Lucy Boston, No Thanks

We go through so many trends and fads in quilting. Lucy was a little slow catching on in my part of the country, but she is alive and very well right now. If you are not familiar with Lucy Boston, she was an English quilt maker and made many lovely quilts. The one she made doing English Paper Piecing using the honeycomb shape has made her name quite common in the quilting world.

A Lucy Boston block

A Lucy Boston block

For a couple years I have seen the blocks and have been tempted, but have refrained until recently. When I bought all the supplies and made my first block with a group of friends.

I love my block and was thinking I would join this group and do one block a month just for the fun of it. I could chat and cut it out and begin basting at the meeting. Before the next one I would have my block completed. As a quilt takes 48 blocks, I would have enough in four years. I could live with this as I have several other projects in the works.

At the gathering of Lucy fans it was mentioned that you should do the framing of each block as you go or you will regret it when you want to put the blocks together. I read the instructions. It takes 16 background honeycombs for each block.

On the drive home, I thought about this. 48 X 16 = 768. Yikes! Selecting fabric for each block is fun. Fussy cutting is fun. Seeing a block come together is fun. Doing 768 honeycombs of the same solid fabric = BORING!

Castle Wall

Castle Wall

Facebook has a group of fussy cutters. It is so fun to scroll through it and see what others are doing. I fell hook-line-sinker for a quilt being done by a lady in the southern hemisphere. I love the internet!

Above is a picture of my first block. I hunted for a fabric similar to her centers. Go ahead and call me copycat. I can take it.

Look at the edges of the block. It is a square! There are no shapes needed to set the blocks. I have done the math. 48 blocks/ 3 blocks per week = 16 weeks or four months. I have already booked the long arm gal for this quilt.

I am not EPP these blocks.  I cut the templates with no seam allowance.  So when I am marking the fabric I am marking the stitching lines.  I guess the 1/4″ SA when I cut the pieces out.  I am hand piecing the blocks and find it rather a pleasant activity.

Yes, I had already set my goals for 2015 and was not going to get side tracked, but this is a hobby. Give me a break.

Sherry's quilt

Sherry’s quilt

My friends are staying focused if I am not. Above is a quilt Sherry has made for a daughter. It will be delivered next week right on schedule.  The fabric of choice is Oriental.  The appliqué was done my machine and is a first for Sherry.

Carol's quilt

Carol’s quilt

Carol’s 2014 get-r-done project was the above quilt. She just needed a little bit of 2015. Not only did she piece it, she also did the quilting. The center was done on a long arm and the boarder with her regular machine. She used a paper pattern for the boarder and did not mind tearing off the paper when finished.

I am liking the diagonal movement of both quilts as well as the quilting.
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Making the blocks for the Little Black Dress II was a winter goal for Carol. She got it done and had the blocks attached by spring.

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Carol teaches a class in her home. They have tried several patterns from Missouri Star.

Raw edge pinwheel

Raw edge pinwheel

One thing the Missouri Star is known for is leaving some raw edges. If you use pre-cut fabric you have pinked edges and can take advantage of them.

“Really Want To Make” project

I am working on my Really-Want-To-Make quilt. I am not certain if I am on schedule with it, but I am staying on the task.  I will say that I like the look of the clam shells, but I am finding this a boring task and would not recommend it.  In addition EPP the curved shape is tricky and not always a smooth curve when I do it.

I will end this post with some thoughts on what our quilts are worth. I have some of mine appraised as I want my children to at least appreciate the value if not the quilt itself. Appraisals will show what it would cost to buy all the materials and hire someone to make the quilt. The truth is that the market value of the quilt is often half of that.

All this being said, I quilt because I love to do it. It is my hobby. Doing so gives me pleasure. Hopefully it often gives pleasure to the person I give the quilt to.

Recently I went to the quilt show in Kalona, Iowa. There are two requirements to have a quilt in this show: 1. It has to be hand quilted. 2. It has to be for sale.

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Would you or could you make the above quilt and sell it for 400$? My thinking is that quilters do not buy at the show as they are there to appreciate the work and be stimulated to do their own creations. Non-quilters also appreciate the quilts, but have no concept of the materials and labor.

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