Christmas is behind us and we are rapidly approaching the beginning of a new year. Whether you are happy or sad to see the year pass, it means one thing to me: We are getting near the end of the En Provence mystery. In years past, the big reveal came on New Year's Day, but this year we are two days away and have two colors that haven't even been touched yet. Believe me --- THIS is a definite mystery for me.
As I wake and check the post this morning, I am once again shocked that we are not using all the colors. Green is coming to play, but yellow is still waiting in the wings for it's big moment on stage. I am stumped. Oh well --- let's get this clue started. We are making hourglasses.
My first step in today's setup is to pull the fabrics and it is fun to grab all the greens I have set aside. I will likely cull them a bit with some help from Allison and we will share strips again today so will have a good variety to pull from. Our weekly sew days have been so much fun and our quilts will share the same fabrics and yet I know they will look so different. I'm getting excited to start building blocks and see where this one is going.
Allison arrives before 8 and after our usual tea and visit, we set to work cutting strips.
Allison stops for a minute to gift me with an apron that she has made me. After getting a new gingerbread pan a couple of weeks ago, this is super fun for me. I now have something to wear AND a new recipe. Perhaps I should make the gingerbread house.
Once we have all the strips we need (and then some) it's time to pair them up and determine how many cuts from each set are needed.
About halfway through my cutting, I notice that Allison and I are using two very different methods in making our strip sets today. I've gone with the puddling method and just grab different groups of four, stack them up and cut.
Meanwhile, Allison is using the stack and take from the top method. She is so organized - I'm jelly.
By lunchtime, we have all our sets cut. Look at the stack of leftover strips I have still to use. Yep, we overcut A LOT today. No worries though -- into the scrap user's system they go. I just stack mine up - along with a stack of bonus half square triangles that resulted from cutting the quarter square triangles.
Allison uses her plate method to keep track of how many she has cut, with a plate full of half square triangles in the back being watched over by Elvis. Yes, if it looks like she has way more sets than I do, it's because she is doing two quilts, thus double the parts.
The doorbell rings bringing Elisabeth and Mariah over for lunch. The even have lunch for all with them. That makes it super nice. We are doing a wee bit of celebrating for Elisabeth's birthday that was a couple of days ago and some belated Christmas as well.
It's such a fun day for me as I am gifted another apron, a wonderful quilting book and a tote that will handle projects or a ton of fat quarters. I don't think anyone can have too many totes. Can they?
We have such a great time and visit away until suddenly it is after two o'clock. Oh my, we really need to get to sewing. Now to say good-bye and get back to the machines.
First stitches are finally being taken and the chains are rapidly growing. Once again, we are running the chains down through the handle slots and they are circling beautifully on the floor. By doing this, we do not need near the table area and are able to comfortably use the meager space my living room provides.
After about half an hour, I have the first run through finished and am ready to move onto ironing.
I have a lovely chain of green/neutral and green/lavendar triangles.
I lay out the triangles on the ironing board with all the green sides up.
By doing that, I can just press the green ones up -- thus making sure the seam is towards it.
When I clip them apart, I keep sets together, thus the stacks you see here still have their chain holding them together and I don't have to once again make sure that everything works without running into doubles in the same blocks. They stay the way they were cut. Yep, one set got run through the machine in a different order and has been isolated for bad behavior.
Now to run the first two sets through and make sure the size is correct. Woohoo --- perfect -- now to really get busy and send one unit through after the other. (Aren't those cords just oh so lovely?)
By four I have all the units sewn AND the bonus half square triangles too. One last trip to the ironing board.
I am alone at this point as Allison has had to leave so I make a few changes in the setup. After finding my phone and putting Netflix on, I get a bar height chair from the kitchen and settle in at the ironing board.
Spinning seams, clipping apart, and removing the dog ears all takes place right there while watching a show. Look at all those bonus half square triangles we have to work with. Crazy fun. My mind is already trying to come up with a place that I need them.
Well, that's it. Another clue is in the books. The tray is getting dang full but I am absolutely loving how the colors look together. It's really getting exciting now. Until next time . . . Thank you so very much for following along with me on this adventure.