Thursday, November 6, 2014

Free Quilt Top Recipe: Scrappy Squares

Last month, I decided to take my local quilt guild's block of the month challenge, a Sixteen Patch.  I hadn't done one of the monthly challenges yet, but this one looked so easy, I asked myself, how long could it take?

I think that about a lot of things. There's a class I want to take?  Sure, I have time for that.  And then that other class?  Well, why not, it's on a Friday and the other's on Sundays.

Sure, I can knit a hat for a friend while I am also designing two blankets, a shawl, and a hood, and making four quilts at once; why not?  How long could it take?

Usually longer than I think, alas.

This square actually didn't take that long, except that I like to spend forever picking and choosing fabrics.  A less--shall we say, playful?--person could have done it in half the time.  (We are not going to say "obsessive."  We are not going to say "crazy."  We are going with "playful" or "creative.")

When I saw the block at the guild meeting, I wasn't too impressed, but once I started making one, I saw how the idea comes together and is quite charming.

THE RECIPE:  You need a solid or neutral color to go with the other scraps.  These were 3.5 inch squares (3 inches once sewn), but you could use whatever size you want.  The brighter and scrappier the scraps, the better.  And that's it.  A bit of chain-piecing and you're done.  (Obviously, if you are making a whole quilt top, you will need more than one Sixteen Patch.)

So I finished the square, and was about to get back to my regularly scheduled overscheduling, when I got an email encouraging us quilters to make one block each for a certain person for a certain gift.

This gift is top secret, hush hush:  the intended victim--er, recipient--is not supposed to know about it.

A colorful beginning
I feel safe putting it up on my blog, though, because I barely know this person and I doubt we would recognize one another walking down the street.  I am 99.99% certain she neither knows my name nor of my predilection for blogging.

I just wanted to participate.  I didn't like the feeling of opting out just because I'm not even entirely sure who this lady is.

Coming together
We were told to use bright colors on a beige background, if background was needed.  Beige wouldn't have been my choice, but "in for a penny, in for another quarter yard of fabric," as the saying goes.

Making this taught me something:  I have an amazing stash full of incredible fabrics, but very few solids or neutrals.  And sometimes solids and neutrals are necessary to set off the design.

So I actually bought a bit of beige for this, but the rest came from my stash, courtesy of Debbie, who gave me the cheerful stuff a few months ago.

It kinda looks like a circus tent.  Really hope the victim likes the circus.

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