Wednesday, September 10, 2014

WIP: Vintage Ornaments Begun

OK. I caved. I decided to start one of the many kits I have in my stash instead of an item on my list of UFOs. As I start a kit I want to remind myself why I bought it. I bought this kit, assembled at my local quilt shop, In Between Stitches, mainly because of the muted fabric colors. It seemed to be a softer Christmas tonality than I am used to and I thought the color palette would stretch me. It came with this set of ten Xmas fabrics. The kit price was less than the sum of the fabric prices and included a pattern, too.

Another reason I bought the kit was because it contained a the layer cake pattern and I had none. The Thimble Blossom pattern in the kit calls for thirty different 10" x 10" layer cake squares grouping the squares in pairs to make the blocks, each the complement of the other. Instead this kit came with 10 cuts of fabric, 1/3 yard each. I can get four 10" squares out of each 1/3 yard and so only need to use eight of the cuts. I will have 32 10" squares just not as much variety as in layer cake pre-cut.

I initially laid out these pairings but realized that unless I want several duplicate blocks I need to partner the fabric duos in other ways as well. I will hold out the leftmost pair for binding; I am thinking that the diagonal stripe would be a good choice but I do not think 1/3 yard is quite enough unless I go with a narrower binding than usual. The other four pairs have an upper fabric that reads like a solid and a lower, larger scale print. By always pairing an upper solid-like fabric with a lower bigger print fabric and switching them around I can still get 32 different blocks, with a nice fabric contrast in each. I can set aside the two with the least likable pairing.

Here are the selvages off the eight fabrics, giving enough clues to determine that this fabric collection is Moda Christmas Fabric Fruitcake Vintage Ornaments by Basic Grey. I think using bells instead of just dots as the color calibration marks is a merry touch. Sixteen different dye colors! No wonder the fabric looks so rich.

I cut out my 32 10" blocks and sorted them into solid/print pairs. Here is my first set of eight blocks, spring-boarded from using the solid like fabric that looks like colored Cheerios with each of the four large scale prints. Since ultimately half the blocks will be rotated 90° in the quilt, on half the pairings, I made the two slices horizontal instead of vertical. Then I am always able to have my directional fabric be up and down and not sideways. This way there will always be a block I can rotate and still keep the directional fabric upright. As you can see, randomness is veryvery hard for me.

Here is one set each of four horizontally and four vertically sliced blocks. They have not yet been trimmed into squares.

Whoops! It looks like the lower left block in the vertically sliced set is upside down – but only in the photo. I can right it in the quilt. There will be three other similar sets of eight from the other solid-like prints. I made another set of eight last night and will do the other two sets of eight today or later this week.

I had one completion for this week but it was knitting. I finished the tree sweater. You can read about that in my post for yesterday. Here are my stats for the week.

Completed projects (1):
  1. Tree Sweater (August 19, 2014 post and September 9, 2104 post)
Ongoing projects (4):
  1. Mask quilt (October 19, 2011 post) - packed away... again
  2. Chicken quilt - spray basted, awaiting embellishment (April 24, 2014 post)
  3. Overlapping square wall hanging - paired with thread, awaiting FMQ
  4. Classic Cars strip quilt (August 3, 2013 post) - need to back, quilt, and bind
New projects (1):
  1. Vintage Ornaments -  started in this post
I am hooking up to today's Freshly Pieced post for WIP Wednesday.


  1. I loved these fabrics when they first came out - that's a great pattern too!

    1. Thanks for commenting. The pattern would be a lot easier if I were not now trying to have all prints face upright...aargh!

  2. That is a neat set of Christmas colors. I really like both the ornament fabrics, and would bind with the fabrics you set aside as well.

    1. I, too, think those large scale ornament fabrics are really pretty.

  3. This post reminded me that, if possible, I'd love to borrow a red-white-green Christmas quilt from you, if you have one. I'd like to use it in our Fall family photos:-)

    1. My goal is to finish this quilt before the christening, bring it down with me, and give it to you then.