Thursday, October 30, 2014

Binding the Supernova Quilt

Well, it's all but done, now and I am super-excited!

I'm stitching down the binding and I used all the bright colors I had left-over from the blocks so it sparkles and flickers all the way around the edge.

I think the quilting design in the background helps anchor the overall explosion and the wavy lines in the diagonal arms moves the eye so it never settles in one place.

BTW, all those rock and pebbles take forever to machine stitch...... this was quilted on a Tin Lizzie with no stitch regulator or computer-aid. So it was a long slow slog but so much fun to wander around with. 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Decisions, Decisions - Supernova Friendship Swap

Now that the final Supernova Friendship Quilt quilt-top is complete, I turn my attention to the backing and quilting motifs and try to decide how I would like to see this lovely creature look at the end of the project.

Here are the added borders:

I decided not to use the original darker smoke grey fabric for the extensions along the border but rather go with more color from the blocks themselves. As I suspected, it leaves a less unified result but I want to expose more color.

The nine blocks (out of 11) I chose to use have a more scattered effect owing to neither of us knowing what the other was going to use each month. We relied on the original photograph

for consultation and my partner also tossed in batiks for good measure. It was always thrilling to receive a package because hers were delightfully modern and unpredictable!

(Aside-  Now when I stop and look at that photo and the colors I chose to use once more, I realize that I completely left off the green tones! Interesting!)

In my first blogpost, I wrote that Kim had sent the raspberry block (right) and decided to withdraw it and replace it with another block.

She had been waiting for a shipment of Cotton + Steel fabrics at her LQS. Once they had arrived, she got busy and sent both the replacement and the next month's block together. She also sent me a selection of fat quarters so I started adding a little of them in my remaining blocks.

A week ago, I received her final blocks and quickly threw them all up on the design wall and started playing with them. As, I wrote, I had 2 additional  blocks left over and wanted them to be a part of the quilt so I pieced them into the backing.

  I chose a Kate Spain fabric from her Honey Honey collection for the backing as I had also used it in several of the blocks. I love her fabric designs and the cotton is so soft. Thank you, Moda!!!!!

Here is the backing on my Tin Lizzie frame, all ready to rock!

 Now, for the real work to begin! How do quilt this Modern quilt design?

I have been pawing at the modern quilt edges for a couple of years now and get great ideas form Angela Waters and Pinterest. Up til now, I have focussed on getting better at feathering and McTavishing but for Supernova, I really wanted something that would accentuate the explosive quality of the block design itself.

I also want to use modern quilting motifs so in the grey open (negative) spaces, I am using pebbles to make the background recede. This is going to take quite a long time.

So, you can see pebbles in the background negative spaces, wavy lines on the diagonal arms and vines and leaves on the axis'.

Still to decide are the 9-patch squares... I am uncertain at this point what I will be doing. I have a few ideas but am unsettled on all of them. Hoping I get a flash of inspiration in my sleep!

To see another finished quilt, click here to go to Late-Night Quilter.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Supernova Catch Up

OK, it's been a few months since I wrote my first post about the Supernova Quilt Block Swap project. Good reasons for that.

1. My daughter got married at the end of August and gearing up for this event took me away from the quilt room at times. But I did finish the wedding quilt in time. The groom (right) and his brother are holding it up for the photographer (bride). I love Kaffe Fassett fabrics and the Quick Curve Ruler makes the Double Wedding Ring pattern a  breeze!

2. My partner's daughter graduated and went off to college, which took her away from her quilt room as well.
3. I have been working on projects for the store where I work and Soldier Quilts. We are trying to raise 168 quilts to be given to our National Guard Unit here in Louisiana.

But, Kim and I are back at work on our blocks and are now sprinting towards a strong finish.

Here are four blocks at play!

And six blocks gathered.

At this point in time, we got together and discussed the final two blocks because they were integral to the look as a whole and decided to send each other both of those blocks so we could see what was happening and make changes, if necessary.

Being flexible and adaptive is important, I think, because when all is said and done, you want the finished product to be as strong as it can be. Sandra, Stephanie's partner in this Supernova Friendship Swap, writes here about remaking an entire block as she was unhappy with the first one.

So after I received Kim's last two blocks last week, I started messing around with layouts. Here are 2 versions, the first with nine out of 10 blocks.

This one I liked with the orange in the N, S, E and W positions but I was unhappy with the exact locations.

This one has the blue-centric blocks in N, S, E and W positions but the center block (the 10th) was not playing nice with the others and no matter where I positioned it, I had the same unease result. SO, this block will be added to the backing and quilted in.

Here is the final layout I will be going with.

 Now, in fairness to the color in the blocks, ..... the room where I work, and these photos are being taken, has a yellowish tinge from the overhead light so this is not a true representation of the color palette. I have to piece the quilt together and get it outside in natural lighting for a better view.

Ah ah ah.... not so fast, sister! What about the outer border?

When Kim and I were deciding on our color palette, we settled on a soft grey for the background and a darker smoke grey solid for the 'connector' segments. But that was then and this is now and I really think I want to use more of the blues and oranges, instead. I think it will move the explosions further outward and make the dramatic effect more, well, effective.

Questions, we get questions!

Two of the last questions posed to us was 1. what are some of our favorite memories and 2. unexpected blessings.

The second was easy for me because I believe have been extraordinarily blessed, from genetics to marriage to location. I have so much to be grateful for and I thank God I am alive here and now everyday.

The first one caught me off-guard. Not because I don't have good memories; quite the opposite! Surely, anyone with enormous blessings in life should also have had some pretty good memories back there, too. The problem was the overwhelming sensations of sorrow for the loss of the people in those memories. The floodgates of tears came rushing over me which, at times, can be cathartic. This time, it was more bitter than sweet because of the release of emotions of what I can't get back but also what was happening with my daughter marrying and moving far away.

Anyway, it was nice to acknowledge the memories and share them with someone completely unfamiliar with my history. I hope to meet Kim one day in person!

One of the things I find funny is how similar Kim and I are. Our grandmothers taught us to crochet at very early ages, we both make jelly from black berries and raspberries, we like to to shoot guns, and we both 'marvel' at the fact our husbands married us!

Kim is far more creative than I, however. She takes the time to hand write her answers while I whack them out on the computer!

While I don't know it for a fact, I'd wager she is (FAR) more organized than I am and this is something I (should) aspire to. Maybe this will be a New Years Resolution!