This is the last time you have to see this quilt because it's officially done! It even has a hanging sleeve. I'll get a label on it this weekend and it will be ready for the exhibit in September.
All of the history and details are on the Goldfinch page but I'll share a few notes/observations:
Don't forget to check out the Gradient sale! The sale ends July 25th!
Just checking in for a quick minutes to day to report that the Goldfinch is quilted! It took a lot of time but 80% of that time was for procrastinating and worry. The ACTUAL quilting time wasn't all that much.
The denim as batting worked great. It was a dream to quilt through and the piece will hang nice as a tapestry without any puffy areas. YOu can see some white through the stitches in the dark area but I think a nice steaming will take care of that and you can't see it from any distance anyway.
Next up is binding (or facing) and then I think I'll be able to easily get my 3 veterans quilts quilted and bound before we leave in 2 weeks.
Today I'm in the dye studio for the last time until Spetember!
Using denim as the batting is working great! As I said last week, I'm doing really simple quilting. I started with the branch.
Then an orange-brown thread for the feet and beak.
Then a dark variegated for the feathers. I could have finished it off yesterday but I got sidetracked gathering things for the thrift store and doing some chore. Chris is coming home today and I didn't want him to see that I've been a total slob while he's been away.
Saturday afternoon was the tax document burn party. I know most of you shred your documents but, I promise you that a big burn is much more satisfying! We followed that with a nice cookout.
It was hot as hades (because it's July in Virginia) but so worth it.
Yesterday I was ironing the new fabric for the shop when I saw that I had a visitor. I watched him for about an hour as he hunted around the pond. He did get in one good strike but, sadly, missed. I haven't seen a heron in a while so this was my excitement for the day.
Chris comes home today and I'm expecting a cooler full of fish!
Here it is, all together! The papers are all removed and it's ready for quilting. I have not figured out how to quilt this yet so I'll take a week off to ponder it. There are areas in this quilt where I think there are probably 20 layers. Forget trying to sew through that, you would have to hammer a nail through it. I think my "quilting" will be very rudimentary for the purpose of stabilizing.
Here's a close up of the eye area to give you an idea of how small some of the pieces are.
My best tool for these blocks were these clips. I remember when they came out and thought they were just another trendy sewing notion that I did not need. I eventually bought some and, like everyone else, I now consider them a necessity.
I got my mess cleaned up
and all of the fabrics put away and I'm very ready to start some new easy projects.
I need some new masculine birthday postcards so I pulled this fabric that was leftover from the Corona Cats quilt back. I can't wait to get them done and share them. They are hilarious.
Today, during my normal dyeing schedule, I'll be dyeing some new sleeveless tshirts for myself.
During last week's session I dyed 3 maternity tshirts and a baby onesie for my nephew's wife. She should have them by now. I hope she loves them and that they fit. If you want to dye some, I found the white shirts at Mother Bee maternity. It took 4 test tries but I finally nailed the ombre effect. The actual color of the shirt is brighter than in the photo.
In other news, we cut down the Dogwood that I've been looking at outside my sewing room for over 20 years. It used to be full of spectacular pink blooms every Spring but it started dying off a couple of years ago. It was now time to add it to the woodpile for winter fires. I need to figure out what to put in it's place.
I slept, ate and worked on the Goldfinch. That's it. Late Sunday I finished the last block.
I'm really, really happy with the way it's looking but, let me tell you, this was a LOT of work! It's been a very long time since I spent this much concentrated time in the sewing room.
This block (3rd one on the bottom row) was the worst. It took almost an entire day! Look how tiny some of these pieces are? Next I'll get the blocks together and start to try to figure out how to quilt a quilt with too many very thick intersections.
The fun thing about being at the sewing room for 3 days was watching all the wildlife that visits the pond. I saw lots of deer, some wood ducks, a hawk eating a meal, a blonde groundhog and lots of squirrels.
This week I'll get the Goldfinch together and I need to make some birthday postcards. I also want to get back to quilting Mom's quilt and I have some dyed maternity tops to share. The tops are done, I was jsut too tired to edit more photos last night.
I mentioned last week that I had a second pair of old hiking pants th recycle and I did it this past weekend. I had to buy cording to make the straps. I got the new backpack finished Monday night. This one is for our friend, Ian. He's taller than me so I didn't make this one adjustable. The full size pack will fit him great. I'll give it to him when he and Laura join us in Maine.
I worked very diligently Monday to get another block made. I think this one has the most pieces. To get an idea of scale you can see a straight pin in the peach colored piece near the top. There are a lot of tiny pieces in this one. I'm a little worried about how I'll quilt this with all the bulk in the seams.
Seven more blocks to go.
that I have to report from my weekend.
This is just as tedious as it looks and I'm thrilled that I got this far with it this weekend. I'm still plugging away and I am really enjoying working on it. Not sure if there will be a newsletter this week as I'm really on a roll with this and I have to work the voting precinct Tuesday.
You may or may not hear from me the next 2 days.
I only have one photo today but it's a big one! I have 2 blocks of the Goldfinch done.
I took a break Monday and Tuesday from this project to make a new hiking backpack. I'll be giving it a test run today. I made it from an old pair of hiking pants. Hopefully, I'll have a report on it's construction and performance tomorrow.
Today we are off to Charlottesville for a 6 - 7 mile hike.
I got the three additional fabrics dyed, washed and ironed and I'm ready to start this project. Let me show you a little about these these patterns work.
The blocks are rectangular and the goldfinch has 16 blocks. This is block A1 (row A, block 1). The sheet on the right is the construction guide. Block A1 consists of 7 foundation sections and the guide sheet tells you exactly what order to do things in. The other two sheets are the foundation sections. In this photo I had already constructed 2 of the sections.
These foundation pieced patterns are designed a little differently from the fondation patterns we are used to but it only takes a few minutes to figure it out and it's actually quite logical.
The complicating factor in this quilt is keeping track of all of the difference fabrics...over 50!
I figure that it's going to take me about 3 weeks to put this all together so I decided to just lay out all of the fabrics in the living room floor. If we actually used this room on a regular basis that hideous carpet and sofa would be long gone. But frankly, this room is really just a dining room a couple of times a year and a sewing annex the rest of the time so I haven't been able to muster any energy for redecorating. Laying out the fabrics here will make it much easier for me to keep track of, and find, the fabrics that I need for each block.
I can bring in the pieces that I need for each section to the sewing room so I don't get confused by too much clutter.
On the guide sheet the bold dotted lines delineate the sections. A1 is the block and the lower case letter is the section. So I've sewn A1b and A1c. The circled numbers on the block indicate the order of piecing.
Here they are sewn together.
In case you were wondering, those little bits are part of the goldfinch head. Blocks A3, A4 and B4 are going to be fast and easy!
If all goes to plan, you will be seeing a lot of this project over the next few weeks.
Today and tomorrow, though, are sewing with my quilt club. I hope to get two veterans quilt tops done that I worked on for the last 2 months.
I think I should be over the hardest part of the Goldfinch quilt now. All of the fabrics are selected! This was not easy but it was kind of fun. I think you can imagine the mess I made all over my sewing room floor.
In the end I identified 3 fabrics that I need to dye and I did that yesterday. Even though my dyeing day is today, I wanted these to be ready to start sewing tomorrow.
While I was in the dye studio dyeing my own fabrics, I decided to play around a little. I'm going to dye some maternity tops for my nephew's wife and I want to do one in an ombre effect. I've never actually done real dip dyed ombre so I did a couple of experiments with a couple of tshirts. I was able to rig up this chain that worked great for keeping the shirt at specific levels. I'll show you how they turned out tomorrow.
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I'm Vicki Welsh and I've been making things as long as I can remember. I used to be a garment maker but transitioned to quilts about 20 years ago. Currently I'm into fabric dyeing, quilting, Zentangle, fabric postcards, fused glass and mosaic. I document my adventures here.