Saturday, August 22, 2009

Strings & Things

I finally finished Thing 1 from my Spring String Fling. This top was started way back in March at my quilting retreat in California. I finished all the blocks at retreat and then had to put it on the back burner when I injured my thumb coming home. I couldn't iron the blocks or cut them to size until my thumb healed. I'm calling this Thing 1 as I have two other string quilts in the works. I showed you those blocks here (scroll down a little ways).

You may notice that my red strips don't always meet at the corners. . . that's because I was deliberately casual. I like the way the red "sashing" works, it seems to give the quilt more of a 3-D effect, and it was easier than doing "real" sashing.

I found this border fabric in my stash - I've had it at least 15 years. I bought it when I worked at the fabric store. I'd decided the quilt needed a black & white to really set it off (no other colors really worked very well), and this one has random red dots that really work well with the red sashing and inner border. The places where the white line is thicker is actually a printing flaw, but I like the way it looks. It's random, and it reminds me of a UPC code!

Most of these strings are from my 20-year collection that I was saving to make a string quilt. So, other than the foundations and a few fabric scrap donations at retreat, this quilt is entirely from stash. What's amazing to me is that I started with 2 large bags of strings, and I've made 5 quilts and Kate has made 3 quilts from them. I'd never have guessed that those string would go so far! It just goes to show you that you can make more quilts with just the bits most of us throw away, because most of those strings were trimmings from quilt backs and 'straightening the fabric' cuts.

By the way, those red strips for the inner border and the blocks is from way back in the early 80's, as well as I can figure. I bought it to use in a Log Cabin quilt for my son, when he was in 6th grade. He's 36 now, which makes him older than I was when I bought the fabric! Oh my! That is possibly Too Much Information! I marked the strips with a posterboard template and cut them with scissors, as my favorite tool, the rotary cutter, hadn't been invented yet. I never made the Log Cabin for my son and have moved those strips 3 times. I decided it was time to use them up. I have less than one strip left now.

I have more strings left still, but I'm really tired of looking at them now. Anybody want some strings??

I got my Bundle of Love for Iraq in the mail yesterday. It looks like there will be A LOT of these Bundles of Love for Iraq. So many that air support may be needed! That is just awesome! And, Mr. IBOL has a very funny blog too. I'm really enjoying reading about how this project is taking off.

I got the little doll quilt that I showed in the previous post all apart. I thought I'd share some photos of the "innards". The little "thimbles" were all sewn together by hand, but the rows are mostly sewn by machine, except this one. Some of them have hand-basting, and then machine sewn. These are little tiny stitches!

This little tiny red scrap was hidden in the binding that I removed. And I love this tan fabric - it somehow reminds me of kelp.

I found out why the little quilt was so uneven and lumpy. The quiltmaker didn't have the best accuracy when sewing the 'thimbles' together. I tried to press it evenly, but it just wasn't happening!

Check out this cool old fabric! I love it. It looks like rope, doesn't it?

I'm currently tieing the quilt together with new batting and backing. I'll show it again when I'm done.

Here is Dunkel, holding down Thing 1 for me, here in the office.

And here is Shade, begging for some pets and kisses.


  1. Good for you for making something 'from nothing' .. and it's turning out really nice! Isn't it amazing how those strings keep multiplying?

  2. Had to laugh at your calling it Thing 1 - I used to call my boys Thing 1 and Thing 2. I LOVE this quilt. I've been wanting to try one of these, but there are so many to finish first, lol! The border fabric is perfect.

    Love the little vintage quilt - and of course the pretty kitty pics!

  3. The string quilt is great. I love the way some novelty prints look when you cut them in stings. The border is absolutely perfect.

  4. Your string pieced quilt turned out great, I see the kitty loves it too. Mine always seem to find the new stuff and sit on it to make it theirs I guess!

  5. I love making string quilts. I also like to contribute to

    Mary of has lots of quick ideas include strings.

    The border is perfect. thanks

  6. Thing 1 is beautiful! And I love your stories about the age of the fabric. I LOL'd about the fabric that you bought when you were younger than your son's current age. Too funny.

  7. I love your Thing 1 string quilt. I've never had any interest in making a string quilt, but your work just might head me in that direction. Great accessories with Dunkel and Shade. LOL

  8. Love the Thing 1. I remember when you and Kate were working on your string blocks. You were both sewing up a storm of strings that weekend!

  9. Your string top is very striking with the black strings and border. Love the way the reds bind it together. I think I want to try this great pattern again.

  10. ...w-a-y cute picked the perfect stripe border too!!!

  11. That border fabric is *perfect* for Thing 1! I really like the way the red fell as false sashing too. I wouldn't mind owning a string quilt but I'm not sure I'll ever make one ;- )

  12. String quilts are my favorite. They are so much fun to put together, especially if you are casual about it. Love it!

  13. I love Thing 1. Where did you get the Monopoly fabric from?

  14. Fanastic string/spiderweb quilt. I think I'm going to delve into my pile of fabrics and start cutting strips!


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