Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Kenny Rogers knew his stuff

I've been working on three different projects over the last week or so, where I have had to make the decision about whether to carry on as per the pattern/previous layout... or make the decision to change things up to suit what I like.  So where does Kenny Rogers come in?  Well, in the immortal words of The Gambler... you've got to know when to hold em, know when to fold em... know when to walk away... know when to run... and I am now super embarrassed to admit that I know almost all the words to that song and I blame my mother :0)

First project - the Bernina Zen Chic Triangle quiltalong.  I managed to get most of the blocks constructed, and started laying it out per the suggested pattern layout.  The instructions from the beginning have encouraged variety and spontaneity, and working with what you have - so I knew there was a good chance that I would be making alterations to the layout.  However, laying it out per the instructions seemed a good start.  It wasn't long before I was tweaking blocks - moving some of the more complicated or busy blocks away and replacing them with the simpler blocks.

I realised that for me it was about the subtle differences in tone, depth and texture, with a few key contrast areas... and that I wanted to emphasize this, not create disharmony.

Still a work in progress

There are some areas in the layout that has quite a lot of pieced blocks in little groups - sometimes the colours I had used worked out OK... like this little grouping...

Other areas I have removed the pieced blocks completely.  I also decided that this printed triangle fabric just creates too much action... There is also some fabrics with light purple tones that create too much contrast, so figured that this was the time to pull these fabrics out of the mix.

I chose a Robert Kaufman Essex yarn dyed linen in Indigo as my background which has a nice textural element.  The design keeps evolving, and I have added some dark navy triangles which I really like.  It will be interesting to see how this finally ends up looking.

The decision whether to replace the stripey block in the Cross Tile quilt finally came to a head.  Yes or No?  Nope... it had to go.

Once again... just too busy when I look at it at this stage.  I have chosen a more subtle stone coloured print and just need to finish that block up, before I am ready to join all these rows.  Exciting to get this project almost completed!

I finally started my Homespun Magazine 2018 BOM!  This uses a wide variety of Tilda fabrics... very floral.  I started laying out some of the elements, liking how it was looking.

However as it built, I felt that it was becoming just a little bit too floral for my liking.  Is it possible that there can be too much floral?

I wanted to add just a little bit of contemporary text... and this is my favourite print for projects that are neither white nor cream... subtle but definitely adds a bit of my own flavour.

The pattern has quite a bit of embroidery added.  I knew that this wasn't going to be happening... so I added some orange centres to the flowers in lieu of the embroidered centre feature. I also changed the tips of the butterfly to a plain pink.

Playing around with some of the leaf placements - I chose some in this lovely grey/blue linen... which I absolutely adore and hopefully will be able to add a little of this fabric to every block.

I'm happy that this block has turned out with a good mix of the original design, plus a healthy dose of me.

After all the fusing was completed, I started the blanket stitch.

While it looked perfect on the top... there were issues on the bottom!

After rechanging the needle, oiling, rethreading and finally changing the bobbin thread completely, I have got a better stitch... although it is still not right.  Any ideas?


  1. Hey no dissing Kenny! I love him and his had me singing the Gambler! :-) All your projects are looking good and you didn't run! Hard to tell from the photo & stripey fabric but either your top or bottom tension is off..........

  2. Firstly, don't feel bad about knowing the words to that song....its a classic! I was singing them too, as soon as I saw the title of this blogpost!!! I like the creative decisions you have made with all your projects. You've found an Ace (or two) that you can keep!!! :-))

  3. I too started singing along! Love all these projects, and enjoyed reading about your thoughts on them. Can't help re the blanket stitch I'm afraid.

  4. I'm afraid I started singing too. Love the colours in your Zen triangle quilt - you may have to change it's name to the gambler now.