Sunday, December 5, 2021

String-A-Long--Post 3

Selection of strings for 2 1/2 inch strips
I continued to paper piece the strings together. I was curious how many units would come from that gallon bag. I was also curious how long it took to piece a section of "string" fabric. It took me about an hour to piece two 11 inch squares and two 3 1/2 inch by 20 inch strips. As for the number of strings. . .I pieced enough to make nine 3 1/2 inch by 40 inch strips. From there, I've pieced 72 blocks. (I have two 11 inch squares and 3 1/2  partial strip leftover from stitching the strips to the background fabric. I estimate that I will be able to stitch another 18 blocks.)

Selection of fabrics
That gallon bag also contained strings that were 2 1/2 inches long. I pieced those into strips too. I pieced four 40 inch strips. My friend, Martha, liked to make Chinese coin quilts. I cut the remaining chunks into squares for my scrap savers system in 2 1/2  inch or 2 inch or 1 1/2 inch squares. Those strips will be the border. Any leftovers will go into another project.

There were also a lot of triangles and six reject curved pieced blocks in the bag. I put the triangles in a separate bag. I have a plan for those triangles later. The reject blocks I made into a mini quilt I named "Joyful."  

In October, when the date of a virtual quilt retreat approached, I decided this was one of the projects that I wanted to move forward. During the retreat, I pieced more blocks. I ended up with 104 blocks. I thought that I would take some time and play with different ways to layout the blocks. 

When I was piecing the strings, I had planned an asymmetrical layout. As I began laying out the blocks, Gertie, my inner squirrel, was whispering in my ear that she liked this lightening design better. She had a point. 

Such a variety of colors and prints in these strings
We get along so much better these days now that we are working together! She suggested a few names for the quilt which was also helpful. "Strings of Lightening" was my favorite of her options.

When we were on a family trip to Australia, I happened upon an art exhibit that was lines. It was so beautiful. Until that point, I hadn't thought of a line much more than wonky, curved or straight! I explored a little bit with line and made several quilts. I had planned to add other projects to that series.  Instead, I got side tracked and played with other techniques. This project will be added to that series though because Gertie insists! 

Quilt layout
In November, I pieced the blocks together. I pressed the horizontal seams open because there was too much bulk at the points of the design. 

The gallon bag netted enough strings to piece 104 blocks. It also produced some "thought" blocks that I used to audition my ideas at the beginning of the process. I made some of the "thought" blocks using a different method of constructing half square triangles. 

There are hour glass blocks that came about from cutting the first angle of the strip. Likely, the hour glass blocks and other HST blocks will become their own project simply because of the bulk a bunch of them would provide on the back of the quilt. It was my intent to use them on the back.

Auditioning borders and binding options
That gallon bag also produced more than enough 2 1/2 inch fabric for a border. Those strings came from the leftovers of making the string fabric. I'll have some "seed stock" for a future coin quilt.Truly, it all is getting used! Gertie told me that the border contributes positively to the design. I agreed and added it to the top.

Last week, when it came time to sew the string border, I decided to miter the corners so that the corners weren't where vertical lines nested next to horizontal lines. 

Mitering is a fiddly process; but, not a difficult process. With the uneven widths of strings, you get what you get in the corners. There is no matching of the lines in the border fabric. I liked the border best with the mitered corners. I did need to add a few inches so I had enough fabric to stitch the miters; but, that didn't take long!

Detail of mitered corner

The neutral fabric will also become the binding. This top measurers 47 x 47 inches. I found some bits in my stash to audition for backing. 

It is terrific to make a useable item from bits that would have ended up in a landfill. It feels great to have made some progress on this project since it's been sitting in a bag in my line of sight for almost a year! 

I'm linking to Cynthia and Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework. Be sure to check that link as those who link provide me so much inspiration on how they've used scraps! 

Finished top
Regarding COVID:

Worldwide: 265M cases; 5.25M deaths

United States: 49M cases; 787K deaths

Oregon: 392K cases; 5,186 deaths

Omicron is a new variant from South Africa that is being touted as more contagious than previous strains. It is already spreading through the United States. Travel restrictions are increasing. Those with connections trying to stop the spread of COVID, continue to plea for eligible people to become fully vaccinated and to get their booster.

Selection of chunks to become a back. . .maybe
Monday, I received my Moderna booster through the hospital where I work. It was half of the dose of the same vaccine I had received earlier. The first day, I had a sore arm. The second day, I had a sore arm which became hot around the injection site. I also felt tired. The third day, the soreness of my arm lessened. The hotness increased and an itching sensation appeared. On the fourth day, I added a headache to my symptoms. By the sixth day, the symptoms had greatly lessened. Truly, I had fewer symptoms than with my second dose. I am glad to be current.

I will continue to be careful and to wear my mask. Being vaccinated doesn't mean that I can't come down with COVID.


LIttle Penguin Quilts said...

Terry, I really love your string quilt in this lightning design! Your inner squirrel is pretty brilliant. The consistent background fabric you used is just perfect to tie all those multicolored scraps together, too. What size are the HSTs you made with the strings?

Luann Fischer said...

So glad that your reaction didn’t last too long.
The string quilt layout is definitely complimented by the borders. Way to go , Gertie!
Have a wonderful filled Christmas.

Deb said...

Getting my booster tomorrow , good on you for keeping up with vaccinations. We will get thru this!! Love all your string work, I like stripping too! Stay safe and sew on !