Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Milan Views

Hands down, one of the best things about putting a pattern out into blogland is seeing what others do with it. So when Milan blocks started showing up, you can bet I was paying attention!

I asked some of the Summer Sampler participants if I could share their version of the Milan block. 

Just look at their color choices.... how they tweaked the placement or added a bit of the unexpected.

Seeing them make Milan their own is just so gratifying.

So we're on to a new block this week, but I couldn't resist sharing some of the fun we're having on the Summer Sampler Road Trip!

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Very Slow Sewing

Keeping true to my word, today I'm sharing progress on my Teeny Tiny Trip Around the World. After June's road trip sewing, things have slowed down a bit. I was gung-ho for a couple of weeks (thank goodness!) but then plain let it sit due to other demands.

Pressing it last night actually made me really happy, and I'm hoping to make time for it again. I bought I few more Karen Lewis prints since I'd run out of what I started with, so let's take that as a sign that the end is not yet in sight. Once this round is done, it'll measure 28" square.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Window on Improv

Some much-needed improvisational piecing last week led right to this little quilt. I was playing around with curvy lines, having pulled a haphazardly chosen palette of solids from the ole stash, and somewhere along the line I reached back in to see what could add some interest and came out with what is now one of my favorite Carolyn Friedlander prints. I really like how it seems to pull everything together, and adds a bit of playfulness.

Since that went so well, I chose another Gleaned print to frame all the curves. Love how the design in the fabric changes near the edges. Love that alot!

All along, though I didn't know how I was getting there at first, I knew the end result would be a type of window. The dark solid that I used for the background in addition to the improv piecing is Kona Raisin and I am quite the fan. I find it to be very rich-looking and I think I've decided it's good to always have a couple of yards on hand.

When it came time for quilting, I opted for some organic straight-line to echo the movement of the piecing. I actually went to the fabric store for thread and the best match was Cotton+Steel #753-1078, a medium orange. I used it to densely quilt the frame as well.

And then. I tried a bit of an experiment and did some ghost-quilting in the space below the frame. With any luck, it somewhat mirrors the quilting above, making a four-paned window. Do you see it?

I used Aurifil 50 wt #4030 [plum] for those bottom panes, and went on to quilt straight lines in the background to give the look of siding on a house. The quilt finished at 36 1/2" x 42", and though decidedly quirky, the notion of looking into a window onto some serendipitous improv really appeals to me. It's kinda what I feel every time I walk to my cutting table with my rotary cutter and no real plan in mind. This piece, for me, recounts a time and place and frame of mind that I keep coming back to. And I hope to go there again soon.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Summer Sampler 2018 :: Milan

When hubby and I went to Italy for our 35th anniversary, we really only went to Milan to get home. It was the closest hub at the end of our trip, and it was just a couple of nights, but it turned out to be an enjoyable last stop.

One of the sights we saw was the Milan Cathedral [aka Duomo di Milano], which apparently is the fourth largest church in the world. Now we've been in alot of cathedrals, but never have we been on the roof! Yes, at Milan's cathedral, you can go up on the roof to walk among the spires.

And it was from that vantage point that I got my inspiration for Milan, this week's Summer Sampler block.

Milan offers a break from paper-piecing, and while not a tricky block, the intertwined border surrounding the center 'plus'  requires some careful pinning. So be attentive to matching seams, and you'll be good to go.

It's fun to see where all we've traveled with the Summer Sampler, and I'm really looking forward to seeing how everyone's Milan block fits in with their others!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Summer Sampler 2018 :: Under the Eiffel Tower

Oh yes! Wouldn't it be great to be under the Eiffel Tower right now, looking up to see the view Rebecca/Bryan House Quilts saw? Indeed. Besides the fact that Paris is a place I'd really like to travel to some day, Rebecca's block is one of my favorites so far. It had some simple curves and the easiest sort of paper-piecing, and I just find it so striking.

It's hard to believe next week we'll be two-thirds of the way through the Summer Sampler! I've been enjoying it SO much!