Friday, August 9, 2013

seeing green ... or "please don't make me have to find and buy more of just this fabric"

I meant to buy plastic bins to store in progress projects in, or at least, the fabrics... right now my studio apartment looks like a fabric shop exploded. I have three quilts being pieced right now and one on the hoop. It's a little nuts. Also, I ran into a little problem. More accurately, a shortage problem. One where I didn't buy quite enough fabric to finish a project, I've got nothing that matches the description in my stash and the shop I bought it from is 25 miles away. Ish. I really don't want to drive that far for a number of reasons I won't bore you with. That said, read on.

For the green Moda variation quilt that I am currently working on [picture provided for reference of the original],
I wanted to sash my nine patch squares with a solid green. I have 4 different shades of green. 13" of one, 30" of another, 18" of another, kissing 36" of still another [and another piece that matches one of the mentioned colors that is almost 2 yards... so we'll save that for the back and piece something together] making a total of 97" of useable solid greens to sash the 9 patches with.

My nine patches are 7 3/4" square; each block needs two [2] short green strips and two [2] long 12 1/2" strips to sash it. Which, when I discovered at 11PM, is where things got interesting and I realized that my initial plan of having a 6x6 set might not be necessary. Especially since a 6 x 6 block set of this size won't fit in my living room. Also, I'm not going to leave white space between my blocks in the border. There's more than enough green in my stash for an entirely green pieced border to go all the way around. And I don't have enough of my background fabric to create that. [And someday, I'll be teaching grammar and the fine art of writing to small children. ;)]

The Moda website only specified having two jelly rolls for this recipe, one of print and one of solid. They mentioned a half yard of coordinating fabric for "border" and an unspecified amount of yardage for the back [their's sizes out to a twin] I purchased 2 yards of a creamy fabric to use as the equivalent of my plain jelly roll. Just looking at this thing, one jelly roll did not seem to be sufficient to accomplish what they claimed it would set out to do, and no one seems to know exactly how much fabric is in a jelly roll. REALLY?!
A side note about the other difference between the Moda directions and what I'm making... I'm not cutting to jelly roll width, which is apparently 2 1/2". I'm cutting everything by hand and went with a 3" width for my strips, which made the overall size of this project bigger anyway.

This one's gonna be close...

I started cutting the length of the fabric, six strips the length of the two yard cut so I ended up with something a little like this...
see what I mean about not fitting in my living room? and this isn't the whole thing

There is no room for strips 5 and 6 to go on the ends, but they are cut - I know it'll shrink up a bit when it's sewn together, but it will have to be sashed some more after that. I cut long strips mostly because I hate piecing. Had I known at the cutting counter that asking for two and a half yards instead of just two would have yielded me exactly what I needed to make non pieced strips for the outermost border around the pieced square border and all the short little cuts I needed, I would have gotten two and a half yards. But I don't do that kind of math. Certainly not in my head on the fly. Ultimately, I didn't cut from selvage to selvage for any strips 44", I cut the entire piece of yardage into long strips.  Since there is only about 27" of the cream boarder fabric left, I'm just going to leave it off and either try to buy more from the shop I got it from or start with something else.

This creamy sashing fabric looks so much better in person; it has a subtle greet pattern [one of the reasons I picked it]. I'm not sure why that is. The looking better in person than in a photo bit. I used all 97" of solid greens for sashing... there was a little bit of waste - a rough inch shaved off here and there with maybe one or two extra sashing strips and was, without planning ahead, able to create the X pattern. Which you can't really see in this picture because the living room is small, the picture is cut off, and the upper left most corner block is actually sitting on top of the grey bin.
[I apologize for the creepiness of the Lyd in this picture. She doesn't usually look possesed.]

Sometimes I'm terrible at visualizing things, so I brought the w.i.p. top over to a friends house who has double beds. The top is presently set as seen in the picture above... and it fits on the top of the bed! Which means that with the solid border and the pieced border and all the sashings, it will look great and fit on the bed with a little extra drape. All was fabulous until I got to the second to last border, where there was enough to go sash two sides, and no more. And I discovered that I actually needed something more like 3 or 4 yards to accomplish this sashing task [the 4 accounts for matching binding]. The good news in that I have about 10 months before I need to have this quilted, so I have my winter project cut out for me. Also, when the recipient upgrades to a bigger bed, this thing will still fit. As long as there is no upgrading to a California king or something.

And in case you were wondering, here is the link to the origional project: Sweet Menagerie Nine Patch

No comments: