Thursday, 11 August 2011

Wonky Strings Quilt

A week ago I attended my first meeting of the Caring Hearts Community Quilt Group. I was given some scrappy string blocks and asked to do something with them. I got the impression that no-one who was present likes making scrappy quilts.

That suits me fine - I'm enough of a novice for most things to be new and therefore interesting.

I am usually up for a challenge and I thought the blocks were salvageable so I brought home all twenty blocks, some wadding and some backing fabric. They were sewn onto foundations of calico or sheeting, most were not straight. Some had the shadow of the edge of the dark fabric showing through the light fabric (which would, of course, be less obvious once it was quilted and backed). Some needed some minor repairs (I hope my Nanna would be proud of me!)

DD and I have decided on a probable layout.

All the blocks have been quilted and cut to an regular size (9 1/2 inches).

I did make the novice mistake of cutting the blocks to a uniform size before quilting. This would be okay if I hadn't cut them to their final size! I may have to shave 1/4" (or even 1/2 inch) off all the blocks because some fabric disappeared in the quilting process but, again, nothing insurmountable!

DD and I are making these blocks in the quilt-as-you-go style. However, we have our own variation: we quilted the blocks so that some strips have dense quilting, some minimal quilting. I checked this with an experienced quilter (Hi S.; thanks for your help!) and it doesn't seem that it will be a problem. The reasons for this variation in quilting are:
  1. the quilting on the strip (as opposed to in the ditch) disguises the dark shadow
  2. both of us have come like the look of the parallel quilting we have seen lately
  3. it gives visual interest to what could be a very boring back (even though it is a variegated hand-dyed fabric)
Below are two photos of the only block that was perfectly made; I gave it DD to quilt: she's more of a perfectionist than me and doesn't tolerate  the kind of mistakes I do (if you can't see it from a metre - 40 inches - away, does it really matter?)

We both love this variation in quilting and find it visually and texturally interesting!
All the blocks are ready and waiting for some fabric for sashing and binding!

I have two choices: either I wait until the next meeting (1st September) to get some fabric from the store cupboard (which may or may not contain the "perfect" fabric) OR I go to the local Big Box Store and purchase (read "donate") the fabric I want to use!

What would you do?


  1. I really love these type of quilts, they caught my attention very early

  2. The blocks look great! I would say that since you have spent so much time and care in making the quilt look good, I would probably want to pick out the "perfect" fabric. But, are the chances good that there will be an "acceptable" fabric at your guild? And do you mind waiting that long to finish it?

  3. I would finish it now! No surprise !

    This string quilt looks so neat! glad you are enjoying it!

  4. It all depends on how much fun I was having and how flush I felt.

    It is looking great.

  5. They are beautiful Lynne! I'd love to hear more about your quilt-as-you-go method - I'm trying to decide how to do a quilt like that. PS thanks for the comment on my skirt and good luck getting through your blogs! :)

  6. I like scrappy quilts. A great way of using up and they always look great.

    If it were me, I think I'd be inclined to "donate" the sashing/binding fabric to get just what I wanted and to get it finished.


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