Monday, November 26, 2018

~ Good Fortune ~ Clue 1 ~

I've long said that every quilt I design or make has a story to tell. I'm an emotional quilter and those emotions sometimes find their way into my stitching.  Over the last few months my color pallet has been an emotional roller coaster.  My normal pallet of happy brights has turned to black and orange, and now to the darker scraps from my earlier years of quilting.  This cute little wheel of 4 patches has a story to tell.  I understand full well what it means but I'll save you the drama and just tell you my heart is on the mend.  The blacks fabric days are behind me for awhile.  The next time I pull them out hopefully will be because I need a new black and white quilt to go with the ones I made this year.

Deciding on a color pallet for the Good Fortune FREE Mystery quilt by Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville was quite a chore.   As a quilt pattern designer my process for designing is a little different than most designers.  Most designers see a line of fabric and a quilt design is born from the fabric.  My designs come from inspiration in any form and it's rarely from a line of fabric.  It can come from the season change, a flower, a TV show, a trip to Hobby Lobby, really just about anything can spark a quilt design.  So choosing fabrics before I know the design of the quilt is quite the challenge for me.  Working out of my comfort zone adds a little bit of excitement to my very structured life in Podunk.  We live a fairly boring life out here in the middle of nowhere.  So these challenges give me the drama that most of humans crave.  It's much nicer than a episode of Jerry Springer or watching the news.  

So I started pulling my fabrics as soon as Bonnie released the color pallet she chose for her quilt.  You can find the introduction to the Good Fortune Mystery quilt by CLICKING HERE.  My original plan was to use the colors suggested by Bonnie.  Well I was lacking the colors in my scraps, so I started pulling from fat quarters and was still lacking.  Then the planned to stick with her colors quickly changed to I'm gonna do this one in my favorite colors and dearly loved collection(hoard) of Lakehouse Drygoods fabrics.

At this point I'm in Bonnie's Facebook group, Quiltville's Open Studio, seeing quilters pull from their stash and scraps.  Most are staying with the suggested pallet.  So I want to be like them, join the club, walk the line of conformity.  So another pull of fabrics begins.  This time from my old scrap stash in the suggested colors.  Very few fat quarters hiding in these bins.  Most pieces are sizes that would be thrown out by the average quilter.  Not me, I've always saved every insanely small piece.  They could be used as applique as small as a dime.  Well after this day of digging I still don't have what's needed and will need to order fabric.  My thoughts were "If I'm going to order fabric, I might as well use fabric from my first pull of more recent fabrics and order what I need to stay with Bonnies suggested colors."  So that's what I did.  I ordered fabric.

So I'm all set and ready to go!.....WRONG!  I had time to think, read and see what others were doing in her Quiltville Open Studio.  Some of these gals are serious Scrap busters.  I kinda felt like they were ganging up on me without saying a word.  They are pulling from scraps and using what colors they have.  That's why I want to do this mystery!  Use up those scrap bins!  Okay, okay, okay I got this!  I will pull only from my scrap bins, I'm allowed to purchase fabric if I need to.

At last... I pulled all of the creamy neutrals from my scrap bins.  The dark browns needed a couple fat quarters added to the mix but they were not purchased they came from my older civil war reproduction fabrics.  The greens are 100% from the scrap bins. Gold and red both were lacking.  The gold almost none in my scrap bins but I had a few yardage pieces in the stash.  There still wasn't enough for me to feel comfortable about calling it the scrap look.  So I purchased 2 Fat quarters. Then the reds/burgundy were also lacking.  I pulled 3 fat quarters from the stash and purchased a couple from my favorite Local quilt shop on small business Saturday.  The shop is called Coffee Cup Quilting.  It's a nice little shop with the friendliest owner, Claranna.  Her prices are amazingly low compared to other quilt shops around here or online.  Fat quarters under $2, and she'll cut as many as you want!

Al last I'm happy with my pull and I feel as if I'm making a considerable dent in my scrap bins. Let me tell you, cutting from scraps is a real chore.  Yes I'm complaining but I will follow up with I know that big chore is going to produce an amazing quilt.  It's worth the hours spent cutting.  Because some of my scraps were small I couldn't strip piece all of them.  I wanted to make sure all 4 fabrics in the 4 patches were different, so I laid out several on my mini design boards.

 As I was finger pressing HUNDREDS of twosies I found this.  I'll need to be a little more careful when strip piecing. Not sure it would have even been noticeable in the quilt and I considered using it anyway.   But what the heck lets cut and sew one more, really what's one more after HUNDREDS!

 It feels so good to have the first clue finished and stored away.  I'm putting my units in these cute little boxes from the Fat Quarter Shops Monthly Sew Sampler.  When I was saving them I had no idea why, but knew they would come in handy someday.  I only have 6, lets hope that's enough for all the clues.  Now lets talk about those clues.  I was looking at the yardage requirements for this mystery.  Does anyone else find the neutrals to be excessive? The average quilt in the size she says it finishes uses around 5 yds of background fabric,  Bonnie's mystery is out of that range.  My trained quilty mind says there's either lots of white space or there's lots of tiny pieces.  And by tiny I'm wondering if this one has some string piecing to go along with her new book String Frenzy.  Something to think about!  

Well I'm off to ship orders from my pattern sale this weekend.  Today is the last day of the sale.  And it's the last sale of the year.  Now is a good time to get those patterns at great prices.  This sale is all patterns PDF and Mailed that are in my Etsy Shop.  CLICK HERE TO START SHOPPING.

This post is being linked up at 
Hop on over and be inspired by all the Good Fortune quilts!


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  1. Your fabric selection process sounds very similar to mine!
    I changed my mind several times, was tempted to buy new fabrics, but was proud of my resolve to use stash and scraps!

  2. I love your reds and think that you made the right choice with your fabric choice! I have watched Bonnie's Mysteries since her Orca one (is that right?), but I have never joined in. This year I got so far as to pulling out enough fat quarters for it, but I haven't mentally committed to it nor have I started pressing or cutting. I guess I will see. Thanks for sharing and now I think I will go browse your patterns!!

  3. I think your four patches look amazing! And as far as "the group" goes -- you ultimately have to do what works best for you and your stash/scraps! I think all of Bonnie's quilts work great with either scraps or yardage so I think you just have to make sure you're making something in colors that speak to you. :D

  4. So glad you are joining the mystery fun! I hope there are string blocks in this one - I love making string blocks! Have a great week!

  5. I'm watching this mystery from the sidelines this year. There's too much going on, but I'll enjoy seeing your progress! Love your reds.

  6. I too prefer to save every little piece..and recently i cut down my collegiate (Texas A&M) fabrics mirrored by another quilter in specific sizes ( 1, 1 1/2, 2 2 1/2, etc..) and realized i could use every bit of what i cut down to add to a project and decided to just sort my fabrics by color and PRESS to flatten in the boxes. I'm currently working on Christmas gifts and will need to pass on the quilt along at this time. If I wasn't working full time i would be more inclined. Thanks for sharing!

  7. I always change my mind on choices! Pretty 4 patches

  8. Your 4-patches look beautifully precise, both spread into a wreath and packed away in that handy box.

  9. I saw your linky over at Quiltville and had to pop on over! I lurk there and find it so hard to resist joining in. I’m just too busy, but I collect all of the clues just in case! I’m glad you’re out of the blacks. Your pic of Lakehouse got me thinking about my stash of Lakehouse!

  10. I have pulled my fabrics from my stash only. Some of my fabrics are easily 20 years old. It's about time I used them. Ha.
    The Lakehouse fabric is really pretty. I would have loved to see that in this quilt.

  11. Well done for sticking to your scraps (almost)

  12. Catching up with bloggers this morning . . . thanks for sharing your thoughts as you chose fabrics for GF. Bust that stash! I like the wreath of four-patches.

  13. I've always been fascinated by those that choose alternate colorways for Bonnie's mysteries. I've made it a point to check out how quilters are doing those this year because it's something I want to do in the future. I appreciate that you shared your process and also saw that for many it was as simple as "what do I have the most of in my stash?". Bonnie's video chat with Holly Anne of String and Story was also great in showing how to do it from "the ground up". Continue to have fun with the rest of the mystery journey!


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