Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Multitasking - is it worth it????

I recently read somewhere that multitasking is NOT efficient. It means that we end up doing lots of things, but NONE of them well. I can see that if I were writing a paper while listening to an audio book or anything that requires concentration - like talking on the phone and doing e-mail - that I might have a hard time doing a good job at either task. However I think multitasking does have its place.

I took Kaylee's suggestion (that dog is just so smart). I dug out the Patchwork Sampler and decided that INSTEAD of working on the random little half square triangles, that I would piece the blocks. Well - look what I have got done in the last two days.
Patchwork Sampler - Block Number 18 - Rambler
Patchwork Sampler - Block Number 20 - Northumberland Star

Now isn't that exciting and NEITHER of these two blocks were easy. I had to fiddle with the sizes. It is always difficult to get an accurate block in this configuration. So I fiddled and it took a lot longer than it should have, but they both measure 6 1/2". And TWO more blocks are done - that leaves TEN to go. And thanks to Kaylee - I cut the half square triangles at Monday, marked the diagonal line and started to sew a few as enders and leaders.
Patchwork Sampler - HSTs
However this brings me to a sad state of affairs. This is what happens when you leave things. I THINK I have enough of two hunks for the border, binding and setting triangles - I haven't measured, but they are fairly big, BUT I decided to make the light side of the HSTs all the same colour and as I was cutting - I am SHORT!!!!!!   Of course this fabric is GONE from the store I bought it from. So I am APPEALING to YOU - does anyone have this fabric......

Nancy Halvorsen - Angels Among Us - Twinkle - Cream 2007 
The fabric line is called Angels Among us by Nancy Halvorsen  from 2007!!!!!   I know - a tad behind the times. It is a pale cream with small coloured dots. I am searching on the internet for more, but I need a FQ. Does anyone have this???????  This particular pattern is called Twinkle and the colour is cream. I have just searched e-Bay and the internet and any store that still carries this line has ALL the other fabrics (well a lot of them) BUT NOT this one. DRAT - I should have checked BEFORE I started cutting.

And here is the progress on the red/white quilt. I had to take the quilt off the wall and when I put the blocks up - I did not put the last row (the outside border on). I think it makes a difference. Anyway - only four more blocks to piece and then I can put the top together. If everything goes as planned, I should be able to get it completed by the 18th.

Red/White - Current status

Just so you know - I DO NOT get a lot of time to sew in a day. I sew in the morning and then try to get in a bit after dinner. Yesterday - I was at Monday Motivators, then to the chiropractor and then finally home. Unpacked all the Monday stuff and repacked for next week. Did a bit of cutting on another scrap quilt and that was it - the day was over. But I am spending my evenings hand stitching bindings. Can't any quilts in the quilt show (Brampton Quilt Show - April 30 - May 1) WITHOUT bindings. Of course every year I have ONE that doesn't have the binding on - could this year be any different?????   There are still THREE that need binding and one that is ALMOST done.

Yesterday when I posted those pictures of the One Block Wonder class, I DID NOT have all the pictures, BUT Joanne managed to get them all. Check out her blog to see them all - AND THEN COME BACK HERE.


I just LOVE this whole concept and of course it probably originated from Stack n Whack. Remember that????   Well I had people ask me what kind of fabric works for this - so here you are......

Elaine's One Block Wonder - Original Fabric

One Block Wonder - it's time to play and arrange those blocks
Mini Stack n Whack - Original Fabric
Mini Stack n Whack - current state

While some of the examples I am going to show you are Stack n Whack - the technique is identical. You can see in the Stack n Whack that yellow triangles were inserted between the blocks - that is the ONLY difference between One Block Wonder and Stack n Whack (well there are several different ways of doing Stack n Whack). And the fact that the yellow triangles are inserted changes the way the quilt is sewn together.

Now remember when I said that I needed that ruler to cut more yellow triangles - well in fact - I now have SIX extra triangles of yellow. So into the scrap box they go.

And now here is DILEMMA number two for today. I had a bright green that I was merrily cutting up and sewing - only to get to the END of the fabric and NOT have enough. I know - just not my week. Kaylee was PUSHING me so hard to get these done that I wasn't my usual conscientious self!!!!!


Yes - this is the fabric that I am missing. Yes - it is OLD.  If anyone has some of this - I would gladly work out a deal with you for it. I do not need much. I need SIX triangles. I did manage to find this fabric below, but it isn't really close. I was going to use Shiva Sticks and put that little gold triangle on it, but I haven't convinced myself that this is the one to use.

 And now back to Stack n Whack and One Block Wonder quilts/fabrics.

Stack n Whack - Original Fabric
Stack n Whack - Original Design. Notice that some blocks are almost completely yellow and others have NO yellow in them at all. 
Stack n Whack - Original Fabric
Stack n Whack - Fan Block - Note every second fan blade is reversed. That lighter piece is the reverse side of the fabric so you get a mirror image. Does NOT work with all fabrics.
Stack n Whack - Fan Block - Note that each one gets placed on the purple background and there is a green piping along the outer raw edge. 
Interesting fabric that makes a GREAT Stack n Whack. A student of mine used this fabric in a quilt. It might take me some time to find the picture - but it was gorgeous so she was able to get me enough to make my own Stack n Whack. 

This fabric was originally purchased for Stack n Whack. When you start making these - you see fabric that would be perfect and then you have to buy it!!!   I think when I was cleaning up, I decided that I DID NOT NEED to make yet ANOTHER Stack n Whack and I found this in the backing material. However I might try One Block Wonder with it. 

But how do you know whether it is appropriate or not?  Well a set of TWO mirrors can help. These next shots show the mirrors in different spots on the above fabric. Note how the blocks are all different depending on the center of the triangle. And yes Carol - the mirror is NOT set exactly in a 60 degree position, but I think we all get the idea!!!!!!
Auditioning fabric for One Block Wonder or Stack n Whack using mirrors

Auditioning fabric for One Block Wonder or Stack n Whack using mirrors. 

Auditioning fabric for One Block Wonder or Stack n Whack using mirrors.

 Those last THREE photos were all from the fabric just before them. See how different they all are!!!!   NOW YOU WOULD NEVER FUSSY CUT this stuff. The mirrors are just to help identify if you will like the look. Once the red/white comes off the wall - the orange/green One Block Wonder will go up and you can see how we mess around with the blocks and the colouring.

Anyway - I hope that helps you figure out if a fabric that you have will be appropriate.

Some suggestions - I like BIG very defined shapes with HIGH CONTRAST to the background. If the print is busy - then the entire quilt will be busy and while this is not a bad thing - the colours will be less defined and the quilt can read as VERY BUSY with a lack of definition. Does that make sense?????

Well I see there are still TONS of photos in the editor, but I have run out of time this morning.

Here is one thing I have noticed about myself lately. In the past - I spent so much time sewing samples for classes, that I had no TIME to finish the samples - I mean literally - half the top would get done and that's it. Then I never had time to ever go back and finish piecing the top (well in most cases) and then the rest of my time was spent searching for things. Now - I am teaching less (which isn't necessarily a bad thing) and so sewing less samples and actually able to get things DONE!!!!!  Well remember done for me is top, backing and binding. I am also MUCH more focused and since I rarely have to search for anything, I have way more time. My room is clean and it is a pleasure to sew - things are together - projects are getting done, albeit slowly and I'M LOVING IT!!!!!!!    I am sure that more than FIFTY PERCENT of my UFOs are a result of teaching a class.

Enjoy and come back tomorrow for more show n tell. And if you have either of those two fabrics - leave me a comment and I will get back to you ASAP.

Have a great day!!!!!!


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