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Sitting Pretty, at last???




Will this work? the fabrics seemed to sit well together as I left them on my bed all day and I do like the layout.

It's been quite a while since I've shared an update of my hand sewn English Paper Pieced (EPP) quilt, here's the story.




Motivation to make more stars and low volume hexies was ebbing so I decided it was time to get serious about working on the layout to see how many more were needed. As I don't have a sewing room nor a design wall, I use my bed to place blocks for assessment.
I had ordered another low volume fabric to use for the filler/background pieces but after waiting for it to arrive (from the US) it quickly became apparent that the lack of contrast was a disaster so I started hunting through my stash for a contrasting fabric. The white pin dots on black certainly was a contrast!

Above is one layout idea. No, not what I was looking for.....somehow the stars seem to become lost in this layout.




Next idea of the stars alone was striking in its own way but again, not quite what I had in mind - and what would I do with my beloved low volume hexies? Back to the design bed.....




Oh there's something about this which I liked! The design was different to any I'd seen (bonus) and I had enough stars and hexies (another bonus). I busily cut out the strange arrow shaped paper pieces  -which were going to present a sewing challenge on the inside corners. But I couldn't bring myself to cut into the pin dot fabric. As much as I liked this idea, it didn't sit well with the more subtle stars and hexies. The pin dots were too vibrant/loud for the blocks I had made.




After another quick look at my local fabric shops for options I drew a blank. Back to the internet and a new order was placed for two different black based fabrics which were less vibrant. Another 2+ weeks wait and my parcel arrived, along with more Kona white which I was in need of for my other quilting projects.

I quickly laid both fabrics out on my bed, blocks placed on top. The top fabric was interesting but definitely too busy. The lower fabric, crosshatch sketch in charcoal, almost hit the spot but was it a little too dark for the effect I was hoping for? What to do? Well, I reasoned I had invested enough time in the hand sewn blocks to warrant waiting for a "just right" fabric, rather than "almost right", even if it meant waiting another two weeks.






Yesterday the crosshatch sketch fabric in "smoke" arrived. Ahh, yes, that's better - I think. The depth of grey changes according to the light. As I left it on my bed today I also realised that two diamonds together will work with this fabric instead of the awkward arrow head shape, another bonus!






Now I can happily wash and cut the background fabric in preparation for some real progress after so much waiting.
Just out of interest, what background fabric would you use in this design? One of these shown above or something different again?


Wednesday Update: I currently have the blocks laid out, half on the charcoal and half on the smoke. I'm leaning towards the charcoal, possibly toned down with grey hand quilting. Some of the blocks definitely look better on the charcoal and over time quilts fade which would make the grey not-so-nice. Maybe I'll choose the best of both, creating a fragmented graduation from charcoal at one end of the quilt to smoke at the other - yes, I like the sound of that! 
The pin dot might work well for the binding, it seems to look better than my first idea (visible in the fourth photo). I guess I have a little more pondering to do before cutting.....


Sharing at "In Hand" EPP and WIP Wednesday.

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