One step closer and a plug

/ Sunday 10 April 2011 /
I've taken one step closer to completing these giant Dresden plates that are part of Lynne's QAL.  The large circles are pieced into the yellow background, and the purple circles are pieced into the centre of the wheels.
I was a bit apprehensive about how that was going to work out, but it seemed to go pretty well.  More or less - I've got to be truthful and say that these large squares - 30" - are just as floppy as all get-out.  The technique that we're using for this QAL is quilt-as-you-go, so I'm hoping that the wonkiness can be beaten into submission in the quilting process.
I don't know if I would do Dresdens again with this method, but I am enjoying it pretty well this go-round.
Someone on Flickr said this photo looked like big, googly owl eyes - I completely agree!
Back view
My other project this weekend is quilting Miss March.  Do you remember this quilt?  It was pieced about a year ago, as my month in the Modern Tradition Quilt Bee, and I'm finally getting around to quilting it.  As it appears that spring may actually be here, it will soon be time to take the down duvet off the bed.  The quilts that we have been using on our own bed are showing their age, and I have always planned this one as a replacement.
Miss March
I'm branching out from the all-over loopy quilting that I usually do, and challenging myself to try something a bit different.  I'm doing a kind of flower motif on each of the blocks.
It's not perfect by any means, but I figured I need to break out of the rut and start to develop some better FMQ skills.  This quilt may not have been the very best to practice on, since it is so big and bulky, but those blank spots formed by the linen strips really called out for some kind of fancy-pants quilting.  And is it ever HEAVY!  That linen really weighs a ton.  And it is a bit stretchy, so that has been another quilting challenge.  Oh well.  As always, I place my faith in the magic of washing and drying to hide the multitude of sins.

Chasing Cottons

And now time for the plug: Rebecca over at Chasing Cottons is running a 12-week series called Quilt Class 101.  Rebecca is the designer of some great patterns, including the one I used to make I Dream of Ogeenie.  She is a very enthusiastic and supportive, and if any of my readers are new to quilting, I think this would be a good series of blog posts to keep track of and follow along.  She's also having lots of giveaways because she has some great sponsors.  Rebecca is very enthusiastic and supportive, and I think her program is going to be a lot of fun.    I'm going to be following along, since there are always new tips to learn!  I'm a bit late in posting this, so get over there right now and sneak in under the wire for the Week 1 giveaway.
The structure of the series is as follows:

Week 1 - Fabric - Choosing fabric, fabric designers, fabric bundles, Fat Quarters, jelly Rolls etc, Where to buy fabric locally or online overseas, shipping costs.. My favourite online shops etc.
Week 2 - Design - 'Sew as you go' OR the Designer - Using a graph book and planning, no rules.. Books/ blogs/ flickr... all the online sources or inspiration..
Week 3 - Cutting - Tools I use, how to cut your material properly, to wash or not to wash, incorporating seam allowances etc.
Week 4 - Sewing - Your machine, threads, needles, 1/4" foot, seam allowances, joinging seams accurately, pins, 
Week 5 - Constructing your Quilt Top - sections etc
Week 6 - Borders - adding borders the correct way, 
Week 7 - Batting - The different types and what each one is used for..
Week 8 - Basteing - how to Baste your quilt, spray? Pins? Types of pins? Tape etc..
Week 9 - Quilting by machine - Straight line Quilting, using a guide, free motion quilting, stitching in the ditch etc..
Week 10 - Quilting by hand - Cottons to use, technique, needles, hoops...
Week 11 - Binding - By machine or by hand.. or both.
Week 12 - Quilt block techniques.... This last tutorial will prob run over another 6 week period where i will teach the basics to make various  traditional and modern quilt blocks. Sewing curves, 9 Patch, Star/ diamonds, Stack and Slash, Raw edge applique, Needle turn applique, paper piecing, log cabin, spiderblock, 1/2 square triangle etc... 


{ Go-Go Kim } on: 10 April 2011 at 09:39 said...

Beautiful quilts! I cannot wait to see them completed :o)

{ Leanne } on: 10 April 2011 at 10:22 said...

I love your big dresden blockss and especially your photos of them! And I remember seeing the blocks being made for your quilt, it will look great on your bed I love the colours and the linen with that block.

{ MariQuilts } on: 10 April 2011 at 10:22 said...

Love your dresdens....I saw them on Lynne's flickr site but didn't realize they were yours. You've used such gorgeous colours. Love your other quilt too.

{ tusen } on: 10 April 2011 at 11:13 said...

The dresdens look great and you have a wonderful place to display your works.
And thanks for the tip about Quilt Class 101.

{ Shevvy } on: 10 April 2011 at 12:33 said...

I'm really looking forward to the QAYG bit. Have you decided how you are going to quilt?

I love Miss March and your FMQ looks very good to me.

{ elle } on: 10 April 2011 at 18:02 said...

The flower is just the thing, Lesly. Great job!

{ Lindsay } on: 10 April 2011 at 19:54 said...

WOW those giant blocks are beautiful and the flower quilting looks really impressive!!

{ Prof. S (the enchanted bobbin) } on: 12 April 2011 at 17:11 said...

I love the flower FMQ you're doing on the linen! I'm trying to break out of a stippling mini-rut myself, so this is great inspiration.

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