Wednesday, January 18, 2017

De-stash with string piecing

  I caught Bonnie Hunter's Quilt-Cam on Sunday afternoon.  It was a short version but always fun.  In between her latest news/adventures she was doing some string pieced blocks she intended to use for a border.  So when I need some relaxing mindless sewing I tend to do string blocks too.


  I have done string blocks in various sizes, and color ways, and many different layouts.  

  •  Shaded floral strips to create light and dark blocks.  
  • Color family  blocks with black strip dividing each block.  For a line drawing to plan this one  here is the post. 
  •  Shaded colors to create butterfly wings. 
  • Leftover random string blocks joined for a quick quilt.  
  • More floral strings with sashing to form window panes.   



     I do not have a specific project in mind for these, but did like the suggestion that Bonnie gave about the center string.  She was using various red strings in the center---corner to corner to begin.  She was mixing widths, but many commented that a narrow or single width might be best and eye-pleasing.
I am experimenting with 2 sizes of strings to begin.   One set I will use narrow dark strings, and the second group is getting random width dark strings.  I am hoping to empty--maybe--one bin and have it more a controlled mess as string blocks.

  I am using old phone book pages as foundations this time.  I often/usually use muslin or old light weight fabric.  But the fabric does add weight to the quilts overall, so I just decided to shorten my stitch length to tiny and sew on paper.  I also prepped by using a glue stick to hold the center starting fabric in place, since that first piece likes to slip and slide on me.
Happy stitching. 

14 comments:

  1. We've done the matching center string thing for Quilts of Valor (when people come to the booth at shows, and stitch a block). It makes every block come together well. I use old printer paper, since my vintage machines make tiny stitches. It tears out well, and gives me something to do while watching TV with hubby. I'll print out the link when I get home. Thanks.

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  2. I've had plans for another string quilt for a little while now, your picture of those gorgeous strings has them calling to me louder. I always use fabric for the base of my strings because I like that added weight but I'm interested in hearing what you think of using the paper.

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  3. String blocks have such variety to them, plus they do eat up thos skinny scraps.

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  4. Strings are timely, as the scrap bags keep building up despite all efforts to tame them. Need to return to doing some as leader/enders. I especially love your watercolor versions.

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  5. I love sewing string blocks - very relaxing! Also love the variety of string quilts you've done. With the matching center string, it is easy to have your blocks look like they are set on point with a sashing. ~Jeanne

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  6. I enjoyed Bonnie's Quilt-Cam too. Your string projects are gorgeous. I've never done one that is planned. How do you keep your center strip consistently centered?

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  7. Wow, your quilts bring strings to a whole new level. I need to do more of this. I have been working on RWB triangles, but I just am so inspired by your colors.

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  8. I like to use a series of string blocks/orphan blocks when I need to make a bigger backing. Rather than just two pieces of fabric joined, the addition of the blocks makes the quilt a two in one as either side can then be the top.

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  9. Those butterflies are a clever use of strings. I also like the glue stick tip. Thanks for the inspiration in your quilts and the practical tips.

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  10. Good idea to glue down that center strip. I like the look of a consistent center string but then I have to fight the urge to make them identical. Using all darks instead of all, say, black is a great compromise!

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  11. I spent my Monday (working on a table I'd set up in front of the fire) cutting a huge portion of my scraps into strips--but for log cabins. I suppose we're on similar pages, tho, trying to work on those scraps. I have a long way to go and may end up with multiple quilts out of it but at least I'm not just chucking the scraps. All beautiful quilts; I do love the way that black makes those colorful blocks pop!

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  12. You have some beautiful string projects. I have one string project that I started years ago and I have never finished it. I used black strips down the centers--uniform sizes. I put light strips on one side of the black and colors on the other side. I really like the look, but I am not a string piecer, I guess. : )

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  13. I love making string blocks from scraps Debbie.......I do tend to make a mess when I do it though.

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  14. Good to see the shots of your string projects completed. One of the reasons I'm busy cutting fabric strips like crazy is to work on blocks such as the ones you're making at the moment. I know the muslin foundation adds weight but I don't know if my hands will cope with all the time spent removing papers, I'd be interested to hear what you think about the removal side.

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