Busy Bee

Yesterday and today I worked on blocks. I like mixing short projects between long ones. Last week I spent my time working on the Rubber Ducky baby quilt. Now that it's finished, I was looking forward to doing some little projects that could be finished quickly.

Our hostess for the We Bee With It bee I'm in this year asked for these scrappy wonky star blocks. She wanted one in pink:

And one in blues and greens:

They're pretty simple to make, and you could make them any size you want. In this case, all the squares are 3.5 inches, just sewn into a 16-patch.

With those finished, I'm ready to take on a larger project: quilting the Psycatdelic quilt.

At 65 x 81 inches, this is the largest quilt I've ever attempted to quilt myself. If Eliza hadn't come to live with us, I would be sending it out to a long arm quilter. 

When I finished it up a few months ago, I realized that I was going to run short of that Laurel Burch border fabric, and I wanted to use it for the back as well. I measured, and figured, and calculated, and came up with a way of cutting it that preserved almost the precise amount I needed to use it for both borders and back. Then, in my usual style, I took the back seam just a little deeper than I might have, which meant that I barely had enough space on the back to stretch all the way across.

When I thread basted it a few months ago, I had about two inches to spare on the left side, but I was right at the selvage edge on the right.


Okay. So I think this is going to be fine, and I can always shave a little off the edges of the borders and make them narrower if I need to. But I decided I could start quilting on this right border and quilt from the middle to the top and then from the middle to the bottom. Then I'll work from right to left across the quilt and it should work out. We shall see. I really hope I don't end up hating myself.

My plan is to quilt around the shapes of some of the cats to help poof them out a little in the borders. I have a variegated thread I'll use there and in my bobbin, so the quilting really won't show much on the back. When I get to the blocks, I have plans for each one of them, and I'll use matching threads there.

It feels like a quilting journey of 1,000 miles to me right now--sort of the quilting equivalent of hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. Please come looking for me if I don't call home at regular intervals. Hm. I wonder if I should attach a homing beacon of some kind to myself.

It's a beautiful day here today, and so I have plans to get out for a walk. The rain is expected to return by Wednesday. Better walk while the walking is good.

6 comments from clever and witty friends:

Sher S. said...

love the bee blocks. I think I have some of the Laurel Burch fabric in my cat tub. I'll check and see just in case you need some more for some very strange reason. Love the cat quilt. Enjoy your walk in the sun, we have sun too but rain due Wednesday also.

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I love those Bee blocks. I have some of that fabric, too - but not enough to help out. I have basted that close to a selvedge myself - it worked out fine.

Barb H said...

You'll do fine quilting a piece as large as the cat quilt. It's just a matter of managing the bulk and keeping a "nest" of fabric that you're actually quilting. You always come up with the perfect quilting design for the piece you're working on--can't wait to see this one as it comes along.

quiltzyx said...

The wonky star blocks look wonderful - great colors! Do you all take turns & pick the block design for your month?
Psycatdelic is out! Yay! You & Eliza will do awesome quilting it, I just know it.

Jacque said...

Hope your walk went well...can't wait to see the quilting on your Psycatdelic quilt!

Kate said...

Beautiful wonky star blocks. Good luck with the quilting. Sounds like you have a good plan.