More blocks done over the past week. I’m not posting about all of them, but I am putting them all in a Flickr set for anyone who’s interested.

I know you’re supposed to match your thread to the main fabric.  But I was enjoying myself.  It’s still pretty.

I have already done 10% of this quilt!  The enthusiasm surely can’t last… as surely as this horrid Winter is over, I will be out and about and into other things as well.  That is what patchwork is for, perhaps… a form of hibernation.

In other news — I have done a bit of a Spring Winter Clean around this blog.  If you’re interested in a particular project, you can click on it in the sidebar and see all the relevant posts.  Nifty!

Danger, Will Robinson:  picture heavy post ahead!

I have had the Dear Jane book for many years now, and I’ve made a block here and a block there.

I have never allowed myself to start, because I have so many other projects on the go!

But I have finally got my big hexies together and basted (photos as soon as it’s not pouring rain outside) and It Is Time.

Not to mention, Dan and I had a week off.  It rained.  He wanted to show me the Lord of the Rings movies.

He insisted on the extended versions.

I’m not making the blocks in any particular order and I’m not following a colour plan: I’m choosing things from the stash on a whim and assuming that I can make 225 blocks of anything go together if I move the placement around.

Some of the blocks aren’t as enjoyable or visually pleasing as the others, so I’ll redraft or replace them with something else.  Or leave them out. ZOMG these are so much fun.

Seriously, has anyone ever taken such a scrappy, lazy approach to the Big Quilt?

Save me from the Quilt Police.

This one was fun to make by hand — would have been too small and tricky by machine IMHO.  I drafted my own pattern and then accidentally stitched it in mirror-image.  I didn’t notice the wrinkly bit until I’d uploaded this photo: it’s small enough that quilting stitches will take care of it.

Patches in this block: 31

Patches so far: 448

In other news, NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow so I’d better get to it and figure out some kind of a plot!  And the lovely Bronwyn has sent me this award for hosting the Vintage Sheet Swap.  I think I’d better pass it on to Alex. She’s been coaching me in the art of climbing mango trees, so that I can have a tree in my book.

It needs an iron.

Since the Baby Janers have been making this block, it’s high time to fix mine.  Sad, though, that fixing a block doesn’t get me any higher in the patch tally 🙂

Time to celebrate with a progress shot, no?

They’re all wrapped up in plastic so that they don’t collect dust and who knows what else in our crazy house before I’m finished making their neighbours!

After all that palaver over the Sarah Morrell appliqué, I needed to sew something easy but very satisyfing. Plus, I’ve had a little extra sewing time whilst the family have been moving my Grandma out of hospital (at last!) and into a lovely, freshly painted room of her own in a ten-bed house with a full time nursing staff. It’s even backing on to the little shopping centre, so they all go and buy a coffee each morning without crossing any roads. Public nursing homes aren’t what they used to be. Praise be.

Hence: sewing, finished. Another Jane Stickle, because they’re so addictive!

This is one of my very favourite Jane Stickle blocks. Simple, but elegant.

Patches in this block: 33

Patches so far: 257

Get the pattern as PDF

I like this one. Not too taxing on the mind (I needed a break after that Indiana Puzzle block!) and not too long in the making. Plus it seems to dance somehow. Not sure why the photo sees a shadow on the right hand side, because there isn’t one.

The next block will be different, promise – not a Jane Stickle block. Maybe a cookie cutter or a Sarah Morrell Album Quilt block.

Patches in this block: 24

Patches so far: 198

Get pattern as PDF (please read the user info first)

This block is also known as “C-12: Family Reunion” to those who make “Dear Jane” Stickle quilt reproductions.

We had a lazy Sunday indoors this week (no moving on account of the heat), so I got to use my new Chaco liner. What a difference a fine line makes in miniature blocks! This time I used a new method of cutting and marking (of which, more when I finish the Indiana Puzzle) and the marks couldn’t be tinier. So it all went together with nary a thread out of place: you can see how precise the Chaco tool in this upside-down shot of the wheel. It’s a tube filled with chalk dust which falls down when the wheel is turned. The resulting mark is less than 1mm thick.

So I was able to keep my seams under control, unlike last time:

And I’m quite pleased with the result:

I have a few niggling concerns here. Is it OK to have those wavy little puckers on my seam lines? If they’re not something that’s desirable in hand piecing, how can I get rid of them? I’m blogging so that I can get better at this, so please help. Also, I tried to hand quilt a little gift-sized piece with this patch size last night, and it was a struggle. Is this the way it goes for miniatures? Will quilting be a chore rather than a pleasure, what with so many overlapping seams?

In any case, I’m pleased with this.

Patches in this block: 49

Patches so far: 70

Otherwise known to ‘Dear Jane’ quilters as ‘B-3: Mirror Image’.

This is one of my all-time favourite block patterns. And it can be done in so many different ways. One of the best was on show at the AQC – ‘Circles of the Past’ by Judy Day:

Isn’t that pretty? And it’s a charm quilt, too, which means that every fabric in it is different.

So, for my simple block, I chose the traditional two-colour scheme, and cut in much the same way as for the Four Patch. Now that I blog about it, I realise that I didn’t take progress shots, and therefore deserve your wrath. This is supposed to be a warts-and-all process blog. Well, for now, here’s a description on how to do it. And to make it all up to you, I’ll make an Indiana Puzzle as soon as my chalk comes, which is four of them in the space normally allocated to one – and take embarrassing progress shots of me piecing really tiny curves.

Patches in this block: 8

Patches so far: 21