Fabric Resolution, August

5 08 2014

Each month of this year I’m digging deep in my stash to find an unused but well-ripened piece of fabric. I’ve challenged myself to use it in a quilt project. This month I have unexpected help in the fabric selection process. While his mother and I were sewing in my studio, ten-year-old grandson Kaleb wandered in, bored with playing legoes.

Kaleb's shoebox

He found his patchwork box, dormant in a cabinet since last summer, and began placing “Ups and Downs” blocks on the design wall.

Kaleb design wall

I had forgotten that Kaleb appropriated these blocks I made from scraps, leader/ender style. You can tell that he is drawn to earth tones and patriotic colors. (He discarded all the bright blocks into a pile, deeming them too “kid-sy.”) The Maple Leaf in the top right corner is an orphan block. He asked if I had more leaves so he could place one in each corner of the quilt. Searching in the orphan blocks drawer, I found the center star block and the fabric to make three more Maple Leaf blocks. I am sure the star block and the fabric have hidden in that drawer more than three years!

Kaleb maple leaf

Kaleb helped sew three Maple Leaf blocks together and proudly placed them on the design wall in the quilt’s corners. Notice the blue painter’s tape on the throat plate of the sewing machine. I stuck 6 or 7 layers of tape together on the 1/4″ seam line. This helps beginning sewers to guide the fabric beneath the needle at the desired seam allowance width.

Realizing the center star needed a border to enlarge it, Kaleb found a deep magenta leaf print in my stash. His mom, Trinity, and I determined that the quilt would look nicer with sashing. After auditioning yardage of several tans, browns, and golds, we settled on a four yard piece of gold tone-on-tone that I purchased a couple of years ago. Cornerstones from the magenta leaf print give a cohesive sparkle at each sashing intersection.

Kaleb sewing

Kaleb’s visit came to an end before he finished the quilt top. I’ll leave the pieces on my design wall for awhile to remind me of the fun we had sewing together. If I need the design wall before he visits again, I’ll carefully label the pieces and put them in the shoebox for safekeeping.

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7 responses

5 08 2014
Beth Stewart-Ozark

What a wonderful alternative to Legos! Caleb seems to be a natural designer; must be a genetic thing. Good of you to keep his blocks in order if you need your design wall before his next visit. Makes you a special grandma!

5 08 2014
Mary Ed

What a cutie!

5 08 2014
csgamble

Great way to spend a day. He does have an eye for design. I always take a picture so that I can put blocks back together correctly.

5 08 2014
Diane

Looks like Kaleb is having a great time! Can’t wait to see his finished quilt!

5 08 2014
Lady Londonberry (@ladylondonberry)

So awesome. His big smile makes me smile! Definetely a picture for a frame. He must have your design skills…

6 08 2014
Kristin

Very talented young man. He seems proud of his work. 🙂

13 08 2014
Patti Hyder

That’s so fun, Aby! I’d like to teach my grandchildren to sew/quilt, too. How did you start with them. What did you let them do first on the machine?

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