Saturday, January 23, 2016

Sewing a Blue Streak

I hate blue. At the beginning of this never-ending month, I loved it. But I have been sewing like the wind. Sidebar: Have you ever seen the movie “Three Amigos”?  Martin Short, Steve Martin and Chevy Chase were in it. They encourage a tiny old-time western town to save itself from the coming bad guy, El Guapo. But the townspeople’s only skill is sewing. So, he has them sew a big phony backdrop of the desert to hide the town behind. And sewed they did! He ran around encouraging them to “Sew Like the Wind!”. You can see the little clip here.

OK, so I really do like blue, but I am just OVER it for this month. However, I have more blocks to show you this week.  Next week I’ll just do a recap of my RSC blocks for the month as well as other sewing projects I hope to have completed. But I digress....

The three Dresden blocks are done.  They were machine-stitched onto a 20.5” pink or yellow background.

But first I had to back the doilies with a solid cotton circle. And because one of the doilies was age-stained in the center (and I had unsuccessfully to completely remove it), I decided to add yo-yos (Suffolk Puffs) to the very center. The yo-yos will match the block color.  I may do a tutorial on how I did all that some time.

I was going to work with my selvages this week, but just couldn’t decide how I wanted to use them. After much online research, I sat down to piece and realized that I really didn’t have enough to work with. That’s OK; I will table that project until next year. There is plenty on my plate without it.

So all that was left for me to do was to sew up the chunks and bits and leftovers.  From them I made 10 - 8.5” (unfinished) blocks.  I still had some blue fabric left over, but not much (probably about a fat quarter’s worth total in 4-5 prints; not enough for any variety).

Then I got this idea to pin up the ten 8.5” crumb slabs with the ten 8.5” 16-patches from last week. CHAOS. It is a certain bet that THEY will not be playing together in any future quilts!!

Once the blue was (finally) done, I turned to Seeing Red, the ugly monstrosity that I have pieced for my brother-in-law (although I didn’t intend for it to be so ugly). My trusty feline supervisors, Alfalfa and Darla were of enormous assistance.

Here is a BEFORE shot, as I had just laid down the quilt backing on the dining area floor:

Then I ran downstairs to my studio to get painters tape and the batting. When I came up, it was very clear that the supervisors had completed their inspection:

But somehow I managed to finish basting it, which was my only sewing goal of the day (I had to clean the floor first, no small feat).

Today I’ll start quilting it. As a break from quilting, I can finish piecing the Valentine Disappearing Nine-Patch (D9P).

I hope to have them both done before the end of the month, so I can get busy with February’s color as soon as it’s announced. We’ll be on vacation for a good part of February, so I need to get right on it!

Looking forward to seeing more scrappy BLUE goodness? Why not join us at So Scrappy for Scrappy Saturday? Participants from all over this blue planet are linking up their projects!!

Until next time,

Cathy maroon


  1. Sorry that you are tired of blue already. There will be a new color before you know it. Though the crumbs might seem like a bit much all jammed together, a bit of sashing or nice consistent alternate block will make all the difference.

  2. For being tired of blue, you've done some great work with it! Love the doily in the center of the Dresden. And those slabs look great! I'm tired of blue, too, and ready for a brighter color.

  3. What an original idea to use a crocheted doily as the centre of the Dresden Plate. I hope too that February's colour is a bit brighter.

  4. I'm getting tired of blue, too, though having purple to play with as an accent has certainly helped!
    Your Dresdens are beautiful - love those doilies in the centers!

  5. FANTASTIC solution for your Dresden block!! Lots of BLUE loveliness at your house, but I really like the quilt that you've made for your BIL. I don't think it's at all ugly... simply cozy!!

  6. Would you like my selveges? I have a bag full, keep thinking I'll do some thing, but find I have too many other projects I'd rather do.

  7. Love the doily idea for the centers...rather shabby chic.

    Yes, it takes a lot of selvages! One of these days I need to decide what to do with mine so I can get rid of the box of them from my dinky sewing room.

    I think I'm going to turn my blue crumb blocks into stars...or not.

  8. The doilies are a good solution for the Dresden centers. The yo-yo is a nice touch. I'm sure you can live through one more week of blue. Keep up the good work!

  9. What a nice idea to add doilies to the centre of the Dresdens. They were lovely to start with, but they are now really enhanced.

  10. Oh my - I love your crumb blocks! I'm always envious of other people's crumb and slab blocks, as I think mine always wind up looking like a dog's dinner. Fear not about one more week of January - Angela usually gives a big hint about the next month's color before the month ends, so we can start playing with something new.

  11. I'm sorry this month has left you feeling you've had enough of blue but you have done a lot! You have some great blocks at least.

  12. I'm sorry you're now feeling blue over blues, but it's my favourite colour and so I have to say how much I like what you've done. AND - I really like the combination of blocks too. I think it would make a beautiful modern quilt. Should I duck and run now, or later?

  13. Funny post . . . and that large red quilt is NOT ugly. In the photos, it's quite striking.

  14. and I will love to continue working with the blue fabrics. So many ideas and only one more week. LOL
    Your dresden plate is very charming.

  15. Some colors seem to go on and on. It just means you have more blue fabric than maybe another color. You have made lots of lovely blue blocks. I love seeing the doily block.

  16. I confess, I love the blue improv. The cool blues keep it calm and not chaotic, and it's very well balanced. It's a winner!


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