When you piece a French braid, you have LOTS of tiny triangles leftover.
Welcome to the Jungle is a very big quilt, and that resulted in a mountain of tiny triangles too beautiful to throw away. While I was piecing the braid edging last year, I dreamed up a few different ways to use up the plethora of scraps, and today's wall quilt is one of those designs.
This is another leftover project. Everything in the quilt is made of leftovers. Most are from Welcome to the Jungle; the ocean mist is from a dress I made back in the '80s. Even the thread is leftover! Some of the light green thread is from my grandmother's stash, way back when thread still came on wooden spools, which my grandfather would craft into spool knitters as they were emptied.
I finished Lizard Leftovers with a week remaining before the Denver National Quilt Festival deadline. There wasn't enough time to free-motion quilt Welcome to the Jungle the way I envision, so I needed something else. Something small, something easy, and something fast. Something just like Running Out, my last-minute entry in last year's event.
These triangles were already cut. All I had to do was remove the stitching and stitch them again.
The project was a little more time-consuming than I expected, and I'm sure there is a faster, easier and more modern way to piece 108 triangles. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the process, especially after a challenging week of work and non-stop deadlines. Some of my closest friends think I'm nuts because I'd rush home to meet a quilting deadline after a stressful day of work.
The ocean mist triangles leftover from this project are not as gorgeous as the Welcome to the Jungle leftovers, but they aren't trash. When this cup gets filled, everything inside becomes amigurumi stuffing.
The colors from my green batik stash are still, to this day, very exciting, motivating and inspiring for me. Even after this week-long project, I still look forward to the next opportunity to work with the leftovers, which will last a bit longer because the pile is still a good six inches deep. The biggest pieces are getting smaller and smaller, and soon there won't be enough for anything but small wall quilts. But the goal is to use them up!
My overall goal is to finish up all my unfinished quilts so I can start something new. So many ideas are raging in my head!
In one sense, Pieces of Braid is something new because the top was just an idea in my head, not a UFO (UnFinished Object) hanging on my cactus quilt rack. That satisfied the burning urge to work on something different than my waiting UFOs. However, this baby also uses up some of the orphan blocks I created last year to break the monotony of piecing Welcome to the Jungle. In addition to boredom prevention, these blocks made use of scraps I didn't want to throw away because they are just too darned pretty!
I used one and a third of my Boredom Breaker blocks on the back of Pieces of Braid! I used the Welcome to the Jungle block that didn't fit the color scheme of the rest of the quilt. (I made a booboo and opted to make that block over again instead of enlisting the services of the seam ripper.) I also incorporated the remaining band of French braid. How cool is that?!?
This wall quilt is reversible! If I get tired of looking at one side, I can turn it around and admire the other!
The plan was to practice free-motion quilting again, but tension problems and a mere two days before the Denver National Quilt Festival deadline forced me to exercise. Lift the presser foot, two, three, four; rotate the quilt, two, three, four. Basting took an hour and a half on my fabulous new quilt frame. Quilting was done in about three hours.
Quilts entered into the Denver National Quilt Festival must have a four-inch sleeve. I wanted to be able to hang the quilt with either side showing, and the prospect of removing a sleeve (which would cover up some of the back) did not sound fun, so I put large loops on the top of the quilt. If the quilt does get accepted, I can remove or shorten the loops after I get the quilt back.
I also have to install a label on the back. I'm thinking about asking a friend with a calligraphy embroidery machine to stitch up a label using the same thread I used to quilt Pieces of Braid on a chunk of the ocean mist instead of printing a fabric label on my color printer.
The deadline for submission to the Denver National Quilt Festival was this week. Photos and filled-out forms have been submitted. I will know by next week if Pieces of Braid has been accepted for display in the May exhibit...
Linking up with Quokka Quilts here, Crazy Mom Quilts here and Confessions of a Fabric Addict here.