Thursday, July 28, 2011

W.I.B.W.O. -- Godson's quilt

My Godson has been a daredevil from birth.   He never crawled.  Instead, he went directly to walking at around 6 months, IIRC.   Before he was a year old, he would pull the kitchen drawers out of the cupboards, making steps to climb up onto the countertop.   Fearless.

Not much of a surprise that, at a young age, he became quite interested in sports.   He played little league baseball and was a gymnast.  And that was just the team sports!   By high school, he was an extreme skateboarder and in-line skater.   His dad would take video footage and post it on Youtube, then send me the link.  I'm not sure how his mother avoided having a heart attack years ago!  

He and his family live in Ohio, where we lived when my daughters were born.   A few years ago, he attended an extreme sports camp near State College, Pennsylvania, so D#2 and I drove west to see him in action and meet up with his parents when they came to pick him up.   My heart was in my throat as I watched him ride,  jump, twist, flip, and land.  

This year he graduated from high school and he's going to study -- wait for it -- high-performance motorsports next year.   Of course, I wanted to make him a quilt as a graduation gift.

I wanted to incorporate the extreme sports into it, so I found several appropriate fabrics.  Nothing quiet and subtle for THIS quilt!     Got these bright skateboarders to start with.

Later I found this panel with a similar theme.  The panel actually repeats all of these "boxes" so there is a pair of each.  The "boxes" are several different sizes. 

I loved this flame-type fabric and thought I'd use it for backing.  The silhouetted skateboarders were a last minute, less vivid (for a change!), addition, but I only had 1/2 a yard. 

BUT, once I had all these great fabrics, the question became how in Heaven was I going to put them together??!??   I got more stalled and stuck with this problem than I've been with a quilt in a long time.   

Finally, I decided to cut the panel into sections, and frame them out to a standard size with some tone-on-tone brights.   The black and gray became a narrow border, separating the center from the border of bright skateboarders.

Since it got bigger than I'd expected (not an uncommon problem for me), my 2 yards of flames weren't enough, so I pieced it with some gold and a couple of fat quarters of race cars.

Daughters and I went to Ohio for his graduation in May.  I took the top with me so he could unwrap it even though I would be bringing it home to finish.  He loved it.  Finished binding and sewed the label on it last weekend and mailed it out early last week.  It arrived a few days later and was pronounced "awesome".

Friday, July 22, 2011

None of the above

Thanks for the comments and opinions about borders on my Almost Amish quilt.  I also got a couple of emails from people who either couldn't or didn't submit a comment.  After much thought and consideration, I decided that the piano keys border would be too busy.  Instead I'm going with this:

Already have a black border finishing at 3" to "float the blocks.  Adding a 1.5" finished purple border to frame the whole set of squares, followed by a 6" finished black, with 6" cornerblocks.   After it's quilted, I'll bind in scraps of tone-on-tone.  

Quilt Day at Upper Dublin Lutheran Church tomorrow.  Plan to finish this top and start another project.   Can hardly wait! 

Friday, July 8, 2011

Calling for opinions

I've finished the main top with my "Almost Amish" blocks.  These were obtained from a swap a couple of years ago.  The rules were to make traditional style blocks, in solids or "read solids", with a solid black background.  I had 24 of them (9.5" unf.) which I set them straight with black sashing and cornerstones.   I still have to add a plain black border so the top "floats" and at least one more border of 6.5" or so.  Finished size will be a generous throw -- around 56" x 80".

Here are some possibilities for the outer border (6.5" unf.), pulled from stash:. I will likely make corner 6" x 6" corner blocks in the same style as the main blocks.  Click to enlarge so you can see details of the options:

The stripes are small rectangles in this one.

Here's an actual multi-colored stripe.

Or I could piece a "piano keys" border from tone-on-tone scraps.

The quilt is a wedding gift for the daughter of a colleague.  I don't know her well and have only met her husband briefly.   According to her father, they have rather traditional taste -- nothing overly fancy -- and her favorite color is purple.  There are a number of blocks with purple as the sole or the major color and I think I'll bind it in purple, no matter what border option.  

Please leave a comment with your thoughts about these options -- or if you have another idea, I'd love to hear it! 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Progress report: month 12 (June 2011)

End of the first year of my 1001 days.   Wonder how I'm doing?   Monthly progress first:

69.  Mailed quilt to C.B. (bargello on previous post)

  8. Got 2 of 3 bookcases into living room.
17. Planted one shrub and various perennials in side and front yards.
48. Watched 7 movies (97/125):
      Shall we dance (Japanese)
      The Women (original)
      Rachel getting married
      Georgia rule
      Cairo time
      Shutter Island
      Big Bang theory; season #3
49. Read 4 books (34/60, 25/30, 6/10)
      Freedom (Jonathan Franzen)
      Lucky man (Michael J. Fox)
     "U" is for undertow (Sue Grafton)
      Mary Ann in autumn (Armistead Maupin)
52. Made reservation for 3 nights "down the shore" in August
59. Taking both daughters "down the shore" in August
     (not a new place, but we all love the beach)
78. Almost finished Rubik's Rings scrap top
81. Had Godson's quilt quilted -- ready to be bound
84. Extra contribution to F.E.A.S.T.
99. Updated blog with progress report (12 out of 12)
101.  Blog posts:
       Keep your *&*& junk to yourself! (June 7)
       W.I.B.W.O. (June 20)

July priorities (nearly identical to June's):
6. Get back to working in basement.
12. Work on more small things around house.
17. Finish planting shrubs (4).
18. Get deck power washed and stained.
77. Set 1 set of swap blocks into top.  (gift for June wedding)
81. Finish Godson's quilt: binding, label, photograph, mail.

One year in: 
Finished: 28 of my 101 goals
Progress up-to-date: 14 of 101 goals
In process (active): 12 of 101 goals
Total: I've actively worked on 58 goals (over half)
I've done the best with "Financial/Legal" and "Family/Friends" and worst with "Health".  Many of the rest are more-or-less dependent on time and money available, but I'm trying to seize any do-able opportunity as it comes along.

Next up: Year Two