Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Misfit Toys quilt top

Hi all! How have you been? Well, I have met some of my deadlines, waved at others as they went past, finished the things that I absolutely had to do, and I finished the Christmas cards!  Oh, and I apparently decided to keep Amazon in business single-handedly, but that means fun packages keep showing up at my house.  It's like my own private present opening every day.

In the midst of all that, I also managed to find some time to squeeze in some stitching for one more finish this year. Here is my final finish for 2017:


When I started this quilt I was really unsure about it, but now I really like it! This is the quilt made up entirely of orphan blocks and failed experiments.  I connected all the blocks with strings from the string jar.  Again, I was unsure, but it worked out great!  I call this one Misfit Toys because I'm feeling like all of these blocks found a way to fit in together.


Those of you who have seen this top before will notice two things-- first, I rearranged the blocks a bit more and added a few more things from the parts and pieces bin to fill in some of the bigger spaces.  That bin should be the next one I clean out because it's stuffed full too.


The second thing you might notice is that I ripped out a bunch of strings and basically started over.  I had started using the colorful strings as sashing in between the blocks, but then I ripped those out and used all the light strings to connect the blocks.  Yes, it was tedious, but look at the result!  From a distance it looks like they are all white or beige, but there are plenty of pale colors in there as well, including a few prints.

A very messy process!

I thought I might have to cut some more light strings to have enough, but I didn't, which is pretty scary, actually.  I did use up a whole lot of them, which is super because I never seem to have a use for the light-colored ones.

The border is made up of the colorful strings from the jar.  I pieced these in three rounds, going all the way around the quilt three times, twice from the medium pile and once from the pile of wide strings. The outer border measures about 3-1/2 inches, and the quilt as a whole measures about 65 by 70. 


This was a fun quilt to make.  There was no stress here beyond choosing which strings I wanted to pull out of the pile. I measured almost nothing.  Mostly I just joined up some strings and then trimmed them all to the width of the narrowest string, then stitched them on.  The only real measuring was to make sure that the rows were all the same width so they would all fit together properly.  If I were to do this again I would trim the strings to standard widths, which would make putting them together much easier.

When I started, I sorted out the strings into three general piles of wide, medium, and narrow strings, then put the narrow strings aside.  What did I do with these? Take a look:


I made about 20 of these 4-1/2 inch string blocks.  Yes, it's a sickness.  Some of the strings here started out as narrow as 3/4 inch. But I'm no longer saving any strings smaller than an inch to an inch and a quarter.  Really, I swear!

After I finished this quilt top and all the string blocks, I did something radical with all the rest of the strings-- I threw them out.  What?  Yep.  If I didn't use them in this project, I'll probably never use them, so they're gone.  I'll be starting 2018 with a nice empty jar.  I wonder how long it will take to fill?


With that, I am closing up the sewing room for the rest of 2017.  We have a lot of travel and relaxation (and a professional conference) to get to, and I have to spend a bunch of time hugging some babies.  I have a couple of posts already scheduled, so there will be some new things, but otherwise 2017's sewing is finished for me.

Whatever holidays you celebrate at the end of the year, I hope you have a wonderful, relaxing, happy time, and that all your holiday wishes come true.  Peace and joy to you and yours!


Sharing at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Finished or Not Friday, crazymomquilts, and Oh Scrap!

19 comments:

newsurfiegirl said...

I love those string blocks. The quilt top is gorgeous too

Jo said...

Have a happy and safe festive season. Enjoy those cuddles. Sewing will always be there...

Stitchin At Home said...

Love the use of orphan blocks and strings! The string blocks are beautiful.

Preeti said...

One day, you will be teaching a class of bright-eyed and bushy tailed young quilters. And this will be the sampler quilt that you will use to demonstrate techniques. This has to be such a satisfying finish. Way to end 2017 on a high note. Although knowing you, it is possible that you may have another one before the end of the year.

Quiltdivajulie said...

Love your Misfit Toys flimsy - what a great way to use up odds and ends. And good for you for tossing those unloved strings! See you again next year . . .

Quilter Kathy said...

A fabulous scrappy sampler quilt... my favourite kind of quilt! So much to see!
And the perfect name!

LIttle Penguin Quilts said...

That is a beautiful quilt, Mari, and I love the name Misfit Toys. So perfect! Have a wonderful Christmas!

Louise said...

This quilt is awesome! It looks like a planned sampler piece, all from your orphans! It's interesting to me that you rarely use your light strings, when those are the ones I use the most. You have lots of really pale pastel strings, which play so nicely with the whites and creams.

Have a wonderful rest of the holiday season, and I'll see in you 2018 :)

Lorna McMahon said...

This is such a pretty quilt and a great use of strings and orphans. They do play so well together and I love the title of your post. Wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas and Happy Stitching!

Kate said...

I love the quilt name! The quilt is a perfect use of all those odds and ends that end up cluttering your storage place. Enjoy your holiday season.

Alycia Quiltygirl.com said...

What a great finish to end the year with!! It turned out so very cute!! and as for the empty jar... I give you 3 months - ha ha!!Merry Christmas!

Karen @runsewfun said...

Love the title and here's proof that everything fits somewhere! Nice description of how you put them all together into one cohesive top. Perfect project to end the year. Happy holidays and enjoy the baby hugs!

dq said...

What a great name for such a wonderful srap quilt. I love it!

Kate @ Smiles From Kate said...

I can hardly believe you made this quilt from orphan blocks and failed experiments, THEN you use odds and ends of strings and out of the chaos comes a wonderful quilt! Amazing. A great finish to end the year with. Wishing you a wonderful Christmas and New Year.

Home Sewn By Us said...

Hi Mari,
Lovely way to finish 2017 all the way around! Your jar is empty, you have a wonderful quilt to enjoy and a fresh slate for the new year. {{Hugs}} Enjoy those babies! Merry Christmas to you and your family. ~smile~ Roseanne

somethingrosemade14@blogspot.com said...

You certainly ended the year with a lovely bang, your orphan block quilt is spectacular. All of the blocks seem like they were meant to be together and look so happy. Hope you have a wonderful holiday rest and looking forward to seeing your creations next year.

JanineMarie said...

I love how you used the neutrals to tie the whole quilt together! What a great way to use up all those bits. And the blocks almost look like they were made to go together. I wonder if that’s because you were the maker of all of them and so your quilting “personality “ shines through. And the leftover strings! What fun! Have a wonderful holiday—fill your arms up with all those babies, Mari!

Jayne said...

To me it looks like this quilt was planned from the very beginning! All the blocks fit together like a well oiled machine! Gorgeous and perfection!

Alice said...

It looks amazing!! You would never know that it was made up of orphans. Your blog is very motivating. Thanks for sharing all of your ideas!