I continue to work my way through the too-small-for-most-projects scraps, color by color.
Without the lime greens that I used yesterday, I was left with a collection of dull and dark fabrics to use in today's quartet of flying geese. It reminded me of my scrap quilt mantra, "Light, bright, dull, dark." On their own, they are quite uninteresting, but combined with the rest of the blocks made so far, I think that they'll be OK.
I continue cleaning out scrap bins, color by color. I'm afraid my daily project will continue to be predictable for another week or so.
These 6 by 12-inch flying geese units are made as described before.
I have been making one large square for the flying geese and using up the rest of the mostly too-small scraps in smaller 6 1/2-inch squares. They may become a border, part of the back or show up in a future project.
Here's how the 4 sets of large flying geese made from scraps look together.
When I knit the first cloth, I followed the directions, then decided I wanted to "improve" them to work better for me.
This version of the Feather and Fan Dishcloth pattern makes a smaller cloth–this one measures 14 inches square–with edges on the bottom and top, similar to the one on the sides and eliminates the odd stripe in the center, which only seemed to be there as an artifact of how the pattern was written.
Worsted Weight Cotton - 1 ball of Lily Sugar 'n Cream
Knitting Needles - US size 8 (5.00 mm)
Knitting the Dishcloth
Cast on 45 stitches loosely (I used a larger needle).
Row 1: Knit.
Row 2: Knit.
Begin Feather and Fan Pattern
Row 1: K2. *YO. K4. (K2Tog) twice. K4. YO. K1. Repeat from * twice more. K1
Row 2: K2. Purl to last 2 stitches. K2.
Row 3: Knit.
Rows 4-6: Repeat Rows 1-3.
Repeat Feather and Fan Pattern, rows 1-6, eight more times, then rows 1-3 once more.
Repeat two Edge rows, then bind off loosely knitwise.
The pattern for this project was one that was returned for my feather search on Ravelry. I've always looked at knit dishcloths made by others and thought it was a good idea. The Daily Feather gave me a reason to finally knit one of my own.
I fell asleep last night while I was knitting yesterday's daily feather and so it is still not quite finished. I'll update this post with another photo when I finish.
The cotton dishcloth will measure approximately 15 inches square. It is knit from Lily's Sugar `n Cream from a free pattern on their site. (Visitors will need to create an account to access it).
The pattern is a traditional knit pattern called Feather and Fan.
I like the nubby texture and how the pattern is reversible. But I don't like the narrow panel down the center and think I'd find something a little smaller more useful–no size or gauge was provided with the pattern–and so I will likely knit an improved for me version in the future. I will probably an edging at the bottom and top, similar to that on the sides, too.
Here's the completed project, ready to be put to work in the kitchen.
Making these feathered star blocks has turned out to be a little like eating potato chips for me. They're addictive and I am becoming anxious to see how a bunch of them will look together and if these scrappy blocks will play nicely together. I can't stop :-)
This is another of the 12 inch square, foundation paper pieced, feathered star blocks from the book, A Flock of Feathered Stars. This quilt block, which is block number 10 in the book, is named Feathered Star Variation by the author.
Now that I've made 5 stars, I couldn't resist putting them in an on-point orientation on the design wall. I still don't know how many I will ultimately make, nor what the layout/design for whatever I make from them will be. Right now I am just enjoying/perfecting the process.
When I came across some small scraps of this black and white print of birds and birdhouses, I thought it would be perfect for the quilt with birds and birdhouses and lots of black and white prints.
But because it was a very small scrap, I decided to try to use it in the corners of the flying geese border of the crib quilt ... but after making the square in-a-square blocks didn't like them for the quilt.
The four blocks became coasters.
The coasters measure 4 1/2-inches square and are made from quilting cottons.
The pieced square-in-a-square is paper foundation pieced. They are layered and quilted simply, along the seam lines, AKA stitch-in-the-ditch, with yesterday's quilted feather design in the turquoise triangles. They are bound, like tiny quilts, in a traditional way with solid black cotton.
They will live in a drawer in the studio, ready for the morning latté or iced water or tea that is I often have sitting next to the sewing machine or keyboard.
Quilters often use feather-inspired designs in quilting. I wanted to attempt a more literal interpretation and attempt to draw recognizable feathers with the sewing machine.
This is an unmarked design, free-motion quilted on a scrap of muslin layered with batting. It measures approximately 4 by 5-inches.
One of Nolan Scalin's skull projects in the book is a thread-titched skull, produced by sewing only forward and backward. I wondered why no one explained how a sewing machine could be used to stitch in any direction by using the free motion technique.
A miscalculation left me a bit short when I was putting together the baby quilt made from the bird blocks and flying geese and so I made a dozen more.
Like those in the large flock of Flying Geese units I previously shared, these measure 2 by 4-inches when sewn into a quilt.
After pulling three more black and white prints from my scrap bin, I ended up using 2 different methods to make the flying geese blocks, based on the size of the scraps I used–both methods are described on my flying geese tip sheet on the Tips and Tutorials.
This is another of the blocks from the book, A Flock of Feathered Stars. It is the first block in the book, named "Feathered Star #4" and is coincidentally, the fourth of the paper pieced Feathered Star blocks I've made for this project.
I confess that I definitely like some of the blocks more than others. I've challenged myself to make at least one block from all sixteen 12 inch block patterns in the book over the course of this 365 day project.
This 12 inch quilt block is the least complex in the book. It would be a great place for a beginner quilter/paper piecer who wanted to make feathered stars to start–the triangle "feathers" are larger and fewer than most feathered star blocks.
I have now completed four of the feathered star patterns in the book. Put them all together and they look like this.
The quilt I'm making from the flock of five birds needed to be taller, so I added two more tall birds.
The birds are separate blocks, each measuring 8 1/2-inches square. They were made in the same way the bird blocks made as my Daily Feathers # 15 through 19. I used my Bird Block pattern (which you can download from the Block Patterns page on my Sophie Junction blog, making long legs, and adding sky to the sides but no sky above the birds to create a square block.
The daily feather has given me a different approach to making blocks for a quilt. Before, I might never had decided to make a set of (at least) 17 complicated blocks like these for a quilt. But when I thought of those 17 feathered star blocks as 17 out of 365 projects over the course of a year, it didn't seem like such a big effort.
This paper foundation pieced quilt block is Block #15 in Carolyn Cullinan McCormick's books, A Flock of Feathered Stars. It measures 12-inches square. It is the third feathered star block made from the book.
If I use my blocks in a quilt like McCormick's Stars of the Night, there will be 16 twelve-inch feathered star blocks, one 24-inch block, set on point, in the center and a pieced border.
Look close and you can see that I ran out of background fabric and made do, with another pale blue print.
Begun as a stretch goal, I wanted to attempt a more complex quilt block using curves.
The Seagull block inspired a quilt design idea, using Judy Dale's technique for curves, but I knew it would become more complex and I would need to improve my skills.
The design is a variation of another of the patterns in Judy Dale's book, Curves in Motion, called Practice Petals. It is offered as a challenge to those of you who wish to try long, skinny curves, or those who just wish to hone their skills. It was a challenge for me ... which means, I'll probably give myself a second chance for something similar in the future.
I added fabric to create a rectangle large enough to cover the composition books I use for my morning pages–three pages of stream of consciousness written in the morning to clear my head and capture ideas. I layered it with a lightweight batting and backing and quilted it with unmarked free-motion quilting (which was pretty stream of consciousness, too.
After quilting, I added flaps on each end (to hold the cover on the composition book and bound the edge.
The open cover measures 10 inches high by 16 inches wide.
I want to try all fiber-related "feathers" as part of this project.
Feather stitch is an embroidery stitch that is often used in crazy quilting to decorate seams. It is also used for plant life, as I have used it in this embroidered square.
I drew the design for this embroidered block, inspired by examples I found online. I included the flag in hopes that, despite it's more folk-art style, it might work, along with Yankee Doodle and the feathers in a future quilt project.
The fabric square will be trimmed to 12 inches (finished size). The design itself is approximately 8 by 10 inches.
I always give myself the luxury of a second try before deciding something is beyond my ability ... in quilting and in life. This block is a second try of Judy Dale's bird block, which I made as my Daily Feather #8, but wasn't happy with my effort.
I can't remember if Noah Scalin ever suggests giving yourself a second chance as a project in the book, 365: A Daily Creative Journal ... but don't we all deserve a second chance at something?
Like Feather #8, this bird block was made from the pattern in Judy Dale's book,Curves in Motion, however my approach in making it was completely different. I created a mirror image version of the drawing, printed it on card stock and cut it up to create templates which I could use to trace the seam lines and all those registration marks for matching the curves onto the back of my fabrics.
I hand stitched the pieces together. Hand stitching allowed me to see the markings on both sides of the seam as I sewed to make sure everything was perfectly matched.
When I machine stitched the first block, I pinned the entire length of the seam before sewing. When hand-stitching the seams, I focused on a smaller increment of the seam ahead and only worried about the next pair of registration marks.
It may be hard to see in the photo, but the result is that the hand stitched bird block has no puckers and is perfectly smooth and flat. (Click the image to see the original on Flickr for a closer look.)