Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Grassy Creek Preparing For The Start--Post 1

The colors recommended for the project
How many of you are participating in Bonnie Hunter's Grassy Creek mystery quilt along that starts the day after Thanksgiving? Bonnie has been offering this mystery for many years. I followed along from the sidelines for several years because I wasn't able choose fabrics. I printed the directions for a couple mysteries and I have participated in the last two mysteries. (I've yet to finish those other mysteries!)

Bonnie releases the yardage amounts and colors for the mystery around Halloween. She lists the colors via corresponding paint chips from Lowes as the colors. That is a unique method of releasing the colors. It is also a good way to check if a fabric in a store is the color of the paint chip! Some online fabric stores will put together bundles of these fabrics for quilters to purchase. I notice that these bundles are sold out with in a day of posting the quantities!

Neutrals after being sprayed with Stay-Flo
Even though, I LOVE using from my stash, for this mystery, I bought most of the fabric. The green this year was the same as the green last year. I had some limey pieces that could have worked; but, I bought couple yards of this color because I can see using it in other projects. 

I had two small scraps (like less than six 2 inch squares) of gray so I bought some fat eighths on line and some yardage at local quilt shops. I had a couple oranges and one piece of gold so I bought more of those fabrics. I even had to purchase some pure white because after piecing almost three of Bonnie's patterns, I had little of this neutral left! I even bought one piece of the red. I was already at the quilt shop so it wasn't like I was making a special trip. . . .

I spent some time prewashing my fabrics. I found the piece of red grunge that I bought ran the worst. After I had washed and dried the fabrics, I heavily starched them. I use a liquid starch called Stay Flo that I dilute in a ration of one part starch to two parts water. I use a spray bottle that contains one cup of Sta-Flo and two cups of water. 

To starch the fabric, I lay the fabric in the shower. A half yard of fabric fits perfectly on the floor. Using the spray

Range of the fabrics

bottle, I saturate the fabric with the starch. I let it sit for an hour or two so that the fibers can absorb the starch. I hang the fabrics to dry. (Clean up after the process is super easy. . .just run the shower for a bit and the starch is gone!)

After I've starched all the fabrics, I iron the fabrics. The starch gives the fabric some body. That body helps me cut and sew more accurately. Yes, it takes some time. Doing a little every day helped me prepare all the fabrics for sewing. Today, I'll be ironing those fabrics so that when Bonnie releases her first clue on Friday, I'll be ready to cut and sew!

Last week, I pushed myself to make a lot of progress on the Unity border. In the process, I over used my thumbs so I have had to back off of the quilting this week to give my thumbs a rest. I have progressed to the last quarter of the border. I so want to finish this project! I know that will happen. I will keep making progress as I can. My chiropractor gave my thumbs a treatment as did my massage therapist. My thumbs are improving; but, pulling the threads to the top of the project to start and end the quilting hurts so it is not as difficult to rest the thumbs!

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