April is now over and Spring has finally sprung! Having finished a few overdue projects in the past few months, I was also itching to start something new. So this is what I started:
I'm hoping for a quick turnaround on this because I want to display it on my bed for Spring. Starting something new means I have another chance to join in again on Barbara's NewFO Challenge over at her blog Cat Patches.
I've done a few NewFos before but this time my NewFO is also a great "three-fer" finishing opportunity (and finishing is what I'm trying hard to be about these days). So in addition to being a NewFO, it also gets to be a part of the monthly "Let's Book It Challenge" being hosted by Sharon over at Vrooman's Quilts.
For that challenge, you choose a book or magazine project that's been on your "To Do" list and work on it or better yet, try to get 'er done! If that's not enough of an incentive, when you link up you earn a chance to win a beautiful barn quilt block charm to add to a Barn pin charm holder!
Since this is also a project I've wanted to make for a long time, I had also included it in my list for my participation in the second quarter of the 2014 Finish A-long which is being hosted this year by Katy Cameron of The Littlest Thistle.
For the FAL, I actually need to finish the quilt but I've got until June to do that.
So exactly what is it that's been cooking on the quilt stove for all of this? My project for these missions is Eleanor's Burn's "Fabric Gal" quilt from the book "Quilt In a Day: Still Strippin After 25 Years".
I first saw this quilt being made on an episode of Eleanor's QID TV series for the book back when Quilters TV was still operating as a free video website (it seems they have now moved to You Tube with a limited number of videos). At the time I could also watch it using my Quilter's Club of America subscription. As the quilt fates would have it, not long after seeing the episode, I also came across a sale on either the Nancy's Notions the website or in her mail catalog for some fat quarter "mystery packs". I loved the colors of the fabrics in the picture of the packs and ordered two.
It turns out the fabrics were all from Nancy Halvorsen's Benartex Fabric line "Angels Among Us". The packs offered almost all that I needed to do this project. I needed two values of each of four colors (one medium and one light) and wanted some variety in the prints used so I wound up needing an additional medium blue. That was solved by my stash. Prior to this I had ordered fabrics from the Connecting Threads County Essentials-Fall line to use as additions to both my Vintage Treasures quilt (seen here) and my Double Wedding Ring project (last progress seen here). So the blue on the far right is from that line.
The challenge was then to find a background and border fabric to pull them all together. Enter one of my LQSs Hartsdale Fabrics. They are always there for me with the filler, foundations, backing, embellishments or thread I need for projects, especially those times when I really need to see and feel the fabric up close to make my choices. That's where I found two wonderful fabrics for the border and the block backgrounds. The bonus was that the border fabric was on the sale rack at the store (I love when that happens)! The striped fabric will be the backing and was found at what used to be one of my favorite internet sources, Aunt Bee's Fabric Stash, which regretfully has since gone out of business.
I've had all of these fabrics bundled away together since 2008 waiting for an opportunity to make the quilt. My plan was to return to the video and follow the instructions for making it. But once again the Quilt Muses intervened in my favor. Last year, I was at the local Joann's store and they had a "clearance books" basket at the register. Lo and behold this book was in the basket for the fabulously low, low price of $3.95!!! I couldn't believe my luck!
At that price I couldn't pass up adding it to the library. This couldn't have come at a better time since I had dropped my QCA membership and Quilters TV doesn't have any QID videos on their YouTube channel. As reported previously on my FAL list, these were all the starting strips cut for the project:
I had planned to use the piecing of these as the "leader enders" for another big project that was supposed to be my primary focus this month but instead I worked on finishing up another FAL project and piecing the parts for this. Unfortunately I underestimated how far the fabrics would go so it won't be quite as large as originally hoped. I even had to make up two blocks from some of the other fabrics in the mystery pack set which hopefully won't be too evident in the finished layout! As can be seen in the opening picture, parts for all the blocks are done so I only need to sew the blocks and then the rows together, make up a couple of borders and then hopefully can get it quickly layered and quilted up before the end of May. But for NewFO and Book It this is more than enough of a start to link up!
So go see what everyone else has newly blooming on their quilty WIP list over at Cat Patches and Vrooman's Quilts!