Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Tea Time Runner

While at Intl Quilt Fest I ran into a sample at a shop that I was really taken with. I looked around, and couldn't find the kit, the fabric, or the pattern. I was perplexed ... I really wanted to make it, but had no idea how. Finally, I flipped the quilt on the back, and aha, stapled there was a 5 line pattern. It says ... sew 4 little 2 inch squares onto the corners of a charm square on the diagonal. It was the classic snowball, though I didn't know it at the time.

I liked the fabric in the sample a lot but couldn't find it anywhere, maybe it's a few seasons old. But I substituted a very bright, spring-y feeling charm pack, and got working. This was my biggest chain piecing ever ... 42 x 4 = 168 seams to pin, mark, and stitch. After it was all done though, I made the mistake of squaring them up to a perfect 4.5" ... by sight, not by finding the center point. So my snowballs all became perfect 4.5" squares, but the corners were liberally sized. Oops. It made it a right pain to match them up when I sewed it in rows, to the point that I decided not to pretend that it matters. After all, modern quilting is supposed to be about freedom and "character". (I tell myself.)

I decided not to do a complicated turning quilting design this time, with lots of pivoting and start/stops, so I just simulated a serpentine stitch (I didn't have it on my machine but a long zigzag comes close) every 1/8 inch vertically. It gave a very different effect than the sample I saw at the show which had echoing, but I still like it, and this actually hides my "mistakes" a bit. It gives it a very interesting texture and was super easy to do.

The colors are definitely much more bright and poppy than I originally was intending, but it's a very cheery, spring-y runner, which is just right for this time of the year.

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