Thursday, June 22, 2017

A Splendid Sampler Quilt

Last year, I heard about The Splendid Sampler quilt-along, and had intentions of joining the group, but never was able to get started. This year, though, I'm going to give it a try. There are 1-2 blocks per week, with options to add bonus blocks from time to time. By this time next year, I should have at least 52 blocks completed, maybe more! I purchased the book on Amazon and it contains patterns for 100 different blocks. Pat Sloan and Jane Davidson pick a couple of blocks for each week from their book.
This year's projects began a couple of weeks ago and so far, I'm on track! Hooray! I am using fabrics from my under-the-bed stash, along with a few more prints to round out the collection.

Here is block number one, "Hearts A'Flutter."
Block number two is called "Wings". I'm not wild about my fabric selections on this particular block, and the corners don't meet too well, but I am hoping that I will like it better when it is among all the other ones. If not, I can always go back and make another one.
Block number 3 is called "+ Love".  I like its simplicity.
From time to time, patterns for bonus blocks are posted. These are optional and there in case you want to mix things up a bit or need more blocks for your particular project.  This first one is called "A Little Friendship". Again, I have a lot to learn about making everything line up correctly, but eventually I will get it.
Here's a quick little bonus block I did this morning.
My favorite block so far has been "Early Bird". I got really confused at first because there were so many pieces and so few directions. The directions in the book called for paper piecing and I had not idea what that was. I ended up throwing away my first attempt.
The creator of the block, Joan Ford, posted some alternate directions using traditional quilting techniques, so I gave it another try with much more success.
Yesterday, I decided to go back and try my hand at paper piecing to make the block "Mini Glory"I watched a short video about it first and then jumped right in. It is challenging, but I kind of loved the process.  Basically, you stitch together all of the pieces on the back of a piece of paper that has the pattern printed. Doing it like this creates sharp accurate lines, which are very satisfying!
The four corners of the block used this method and then were stitched to other squares to complete the block.  It got a little wonky when I stitched it to the other pieces, and I'm not wild about my fabric choices (too busy), but the paper piecing itself worked out great!
Stay tuned to see as I post from time to time about my progress. At this point, I'm not sure exactly how they will all come together, but I am thinking about using a white border around each block will be a nice way to frame them since they have so much color within.

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