Sewing in the new year!

I am working on a pieced quilt based on a triadic color scheme of red, blue and yellow (the primary colors) for the color book. Red is the dominant color in this quilt, with blue and yellow accents. My first attempt (last week) produced blocks that were not what I expected. Even Steve agreed that the test blocks did not look friendly. They weren't exactly bad, but they were not going to work in the book. What to do?

I slept on it and woke up New Year's day ready to begin again. I wish I could show you the blocks—both bad and good—but I can't. They will be in the book. I can show you the pile of scraps from both quilts…


The oldest scraps are on the right. The darkest reds and the truer blues did not make it into the new quilt. I replaced them with red prints that are more active and blues that lean to aqua.

The idea of 'primary colors' makes me think of crayons, little kids, and clowns. The pile of scraps reminds me of all these things but amazingly enough, the quilt does not. It is much quieter than you'd think, and it is very friendly!

In other news, Steve has been helping me with the quilts for this book too. He has been sewing down bindings (there will be more of that) and he's been basting quilts!

Steve-Basting copy

I have one more quilt top to make and then the machine quilting will begin—maybe next week!



12 thoughts on “Sewing in the new year!

  1. I just have to ask–did you ever get your box from UPS? Thanks for sharing your creative process. Cool that Steve helps! I’ve often thought my husband would be way better than me at cutting fabric. He’s pretty precise about measuring whereas I am easily annoyed with this part of the process😡


  2. Yes! I did get the box of books and we were able to ship them out yesterday. Now were waiting on three more boxes. Im not sure that UPS has caught up yet, but I hope they have.
    And, yes, husband-help is very nice indeed!


  3. Some quilts have already been quilted by Angela Walters but the rest Im quilting myself. I think there are 5 or 6, maybe 7 to do. I suspect that I will spend most of my time until mid-March chained to my Sweet Sixteen. There are worse things :-).


  4. I’m surprised that you would finish all the tops and then do the quilting all at once. I’m thinking that my arms would get tired or I’d run out of ideas and need a break. Heck, whatever works is fine with me. I’ll be looking forward to adding another book to my POC collection!
    As for husband help — some husbands are very talented. In fact, one of my co-workers’ husband quilts and she does not. But mine – he’s much better at putting up a design wall and commenting on my efforts. He’s very mechanical, but I wouldn’t trust him with my sewing machine. I do, however, trust him with a snowblower (which he’ll be using tonight to remove 15 or so inches of snow) and the lawn mower – and even a welding machine!! He can have his toys and I’ll have mine! Works much better in our house that way!


  5. Steve only binds and bastes. Beyond that he is not interested… except to add helpful comments :-). Gotta say, they are helpful!
    I hope you are warm and toasty inside. When I see the weather in Chicago and parts north, it makes me glad I live in Texas. Even when we have an ice storm its usually gone in a week. Or course, it does get hot in the summer!


  6. My sweet husband cut several tops for me almost 15 years ago and I am still getting them quilted. (I am a hand quilter). Things like new babies, weddings, nightgowns for two of my granddaughters, etc. seem to keep me from finishing my own projects! My husband is much better at cutting than I am, so it works out well. He will also help me baste the quilts on which I am working. He did try hand quilting, but didn’t care for it. However, he would love to learn machine quilting. What do you think? He has also machine stitched several small tops together that one of my quilting groups makes for charity.


  7. I think he might love machine quilting! Its a power tool and you know how men like a good power tool! He might really like a long arm if you have both the room and the money. Maybe you two should go to a big quilt show where several manufacturers will have their machines up and ready to try.


  8. Is Steve basting with thread? What method do you prefer..needle and thread or curved safety pins? I have seen straight pins used with “Pin Mors “. Not sure if I want to try that one! Excited to see your new book!


  9. Hi Vicki:
    Steve and I both thread baste using a long basting needle. I dont like the pins—either curved or straight.
    I use a cotton batting and have not had a problem with thread basting.


  10. Thank you, Becky. Interesting! I am assuming your thread basted quilts will be machine quilted…. Will you have a tutorial teaching your preferred method of thread basting….? Is it discussed in any of your books?…(I have most of them!)


  11. Weve talked about thread basting in some books—mostly the Piecing book—but we havent really written much about it. It would make a good video. Ill add it to the list and try to get to it once I get the color book finished.
    In general, I baste with a white or beige thread and a long basting needle. I take long stitches across the width of the quilt. Lines of stitches are spaced about 6 apart. Once the quilt if completely basted in one direction, I turn it and baste it lengthwise. When finished, there is a big grid of basted lines that hold the quilt sandwich together.
    When quilting, I snip the threads rather than sewing over them. I remove threads as they are no longer needed.
    This is a short description, but I hope it helps :-).


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.