UFOs rediscovered and some new beginnings

‘Tis the season for new beginnings.  For a reader of patchwork and quilting blogs that means gazing at the seductive posts calling us to sign up to quilt-a-longs (QALs).  I have been tempted by and succumbed to the following:

Sugar Block Club 2016 by Amy Gibson at Stitchery Dickory Dock.  The first block, a twist on the traditional Churn Dash block went public on 1st of January, providing the kick I needed to get back to my cutting mat and sewing machine.  I haven’t bought any new fabric (yet) for this QAL, instead I’ve used the fabrics left from an old project that didn’t get off the ground.

My version of the first block from Amy Gibson's Sugar Block Club 2016

My version of the first block from Amy Gibson’s Sugar Block Club 2016

Modern Half Square Triangle Sampler QAL by Alyce Blyth at Blossom Heart Quilts.  I think this QAL will push me into sharpening my HST techniques as well as providing the incentive to try some new (to me) methods of making HSTs.  The first block was posted on 11th January, I’m treating myself to some new fabrics before starting this one.

2016 Finish-A-Long hosted by several quilters around the world including Jess at Elven Garden Quilts.  Although I haven’t shared a list of my UFOs on this blog be in no doubt there are plenty! I would like to tackle some of them, most are at the ‘don’t know how to quilt it’ stage, and joining this QAL with a view to being encouraged by other quilters wrestling with UFOs seems like a good way forward.

Fabrics from the Moda retro 1950s Padstow Range. Pattern adapted from Pam and Nicky Lintott's

Fabrics from the Moda retro 1950s Padstow Range. Pattern adapted from a pattern by Pam and Nicky Lintott 

The first UFO I pulled out of the cupboard had been put away because I started quilting it by hand and found the actual stitching incredibly difficult. Having persevered with stitching template patterns onto 5½ of the centre blocks I realised my problems were caused by having chosen the wrong sort of batting.  The batting is needle-punched cotton with scrim and obviously not suitable for hand quilting (so long has this been a UFO I can’t remember the manufacturer or type of wadding). 

The centre four, handquilted, blocks

The centre four, handquilted, blocks




A course of action became clear: leave the handstitching in the centre four blocks; unpick the quilt stitches in the other 1½ blocks; machine quilt the rest.  In fact so swift were my decisions and the actions that followed that I’ve raised the status of this quilt from UFO to WIP and won’t be including it in the 2016 Finish-A-Long!  

The two quilts I have chosen to include in the first quarter of the 2016 Finish-A-Long have both been languishing in the cupboard of forgetfulness/shame for the past couple of years at least.  The QAL gives me three months to transform these two into finished quilts – watch this space… 😉

Moda French general fabrics and another pattern by the Lintotts

Moda French General fabrics and another jelly roll pattern by the Lintotts

A quilt top made at a workshop by Doris Dove.

A quilt top made at a workshop lead by Doris Dove.

Coffee quilt close up

All three of the quilts above will be machine quilted with the new found confidence and enthusiasm I’ve gained from watching the Craftsy class, ‘Next Steps With Your Walking Foot’ by Jacquie Gering. The first four lessons had some information I found useful but on the whole just confirmed what I’ve discovered by trial and error; the later lessons have lots of clear guidance about how to mark quilts specifically for machine quilting, I’m finding these very helpful.

Which new QALs have tempted you?  Made any blocks yet? Or are you resisting the QAL temptation this year?


Linking with the 2016 Finish-A-Long

About allisonreidnem

New Every Morning – About Me Hi! I’m Allison, an obsessive patchwork-quilter who has no desire to be cured! I’ve been developing my skills and knowledge by paying attention at my local quilting group and by putting my questions into the computer search engine. I’m so grateful to the generous people who have taken the time to share their knowledge with me in person, via YouTube videos or their blogs. I’m intending my blog to be a link into the worldwide patchwork and quilting community and a means to contribute helpful hints and inspiration as I continue to discover more about this addictive craft. So, why ‘New Every Morning Patchwork and Quilting’? Well! I am a morning person! I often wake in the wee small hours and think through design and quilt construction issues. My woolly–headed evening brain finds such issues far too difficult to resolve! If I’m disciplined enough to be asleep by 10pm, I can be up cutting, piecing, pressing and quilting before sunrise! By the time daily family routine kicks-in I’ve had a satisfying, soul-feeding creative fix. (I should mention that ‘family at home’ is: my patient, faithful husband of 27years; and our equally patient 16 year old son, who acts as our in-house IT support complete with sighs and rolling eyes! Older daughter and son have both recently flown the nest). Not only do I find early mornings my creative time I also find it a time for receiving spiritual nourishment. I often find myself humming a gentle chorus and reflecting on God’s constancy as another new day dawns. ‘The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning, new every morning; Great is thy faithfulness, O Lord, Great is thy faithfulness.’ Edith McNeil’s chorus is based on verses from the Bible – Lamentations 3: 21-23.
This entry was posted in 2016 Finish-A-Long, Modern HST Sampler QAL, On-Line Classes, Quilt Alongs, Sugar Block Club 2016, Works In Progress and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to UFOs rediscovered and some new beginnings

  1. You have some great starts there! Now go with that flow and enjoy the process.

  2. Marly says:

    Stunning fabric combination in your first Sugar block. Good luck in completing your projects.

  3. Ha, Ha! I have a few cupboards of shame in my sewing room! Here’s hoping that we both are successful in this FAL and our shame is less!

  4. Lee Ann L. says:

    Good luck on your endeavors! I am loving the colors of the last quilt pictured.

    • Thank you! It was a nice surprise when I pulled it out of the dark cupboard and saw the colours again. The spinning blocks and piano key border are made from a Moda jelly roll, Java by Deb Strain.

  5. Debbie says:

    oh this looks to be an exciting quarter for you! Good going on making such progress on your ‘problem’ quilt – that’s amazing! And yay for new found quilting confidence! Thank you for participating in the FAL, on behalf of the 2016 global FAL hosts. This is gonna be fun!

  6. Colleen says:

    Your new year looks to be off to a good start. You have made great progress already !
    You are right about all the tempting QAL’s and BOM’s out there, seems to be more than ever. Or I’m just spending far too much time looking/surfing and not enough time sewing.

  7. katyquilts says:

    Beautiful projects here, Allison! Good idea to finish the one you started handquilting with machine quilting. Mixing the two techniques seems to be all the rage these days. You are ahead of your time!

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