Strip storage

If any of you know me, you know that I love Bonnie Hunter. She amazes me with the quality, consistency, and quickness of the work that she does. One of the reasons she accomplishes so much is because she is super organized, and that certainly appeals to me as well.

If you’ve never heard of Bonnie, you need to click here and spend a few hours perusing her site. I mean it……Leave my site right now and go visit hers!!!

For many years I have cut my scrap fabrics using her “scrap saver” system. She suggests cutting your leftover fabrics into usable sizes having them stored and ready to be grabbed at a moment’s notice.

Her suggested sizes are… 1.5 inch, 2.0 inch, 2.5 inch, and 3.0 inch. She cuts as many strips as possible and then uses the smaller pieces to cut squares in these sizes.

I currently have a large basket of scraps that need to be cut so that I can have them when I need them…..

I always say that I am going to cut after every project but we all know that is just something I say to myself to make me feel better.!!

One of the things I have struggled with is how to store my strips. I started out by trying to keep them in stacks by color, but that was quickly messed up. I tried putting dividers in my drawers, but that didn’t last long either. Finally, I just threw them all in drawers and would pull them out when I need them.

The problem was that the strings became tangled, causing the edges to shred, and making them harder to use.

In one of Bonnie’s recent posts, she talked about her strip storage method of putting like colors together, folding them over, and putting them in Ziploc bags. This appealed to me greatly and I decided that I needed to do it immediately!!

I started by pulling out the drawers that held one particular size of strip…. 2 inch in this case.

Next, I sorted them into basic color groups. It looks better already!!!….

I took each group to the ironing board laying out the strips flat on top of one another and giving a quick press every few strips….

If the strip stack started getting too big, I simply started another one….

After I finished with one color of strips, I rolled them loosely together……

……and placed them in a gallon-size Ziploc bag…..

I did not seal the bags up in order to allow air to be able to circulate around them.

Here is the final solution for the 2 inch strips…..

I kept going until I had finished all four sizes of strips and then moved on to my crumbs. When I was making the crumb blocks, I sorted one drawer of crumbs and put those in zip-lock bags as well. Today I sorted the 2nd drawer and added them all together. This is SO much better…..

So I will say “THANK YOU BONNIE” and go to bed knowing that ALL of my strips and crumbs are ready for use!!

Crumbs complete!!

Yesterday I wrote about the start of the crumb block quilt design phase. Today I have to actually put my thoughts together into a cohesive design!!!

The first decision was to have the geese move in a left to right direction so that you can follow them across the quilt. This also meant that the crumb block would float to different corners of the block…..

The black block was going to be in the center, but I wasn’t sure that I wanted to add flying geese to it so tried just putting borders around it…..

I liked that better, but it looked a bit bland, so I added a small strip of a multi-color fabric that I found on the shelf…..

…and really like the way it separated the black block from the others.

In the final piecing, I made the strip a bit wider and probably should have centered it better in the borders, but I am still happy with how it looks….

Let me say once again how pleased I am with having all of my fabric out so that I can see it at one time. I would NEVER have remembered this multi-color fabric as it would have been in a completely different box!!!

My plan was to go up the next day and pick some borders but, the more that I looked at the quilt, I didn’t want to add anything else to it. So this top is FINISHED!!!

I really like this layout design and can see where it would work with almost any 8 inch block. I am looking forward to doing some more playing with it!!

Cleaning up the Crumbs

A few weeks back, I posted about making crumb blocks and showed three that I had finished. A few days later I finished 6 more so ended up with 9 finished blocks……

They were luscious but now the question was “what to do with them”!!!

My first decision was to finish each block with a one inch black border….

I kept thinking about flying geese and decided to experiment on the green block. This was my first attempt…..

Nope….the back polka dot is TOO much!!!

Second attempt……

No again….the grey is too bland!!!

How about a mottled black…..

Okay, I like that…..let’s try another one…..

YES…..we have a winner!!

I spent the next few hours at the machine madly sewing flying geese. I do love when the pieces back up behind the needle…..

….except when I realize that I ran out of bobbin thread ELEVEN geese ago!!!!

I did make one other decision about the black block…..

I felt that the white was too prominent but rather than re-piecing it, I simply got out a grey Fabrico marker and toned down the whites…..

It isn’t greatly different but I think that it is better.

Now to figure out the layout and borders!!!!

This may get addictive!!!

I have been working on the quilting for the Brown Stripe Quilt…..

I finally decided to do a linear design in the stripes and a circular wreath design in the white blocks. Since the rulers that I ordered haven’t arrived yet, I started on the stripes……

After finishing 15 of the FORTY EIGHT stripe blocks, I decided that I needed a break.

Last week (while on the treadmill), I watched a woman piece crumb blocks. Now I have NEVER had any interest in making blocks out of my little bits and pieces, but she caught my interest. So, once I had grown tired of quilting, I pulled out all of pieces that were “too small to use but too big to throw away”…..

….and started piecing them into squares, using a base fabric for a guide…..

Come to find out, this is kind of fun and relaxing!!!!

Now I have made three……

…although I have no idea where they will go from here….maybe into a charity quilt.

It was certainly sweet to take the time to just do something mindless, but I can certainly see this turning into another BIG addiction!!!