Wheel Estate On the Move

Yesterday was the day I promised myself I'd get started sewing Wheel Estate into a flimsy. As I mentioned, it was an open question whether the fabrics I would need were available in Ye Olde Stash Fabric Store. When this quilt first got under way, I went shopping online for a backing fabric and purchased 3-4 yards (can't remember how much I have) of this one:

Then, while we were traveling in Idaho this past summer, I remember purchasing this one in Garden Valley. Since I purchased three yards, I must have been thinking it would make a good backing for Wheel Estate. (Another clue: it was in the bin with the Wheel Estate blocks.)

And I think it's by far the better choice. I can save the first one to use as a backing for the Quilty 365 I want to make from quilt shop fabric swatches when we make our loop around the USA (coming right up!). You can read about my idea for this quilt right here. Already, I have something like two dozen swatches cut, and I'm hoping to add lots more.

But to get back to Wheel Estate, here's how the quilt looks on the pattern cover. This is Amy Bradley's "Campers" pattern, and it's a great pattern. This RV quilt is only one of many quilts that can be made. In fact, it's given me an idea for my next quilt, but I'll say more about that later. 

This quilt measures 40 x 54 inches, which is just a tad larger than I want it. At 40 inches wide, it will just barely fit onto the wall where I want to hang it. It's a large wall, plenty tall enough. The problem lies with the thermostat on the left and the step up to Mike's side of the bed on the right. When I measure the space between those two "impediments," the wall is just about 42 inches.

So, no problem. I can make adjustments here and there. It's just good to start off knowing the parameters for the perimeter (like that?).

The first thing I needed to do was to trim the blocks down to size. The blocks are supposed to measure 11.5 x 15.5 inches. I'd already cut the white (with blue polka dot) background pieces when I realized that the grass was intended to be done with applique. That seemed kind of silly to me, and so I cut strips of grass and sewed a seam instead. Why use applique when piecing will do just fine? (As with so many things, no one consulted me.) So, anyway, my blocks ended up at about 15.5 x 15.5 inches with a lot of "sky" at the top. I trimmed them down to 11.5 x 15 inches. It was easy enough to cut off the excess sky at the top. I cut a quarter inch off each side just because they'd kind of frayed while I worked with them. Now...nice clean-cut edges, which just sets the world right, don't you know? Then I laid them out the way I wanted them to appear in the quilt. 

If you missed the start of this quilt, I'll just say that the blocks that don't appear to have blue polka dotted backgrounds simply have a smaller scale of polka dot. I didn't have enough of that fabric, and so I ordered more. Sadly, I couldn't tell from the picture that it was a different scale of polka dot. It worked out though. I kind of like the different sizes now.

For the sashing, I liked this turquoise with white polka dot. It fits with the polka dot theme of the blocks, and it's the right color to go with the camper fabric I'm using for the back and the outside border. Here's where I left it yesterday.

Now I'm going to add just a very narrow white stop border, and then I'll finish up with a border of the camper fabric above. I have enough for the quilt back and the border, and I think that's going to be very cute. I'll probably use the turquoise polka dot for the binding. As for the dimensions, I've lost half an inch on the quilt blocks, and I'll lose half an inch on the stop border. If I make the outer borders 3 inches instead of 3 3/4 inches, I'll have taken almost two inches off the width of the quilt, which will be a good size. I might even make the outer border narrower, but I want to make sure I get enough width to pick up at least a couple of rows of campers on the fabric. (I hope that makes sense.)

Yesterday's mail contained a sweet surprise. My friend Gail at Shedding the Wolf was making these pink pussycat hats. When I admired her handiwork and allowed as how I really needed one, she said she'd send me one. When I opened her package, I found not one, not two, but three of these cuties! Wow! Gail said she was sending one for the "three" of the "Three Cats Ranch". Well, I tried to get a picture of Sadie and Smitty wearing their hats, but they said no way, and no how. And Smitty stamped his paws insisting that there was no way he was wearing pink. 

So, thank you, Gail, for your incredibly generous gift. I think I'm going to give Smitty's hat to my friend Sue. Look for a selfie of us with our hats soon.

Speaking of Smitty, is this the saddest picture you've ever seen?

He's wishing he was on a sandy Caribbean beach with aquamarine water lapping at his paws. Instead he's sitting on our Oregon deck with sleet covering his path. And, ew, you don't want that stuff on your feet.

We've had piles of slush fall from the sky. It really isn't cold enough for snow accumulation, although it continues to try. As I'm writing this, I can see a few flurries out there. It's an egg pick-up day for me, and I might as well hit the grocery store while I'm at it. When I get home, I'll get back to work on Wheel Estate. Hoping to get it all put together today, and then I can start on something new. Intriguing, no?

15 comments from clever and witty friends:

WoolenSails said...

That is such a fun piece and perfect for the new camper. I have some blank wall space and would love to make it into storage but also don't want to add weight.


Quilting Babcia said...

That turquoise sashing is absolutely perfect for Wheel Estate, it makes the colors in the blocks pop. It's going to be a perfect quilt for your new home away from home.

Shirley Elliott said...

Your Wheel Estate wall hanging is just beautiful! Looking forward to seeing it completed. Nice to see a photo of Smitty. It's like you can just see the disgust in his expression.

Beverly Wood said...

Love your Wheel Estate quilt. I can't believe how prolific you are. You sure do get a lot done. I liked Smitty's photo. I took one like it of my cat just like it this week. I was wondering if you applied for the Parks Canada pass. It gives you free admission to all the national parks in Canada this year. I think you still have to pay camping fees, but every little bit help. Just an FYI. The pass is being offered to help celebrate our country's 150 th birthday. Your new camper and truck are awesome.

quiltzyx said...

Nope, not gonna get any of that sleet on my fleet feet says the Smitster!

I'll be looking forward to you & Sue's pink hat selfie. :) I've been trying to crochet a kitty hat, but I've been coughing so much the last couple of weeks I haven't been able to do much of anything.

Love the way Wheel Estate is coming together! Hooray!

Brown Family said...

I like the all over camper fabric. It is going to be a very cute quilt for your camper.

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I like the camper fabric for the backing and the aqua sets it nicely. Poor Smitty - looks like my furries as we are in another ice storm.

Kate said...

Wheel Estate is coming together beautifully. Your choice of sashing and backing fabrics are just about perfect. Poor Smitty, he's definitely a warm weather kind of kitty. Hope you get a break in your weather soon.

Dana Gaffney said...

The camper quilt is one of my absolute favorites, it's just too cute and will look great hanging on that wall. Tell Smitty real men support women no matter what color they need to where, especially when one is the feeder and treat giver. That picture does look like he's on a beach, tint that slush blue.

Susan said...

I know this is after the fact, but could you have done a horizontal layout of the quilt? I still like your version of the campers better than the original--must be the kitties :-) Poor Smitty, I kinda feel the same way when I step outside and this winter has been "mild" compared to out usual winters.

Wendy Tuma said...

Your camper quilt is so cute and cheerful. Perfect for the camper as you get ready for its first excursion! I agree that the turquoise really adds a pop to the blocks. Smitty looks as though he has had enough of the wet mushy stuff. I quite agree; let's get some green grass, sunshine, etc. going! I'm interested to see where your travel loop takes you. Pretty exciting stuff!

Natureluvr57 said...

The one thing that caught my eye was the Los Angeles block with the movie camera. I'm buying and saving fabric for an Alfred Hitchcock theme quilt. I bought quite a bit of the fabric with Alfred and his movies on it. I bought some blood splatters for Psycho and some birds for The Birds. Someone had a small directors clap board (not sure what they are called) that is a charm and I bought one. I also found some dark and stormy night sky fabric-some is just the sky, one panel has a cemetery and one panel has a crow. Not sure when I will start planning it out but in the meantime I'm just collecting fabrics and ideas.

Teresa in Music City said...

This is going to be such a cute quilt Barbara! Your blocks are so colorful and have wonderful character. You definitely chose the right backing. And poor Smitty! My Gypsy used to look at me with disgust and disappointment whenever I opened the door to snow outside - she clearly thought I had done it specifically for the purpose of making her life miserable. And tell him that Rocky has already made it clear that he would not be caught dead wearing one of those pink hats. He says he may be a cat, but he's no pussy LOL!!!!

Rosemary Rivas said...

Love that Kaufman fabric. Another "day in the life," of a home with a new kitty. I should've known better leaving the butter on the counter to soften. This morning I noticed about a tablespoon had been gnawed off! It seems he's hungry all the time. Perhaps he's going through a "growth spurt," similar to kids. It's been raining here in the Bay Area now for several days, but the weather man promises good weather for the weekend. I am giving a Baby Shower for my daughter who is due next May. So much to do, so little time!

Angie in SoCal said...

I so enjoy your process posts - they always teach me something. Cute little hats.