished I'd bought a layer cake instead. I think most of the prints are too big for a charm pack. I bought some FQs and half yards of some of the prints and am using the charms that are useable, the rest will be cut up as you did above

    ReplyDelete
  5. Stopping by from Lets BEE Social. You hit the nail on the Head.. buy more and play more

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're right! thanks for taking the time to stop by & read

      Delete
    2. "Playing more" allowed me to think more freely when I imagine using my hand-dyes created last Friday. That was a valuable process!

      Delete
  6. You made me laugh with that line about not letting the fabrics convince you to spare them. That lipstick color is fantastic, I agree, and looks great with the teal.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad I could bring some humor to the situation. Yes, those 2 colors together are incredible!

      Delete
  7. So many ideas for blocks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Lucy, thanks for stopping by to see them.

      Delete
  8. What a great little story! Just love all the combinations. I too need to make more of an effort & buy more solids, and those textured ones look very appealng! L

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for taking the time to visit and read. The "painted canvas" line by Laura Gunn is very nice! I like a lot of her style.

      Delete