Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Process of Stripping

I am beginning to identify that I like strip quilts, what I call strippies. I posted these yellow quilts before.
I luv Karla Alexander's stack the deck technique. I need the stimulation of surprises in my work. With stack, slice, shuffle and sew, randomness is a given. This is her version of stacked coins. Her method is a good lead in for doing purely improvisational piecing which can be intimidating when you first set aside your ruler for free wheeling cuts. At least I have found it to be rather stressful. lol

So with the first flush of success I made this more traditional strippy but with the blocks being in a more improvisational style, square in a square, and separated by a pieced sashing. The border is a repeat of the first quilt's style. The sashing was just pieces of all the leftovers. There are lots of things I'd improve but as a first improvisational quilt, I quite like it.
I actually do not like traditional quilts with their inner and outer borders. A lot of my quilts do not have borders. When row quilts began to become popular I immediately liked them. They are strippys with a horizontal orientation. When the Common Threads Quilt Group spent a year on trying border techniques I knew I'd be making mine into a row quilt. I also knew that I needed a fabric plan if I was going to avoid having a group of blocks that would be in the same project so I grabbed white as my light, greys as my medium and black as my dark. Then I added a multicoloured checkerboard to stabilise all the piecing. The binding will be the checkerboard as well. This top is ready for some body's baby!
I have one more quilt to show but it seems I have not photographed it before and this post is actually a stalling technique. I can't post my progress on the orange strippys because of a lack of batteries for the camera. oops! I wanted a small quilt for a chair throw and sewed lots of strips using all my pinky peaches. It uses short and long strips. I learned that when you sew strip after strip the sewn strips begin to smile at you. The fabric curls or curves. To counteract that you need to sew in opposite directions every few rows.
I am just thrilled with the Process. I am sticking with a quilt to the end. I am usually hot on the trail of another idea and have begun to stack another bunch of fabrics on the cutting table and books are all over the place. Then the older project gets piled into a tub while the new kid on the block runs all over the design wall. Gee, I may actually be growing up!
I'm learning the balance of forward planning and present projects. (I will need to deal with all those unfinished bright ideas from the past though) The sunshine room is still my focus. I'm getting my bunk sketch ready for our appointment with the cabinet maker. I am sewing the second quilt top and I have the backing fabrics loosely gathered. Then I'll figure how to do the circles. I have the fabrics picked for the next room's seasonal decorating project. Those may just sit in their tub as I want to do our room first. I'll stick with the spring season planning but summer's deco plans may be less precise as I head into all my dyeing plans which include stripping the old potting shed of its pots and paraphernalia and setting it up for dyeing.
Okay, it is time to really strip, hit the shower, and seize the day!


KatieQ said...

I really like the square in a square strippy quilt.
Black and white are definitely a favorite of mine. I like the way the multicolor check brighten your borders turned strip quilt. What a great idea to plan out a way to use the result of your border workshop.
I took a FMQ class in April and was incredibly disappointed. The supply list was huge and I didn't plan well with the practice pieces, so I have a lot of HUGE nine patch squares that I have to find something to do with. There was a woman in the class who monopolized the instructor's time with a lot of whining so we didn't get as far as planned and didn't use half of the "required supplies."
I hope your potting shed becomes the perfect place "to dye for." I wish I lived close enough to come play in it with you.

Twisted Quilts said...

I am not familiar with the stack the deck technique you mentioned. I love improvisational and making more quilts with that method is my goal this summer. I want to use things from my stash and I want it very random.

Yvonne said...

These are all great. I will hve to try that technique one day.