Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Month 6 of 8 QAYG (Quilt As You Go)--Part One

The quilt shop where I'm attending the lectures for the QAYG project, canceled the class for July. When we met in June, I learned we get to stitch eight 12"x15" blocks. The class was canceled in July because we had already received the videos in June on how to stitch the blocks. Of course, I was side tracked working on the HH Hall project and that chicken project.  In June, I didn't stitch any blocks. It doesn't take me long to get behind! 😀

I decided my goal was to finish all eight of the blocks by the August meeting. Sure, I may not make it; but, I'm going to try! The idea is that we would have our tops together for the August meeting; but, I'm doubtful that I will be that productive as I so want to see that chicken project hanging on my wall instead of in my "in process" pile!

Block 1 of 8
Back to QAYG, I watched the video for the first block and then tried to stitch it. Watching the video, I felt confident that I could stitch this block. I started and had a dose of reality! I don't know why it was so difficult for me to mark the lines on the block; but, it was. The actual stitching of the block went okay. A couple of times, I neglected to put the ruler on the correct line and I "got" to rip that section to stitch again.

I also had a challenge stitching the background; but, after way too many hours, I finished it!  My challenge was that I had trouble keeping the spacing of the lines even.

Often the first block stitched is the easiest and the difficulty increases.

Using tape to mark a line

I started the second block. We were instructed to mark a line on our template to stitch the petal of a flower which was a cool way to use the template in a different way.  I stitched and then I ripped and then I repeated that sequence many more times! Stitching the motif was covered on the video and then we were given the direction to quilt the background as we wished!

Part of the issue with my frustration was that I couldn't tell in the video how the demonstrater was holding the template so that she was able to return to the starting position. Secondly, I couldn't tell how to measure the distance with the spacing gauge. (We were supposed to use the inch mark and measure from the stitching line to the template edge.)

Obviously, when my lines didn't match, I wasn't using the spacing gauge correctly or perhaps, I let the ruler slip!

First background
I really tried to have success; but, it wasn't happening. The project wasn't fun and I was getting more and more frustrated. So, I decided that the more stitches there are in the block; the less noticeable are the errors.  I just stitched. I finished it. While I liked the curved cross hatching effect, I don't know that I could replicate it.

I also understand that we should be figuring out our own background fills; but, my creative muse is on hiatus. I would have rather had some visual options to have a jumping off place for my creativity.  Perhaps, my muse would have engaged a little faster had I had this help.  In the video, the demonstrater verbally provides some options. I eventually figured out a background fill.

I've also been thinking about why I have such difficulty in hitting the points and keeping my lines even. I love the effect of ruler work, so I haven't given up yet. Below are some of the reasons I'm working through. If I only see the effect and can't figure out the cause, I'm not going to get past the issues I created!

--Perhaps, my ruler foot isn't round.
--Perhaps, my perspective is different when holding the ruler at the back of the machine and my perspective is different when holding at either side or the front of the machine.
--Perhaps, the width of my marked line makes a difference.
--Perhaps, I've stretched the fabric as I've stitched and that creates additional space.

Block 2 of 8
After stitching some of the background fill, I decided it was too blah. So I ripped and created something else. As I stitched the second background, I was having fun!

This design would have been more impactful had I quilted some of the areas more densely; but, I decided that I wasn't going to put that much effort into this block! After all, this project is a learning experience!

I'll post about the next two blocks in another post!


  1. Terry,
    I really like what you've done. And I'm in love with that fabric you are doing it on. I've never been fond of green, but lately,,,, must be the heat and humidity taking a toll on me. LOL Keep on trying. I'm doing a workshop (DVD Series) with Heather Thomas and like she says, anyone can free motion quilt, you just have to continue to practice to get where you want to be. And you will get to whatever level you desire, you've got that kind of stick-to-it attitude. And look at where you are with your chickens,,, might take time, but it's going to be hanging soon.

    1. Thanks, Luann! Yes, practice is a key; but, trying to figure out the angles to use those rulers is a whole different kind of learning. I'm motivated to get to the finish! As for the fabric. . .well, it has been hanging out in my stash for WAY too LONG!!!

  2. It looks like you're getting great results with the rulers. I love that curved cross-hatching!

    1. Nancy, I too, like the curved cross hatching. That was one of the designs that I've wanted to feel more confident stitching. I've a ways to go; but, I'm learning! :)

  3. Your QAYG blocks are beautiful, in spite of all the challenges and unsewing. Keep at it, as I know you will accomplish your goal. --Connie

    1. Thanks, Connie! I will keep at it!


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