THE OFF GOAL PROJECTSI signed up for an on-line class run by Sharon of the Pin Tangle blog. The project will be an encrusted/embellished crazy quilt block. I have printed off Week 1 [of 6] and have set up a binder. It makes for very interesting reading. But the real joy has been in stash diving for all the various materials required. Of course, I have gathered far more than I will actually be able to use ... keeping my options open as the class progresses ... the toughest part was settling on a color way for the base fabrics. I don't have a lot of velvets, satins and metallics in my stash. I prefer cotton or wool for most of my quilting and sewing. I do, on the other hand, have loads of embellisments: crocheted laces of all types, beads, buttons, cording, charms, ribbons and just about every type of embroidery fiber known to woman. Choosing a color way wasn't tough because I had so many choices but rather because I had so few on the appropriate fabrics: a bit of black moire silk and some red tartan plaid silk tafetta. I am supplementing these with a few quilting cottons from Moda in reds and yellows picked up from the tartan plaid since I have accepted the implicit challenge embedded in Week 1 of the class: work with what you have ... historically, it is the whole raison d'etre for the crazy quilt. I'll be using a lot of white crocheted lace to soften and tame all that black and I can use my stash of cording and floss to introduce complementary colors into the block. I'll be looking at a lot of mossy and silvery greens, so far as that goes ... I am planning on arranging my pieces so that the block ultimately looks like a very stylized partially opened rose bud ... I can get behind that concept with a good deal of enthusiasm, actually. The first picture shows the fabrics I have selected, the second shows the trims, and the third shows some buttons in mother of pearl and vintage celluloid that might work as embellishments. Obviously I won't be using everything I have pulled from my stash but I wanted to have a lot of options once I started playing with the design.
Cupcake Pin Cushion: I used a floral wreath motif fromBH&G 2001 Cross Stitch Motifs for this piece, though I ignored the accompanying color chart, substituting my own Belle Soi Silks and GAST Overdyed Cotton. It's another project stitched almost entirely from stash: scrap bit of DMC linen, lined with a scrap of muslin, filled with ground walnut shells [lizard litter - a gift from my animal loving daughter], stitched with fibers already on hand. The only item purchased was the silicone cupcake cup. Next time I do this I am going to start with a smaller circle of fabric since I am not entirely happy with this finish. Well enough for a first attempt but plenty of room for improvement. It looks entirely too lumpy around the edges for my taste.
Heart in Hand's Wee Bee: I decided to use Belle Soie Wheatgrass to work all the satin stitches. So all that I need to do now is order the Homespun Elegance Bee buttons. I think I'll use two: one to the left and above the bee skep and another in the upper right above the flower. The Homespun Elegance buttons are somewhat expensive and I did think about replacing them with some JABCo buttons. Upon reflection, I don't believe the rather colorful and contemporary looking JABCo buttons would suit the sophisticated spareness of the piece. So the economical element of stitching from stash [scrap linen and fibers from existing stash] goes right out the window but I will be happier with the final product. What do you think for the final finish: a flat fold, a cube or a pillow?