Friday, March 29, 2013

3rd UFO finish for 2013!! "SPRING GARDEN"

It feels so great to finally have this quilt finished.

It has a long story and it goes something like this:

This quilt began its life as a mystery quilt off of Bonnie Hunter's website,  I have loved my journey with Bonnie.  Learning to steer away from the matchy matchy style of EXPENSIVE quilting and using what I have on hand to make scrap quilts has been a very liberating and fulfilling experience.  Thank you Bonnie for opening my eyes!  Some of my more interesting scrap quilts have much more character than those I've created from purpose-bought yardage alone.  Our quilting ancestors knew a thing or two!!

Anyway, this is Bonnie's pattern called ROLL ROLL COTTON BOLL (see her button bottom right column of my blog).  It uses strings pieced onto foundation paper and Bonnie encouraged us to 'throw it all in there'.  In mine is everything (except Y2K prints which I never owned - this is an inside joke because she has tons of Y2K fabric that she cuts up and puts in many of her quilts).  If the colour was neutral it didn't matter what the subject of the fabric was.  I have polka dots next to kiddie prints, next to batiks, etc.  I know!!! Liberated or what!!??  Anyway, this quilt and I have a story to tell as it hasn't been without its trauma.

The foundation paper I used for the string triangles was Ricky Tims' washable foundation paper.  It's wonderful stuff and I would use it again in a heartbeat.  But I did something very stupid.  After finishing all of the string blocks, I wanted to soak off the washable foundation but we were due to a funeral so I decided...wait for put it in the washing machine on 'delicate'.  I thought the gentle agitation of the machine would just loosen off the foundation paper.  BIG MISTAKE!  You're probably rolling your eyes and thinking 'what were you thinking?'.  I know.  It looked like someone had emptied a whole Kleenex box into the washing machine.  The floor to the laundry looked like we were flying above the clouds.  And yes, I put them in the dryer and then had to iron them to make them behave enough to be pieced into the quilt.  Trauma #1.

Then I happily started piecing my string blocks together with the pieced blocks but put it away for whatever reason that I cannot remember at the moment.  But what I do remember is our decision to list our house for sale and the mad packing up we did to stage the house.  Into a moving box it went and I lost control.  I had people helping pack (mostly our kids and their friends) and most of my sewing stuff went into the garage but I lost track of what went where.

It was time for my annual November retreat and I really wanted to pick up where I left off and finish this quilt.  I started packing up my projects and looked in all of those garage boxes for my half-finished quilt.  Nowhere to be found.  Oh no!!!  Did it go to the thrift store by accident??  Remember we were staging and decluttering and I figured the worst had happened.  All those bazillion half square triangles that became the frame of those blocks and all those string blocks had left me forever.  Waaaaaahhhhh!!   But off I went to my retreat pining away for my Roll Roll Cotton Boll but managing to find something else to do.

Well, almost a year later I was looking in a hall closet into a box that I thought came from one of the kids' rooms when what did I see?  "SEWING ROOM".  I think I sucked all the air out of the room as I gasped.  Could it be??  YES!!!!!  There it was, safe and sound!  I am pretty sure I jumped up and down that day that the lost quilt had been found.  We were reunited once again.  The quilt WOULD be finished!  I was overjoyed.  And then it was time for another November retreat.  And of course, what did I take with me to finish ??  Yup.  My Roll Roll Cotton Boll quilt.  I got it to the stage of getting the borders on which you can read in this post.  I've just recently finished the sewing the binding on and this quilt will now share the spotlight with this quilt which has until today been living in the Queen suite of our B&B.

They will both be used on this bed.  I find it's just nice to switch up the look from time to time.  You will see that we've also done a bit of a makeover on this room, getting rid of the dated brass bed and adding the wooden DIY headboard that my DH created from an idea on Pinterest.

Anyway, I told you it was a quilt with a story.  It was worth every single frustration along the way.  I've named the quilt "My Spring Garden".  Roll Roll Cotton Boll makes total sense for those who live in North Carolina where Bonnie is from.  But for those who live in Canada and have rarely seen Cotton fields, this name made more sense for my quilt.

This has been an unusually long post for me so with that I'll sign off for now.  Thanks for listening to my quilt story.

Until next time,