Saturday, February 23, 2008

Saturday Day of Beauty

Sometimes getting dressed on a Saturday is beauty enough. Oh, I did make a cursory check for chin hairs and located one or two, but I soon abandoned the search due to poor lighting conditions. In other words, right now I could have a veritable forrest of chin hairs, but since we had this gloomy weather and I'm a middle aged woman with poor close-up eyesight, it just didn't seem like a worthwhile way to spend a Saturday afternoon.

And remember the 75 mile an hour winds we were supposed to get? Didn't happen. It stayed dry but overcast most of the day until late afternoon when it started raining off and on. Tonight we have a bit of wind, but nothing like 75 miles an hour--well, maybe 7-point-5 miles an hour. That's fine with me though. At least I didn't have to worry about power failures.

So, if I wasn't plucking chin hairs or tying the cats down to keep them from blowing away, what was I doing today? Well, I was playing with fabric and tulips--fabric tulips, not the real kind. Several of you asked about the pattern for the tulip quilt I had posted yesterday, and I checked with Ms. Red Geranium Sharon who said it was from a Cheri Saffiote book, but she wasn't sure which one. I think she's going to check and let us all know, but since she's still looking for her Hometown Christmas quilt kit . . . well, let's just say that if any of you happen to know the answer, could you please post a comment to let me know? In the meantime, I thought I'd show you what I was doing with my tulips--

The pieces above are just stuck up on my design wall and not yet sewn together in the photo. In real life, I have them about half sewn and will probably finish sewing tomorrow (Sunday). Until we get some info on that pattern, I thought I'd give you a little tutorial on what I've done with mine.

First of all, on Friday night I picked out some pinky reds and pinks and several scraps of background fabrics. For my quilt, I made 13 tulips, so I had 13 different reds/pinks. I cut a 4-3/4" square of colored fabric and one of background. I also cut a 4" square of colored fabric and one of background. I did this for each of the 13 tulips. This morning, I paired up the larger colored squares with the larger background squares, drew a diagonal line down the back of the background pieces, and sewed 1/4" on either side. I then cut on the line and pressed the pieces open, ending up with two half-square triangles. I then trimmed those down to 4". Of course, you could cut your larger pieces a little smaller and not have to trim them, but I like trimming--I think it gives me a more accurate block. So, here are the pieces that comprise each tulip block (they are all 4" at this point--camera perspective makes them look unequal but they aren't!):

Next, without sewing the pieces together, I stuck them up on my design wall in a configuration I liked--

Knowing where I wanted stems, I cut background blocks. For those two larger empty spots, I cut 7-1/2" blocks. I did the same for the two central spaces below the last line of tulips. To fill in the rest of the stem areas, I cut 4" blocks.

To make the stems, I cut 1" strips of green. I then cut each background/stem block on the diagonal and sewed each side back together with a strip of green down the center. Because I wanted this scrappy, I did a bit of mixing and matching of those background pieces after I cut them and before I sewed them back up. (You can see that in the next photo.) Once I had the stems made, they went back up on the design wall.

I then realized that the stems were going to look kind of funny if I didn't add green corners to some of the blocks so the stems went straight all the way down; otherwise, where the blocks joined, the stems would come to little points. Maybe you can see what I mean in this photo--without adding anything, that stem under the tulip would come to a point and the bottom of the tulip would come to a point and I think they'd look a little funny, but this is even more apparent where I have some really LOOOOOONG stems that travel through more than just one block.

So I cut some squares and sewed them on the diagonal at each spot where a block would touch a stem.

I ran into a problem here, because I figured the squares should be 1". Nope, too big, so now I'm adjusting. If you want to try this, try cutting them at 3/4"--I think that might be about right. But try it before you make all of them this size and see if that works, because I didn't test mine first, and I'm paying the price now! LOL!

For the rest of what you see in the first photo of the tulips on the design wall, I just kept cutting 4" background squares to fill in until I was happy with the size, and then I cut some larger squares and cut them on both diagonals to make the triangles to finish the sides. I think I cut those larger squares at 9", and the smaller corners, which were just cut on one diagonal, were cut at 6" (I didn't have the corners up on the wall yet when I took the photo).

Other than adjusting those green corners and sewing some of the blocks together, this is as far as I got today. I'll post more tomorrow of my progress. Until then, happy quilting!


Eileen said...

Those are neat, Kim, Now how come so big? What size are you making this quilt.
Neat way to add a little bit to the top of the stem.
Thanks for the info.

Anonymous said...

The name of the book is My Flower Bed.

Darlene said...

OMG, this is beautiful, gorgeous, pretty, stunning, and maybe MINE. LOL Oh, Kim you continue to amaze me. Great tutorial, thank you!

Anonymous said...

Kim I had an idea. You know how some tulips have a different shade points. Maybe the HST could be of a lighter shade on some of them. Might make it more interesting. I like the blocks you did, but it seems like the stems are so long. Perhaps they need some leaves. LOL! Even though I liked Sharon's
I thought the stems were long on her's too. Just an idea. I might try a table runner for Spring with these. I do love tulips.

Linda Z

Mar said...

love your garden of tulips! thanks for the tutorial.

Yvonne said...

I love your tulips. :)

I think Sharon's Hometown Christmas is visiting with mine.....I heard they were having a marvelous time.

Cheryl said...

Oh your quilt is going to be wonderful. Great tutorial!

Su Bee said...

WAY cool! Glad to see you stole the idea so I won't feel bad swiping it from you -- LOL!!!

Greenmare said...

I really love your red tulips. I think those blocks could chase away the winter doldrums. Chin hair- you gotta admit, God has a sense of humor to stick us with that one when we get to "this age".

Amanda said...

Thanks for the tutorial. I love the tulips.

I love your blog! Late Saturday night I saw your post about the carrots you made. I went to my sewing room and made 4 of them. Yesterday I had fun painting them.

If you would like to see them, go to my blog for Sunday, February 24.
They were so fun to make.

auntiedart said...

It is My Flower Bed available through Indygo Junction, Inc.

Beautiful quilt, Kim!