Sunday, March 15, 2020

pineapples in spring

Since finishing the last stitch on my Forest Fog knitted blanket I've been spending a lot of time in the studio cutting strips of fabric for my next quilt. So many strips! I am enjoying the counter height cabinet to work on for cutting; it's much easier on the back and shoulders than the card table. I also enjoy that I can clear off the top to work with large pieces of fabric so it isn't as difficult to maneuver yardage and cut width-of-fabric strips. Many of these were cut from fat quarters, but that linen on the side there was from a big cut of yardage. 

I am making a pineapple block quilt, my first. Mom got me a set of templates and a pattern book for Christmas, and I've picked out a pattern for a quilt to throw across our living room couch. I'm sure like all the quilts it will end up all over the house but the initial color choices were inspired by our living room. 

The template is pretty great as it takes what would be an otherwise very rigorous process of trimming and squaring up and making it super easy. This block is on round 4 of my pineapple, pre-trimming. 

All I have to do is line up the center square with the appropriate square on the template and trim all four sides and I'm all set to do the next round of strips. It's simple and easy to keep edges squared and the pineapple growing without getting skewed. I am very happy. 

I'm also using my cone thread holder for the first time. I've been quilting so much that I'm going through thread quickly. I've had a couple of larger cones in my cabinet for a while and was always meaning to try the coffee cup or travel cup thread holder, but never got around to it with a project I thought was big enough to try. In the meantime I treated myself to a relatively inexpensive actual thread holder, so I set it up in the new space. I wound 3 bobbins before I started this quilt, so I'm hoping I'll be able to sew for a while before needing to do anything with thread. I did increase the tension from "AUTO" to "+1" on the machine after sewing a few test lines to get the stitches looking good, but other than that I've had no issues switching to this set up so far. 

There is a lot of traffic between the sewing machine and iron/cutting area in making the pineapple block, but I'm going to try to figure out a way to chain piece at least a few at a time to make that a little less of an issue. Love how this first block came out - just 23 more to go!

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