Sunday, July 16, 2017

Bag Quilts

I'm sure you all have a few of these.  Projects started and discarded, when the mojo ran out, that have been stored in a bag.  It gets moved from here to there to over there and back to here again.  Part of my commitment to myself and to my sewing room was to not "shelve" these bags, so they sat on the floor, lined up in front of my design wall.

The Batik bag actually made it's way to the "donate" bag.  Then I had someone come over and I offered to give them the batiks, which prompted a sift and search mission into the bag.  I quickly realized I needed to do this in private, called off the search and said I would bring them to our next stitch meeting.  The scraps got dumped onto my table and I realized that in with the scraps of fabric, I had stacks of blocks that were left overs from another project.
I sewed the blocks together, shopped for the stop border, then continued cutting and sewing the scraps into a string border.  I dug out one of Gwen Marstons books and set out to make the corner blocks.  I need a bit more practice to be really pleased with the results, but for a baby quilt, they turned out perfect. 
It has now been quilted, the binding is attached and just needs stitched to the back.  Yes, I still do this by hand, even for baby quilts.  It's my favorite part of making a quilt, the last time you get to sit and stitch on it, look at the fabrics, techniques, think about who is going to receive the quilt.....

 This was quilted using Silk batting by Hobbs.  First time for me, and since it's (hopefully) going to be well used, the quilting was quite dense, just in case the batting decides to react to the washing and use of the piece.
 Two left over chunks of cozy flannel were released from my stash, and voila, I now have a finished quilt to gift out and one less bag in my studio.  Sorry to my stitching buddy, I used up every last scrap of the batiks that were in this bag.

Bag #2  Yellows and greys from a previous project.  At some point I got the crazy idea (it might have come from Victoria at VFW Quilts) that I could sew all the bits and pieces together and "make" fabric.  Good grief, like I need to make my own; I've got baskets full of fabric made by perfectly good fabric mills!

 I started making some liberated stars out of this 'made' fabric. What was I thinking?  Oh, right, I wasn't thinking!

 Then the 'made' fabric became the star points, and then it all got dumped back into 'the bag'.

Here is the beginning of the sort.  Just trying to figure out what I had was a challenge and made me think a few times about putting this back into a bag, one that would head to the dumpster after it got filled up.  But I persevered.
 The funny thing about this was that the only fabrics I had in all my 24 bins was solid yellow or white on whites to mix into this pile of scraps.  I did not have one grey or printed yellow piece that I could add into this creation. Hmmm

The end result of this bag of scraps is this very cute and sunny Liberated Star quilt. It measures approx 36" x 42"  There is no rhyme or reason to this.  Blocks were made to 'fill in the spaces' and trust me when I say this is a One of a Kind.  I couldn't even replicate this if I tried.  And I won't.

 It needs a good pressing, but it's flat, straight, and square (rectangle) but you know what I mean.

 A few filler strips were added

Partial seams were my best friend when putting this all together.

 And some of the blocks are a very funky size.  That's the beauty of Liberated, you can work out those variables, and no one notices.  When this was all finished, I folded up the yellow solids, and the handful of scraps that was left, yes, handful, went into the garbage.

This last one I'm showing has been pieced, layered, basted and partially quilted.....for years.  I'm finally getting back to it as I've now got the sashing motif settled in my brain.  I do love a good sampler, and I think this one fits that bill.

Yes, it's slow going when you decide to tackle these long gone projects. We need the mojo, the excitement of the start, the something new. I do too, but I thought that if I kept moving and shelving these bags, they would never be used and that, my quilter friends, would be a shame. The batik one will be gifted as soon as the binding is done, maybe even tonight. (if I get away from the pc). So I challenge you, pull out just one of these bags, and poke away at it. The rewards are a finished piece, and more room on the shelf for the next abandoned shelved project.

Next post, boxed quilts..........
Keep stitching,


Robin said...

This was an inspirational post. I really admire you for making something out of your various scraps. I love the yellow and gray stars and I don't normally like yellow and gray together. It is really cheerful. Nice job!

Mimi said...

I absolutely love your yellow and gray one. The other ones are adorable, too. I know what you mean by "bag" quilts. Never thought of it that way before, but since retirement, I have been going through those bags and I can finally say that the "floor" in my sewing room can be seen again because I thought if I left them out to "bother" me, I would get to them. Time is what was needed all along and now that the floor is clear, projects are finished, I can now feel good about getting to those that are hidden in the cupboard and closet. Things are getting done along with a few new projects thrown in there, too. It's a good feeling. Maybe someday I won't have any projects that are waiting a long time and I will be only working on the latest and greatest quilt. Right now I can't imagine it, but I can see a huge dent since retirement. Keep up the good work.

Janet O. said...

This was a wonderful post. Loved the story about the batik quilt--love the quilt, too. It really is a beauty.
And the yellow stars are just so fun!
Though that sampler quilt is more what I might make, those first two quilts really captured my imagination. I need to think outside the box more often!

Kyle said...

You have met three bagged challenges and conjured those quilts. The yellow and grey one is so delightful. You definitely got your mojo going. Maybe some of it will rub off on me so I can tackle a few challenges too!

Carol C. said...

Thanks for sharing with us!! Your finishes are delightful! Love the batik quilt, and the yellow and gray stars are just so happy! How rewarding to have them finished!

Lori said...

WOW! Almost like "made" quilts! I never understood the "made" fabric- it's getting pieced. Just like those great quilts, Sharon! Way to go for being up to the challenge and making them lovely and fun quilts!

Karen said...

The yellow stars piqued my interest. Makes a nice variety of star blocks. Probably not something I would do as I have way too much fabric to be worrying about little pieces going together to create new fabric. But still a good idea if you have the want and the time.

Dondi M said...

Thank you! Now I am excited to get to work on a yellow and grey quilt that I have deserted. Your creations are so marvelous. I love your high level of creativity!