I finished this quilt up last week, staying up way too late hand sewing the binding on. For some reason the binding is my favourite part of quilting. Besides choosing and buying fabrics, but that goes without saying doesn’t it? It’s a small quilt, and was made for two reasons: I love these colours together and I love triangle quilts. The placement of the blocks is random, I didn’t play with it too much. The fabrics are all from my stash, with coordinating binding and backing.
Category Archives: Work in Progress
I’m a girl on a mission at the moment. I’m on a self-imposed ban on starting new crochet projects until I finish the UFOs (unfinished objects) in my stash. This is following on from my self-imposed 10-day ban on crochet altogether. It’s a bit all-or-nothing with me sometimes, isn’t it? Anyway, I had a bit of a rest from crochet last month but am back in full swing now. I’ve actually already crossed off one UFO from my list this month.
The good news is this baby ripple blanket I started in, um, 2009 is almost done. Why did I stop working on it for so long? It’s Shepherd Baby Wool Marino 4ply on a 3mm hook. I’m wondering what to do with the leftover yarn.
And in other crafty adventures I’ve been sewing here and there, most recently this wee pink and grey quilt. It will be pram-sized when finished and all fabric is from my stash. In another case of “Katie Isn’t Quite as Bright” it took me quite a few days to work out what this quilt block might be called. It’s a combination of two half-square triangles. What about quarter-square triangles, Katie? So obvious in hindsight.
My points are getting better the more I quilt but here’s a bit of a reality check – not everything I make is perfect. Far from it! Sometimes the pursuit of perfection can be stifling. I wish I could put that fear of failing aside more often. Or, I should say the fear of being less-than-great-at-something aside. In the spirit of not stressing about perfection here are two shots of the quilt, taken at different times so the colours look a little different in each shot. Scandalous! And those points! I guess they aren’t too bad, are they?
Riley Blake produces some beautiful fabric ranges including Summer Song which I used for my first quilt and this one, called Fly a Kite. I love this fabric but I just noticed it’s been 10 months since I bought it. Some months ago I did cut the fabric into rectangles, and started sewing them together for a quilt. I stopped working on it as I wasn’t sure how big I wanted the quilt to be (cue craft anxiety and indecision) so it’s been sitting in the cupboard since.
I had a lovely morning sewing the rest of the pieces together, and was almost finished when I realised my silly, silly mistake. Somehow I’d sewn the first half of the quilt top with a different seam allowance to the part I’d been working on that day. The two halves wouldn’t fit together. And there was absolutely no way to disguise or work around it. I’m not sure how I didn’t notice sooner but the next few hours was spent with the seam ripper and a broken heart. Ok, that’s going a little too far but needless to say I’ll never make that mistake again!
Yes, my expression was much like this when I realised what I’d done.
I just love when the seams come together so well. It was careful, careful cutting and patient and precise sewing. And a little luck, after all I’m no expert sewer/quilter.
I splurged on some matching backing fabric so this quilt may even come together this week. I don’t look forward to the quilting portion of the project but I love hand sewing on the binding. This time I think I’ll make some red polka dot binding to finish it off. What’s your favourite part of making a quilt?
If you follow me on Instagram you’ll know this week I’ve been addicted to making a new-to-me pattern called African Flowers. I figured it is about time I stray from granny squares and ripples for a little while. I think I’ll make these into a cushion, but wouldn’t a huge blanket of these flowers be amazing? If only there were more hours in the day.
The colours are from my stash but inspired by my favourite scarf below.
Thank you to my good friend Maria for showing me this pattern! I’m using Heidi’s instructions and then joining the hexagons by sewing them together, in the back loops only.
Us crafters are a funny bunch. I’m yet to meet a crafty person who doesn’t have a half-finished project or six collecting dust. Why do we lose interest in projects we began so enthusiastically? Buying fabric and yarn is so fun! Starting a new project is exciting! The planning of a new design makes us happy! I guess sometimes the buying and planning is more fun than working through the middle stages of a project. Which is probably why this blanket has been sitting in a box, unfinished, for er, about two years. It’s almost done now though, just a few loose ends to tidy up and maybe a few more rows around the edge. When it’s finished it will be the eleventh blanket I’ve made. (With probably three half-finished blankets collecting aforementioned dust).
Diary of a Crochet Blanket – A story of excitement and neglect.
August 2010 – Enthusiastically bought skeins of wool and started making granny squares. Chose Shepherd Colour 4 Me wool because of the large colour range. Blanket originally inspired by Carina.
November 2010 – Finished the 70th granny square and started joining the squares.
December 2010 – Finished joining the squares then decided the method I’d used was totally unacceptable and had to be re-done. The squares didn’t line up well enough for my liking. Took all 70 squares apart.
January 2011 – Started joining the squares again, using the join-as-you-go method.
Sometime in 2011 – Got sick of the joining with about two dozen squares left.
2012 – Left the blanket in a box, untouched.
June 2013 – Figured I should probably finish a few old projects before starting too many more. Joined the remaining squares over two nights in front of the TV. (Paper Giants – Magazine Wars, The September Issue and House Rules)
June 2013 – The blanket will be finished!
I’ve wanted to make a quilt of triangles since I stumbled upon the beautiful blanket Mette from Ungt Blod made. This was before I’d ever made a quilt, and to date I’ve still only made two. I’m not really into the old-school quilt patterns and blocks. Give me a bright, mismatched, scrappy quilt of triangles or squares any day.
Of course I would decide I just had to make a triangle quilt on my first attempt at quilting. While sewing together squares didn’t prove to be too challenging, triangles on the other hand were just too tedious. I cut some triangles and started sewing but getting all those pesky points to line up just wasn’t happening. So I gave up. And made a square quilt instead. And then for my second quilt I didn’t dare try to cut triangles out of the a-little-too-stretchy vintage sheets. Just nice, big squares.
But today, almost two years since I made that square-but-wished-it-was triangle quilt, I hatched a plan to conquer those darn triangles once and for all. I searched for hints, tips and tutorials. I bought a 60 degree triangle quilt ruler. I raided my scrap bin. But the most important thing I did was to buy some spray starch. I spray my scraps, pressed them, then cut them. The triangles didn’t stretch or warp when I sewed them into rows. The points of the triangles matched up with I sewed the rows together. Hurrah! My little sample of 5 inch triangles is a success. Perfect? No. But pretty darn good so mission accomplished.
The Hodge Podge blanket – made entirely of scraps and leftover yarn from my stash. I wonder if any crochet lover ever gets to the bottom of their yarn stash. I’m guessing probably not.
The rainbow granny square blanket – the delivery man arrived with more yarn! I have a month to finish this one. An interesting tidbit I recently read – the ubiquitous granny square pattern was invented in the late 1800s as a way to use up leftover yarn.
The blanket know as The Hodge Podge continues. I still have plenty of yarn to use so I guess this blanket could turn out to my biggest one yet. It’s pretty cosy and just the right amount of ugly. I’m also working on a small blanket that is coming together quite quickly but will have to remain a secret until it arrives at its new home next month. What are you making? I know Thouraya is working on some sweet, spring dresses. She has two of the cutest models around!
If you know how to crochet then you likely know how to make a granny square. (If you don’t here’s a tutorial on how to make a granny square.)
I’ve made small squares, medium-sized squares and a large granny square. However, I’ve always had a problem when making a large granny square; the square would end up, well, less than square. Once the square would get to, say bigger than ten rows, it would lean to one side, look crooked and just generally displeasing to this crocheter’s eye. But hurrah! I’ve figured out how to overcome this worrisome predicament.
And I’m pleased to say it’s a pretty simple solution. I’m sure I’m not the first to work it out but that’s no reason not to do a happy dance. I tried the technique on The Hodge Podge blanket. All it took was turning the blanket after each row. Instead of crocheting round and round, I crocheted a round, flipped the blanket over and started another row. You can see below where the “seam” is in the blanket, where I’ve turned it over after each row. Of course if you are making each row in one colour you won’t see the seam. I’m not worried about it on The Hodge Podge, because well, the whole point of The Hodge Podge is not to worry!
There’s an added benefit to turning after each row. There is no “front” or “back” to the blanket.
A lovely, lovely, straight granny square. Made with a pretty whack assortment of colours. Today’s message from Life Lessons Katie Learnt from Crochet – sometimes you have to turn something upside down to find the solution. And I thought it was just crochet!