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Eads Quilt Along #10: Gleaned Eads and Anticipatory Sewing.

Eads Quilt Along #10: Gleaned Eads and Anticipatory Sewing.

Yay, Gleaned is out in the world, which means I can start publicly using it in my projects. Whether it’s a collection that you’re awaiting shipping or a secret sewing project that you have up your sleeves, being able to share something that you’ve been working on is exciting.

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

I’ve been looking forward to mixing some of my newest fabric, gleaned, into this project. Being able to mix gleaned along with everything else–my old/new stuff and other stuff from my stash–meant it was hard to keep block production up with the fabric combinations that I wanted to explore.

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

I’ve got a couple more than 1 week’s worth of blocks here. First, I got on a roll and had a hard time stopping.

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

Second, I’m going to be catching up a little bit since I didn’t show blocks the first couple of weeks in this QAL. My personal goal is to have a sewn-together top to show you by the post for week 12. If you’re with me on that, hoorah–if not, this is a go-at-your-own-pace kind of deal, and I’m happy to cheer you on no matter what your own timing is. No pressure.

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

Greens, pinks, blues, oranges, mustards…there are a lot of colors going on, and I’m really excited about all of it.

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

Like I mentioned, my eagerness for mixing in the new stuff has meant an overflow of fabric combination ideas and a hearty stack of pairs ready to be made into blocks. Here’s a peek at where it’s heading.

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

There’s a big run of greens coming up–including some original architextures that I’ve been holding on to since the beginning. I cannot wait for that.

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

The new blocks are now up on the wall. It’s kind of amazing how fast this side of the design wall is filling up. It’s also amazing how much the new additions perk up my sewing space. And, I continue to lose sight of the top of my sewing table. But that’s normal.

Eads QAL 10 . Carolyn Friedlander

Tips:

+ I’ve mentioned that Eads is a perfect project for creative cardio, and I’ve loved seeing that in action in your own work. This week that’s especially the case for me as the addition of new fabric allows me to engage in new color and fabric combinations. If you’re feeling a bit stuck, take another dive into your stash or another look at the fabric store to see if some new elements might encourage some more enthusiastic mixing.

+ This week I was personally hit with a the feeling of “I can’t believe I did this!” It seems totally stupid to say that, because I make things all the time, and clearly I set out to do this, but it’s feeling really good to have a project nearing completion that very easily may not have. Does that resonate with you? It should, you guys have been rocking your projects and should pat yourselves on the back. While it’s often too easy to focus on the things that we haven’t done, it’s all the more important to celebrate the things that we have done.

Lastly, we have just got a couple of weeks left, and I’m wondering how you guys have felt about this QAL? I hope that it’s been creatively encouraging and engaging for you. I’d like to remind you that you’re always welcome to shoot me an email (info[at]carolynfriedlander[dot]com) or to leave a comment if you have any feedback that might be helpful as I shape the last couple of weeks, think about future plans and/or consider possible QALs in the future.

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Eads Quilt Along #9: Goals and Deadlines.

Eads Quilt Along #9: Goals and Deadlines.

To be honest, goals and deadlines–whether self-inflicted or external–are the only reason that I get anything done. I was thinking about this last night while also completely distracted by and dreaming about new projects. In thinking about new things that I wanted to make, it was hard not to think about all of the previous dream projects that have been started but have yet to be finished. It’s not that I don’t want them to be finished, it’s just too easy for them to get pushed aside when other things need to get done. It kind of made me sad, but then it also made me think about this Eads project which very easily could have been one of those languishing in a pile somewhere. Yay for the fact that it’s not!

The truth is that definite goals and hard deadlines make dreams become real. Maybe other strategies work well for you, but this is what works for me. Had I not taken on this QAL, the idea of a 2nd Eads would probably still be just that–an idea. Or maybe, I’d have gotten a few blocks made at some point and they’d be sitting around and very likely destined to live out their lives in a pile of unfinished things in my studio. Ask me how I know this…

So yeah, goals. I’m in to them.

And to be clear, there are TONS of things that I’ve started and not finished. If you have a pile of unfinished projects haunting you–don’t worry. You’re not alone. In fact, I was cleaning out a shelf recently and discovered a finished quilt top sitting with backing fabric that I had no idea existed. Not a clue. What makes it worse is that it is an appliqué project, meaning it and I spent some time together, and yet despite that, I still had no idea that it was there. Oops!

While I can attest to having plenty of unfinished projects sitting around, I realized while working on my Eads blocks this week that I need to be thinking about which project to grant a deadline to next…

Anyone with me?

To the blocks!

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

This week is a good continuation from the previous weeks in that I was drawn to a mixture of textures and prints from my own collections as well as a few prized items from my stash. Have you been finding magical pieces in your stash that fit in perfectly? This week felt like that.

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

There’s a merry mix of linens and cottons and even a lawn from my most recent collection. This week’s fabrics include: Lucky Strikes by Kim Kight, green reproduction print (unknown) from my stash, Lotta print (from previous weeks) and some doe, friedlander, friedlander lawn and euclid from me.

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

In the end, it feels like I’m connecting colors and ideas from previous weeks, which I’m really excited about. There’s the natural-vibe in there, plus some peachy orange to connect to the warmer shades that I’ve used, and then there are bits of green harkening back to the green theme that’s plagued me from the beginning.

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

Also, the bonus of movable design walls is that they are 2-sided. Instead of taking everything down from the previous week, I realized that I could just flip my board around. Clean slate accomplished! I cannot wait to fully lay this guy out.

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

By the way, you may notice that I have a new addition to my sewing space. I’m trying out a Wafer 1 lightbox from the Daylight company, and I have to say that I’m already a fan. I’ve only had it about a week, so I’ll save my official assessment for later, but for now I am massively impressed with its sleekness–it’s so thin that it doesn’t get in the way on my extension table. And it’s been pretty handy to use while paper piecing. It’s kind of falling into that category of I-didn’t-know-I-needed-it-but-now-that-I-have-it-I-may-not-be-able-to-live-without-it…

That is a thing.

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

Tips:

+ Goals are good! If you’re like me, there needs to be something holding your feet to the fire. Whether it’s work-related or personal, enforcing an endpoint to your project means you’re more likely to finish. And, the finish itself will feel so good that you’ll feel encouraged and therefore more likely to finish many more.

+ External deadlines can come from anywhere. Is there a baby quilt that you want to make for a new baby in your life? Maybe some friends are getting married, and you want to shower them with something special. Whatever the reason, situations like these are perfect excuses to give yourself a deadline and to stick to it.

+ On an unrelated technical note, paper piecing makes working with different types of fabric much more manageable. You’ve probably noticed my willingness to mix all types of fabric from heavier linens to quilting cottons to cotton lawns. The paper foundation helps stabilize the fabrics and therefore equalize their differences. Go, paper piecing!

 

Eads QAL 9 . Carolyn Friedlander

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Eads Quilt Along #8: Layout Play and Borders.

Eads Quilt Along #8: Layout Play and Borders.

Even when you’re working with just 1 block, there is so much you can do when it comes to layout. Last week, we mixed things up by just moving the blocks around. Doing that not only changes the scenery, but it is also a great way to start playing with your layout and thinking about how your pieces can work together in different ways.

Eads Quilt . Carolyn Friedlander

When it comes to borders, I love them. They can be an area of rest, or they can be an area to showcase some quilting or a special fabric–they can do a lot! In my first Eads, I knew that I wanted the block design to go edge-to-edge, which meant no official border. Despite that, I couldn’t help but think about how I could bring the idea of one in even though I wasn’t actually going to have one. If you take a look at my Eads, you’ll notice a chunk of red/orangey blocks–those were the result of my longing for a border. I was (still am) enticed by the idea of less-contrasting blocks that can be grouped together to become a border.

In the end, I didn’t group my red/orangey blocks into a tight row. I liked the idea of them being less formal and more integrated into the quilt which is why I grouped them the way that I did.

Eads Quilt . Carolyn Friedlander

Having said that, with the next version, the idea of a more formal border created by the blocks is something I still think about. I’m not sure if it’ll happen in the end, I’m basically just going with the flow on this one, but it’s an idea that I wanted to throw out to you in case you’re someone who sometimes longs for borders like I do.

Here are the blocks for the week.

Eads QAL 8 . Carolyn Friedlander

I jumped into that green piece from carkai and finished up the black piece from doe–both pieces from my initial fabric pull. There’s also a print from friedlander and then more UPPERCASE and back to some Lotta.

Eads QAL 8 . Carolyn Friedlander

Some euclid was added in to continue on the linen/natural/texture-y trend that I seem to be into.

Eads QAL 8 . Carolyn Friedlander

Do you look forward to finishing new blocks just to see how they fit into the whole? I really do. I find it to be a satisfying end to a sewing session to find places for the new blocks.

Eads QAL 8 . Carolyn Friedlander

Shuffling things around last week sort of opened the box on moving things around, so it was hard not to get into too much of that this week.

Eads QAL 8 . Carolyn Friedlander

I also kept thinking about how crazy my sewing area is looking…

Eads QAL 8 . Carolyn Friedlander

I really wanted to continue moving things around, but there are other things to be done, and I think I’ll leave most of the major layout-ing until the end when I have all of my blocks complete.

Eads QAL 8 . Carolyn Friedlander

Tips:

+ Blocks don’t have to just be blocks. They can act as borders, delineators or blenders depending on their placement in the overall layout as well as on the fabrics that you choose for them.

+ Are you having fun or getting a little stressed out? Visually, things were getting a little too cluttered for me, not only because I have so many blocks, but also because they are really outgrowing the area, so I simply stacked some of them, and I may stack more. I just needed a little more breathing space on the design wall.

+ As a continuation from the note above, don’t pin all of your blocks on the wall at once. Instead, focus on smaller groupings that you can change out regularly. Not only will this keep things looking fresh, but the changing scenery will make you think of your project in new ways.

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