Monday, January 23, 2017

It's A Challenge

Thistle Thicket Studio, 9-patch quilt block, quilts, quilting, 9-patch
A new year brings a new challenge in our quilt guild. In recent years, a new year long challenge project is introduced at the beginning of the year. This year the challenge is a row quilt. Each month, a new type of block will be drawn from 40+ possibilities and members are to make blocks for their row quilt. Size of blocks and size of quilt is up to each member, as is fabric selection. The first block type drawn for January was a 9-patch Medley.

My interpretation of a medley of 9-patches was to make each 9-patch different. My personal challenge was to make them cohesive. To do that, I chose to make 4-patches in the corners of each block. But before I could make my blocks, I had to determine what size of quilt and what size of blocks to make. After some thought, I decided to make each of my rows 60" wide because a variety of block sizes (2", 3", 4", 5", 6", & 10") would all divide evenly into 60, giving me the greatest variety of sizes of blocks.

For the 9-patch Medley, I chose to make 10 six inch blocks because it would evenly divide into 6, making each section of the 9-patch 2" finished. With all the math out of the way, I began sketching blocks on graph paper until I had 10 I liked.

I've had a partial fat quarter bundle of Etchings by 3 Sisters for Moda and decided to use it for this challenge. The bundle is partial because I stole all the red fat quarters for another project, so I had to search a little to find a suitable red. It is not from the Etchings collection, but I like how it fits in. I did find an Etchings solid gray and will be using it to insert 1" sashings between the rows.

Since these quilts are a "challenge", I try to challenge myself to try a new approach or learn a new technique each month. But the biggest challenge for me on these projects is probably finishing them! Life seems to get in the way and I get behind, then pretty soon the project gets set aside and I'm off to a new project. The last two challenge quilts are still sitting in my sewing room, half done, and now on my list of 1st quarter goals for the Finish-A-Long.

Here's hoping this row quilt challenge isn't destined for my list of goals for the 2018 Finish-A-Long!