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Happiness is …

avoidance. For awhile. Real happiness is putting an end to procrastination. I blocked my first quilt (Migration) yesterday and was surprised that the t-pins did not leave holes. The top and bottom are still a little wavy, but overall, the quilt is now square and flat and will hang on the wall more nicely. I had planned to send this quilt to Wisconsin for the Modern Mini Quilt Challenge at Quilt Expo, but after reading the rules, it was not eligible, having been already displayed in public. Rats.
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Less is More is drying. I really had to tug on it to square it up–the drawback of matchstick quilting. Next time I will make sure the design does not go to the edges and that I do more initial stitching to prevent so much warping. I am going to face the edges and then email a photo/s to be juried for a modern quilt display at Houston International (deadline June 22) if it turns out.
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Speaking of procrastinating, I still haven’t contacted Janome about my needle bar not staying centered. In the meantime, I decided to finish this donation quilt with straight-line stitching in the borders (instead of free-motion) and darned if the needle bar didn’t center itself after engaging the dual feed device–I guess it didn’t have any choice.  Happiness is also a new pair of Machingers quilting gloves.
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I finally hung Elefantino in my studio next to Mini-Tumbler (no fabric repeats, with scalloped border), a 2012 swap with Mini-Masterpiecers
P1120828Till next time–

 

Less is More

THE LESS IS MORE QUILT. In a previous post, I talked about one of the reasons you have unfinished projects: you’re working on one project but then have a deadline, drop project #1 and finish project #2. So, I dropped everything to make this quilt. My last #doonething in March was to cut out 96 squares, make 48 half-square triangles, and piece the top for a quilt I wanted to enter in the NWA Modern Quilt show (our first). The quilt was juried in but 20 minutes of quilting a day didn’t get it finished in time. I found this wonderful neutral fat-quarter bundle online and it was more than enough fabric for what I needed. 

I like to wash my fabric in order to remove the chemicals. I also think it is easier to cut once the sizing is gone, and it doesn’t make me sneeze and wheeze. The fat quarters did get a little wrinkled and only one piece was cut off-grain but I managed to cut four 8-1/2 inch squares from each. Squares laid out in random order.

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Pairs of squares for half-square triangles.

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I marked the 8-1/2 inch mark with a piece of Master Piece Static Stickers (it comes in 8-1/2×11 sheets). I cannot find this product online; instead, you can mark your cutting line with a piece of masking tape, such as the blue or green painter’s tapes.

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Less is More, before quilting.

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Some straight-line quilting–I started by echoing around the brown arrows.

 

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I was going to add a small border in order to keep the brown points but opted not to. Matchstick quilting can shrink and warp your project quite a bit, and I learned a lot from this project. I stitched around the brown less than/more than signs before starting quilting, but should have stitched in every seam to prevent distortion. I have no idea if I’ll lose the points when I square this up. Draft of my label:

Less is More

Original design using mathematical symbols (less than/more than) to express the phrase, “less is more,”  meaning that a minimalist approach to artistic or aesthetic matters is more effective. Phrase made famous by architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, but used before that in a Robert Browning poem, “Andrea del Sarto.”

‘Well, less is more, Lucrezia: I am judged.’

Kona fabrics, Superior King Tut (variegated neutral) and YLI (earth with black and red) threads. Machine  pieced and straight-line quilted on Janome 6600P.

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I often weave thread ends in as I go, but I wanted to spend the time at my machine finishing the quilting. Instead I wove in ends while binge-watching Death in Paradise on Netflix from the comfort of my recliner. Is binge-watching a hobby or a sickness? I have watched Midsomer Murders at least five times, mostly while piecing. I’m still not sure if I need to block this quilt–will have to consult with my blocking guru, Karen K. I’ll post the finished quilt as soon as it’s, er, finished.

TIP OF THE DAY: When marking fabric, place a piece of sandpaper underneath so the fabric doesn’t stretch or move. Use what ever you have; 400-grit is grit enough.

Next post, my Elefantino quilt.

HUMOUR FOR THE WEEK.