Friday, November 07, 2008

Quilting day

I had an unexpected day with my quilting friends yesterday. I didn't get the message that Mrs. Harada was coming to town (she lives about three hours away) until around 8:00am when Mrs. Furui called to find out if I could change my plans and join them. Sure could! Eight of us got together and had a nice day of chatting and quilting and planning.

This is Mrs. Furui's latest quilt top. She's been making this for her son for...let's many years? I think it was supposed to be for his apartment when he went away to college and he is finishing up med school so it has been awhile. I told her she needs to get this quilted right away because it won't be long before she'll have to be thinking about a wedding quilt (nothing in the immediate future but at the rate she's going she may have to give this to her first grandchild down the way....)

No, Mrs. Furui hasn't really been working on this all these years. She talked about what she is going to make for maybe three years. This pattern... that pattern... She clipped pictures from magazines and drew out block placement on graph paper. When she got started, the quilt really went quickly, but isn't that the way with most things. With all that lovely white space she's probably going to do some fantastic hand quilting and make this into an heirloom. I don't know when I'll be able to show you the finished quilt though. Don't hold your breath.

Of course one reason Mrs. Furui doesn't get much quilting done is because she is always busy doing something else. She also teaches a Swedish cross-stitch group (I think that's what you call it) and she makes things herself and also ends up making the delicate cross stitch made by her group's members, into wall hangings. This absolutely lovely piece was done by one of her students and I fell in love with it!!! But am I ever going to make something like this? Not if I want to do my quilting and knitting. I guess I'll have to be satisfied with a picture on my blog. This is going to turn into an advent calendar and Mrs. Furui is backing it and stabilizing it for the embroiderer this week.

The other thing that our patchwork group decided to do yesterday was try our hand at a mini-Round Robin. I had found some instructions on May Britt's blog long ago and I thought our group should try this as a game. We are always working on the kindergarten bazaar quilts but we never have time to make anything for ourselves (as a group) or work together on a similar project. This will be a first for all of us so we spent the day writing up instructions, setting up a rotation schedule and giving out measurements for the first block. Never having done a Round Robin I don't know what to expect. Any suggestions?


BrendaLou said...

While doing round robins it is easy to have them end up HUGE! Be careful.

teodo said...

A round robins is a beautiful project.
You will be happy.
Look here........

and enjoy your rond robins.
ciao ciao

Shasta said...

Aargh! I wrote a long message that just got lost.

Mrs. Furui does great work - I love the crispness and cleanness of the blue and white. The cross stitch is adorable.

Shasta said...

As to the round robin, I've never done one, but I have seen some beautiful ones. There are 3 things that one has to be careful of. 1 is the different skill levels (a nice way to say shoddy workmanship), but I don't think that will be a problem with your group. 2. is time. Life sometimes gets in the way and people can't always meet the deadline. Being flexible is good. (And knowing where to retrieve the quilt tops for someone who has to bow out) 3. Someone mentioned the size of the quilt, which you can easily avoid with the directions, give a maximum amount the quilt can be increased in each round, and maybe a maximum for the entire quilt.

Nettie said...

Love Ms. Furai's quilt. Do you have reasonably priced machine quilting there? (I used to live in Tokyo and am guessing not :-)

Jeannett said...

Hi Tanya, I love your blog you make beautiful quilts and I learn a lot about japanese life, is very interesting. I live very far from you in Bolivia, South America, did you hear about us...??
Mrs, Furui's quilt is gorgeous, I like colors too much.

Connie W said...

What a treat to have an unexpected sewing day with friends.

Sara said...

Every round robin I have been in (4) starts with a 12.5" square by the "owner". Then they grow! Do put a suggested width limit on each border.

Three other ideas that help limit the size are: 1) the middle round directions are: add a ONE INCH(finished)border of only one fabric. (This also gives people a break of not so much work in the middle of the process!)

2)Have two rounds in which birders are added to only TWO sides of the quilt.

3)Have a round (often the last)in which people are to add to the quilt without adding to the size--otherwise known as embellishment.

And, if your group agrees, you could start with a smaller center and reduce everything in propostion.

We have used project containers which hold the so-far-completed piece and left over pieces of fabric, in case the following workers want to repeat one.