News From the Studio, Episode 1706

Posted on February 20, 2019 by prairiemoonquilts in Studio News

This year, on Sunday afternoons, I’ve been trying to devote some time to “selfish sewing”. I seriously need to move some of my own projects along, so I’ve set aside a little bit of dedicated time to work on them each week.

In my efforts to purge and clean, I noticed that my orphan block drawer was too full to even get shut (as is the case with a lot of the bins, boxes, and drawers around here)! So I pulled it out, and sorted all the bits and pieces into 3 different piles. Yes, I actually have enough stuff in the drawer to make THREE orphan-block quilts (large ones). I started with the bright one first.

I’m doing it in four sections, so I divided up all the pieces and parts into four piles so I could evenly distribute them around the finished quilt. And then I put the first section up on my design wall:

Last weekend, I got the first section finished!

This coming weekend, I’ll lay out another section, and see how much further I can get. If ever I was gonna call a quilt ugly, this might be it, so it’s a good thing I always say, “There’s no such thing as an ugly quilt!”

I also dug out my Sew Sisters Bee quilts, and got the blocks sorted and reorganized, so I know what I’m doing with those. We did two rounds of Bee blocks, and all I did was collect — I made blocks for others in the Bee, but I didn’t actually work on my own quilts at all. (Which can also be said of two other Bees I’ve been involved in, which is why I try not to join in Bees anymore — uff!)

When it was my turn to request blocks, this is the pattern I chose:

It’s called Improv Herringbone, and it’s a free tutorial by Amy Garro at 13 Spools. I got seven blocks back from my Bee mates, and the rest is up to me, so I have several more blocks to make for this quilt. But they’re fun, and they’ll use up lots of scraps, so I’m using them as my leader/ender project for awhile.

In other news, all the activity in the studio has been going on over at The Life of Hazel Ilene. There are TWO new Quilt-Alongs starting very soon, so I’ve been super busy writing, planning, editing, etc., to get all the information ready on time. I’m excited about both of these new Quilt-Alongs!

I announced the Vintage Christmas Ornaments Quilt-Along over there yesterday, so if you want to make a Christmas-themed project with me this year, head over there and check it out.

There’s also a second Quilt-Along starting in early March that is based on the time period of World War II, and we’ll be making a quilt inspired by a quilt from 1943. I’m announcing the details for that one next week.

Oh, and I also posted a free pattern over there you can go download, so go check it all out so you don’t miss out on anything fun!

And to go along with all that, I’ve opened up a new Etsy shop called Hazel’s Mercantile, where I’ll have lots of items inspired by The Life of Hazel Ilene. You can read more about that HERE.

My boy, Stormy, likes to help me out in the studio, but he’s only allowed in for very brief periods of time because he gets a little too helpful. After he rearranged some piles on my cutting table, and knocked a bunch of stuff off in the floor, I was ready to give him a spankin’ the other day, but then . . . he’s just too cute to be mad at!

It’s still cold here, and we got another half-inch of ice on everything overnight last night. As the temperature rises, the ice is melting and falling off the roof, and as it crashes past the windows, it’s scaring the cats half to death, so they’re all in hiding today! It really does seem as if winter is never going to end this time. So depressing . . . so my solution is to go sew with bright colors to cheer myself up!

How’re things going in YOUR studio?

9 responses to “News From the Studio, Episode 1706”

  1. Wendy says:

    We’ve had another heavy snowfall, at least 6 inches, but I’m thinking closer to 8. Love those improv herringbone blocks!

  2. Marlene Clausen says:

    We are not so cold in Chattanooga and, thankfully, no snow and ice. But a whole string of sunless days and rain, rain, rain. So it is brights here too! Last week I happened t see a finished quilt of one of my very favorite traditional patterns and a light bulb lit like an LED spotlight. I suddenly say how to make it using charm packs and in wildly different colors for the main fabrics and background. Started sorting through all those packs and extras and loose charms and am 75% finished w/the blocks. I also came up w/two more variations and have the charms set out to do those. Am going to alternate with three baby quilts of my own design. Hoping to enter one of those in QuiltCon next year. Every blessed one of these six quilts are happy, happy summer colors!

  3. marianne says:

    my 22 month old granddaughter was in the studio..wide eyed!..for the first time yesterday while her daddy fixed a glitch in my computer: so I am restoring my cutter first and then am going to try and get things organized before the maid comes friday!

    I have given up on orphan blocks. I never have many and I am not promised tomorrow. I now send them to an on line friend in AZ. They make placemats for the seniors Christmas party and they get to take a placemat home. I like the idea of gifting seniors at this time of year as so many no longer have families etc. I was told that they arrive early and walk around to sit in front of the one they like best. Great mixer activity!

    They start with orphan blocks to make them, need about 200 this year…so…!! makes me feel good to have a subcontractor for my orphans. I would use them for donation items anyway. Now all I have to do is mail! Easy, peasy!

  4. Scarlett says:

    Shelly, your little helper is very cute! I am not sewing much lately. We are putting together my new longarm frame! Love the Improv Herringbone pattern and I am feeling the need to be scrappy…

  5. Shirley Guier says:

    Love your cat. My cat used to help me and would always just lay on my quilt. He always claimed all the quilts as his. When I was sewing clothes and using tissue paper patterns, I would have to lock my cat in the bathroom until everything was cut out. He was right in the middle attacking everything. I now miss them both.

  6. Rose Marie says:

    I think that quilt you called ugly is just about the right color and contrast recipe to please me very much. I love bright and lots of it.!!! Why make a red and green quilt if you can make it orange, red, yellow, aqua, pink, blue, chartreuse, forest green and maybe just a tad of gray or white. See how close that is to your quilt above.

  7. Randy Menninghaus says:

    Oh, glad to read your entry. I looked out the window and there are 6 inches to shovel and plowed before my 6 week doc appt. I may be able to do some weight bearing
    after today… hoping hoping hoping…..I do have an orphan box. I make an occasional baby quilt from them

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