Monday, 14 January 2013

Strip Teasing

I never thought the feeling I didn't want to sew would last this long. I am only sewing stuff "I have to" because I have committed to doing it. And even then if there is a chance I can put it off, then I am doing so. The easiest sewing seems fraught with needing to think far more than I actually feel capable of right now.  At the moment, anything that keeps my life simple is good for me. Working on the assumption I might one day feel less resentful towards my sewing machine I started cutting strips.

No prizes for guessing what I'll be making :-)

I don't normally find cutting therapeutic but knowing I'm 1) reducing my stash in a positive way. And 2) I am getting to use up some gorgeous fabrics that I'd been hoarding in case I used up the last precious bit and I'd never get more. Now it doesn't matter I won't get more because this quilt will be for me. I'll always have a piece of those yummy fabrics. One of the things that first made me love patchwork quilts was all the random scrapiness, the way fabric was recycled and represented bits of the makers history.  Even though my fabric comes from my stash much of it was bought for a reason or has been sent to me by friends. It actually won't take that long to have all the strips I need cut and then maybe I'll feel like sewing them together.  

Whilst I haven't been sewing I have managed to read 6 books already this year and I'm actually enjoying curling up with a book and losing myself for a while. 

In March it's my turn in a stash bee to be Queen Bee. I'd known all the way along what my preferred block would be. And then coincidentally I've just read it's been chosen already for February's block and now I having been so sure this would be my block, I've now got to come up with a new block choice.

So do you have great block suggestions? I'm noticing in the two bee's I'm in that often when a block is chosen many bee members have already made the block in other bee's. Does this put you off? Have you ever groaned because a block you *hated* has been chosen in another bee? Are there any blocks you wonder why nobody chooses?

As the Bee I'm on about is a stash Bee I can't specify a certain shade for the negative space in the quilt because people are making from their stash. It's no good wanting say, Kona Pond as the back ground, when the chances of everyone having it are remote. So any block that's chosen has to work well with no specific shade to tie it all together. A block that allows, say a low volume back ground, might be a better way to go.

I'd love to hear your suggestions because at the moment feeling so uninspired by sewing, I'd hate to request a block that I don't really 'Love', just for the sake of having some bee blocks.

I've also managed to not buy any fabric for a couple of months now. So I'm doing pretty well at my using my stash not adding to it plan!

I find this weather very stressful. So I hope you are all managing to move around safely in the snow and ice. Keep warm.


  1. I am sitting on my hands trying to not do the tripalong but I may have to join in...I've heard it is good for getting the mojo back! I wouldn't worry about doing a repeat - do the block that you want - you are the queen bee for the month and you get what you want! Keep warm and sending hugs - enjoy those books.

  2. Oh thats a shame: I always think quilters cache has some lovely blocks: it might be worth having a look on there. I have no idea what I want to do for my stash block!

  3. Noooo, was it me?! I bet it was! Lucy did it to me too ;-) only kidding Lucy, I've been toying between feathers and +x for a while but as I'd already started +x blocks last years thought I'd best add to them and do something with them. Anyway seriously, would the bee ladies really mind making the same block two months running? I wouldn't and I bet no-one else would either, there are no rules to say you have to do a different block every month. If it was me, I'm really sorry! X

  4. There is nothing nicer than curling up with a book and it being cold outside. I have been in a dilemma about my hipBee block but I had a good trawl through Flickr for inspiration. You have a little time yet. Di x

  5. Oh bummer on the block! I fretted right up until my month in case someone chose what I wanted too lol Do you have the Modern Blocks book? Boxed In on page 34 would look great all scrappy

  6. You could get them to make you a couple of scrappytripalong blocks each? Or just go for stars of any sort?

    Reading is good, so keep it up, the sewing mojo will return xxxx

  7. Inverse stars - lots of stars here

    or Bottled rainbows - with a white background?

  8. Your idea of low volume is great for background/negative spaces. You can decide which aspects of the blocks have different values e.g. bright, solid, etc. At the end of the day, it doesn't matter whether folks have done the same block already. If it's new to you and you would like it in your quilt, then that's all that matters. Folks are making for you in the same way you will make anything they request. Jxo

  9. I do not think it is a problem, making a second block the same for a different person, in a bee. If you want that one, just go for it.You will put it together in a different fashion anyway, and should have the block you want. especially as you are in the doldrums at the moment, just keep it simple and go for the same one!

  10. Your quilt is going to be gorgeous! I bet when you get all the strips done, they will start calling to you to be sewn together. Meanwhile, enjoy reading, and don't worry, just pick the block you really wanted in the first place. :)

  11. I've struggled with bee block decisions lots. I have Feb in the Modern Stitching Bee. My ploy? Talk to Sarah (narcoleptic) as she always has good ideas, will help on colour choices and modify your suggestion if she has a better idea. She has the capabilities of doing a computer graphic as well to give you an idea what it looks like. Plus she is a brilliant all round person.

  12. Funny, I retreat to books when I'm out-of-sorts! That's a beautiful pile of strips, wait til you start sewing. It is so gratifying knowing it's from stash!!

  13. what a lovely pile of strips! I am more than happy to do the same block for you if that is the one you truly want!

    I am new to this bee business so kind of agonised over what block I chose but in the end I thought I will just go for what I want!!

    If you love it I will make it!! or two!!
    Collette x

  14. Jan we all seem to want to make what you want so we'll practice on Emily's and get it right for you!

    Maybe I'll need to make a feather for Emily too!

  15. I hope you feel more like yourself soon! Love your scrappy strips! I think you should still ask for x/+ blocks from the bee - no one will mind making the same block twice! Take care xx


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