Monday Memory – Take One

I am going to try to feature a quilt from my “past” every Monday.  So many are worth seeing again.  This one is Rambling Rose meets Jamestown and was a Block of the Month featured by Sew n Sew, one of our local quilt shops.  The pattern is by Marti Michell.   It was beautifully pieced by Joanne P.  I quilted feathers in the light areas of the log cabin blocks, used a stencil in the sampler blocks to give them unity.   In the dark parts of the log cabin I freehanded a motif from the stencil and added swirls.
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Sisters’ Choice ala Betsy

Every year or so the Sew’n Sisters work on a joint/mutual project.  A couple of years ago we decided to make Sisters’ Choice blocks and do a block exchange.  We cut lots and lots of 2 1/2″ strips from each of our stashes and tossed them all in a big plastic tub.  We found a white background that we all liked and cut strips of that also.  Then once a month or sometimes more often we would dive into the plastic tub – select two strips that we liked together – and start cutting and sewing.  After about a year – maybe a bit less – we decided we had enough blocks made.  So we put them all out in a pile and started choosing.  That way each of us had blocks made by each and every sister in our quilt.

Next we had to choose a setting and start putting out quilt tops together.  Frances was the first to be finished – is anyone surprised about that?  Frances is FOCUS with a capital F and she keeps at a project till she “gets ‘er done.”  You can see Frances’ finished top and how I quilted it here.  Hers was finished in November of 2011.  The other Sisters have been very distracted.  Me by quilting for lots of customers, Betsy by weddings and babies in her family, and Sheila – well if I had to name all the major life changes that gal has been through in the past two years I would need another page.  All good but her life has been a very big whirlwind and much piecing/sewing got put on the back burner.  But her top is done and I can’t wait to get it quilted.

I was the second one finished but mine is yet to be quilted.  Betsy was the third – she had to make a lot of setting blocks and then cut those blocks and add them to the Sisters’ Choice blocks.  Lots of work.  Well worth it as you will see from the photos.

I used two different quilting stencils for the setting blocks and the Sisters’ Choice blocks plus some freehand continuous curves in the star points of the Sisters’ Choice blocks.  In the setting blocks I also echoed around the outside of the stencil and I added continuous curves in the centers of both the setting and the Sisters’ Choice blocks. The background has straight lines and pebbling.  I used Superior’s Sew Fine thread on top and pre-wound Bottom Line in the bobbin.

The back is just wonderful – I love it when the back looks as good as if not better than the front.

Hopefully I will have Sheila’s and my own quilted within the next few months.  We want to display them together at our next quilt show.

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I love Betsy’s setting around the Sisters’ Choice blocks and the on point.  Where the blocks come together it makes a new block/secondary pattern.  This is the scrappiest quilt that Betsy has done – she was not sure about this the entire time we were working on it.  But I think she is very happy with the final product.

Wiawaka Whig Rose

A very long time ago….I think August of 2006 or 2007, my friend Janice and I traveled to Lake George in upstate NY to a quilting retreat hosted by Anita Shackelford at Wiawaka Holiday Retreat House.  This is a historic place built in the late 1800s to serve as a vacation place for girls who worked in the garment industry.  It was rustic and beautiful.  While there we worked on Whig Rose blocks.  All hand applique.  These are very big blocks – about 20″ each. I worked diligently on my first one and then slowed down a LOT on my second one.  I just finished it last Sunday.  I want to make four blocks – each one different – and then do some piecing – either sashing or setting blocks or both – to pull it all together into a large wallhanging.

I love the fabrics I used – very nontraditional and I fussy cut all the green so that the paisley motifs would show up in all of the leaves.

So tomorrow I’m going to prep and lay out Block Three and see if I can get it done in a couple of months instead of many years!!  If I just stitch for an hour every night that will be doable.  Less Words with Friends, more stitching!

Which block do you like the best?  I like them both but think the block on the right has a more pleasing design.  I like the stems coming from between the big leaves better than out from the big leaves – but Whig Roses can be done either way.  One set of stems in the left hand block needs to have more curve to them but I’m sure not unstitching all that tiny hand applique stitching.

Whig rose 2 blocks