I finally dug out my Splendid Sampler quilt box again, it’s been on a bit of a back burner for a couple of months but I’m in the mood for a couple of finishes – I seem to have rather a lot of projects which are taking several months (or years!!)
This is a BOM by Pat Sloan and Jane Davison, there are 100 6″ blocks, designed by 80 different designers, so lots of different styles and techniques. Pat released the first twenty blocks twice a week, then you had to buy the book for the rest of the patterns. Pat gives a huge number of free patterns, I’ve made four of her quilts, so I didn’t mind having to buy the book. Last time I shared this with you I’d made 30 blocks in total, I’m not making them all, I only want a throw size, not a double bed quilt.
I finally got myself organised and rather than flicking through the book trying to decide which one to make next, which wastes an awful lot of time, I started at the front and worked my way through…it worked, I’ve made another eight over the last couple of days.
The dark grey fabric behind is what I’m planning to sash them together with, I think it works pretty well.
When choosing which blocks to stitch I’m trying to select ones that mean something to me. The square on the left is called Match Point, it’s by Mary Honaker, it reminded me of cricket stumps and after the epic Ashes match at Headingley when even I got excited, and I don’t really do sport, I had to include it!
The star is probably one of the trickiest blocks I’ve done recently, mainly due to the tall triangles, I love the result though and I just quilted it simply with quilting in the ditch and an echo round the star too. It’s called Sparkling Star by Linda Nitzen. It looks great with the darker blue background. I love looking at the stars when I’m in the country, when we were in Bali last year it was Nyepi, part of the festival is the quiet day, no electricity for 24 hours, the hotel put the sunloungers out at night so we could star gaze, it was magical, watching shooting stars.
I wasn’t sure about ‘Happy Day’s by Chelsi Stratton at first, it’s two hearts and as she says “any day filled with fabric and quilting is a happy day”. It was a quick and easy block to make. I do find that blocks I’m not so mad about are the ones I do my best quilting on, I think possibly because there’s nothing to lose, so I go for it! I started off with the idea of stitching the three petals over the white block, intending to stitch a heart over the hearts, but the petals came out so well I carried on. I still had the mini border to quilt, so I just extended the petals. I love it, I think it’s one of my favourite blocks now!
The block on the right is called Grandma’s Abiding Faith, by Jill Shaulis, it shows the ‘Old Rugged Cross’ as her grandma had a very strong faith and used to play the organ. My mum’s faith is very important to her and she used to play the piano, so I thought I’d include this one.
Radio Waves is by Pat Sloan, it’s a nice simple design, I decided it could be all the paths we walk that intersect and cross over. Love is also by Pat, I wasn’t sure about it at first, I thought it might be a bit twee, but I decided to use blue and grey to represent the countryside I love in all weathers, sunshine and rain, though I do prefer the sunshine!! I used the same print in the two colourways. The applique is done with bondaweb and machine blanket stitch, I just meandered all over to quilt it.
Stars Above (below on the right!) is by Cath Hall, it’s paper pieced, I like paper piecing but it’s a lot more fiddly when you have to trace the patterns (four times!!) instead of just pressing print on the computer! I like how this one came out.
The block on the left is called ‘There’s always one!’, it’s by Jennifer Keltner, it made me laugh; when my daughter was 16 she went on a six week adventure training in Canada with the Army Cadets, we got regular photos from the leaders, as soon as I saw this photo I knew it would be Helen, as there’s always one!!
So altogether I’ve made 38 blocks so far, I laid them out on the floor to see how they looked, they’re in no particular order, the only one that stands out to me as needing changing is the one with a whiter sashing, the little house. I might manage to just trim that back and stitch a colour over the top. I like the little pop of darker blue, a new addition to the fabrics, I think I’ll try and include some in the remaining blocks. It’s not easy photographing so many, this is the best of about 20 photos with me stood on tip-toe!
I’m trying to decide whether to just do another four blocks, which would make it 42″ by 48″, or stick to my original plan of 49 blocks, which would be 48″ square but another eleven blocks. Fabric stocks may make the decision for me as I’m getting fairly low, not helped by the fact that I’m trying to back the blocks with the same fabric as the block sashing, so when it’s finished the back will be pretty too. Decisions!