Friday, October 23, 2020

WIP: It's A Hoot! Quilt Top

This is easily the longest standing work in progress I have or have, particularly after finishing some of my other super old projects. I purchased everything for this quilt back in (I believe) 2012. I had just got back into sewing and saw these fantastic quilts other people were making and felt inspired. I just knew I was going to love quilt making! I fell in love with the backing fabric and bought all the other fabrics at the same time and planned for a disappearing 9 patch quilt top. I brought it all home, started cutting fabrics... and got bored. Some time later when I picked it up again, I started sewing some of the blocks together since cutting squares was so boring... and I got bored with that. This project sat in a bag for years at a time with no attention whatsoever, being moved from place to place, unloved. A few years ago I picked it up determined to finally finish this project, but I hated the order I had sewn the squares together since my favorite fabrics would be spliced beyond recognition. I had 17 blocks sewn that I had to unpick and rearrange - and I had sewn them with a 1mm seam allowance. The horror! It was a nightmare to unpick, seriously. Anyway, back in April while I was on lock down, I decided to finally just keep working on this even if it bored me. Knowing what I know about sewing now verses 8 years ago, this went much faster than it had before, and I sewed the blocks with a normal seam allowance :)
For a disappearing 9 patch, you cut your desired square size (mine was 5") and sew them together in blocks of 9. Then you cut the blocks down the center horizontally and vertically to make 4 smaller blocks from the 1 bigger block. Then you rotate those 4 pieces and put them together in different combinations and sew them back together. It's quite the process, and honestly sewing all those straight lines, then stopping to press so frequently, was super boring to me. I am definitely not a quilt piece-er. 

But once I got my blocks officially sewn together, I was extremely happy :)

I brought all my completed blocks to our open showroom floor at work while we were closed to lay it all out and decide what to do from there (my kids thought this was super fun, can you tell?). Originally I didn't plan on adding anything in between the blocks, but with all the crazy fabrics I chose I felt it needed something to break up the visual cacophony of the blocks so you could focus on the fabrics themselves. So once The Sewing Studio in Maitland was open again - I think in June? - my mom and I made a pilgrimage with my stack of blocks and my backing fabric. 
I tried all kinds of different fabrics between the blocks - several different colors, some with patterns, some plain - but in the end the best was Parisian Blue from Art Gallery Fabrics cotton solids. It's just a nice blue that is present in some of the block fabrics but not super prominent, and it was a blue that went well with my wall color of my bedroom. Sadly, The Sewing Studio only had 1.3 yards on hand, which was enough to connect 3 of the 5 rows I had to do. Because of all the covid closures, they didn't know when they would be able to get more of that fabric, so I searched online and was able to find it at a great price from Sew Much Online. They got my fabric to me about a week later and I was able to finish the whole top:
I'm super happy with how this turned out :) I think it looks cute on my bed - it's a great size and the fabrics just make me happy. It's a good thing I ordered extra of the Parisian Blue fabric too because I will use some to piece the backing.
This is the backing fabric - my original inspiration for this quilt. It's called It's a Hoot! (thus I have named my quilt project). This was on clearance when I bought it, so they only had about 3 yards. I need it to be wider and longer than the piece, so my plan is to cut the piece in quarters and piece together with my blue and remaining fabrics from the top. Sadly, I haven't worked on this since June just because I haven't been in the mood and I have to make a plan first. Oh well. I'm still very excited that I got the top finished and even just writing this post has made me feel more like finishing it up, so maybe I'll go on a sewing spurt soon and complete it. We shall see. 

Once I have the back pieced together, I plan on quilting this myself. I'm trying to decide between just diagonal lines or wavy lines, but it will be something simple since I've never done quilting on anything larger than an oven mitt before. Should be interesting, lol. But I like the idea of being able to say that I made my first quilt entirely by myself. So even though I don't think I will become "a quilter", I'm super proud of this project and I know I will really enjoy the finished project for years to come.

Next time I share this, I will have it done :)

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