Thursday, May 15, 2014

Stash Bee Hive #12 blocks

2014 is a year of changes for me.  New beginnings.  
  • Moving from Princeton, NJ back to Santa Cruz, CA
  • Abandoning my academic astronomy career (10 years in the making!) to do something new
  • Making some online quilty friends
That last one is the most important, right?  

In service of which, I started this blog, which no one reads (yet).  And decided to do some quilt-alongs (including two Catvent quilt tops which still need to be made into quilts, and Sew Lux Fabrics' Medallion Border of the Month where I'm still working on the January border), so nothing much to show for myself.  

And, and, AND... I joined the Stash Bee.  More success there, in that I have been finishing my blocks, mostly on time.  Still working on the convert-bee-mates-into-friends part of the equation.  :-)  

So, in reverse order...

May blocks for Heather at Bobbins & Bullets.  She asked for a Square Dance block in grey and aqua, but then realized that technically, she was only allowed to ask for 1/4 of a Square Dance block.  

I like paper piecing, and didn't want her to be sad and thwarted... I made four quarters so that she'll have a full Square Dance's worth of block from me.  

Fun, right?  Finished those last night, should have them in the mail tomorrow.

Moving back in time, Aprils' simplified Dresden block for Michele:

This block was much easier than I'd feared, but I didn't have it in me to make more than one.  The blue fabric with hearts is a scrap from my mom's stash, given to her in the 1970's by the woman who taught her to quilt.  To make up for my one-block lameness, I also made her a cute patchwork pincushion.  It was my first ever pincushion, and a bit lumpy, but hopefully she'll stick it full of pins and the lumps won't matter.

In March, it was an Arizona block in orange and aqua for Jennifer.  In February, a number of our bee-mates had (intentionally or not) swapped around a few pieces of Cheryl's simplified Swoon block.  I looked at that and though, "How fun!  That'll make an even more interesting quilt!"  And then I remembered this quilt by the Littlest Thistle, and the Gen X Vice Versa BOM, and I had to make two blocks: one "correct" Arizona block, and one inverted.  Except when I laid out the "correct" one, I didn't like the combination of fabrics (too many lights, not emphatic enough), so I split up the lights and wound up making three blocks.

The "correct" blocks are fine, but I *LOVE* the inverted block.  I now totally want to make a whole quilt with this inverted block.  It also somehow feels even more "Arizona" to me.

Not sure if Jennifer will use it in her quilt, but since I sent her two real ones as well, I figure she won't complain!

Moving along (backward?) we had February's simplified Swoon for Cheryl.  She chose colors that were really hard for me: purple and grey.  I like them both individually, but together they just felt 'blah' (no offense, Cheryl).  But I couldn't make or send a block I thought was 'blah', so I just had to keep looking until I found fabrics I could like for this one.  I'm pretty happy with how it turned out:

I *LOVE* how the Alison Glass "Bike Path" fabric looks radiating out from the center (more on that in another post someday...).  

And after ransacking my stash, I could only find one thing I liked for the center: a piece of Liberty Tana Lawn from a gorgeous scrap pack my British in-laws got me for Christmas.  So in it went.  Not because I'm generous (I would happily have kept it all to myself!) but because it was the only thing that I liked there.  And I couldn't make or send a block I didn't like (see above).  

And finally, a very simple paper-pieced block in January for Heather at Quilts in the Queue:

She's using them to finish up a quilt with lots of much fancier stars---what a clever idea for a bee!  And a nice way to ease into the new year, and my first bee.

Hooray for 2014!  At some point, I'll have to decide what I'm going to ask for in my month...


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