Friday, July 20, 2018

BeeSewcial x3: Rooted, Code, Homage

Every single one of my BeeSewcial blocks is deserving of their own post but that hasn't been happening lately so get ready for a blast of beauty.   All very different, all very special and happily now in the hands of my beemates.

Rooted:  Touch Up and Entangled

"Touch Up" 14.5"x16" Rooted Block One
The prompt “Rooted” April’s #beesewcial theme for Felicity @felicityquilts immediately made me think of my hairline as I am constantly trying to keep the grey at bay and periodically reevaluate the decision to continue to dye my hair. Seeing the personal interpretation of the word by bee mates encouraged me to bring to fabric the concept in my head (pun intended). I’m calling it “Touch Up”. It’s kinda big, 14.5”x16” 
Fabric Pull
The purple background is a bit of humor as a nod to the color of rinse water. She asked for a variety of shades/value for the roots portion and one color for the background with a palette of our choosing.

 This process photo is at the stage of auditioning for the center hairline.  Keep in mind that this isn't meant to be a literal representation.  I decided to go for a darker sliver surrounded by lighter.
the Second Stitch Pass
I enjoy the trial and error approach that I typically take with improv and it's no big deal to get it "wrong" the first attempt.  Figuring out the solution or alternative to get where you're headed is part of the journey.  In this case, the center was distractingly wide and not in the proportion I wanted so I simply took a second pass at the seem (shown here) and trimmed.  Process shots help me remember what to do next time I find myself in a similar situation and give me the ability to share details here on the blog.

"Entangled" 10.5"x11.5" Rooted Block Two
Block two is a bit smaller measuring and came together like a dream.  Using my go to color Teal for the background the pink ranges from powder to hot and I really love the way it turned out.  Inspired by the task of pulling weeds - which I do not love, unlike the first block there isn't a single process photo to share.

Code: Hand in Hand

Next up is CODE in red and white on black was the #beesewcial May prompt for M-R and I’m happy to complete “hand-in-hand”  15”x26”. The words BEE SEWCIAL written in shorthand.  

"Hand-in-Hand" BeeSewcial Shorthand
Because it’s important to me that my contribution to a collaborative quilt reflects something personal, I went low tech and tapped into a fond memory of when I aced  the class in High School.  Of course I had to google images to find the words I wanted because it's been a very long time and I haven't used it since. 
Research - and Coffee
To get the proportions somewhat accurate I kept enlarging and enlarging making it all and thin.  Having the block visually pleasing was more important than accurately placed side by side and also kept the width more of what I was after.

I had a moment during this artistic freedom phase of the layout where I worried that I was spelling out something totally different than the words Bee and Social.  Hopefully not.  Trust me it would have been a much easier construction if I had separated them rather than nesting. 
Positioning the two together
I thought it would be an odd block out visually because of the others had less curves but I think it blends just fine.  M-R posted several together on Instagram 

I wanted to incorporate both colors so I added the drop shadow complicating things a bit.  

Machine pieced, Improv and ruler fee in solids.

Reverse appliqué would have been quicker and possibly more successful a technique to construct it but I wanted to challenge myself as I had done with the Graffiti EFFORT block blogged HERE.   For this block I did much more "winging it" but used the same basic concept and freezer paper to get started. 

Homage: Sketch in Red

"Sketch in Red" 19"x24" Homage
For June, Debbie @aquilterstable had a wonderful theme that you can read about on her blog post.  What a great idea to pay Homage to Gwen Marsden and her Liberated Patchwork aesthetic.   Listening to Crafty Planners podcast while I sewed made the perfect setting for this block.

I've never taken a workshop from Gwen but enjoyed attending her lecture as the Keynote Speaker at QuiltCon 2016  and listing to Freddy Moran tell stories of their collaboration and friendship during a recent collage class (which I still need to blog about!!!).

There is a lot going on in this block and I'll admit it took - a very,very long time to create.  The expression time flies when you're having fun couldn't be more true and I hope the Playful Freedom translates in the end.  

Building Out and Over

Using all of my FQs and scraps there's probably 8+ different reds included.  Hard to photograph and difficult to distinguish with indoor night lighting with some second guessing what's what.
Close Up
Ruler free and mat cut until the final square up.  

Well there you have it.  All caught up showing off my #BeeSewcial blocks and on track to work on my July prompt Underground Maps for Sylvia at A Stranger View.  I'm leaning towards using one from San Francisco BART since that's pretty much the only one I've been on. 

Happy Stitching, Karen


  1. What a fun post - and I love your homage block!!

  2. These pieces are amazing! I especially like the shorthand one. I used to love shorthand class in high school. So much so that I took an adult ed course in it just for fun. Apparently there were a lot of others doing it just for fun too because they kept looking at me and saying "how do you know that?" whenever I could read something!


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