Second Chances Quilt: Odd Blocks To Visual Treat

I was excited to have a package of blocks and some extra fabric come my way. The tulip blocks were intriguing. However, there weren’t very many of them and the seam allowance wasn’t quite standard, making them an odd size. But, much too nice to throw away.

First I tried a variety of possible layouts, just seeing what might happen.

It needed a few more blocks.

And sashing.

What next? Sometimes with something like this you just need to experiment. The centers of the tulips were created with 2-1/2″ squares, so I started playing around with ideas to keep the blocks on point and make the quilt larger at the same time.

The math took some thinking, and an inner border was needed, but I added large “setting triangles” made of 2-1/2″ squares.

Then a binding that matched the inner border (which, in its turn, matched the center of the tulips). It seems to bring unity and help the quilt feel truly finished: 40″ square. A visual treat as a wall hanging, a table topper or a lap or baby quilt.

I enjoyed the challenge and surprise of discovery as I worked on this project. I hope you enjoy it, too. Maybe take a look at an abandoned project of your own…Could it be finished by giving it a Second Chance?

NOTE: This post also featured in the Online Quilt Magazine.

Green Update

The green crumb quilt is moving along.

I have completed 25 blocks and am really pleased with how they look.

Given the inspiration, art murals created by our art teacher and kindergarten-grade 5 students at school, I decided on a low volume print for the setting and a “tilted” look.

Those are all coming together.

I hope to start assembly by this weekend.

Miss B’s Quilt

I have a very special student in my homeroom class, Miss B. She is in 7th grade. She has Down Syndrome.

When we were making our charitable project of Christmas stockings at Christmas she expressed a real interest in sewing, but said, “I could never do that, maybe I could get a toy machine for Christmas.”

“You don’t need a toy,” I said, “You need to sew.”

It took some convincing, but it turned out that she could sew. Better than average. And now she has a special sewing class with me two days a week. Similar options are available at the school, but she needed something individualized and carefully paced.

Well, first she made a drawstring bag for her waterbottle. Went just fine. The next project was a quilt.

She finished the piecing a week ago. I had it quilted and bound it for her (She isn’t ready for that yet).

She got it back today.

Such a beautiful thing. She is so proud. It has transformed her life. Sewing. Is. Power!

Second Chance Quilt: Odd Blocks To A Fun Finish

I was given this interesting pile of blocks. The colors were appealing, but they needed…a few things.

First trimming to a uniform size.

Then a layout. There weren’t enough, so it was time to find coordinating fabric. Part of what makes Second Chances quilts work in the end is the unexpected.

I made simple half square triangle blocks to match.

Then added borders.

And sashing.

And quilting and binding…Ta-dah!

This is my first minkee back, and I think I like it. Not for every quilt, but it works for this one.

Final size: 41″ square. This is finish #4 of my weekend binding blitz. Whew!

Big lesson from this quilt: Don’t be afraid to play. Second Chance quilts are a great chance to try something new and take a (low risk) risk.

Throw Of Squares

This quilt started as the leftovers of THIS quilt. When I decided to size down, the 16-patch blocks were already made.

Too much to throw away. Not quite enough for a complete quilt.

Adding the 4-patch blocks with borders brought it up to 48″ x 60″. A nice throw size.

And the backing is so much fun. It is planned as a gift for a classroom aide at school.

What I’m Working On

Right now I have three quilts in the works.

The Jewel Box quilt has become my leader/ender and there are suddenly 50 blocks complete. Only about 10% of the final total, but that is progress. One must be persistent with this sort of project.

Next we have a Second Chances quilt. It is slowly evolving and will be a fun small quilt, table topper or wall hanging soon. Fun colors!

And, finally, we have my new general scrap pattern for donation quilts. I use them to practice on the treadle. I am getting better rhythm and fewer thread breaks all the time. This is 15 blocks out of 35 to create a 60″ x 80″ top.

In the meantime, there is one quilt being bound and four waiting for binding. I am saving them up for General Conference the first weekend of April, a great time to listen, learn, reflect and bind quilts.

More updates (and some of those quilts finished) soon!

Second Chances Quilt: Half Square Baby

Debra was so kind to share some of her leftover half square triangle blocks.

All they needed was some sorting and squaring up.

The backing was from stash, also donated, maybe by Stephanie?

Isn’t it lovely how fabric can find a purpose over time and distance?! I am really pleased with the results.

Works In Progress

The blog has been a little quiet lately, but not because nothing has been going on. Life is busy, but not in a bad way. Trying to keep school in business and take care of personal obligations…that sort of thing.

It seems like when I am busy, I always get several projects going at the same time, too.

There is a whole set of Welcome Home blocks (96 of them) ready to build two twin size quilts. These were mostly sewn on my “new” treadle machine (that story coming soon).

And a 30s quilt that is using up some small (2″ square) scraps. It has no definite size plan. Just until I am out of usable scraps, maybe?

And the start of a Jewel Box quilt. The blocks will finish at 4″. It will only take 500 or so to make a queen size quilt. Probably a two year project.

And a Second Chances quilt that is nearly done. Just 15 small snowballs to go.

I am pleased that the current projects show so much style variety. Yes, they are all scrappy, but so many different aesthetics.

So, that is four active projects, plus the one I hope to finish binding in the next few days and show by the end of the week (also a Second Chances quilt). Other than that, not much. 🙂 You know how it is.