Monday, June 19, 2006

Strings


I love string quilts - the completely random placing of the fabric and sizes of the strips really appeals to me. My string quilt started off that it was going to be a bag (see picture with the 6 squares trimmed and sewn together) but I loved them so much I couldn't bring myself to make it into a bag - it just had to grow. So...every now and then I cut out squares of plain calico and just sew the strings on. Sometimes I sew on strings that compliment each other, sometimes I just choose all the uglies and put them together, sometimes I only use floral strings - whatever comes out of my box. I have lots of strings from all the shirts I buy - I use the fabric from the collars, the cuffs, the bit where the buttons are sewn down the front and any scraps left over from trimming the fabric into even strips for other uses. This way I don't feel so bad about cutting up otherwise serviceable clothes and it seems kind of true to the tradition of quilting and patchwork in using up every last scrap. For these squares I only cut strips from yardage or otherwise useful fabric if the fabrics in the string box are looking a bit dull and need brightening up a bit but I am tempted to do another string quilt using yardage 'cos it would be a lot quicker like the quilts in 'Liberated Strings' by Gwen Marston.

This is a bit of an ongoing project because it does take a long time to sew all those strips, but it's good to return to when you don't want to do anything too taxing.

I have been continuing to quilt the seaside quilt for my DS this weekend, he likes it, but I know it would have been better if I'd tied it instead of trying to quilt it by machine. Well, I'm not going to unpick it now, so I'll have to chalk that one up to experience. I'll post a picture (taken from a distance) when I've put the binding on.

6 comments:

anne bebbington said...

really jazzy strings Fiona - I love them so gorgeous and bright. Never though about using those little bits on the shirts

Judy said...

Very perky and bright!! Love the color mix! I too like string quilts a lot!

KCQuilter said...

Just absolutely beautiful--those string blocks! I am working on a string quilt myself. Do you sew to a foundation piece? If so, what is it?

Finn said...

In reading your post I have to say, that I have done string the "cutting from yardage" way, but it feels more planned...less appealing to me.
Take time to build up a box of strings from trimming fabric edges straight, or the last bit as you end a yardage. But I do like the outcome better.
And heres one for you...you and join short strings together and within one string have several fabrics....LOL. Kind of a pieced piece..*VBS*
Did you get a chance to read Tonya's blog yesterday?? She shows the size of scraps that she saves( almost smaller than small) and alot the things people in Cairo make from fabric that we toss away..it's sooo neat to see a whole industry based on little fabric scraps.

Tonya R said...

Hey, those scraps weren't all thaaat small. I threw away the ones smaller than 3/4"

The string blocks look great. Love the angles. I tried to do blocks the Gwen way with sewing big units together and I hated it. I like sewing strings onto paper foundations better...

Marcie said...

Fiona-your strips are terrific! You inspire me. I started saving strips, but mine are rather boring. Hmmm.