I started this project with no plan in mind other than to put scrap strips together log cabin style. I chain piece starting with the smallest strip and work my way through about six blocks at a time.. until I get tired of sewing and then I square each block up. None of the scraps are equal in width, so some blocks have more strips around than others. Also, I don't follow a light/dark patterning. What to do with them once they are squared?
I could put them together to create a mishmash. That didn't appeal to me.
I could stick them into my parts department box. (The parts department is a concept I learned from Gwen Marston and Freddy Moran. In preparing for their collaborative quilting projects, they made various block pieces ahead of time, not knowing just how they would use them. The idea was to provide time efficiency when they got together to make the quilts.) I really wanted to make something with my scraps and not have them sitting around in a box waiting for an idea. I dug into my parts department box and found 10 more similarly pieced blocks waiting. With 16 log-cabinish squares available I had to do something.
I decided to feature each block separately, so I turned each on point and surrounded them with strips of text prints and other neutrals. These strips were sewn to the blocks in a log cabin fashion. But, after three rounds of text I realized that the center blocks (measuring six inches square) were getting lost. By now I had decided that the finished block would be 20" square.
|First rendition of the 20 " blocks|
|trying out the scrappy strips|
Once the colorful strips were sewn on I had to come up with a way to deal with the corner triangles.
I sewed three rows of rectangles for each corner. Then I took my 20.5" square ruler and laid it on the block, lining up the centering lines with the corners of the central blocks. This showed me where to trim the color strips and where to mark the midpoint of each side. Once the big block was trimmed and marked, I matched it to the midpoint of the strips that would make the corner triangles.
|The faint white lines show the centering lines I used to trim the block|
|trimmed and ready for corners.|
|Pins show matching midpoints|
|ready for trimming|
|one block 20.5" x 20.5"|
When I tried sewing these blocks together, I found too many discrepancies. The ruler had slipped while I was trimming. Consequently, some were smaller than the others, never by much but enough to skew everything. Another problem to solve.
Cornerstones and sashing were added all around and it worked to add another dimension to the quilt and to disguise any mistakes.
|The final version|
By this time, I had a name for the quilt. When I was little, the local paper published the funnies in color. That was a big deal. The scraps of color and the text and gray reminded me of that... hence, The Sunday Paper - printed with lots of help from the parts department.