Tuesday, January 8, 2019

A Finish and an Annual Review

Still turning tops into quilts and this is the latest. Hooray. Simple parallel lines using the walking foot always make an effective design on Coins. 


Chinese Coins XI quilt
One of my irrational fears is that the seam will fray or rip. Stitching in the ditch is one way to assuage that, plus it helps stabilize the layers when quilting on a domestic machine. Then I stitch a "presser foot" away from the seam on each side and end by halving the remaining space until it looks right.


Parallel quilting on Chinese Coins XI quilt
I planned to quilt with blue thread until I looked at the back. It's all peach so a change of plan was in order.  There was just enough of the daisies on aqua fabric for binding. It makes a good contrast with the back while also blending with the front.


Binding and backing of Chinese Coins XI quilt
After a couple of days quilting, this one is ready to go.


Quilt Details
Size: 58" x 62"
Design: Chinese Coins
Batting: Mountain Mist Cream Rose 100% cotton
Thread: Peach Gutterman cotton
Quilting: Walking foot parallel lines

Previous posts:

  1. Using scraps
  2. Top sewn

2018 Review


Finding myself in an extremely prolific "quilt-'em'-up-and-move-'em-out" mode, it's difficult to stop and write a thoughtful post about the past year. One lazy excuse is that finished 2018 quilts already have their own page; however, reflecting on my previous goals versus results helped the last two years... although I seem to ignore goals at will. The tally? Seventeen quilts, one Christmas stocking, and one quilt repair. More were small. {Another goal met.} Nine baby, four toddler/lap size and four full size quilts. 


Looking back, this has been a year of Chinese Coins quilts. The overwhelming reason/excuse is the September workshop for my guild. Deadlines are always an incentive. Paying attention to fabric selection was a goal that is visible in these quilts. It is evident {to me at least} in the original fabric pulls as well as the many columns of colors. I enjoyed those first pulls and then sorting them by values, colors, or arranging them randomly.  


Eight finished quilts were Chinese Coin variations while four spun out of the Bars workshop. Only one was specifically for me. Two Coins are held for future workshops but everything else was gifted or is ready to be. 
Most of the Coin quilts have a similar arrangement as I worked through iterative examples of the class but a few explore some other ways to use Coins such as Medallions and Stacked Coins.  



Representative sample of 2018 finished quilts 

I drafted the Racetrack quilt and used templates for the Spiderweb but improvised the others. For me that means working in small units and pausing along the way to see what is needed for the next step. Repetition is important and usually some grid-like structures. While I admire wild piecing, it's not what I create. In fact, the past year is mostly one block designs. Scientific Pinwheels is the only one combining two blocks: Coins and pinwheels in two sizes. I think I'll expand my design choices a bit in 2019. 


About half of my 2018 plans were met: smaller quilts, simpler quilting designs, using scraps + recyclables + new fabrics, and paying attention to color selection. A couple of quilts have more details but that effort could be improved. So far, so good. 


On the other hand, none of the listed quilts was finished nor did I write the baseball quilt pattern. My idea was to post it through Craftsy. However, they've been sold and deleted many existing patterns/contributors so that doesn't seem viable. I'll have to find another way to publish - if I ever get it done. Any advice is welcome.


Overall last year's plans are things I want to continue. {Perhaps those WIPs will actually be finished this time around. Ha.} The Square Deal, which started from leftover Coins, is almost ready to be quilted. Considering how much I like borders, I've become lax/lazy with them... they are frequently missing and that needs to change.


Finally I purchased some clothing patterns and pulled out a few old ones. Finding clothes that fit my more casual lifestyle is difficult and this may be a solution. Ideally I would have clothes that fit in fabrics and colors I prefer. We'll see. 



2019 Plans
  1. Write it up: baseball quilt pattern.
  2. Keep them moving: quilt tops and finish several WIPs.
  3. Consider: borders, stars, and medallions. 
  4. Continue combinations: recycled + scraps + new fabrics; traditional + improvisation + original designs. 
  5. Sew some clothes.
Enjoy the day, Ann

28 comments:

  1. This latest coins quilt is so pretty! Congratulations on another finish. You were very productive in 2018 and have a solid plan for 2019 which is good.

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    1. Thanks, Patty. Having a plan is good even when I don’t stick with it.

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  2. One of my favorite things last year was watching you make your coins quilts. It was fascinating seeing how each variation spun off into another. Inspiring, as well!

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    1. How very kind of you, Gayle. I did enjoy the iterations and the class which inspired them but was a bit surprised to see so many Coins at the en did the year. I thought it must have made dull reading. You’ve eased my mind.

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  3. I really like the coin quilt - such wonderful colors. Your fabric selection is spectacular. You know you have had a good year when you can show a representative sample of the quilts you have made instead of having to show every single one. I like the spiderweb the best. Your plans look good. I wish you the best on them.

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    1. Thank you, Shasta. I’m enjoying choosing the colors and scraps for these quilts. That spiderweb turned out so well once I chose the right border. I will need luck to make clothes. It’s been a very long time.

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  4. I love your work and how your share your process.
    Blessings!

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    1. Thank you, Pam. I’m glad to know someone finds it interesting. Sometimes I worry I’m just garrulous.

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  5. clothing! I used to make all my clothes, til I gained a bit of weight (ahem)
    worthy goals, and reachable so you can check them off!

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    1. I made most of mine through high school. And a few after college. I think it would help me if things actually fit well. Now I need to kick myself to it.

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  6. It's fun to see all your coin quilts. Initially there seems to be only one way to make a coin quilt but you have stretched the limits and possibilities. I'm trying to finish up old projects and I'm finding that the colors I loved at the time I began a project are not necessarily what I like now. But, I'm determined to see them through. If I work on them long enough, maybe I'll fall in love again. I'd like to sew some clothes for myself too. Just think, a project you could start and finish in a single week - boggles my mind~

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    1. There are still some ideas about other Coins running through my mind. I have the same trouble with some of my older projects. Sometimes it helps to toss new fabrics on them and see what I can change up.
      The hardest part about these clothes is fitting the pattern. Sigh.

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  7. You have quite a series of Chinese Coins quilts! Each one is unique and very pleasing. You have a wonderful way of combining scraps, including enough lights, that the results don't look muddy.

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    1. There certainly are a lot of them. Thanks, Lee Anna.

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  8. Great finishes! I really like all the coins. When I was younger I sewed some of my clothes, but haven't in years.

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    1. I haven’t sewed clothes in a while. I need to try the patterns out for size. Better get busy.

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  9. I so love seeing your Chinese Coins series, so inspiring, and with this year being the Year of String Quilts in blogland I'm hoping to attempt a creation or two of these scrappy wonders. I love your ability to combine colors and patterns into such a pleasing whole.

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    1. Coons are a delightful variation of strings. I look forward to seeing yours.

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  10. About the pattern - you might touch base with Lynne of the Patchery Menagerie. Her tutorials are on Etsy and she's had good response there. And Sophie from Block Lotto uses Payhip, another viable outlet. Best wishes!!!

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  11. Cheers to a fabulous year of quilting ahead! I can't wait to see what spectacular quilts you create in 2019!

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  12. Thanks for describing how you do your straightline quilting--the space apart. I need to get better at that for sure. Love seeing some of your wonderful quilts. They always seem to have a lovely glow to them and I'm envious of how beautifully you use reds and turquoise to best effect.:)

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    1. I hope it helps. I've found that I like printed fabric so much and very little quilting shows up on it. As I age, my quilting is getting simpler. Wish I could hand quilt but it messes up my fingers.
      Your quilts glow. That's partly why we all like to read your blog. The other part is the fun designs you make.

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  13. A lovely selection of your 2018 quilts! And I too have enjoyed your journey making a great variety of coin quilts, inspiring!

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  14. It has definitely been a real delight to see your Chinese Coins with all the variations you came up with. Great plans for 2019!!

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  15. What a productive year you had! I've really enjoyed watching all your iterations of one basic quilt pattern and have learned from you along the way. Your plans for 2019 sound promising -I need a plan but can't gather my thoughts at the moment.

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  16. This last coins quilt is so pretty. I love that it's all coins and it works so well without strips. Those fabrics really play well with each other. I have been thinking that it's time for a "year in review" post but can't seem to get there. I think my crazy week is stunting my thought processes.

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Reading your comments is a pleasure. I usually reply here where everyone can join in to create great conversations.