Above the Painted Drinking Glass

This quilt is called "Above the Painted Drinking Glass". This reminded me of looking into a funky drinking glass directly from above.
Design: Joanne Grimes
Materials: thrift store
Machine pieced and quilted: Joanne Grimes
Size: 57 1/2 inches square or 4' 9 1/2" square
Above the Painted Drinking Glass
The links below show the process of making this quilt.
  • Mar 7, 2014
  • Mar 6, 2014
  • Mar 5, 2014
  • Mar 4, 2014
  • Mar 3, 2014
  • Mar 2, 2014
  • Feb 28, 2014
  • Feb 27, 2014
  • Feb 26, 2014
  • Feb 25, 2014
  • Feb 24, 2014
  • Feb 23, 2014
  • Feb 22, 2014
  • Feb 21, 2014
  • Feb 20, 2014
  • Feb 19, 2014
  • Feb 18, 2014
  • Feb 17, 2014
  • Feb 16, 2014
  • Feb 15, 2014
  • Feb 14, 2014
  • Feb 14 ***************************************************************************
    This is the start of a new quilt project. I'm going to do the blog part of this with a slightly different approach. I will be updating this post as I work rather than one giant post when the quilt is finished.
    Let me get started.
    I need to pick out my design from my folder:
    Even though I have all of these scanned onto my laptop I still pull them out of the folder and spread them out on the floor. It helps me see the actual sizes of the drawings. You're also getting a sneak peak into my eventual quilt collection or my madness, you pick. Anyway see the orangey-yellow circle at the bottom of the pile? That's the winning design for this project. It's also one of my 'old' drawings from the late 1990s. I drew most of these things on school notebooks when I was in gradeschool. There's a few EQ7 printouts there, too. Ok now onto the next phase.
    I need to figure out exactly how the design will go from sketch to quilt:
    Ok now without ruining the original I can use the wonders of Photoshop to make notes on the sketch about what parts will be what. The original sketch is roughly a 6.5" diameter circle. Doing some quick math brings the full quilt size to roughly 52" square. I used 1/4" on the design which will be equal to 2" on the quilt. That means the smallest pieces will be some triangles near the center about 1/2" from base to tip. That's mighty small for piecing, but I have pieced smaller. This particular design also looks like a great place to try some trapunto.
    What my notes mean: (anything can change when I start drawing the design out to quilt size)
    ?: I'll figure out what those parts will be when I draw the design out to the workable quilt size.
    em: embroidery areas
    t, tr, trapunto: trapunto areas
    pcs: pieced areas
    Feb 15 ***************************************************************************
    Drawing day...The tools I need for this part of the job which is laying out the paper needed for the pieces:
    I use the right angles to help keep the freezer paper tear-offs in a general square. The tape measures are pulled out the the length I need. I went out to about 5 feet just to be safe. The quilt is only supposed to get to 4' 4" or so, not including a border. I tape the freezer paper on the non-shiny side with some tape that I need to get rid of. It doesn't matter as long as I keep the paper straight and flat. I use the box cutter to cut the cheesy tape.

    Oh goody now it's time to draw. I have a notepad full of scribbles from figuring out quilt sizes and whatnot, the original sketch, a ruler, a really short pencil (no reason, it just is), pink eraser, and a protractor. This is all I need for this quilt drawing.

    Ok here's my favorite part. Why? I happen to love math, fractions and geometry. (not kidding) This part is also hard to explain if you don't understand how I sketch these designs in the first place. I always start in the middle and then go from there. Sometimes I even have to study the sketch awhile to figure out what reference points I used to get the shapes the way they are.
     I tried make this a little more understandable with some notes on the pic below. I'm not sure if that helps or hinders, but it's my thought process. Right now all my brain is saying by way of explanation is...nevermind...I started writing it out, but uffda what a nutty thought process I have. Anyway if you have questions...ask and I will try to answer in a different way. I knew there was a reason I can't teach...

    I'm getting there. The blank area is where the trapunto and embroidery bits will be drawn in later. I'm getting the piecing part done first. That's all for today. 

    Feb 16 ***************************************************************************
    Well back to the drawing board. This is drawing day 2 and I ALmost got it done! After I finish drawing the basic piecing parts I square up the whole thing and draw on the border. As you can see I do all of this "seat-of-the-pants" style.  I know my methods are not in any recommended quilting how-tos or classes. There are probably much better ways to do this, but this is one way I can guarantee a flat quilt without much ironing.
    Good thing I made the square as big as I did. The squaring up part yielded a quilt that is 59" square. That's 7" larger than my initial estimate.

    Now the fun part of labeling each piece. The dotted lines mean that the piece will probably be the same color as the one next to it. The circled number is the piece number and then that number is placed on each piece adjacent to it, so I know where to connect each piece.

    Continuing on...Well it looks like I have another drawing day left.

    Feb 17****************************************************************************
    Ok I know this drawing bit is getting boring to look at, but it has to be done. It's a lovely day to draw anyway. It's snowing buckets out there. So I am finishing up the drawing. I am labeling the pieces and drawing on the trapunto and embroidery areas. Those are in blue pencil. And that my friends is all for today.

    Feb 18****************************************************************************
    Today I picked my fabrics my little tote box. Here is what I have to pick from at the moment. I haven't had to go to the thrift store lately for fabric. My fabric tote is full and my housekeeping rule is to never let the tote overflow. I'm keeping that rule. You can just see the bottom edge of the blue tote at the top right of the pic.I also trimmed the excess freezer paper off the design.

    Here's the fabrics I picked and they are labeled with their piece numbers. I put each roll of fabric into its own plastic bag (which are walmart & grocery bags) with the label taped to the bag. The fabrics look a little odd right now, but these things tend to work out just beautifully. I have 18 different colors and patterns picked out for this quilt.
    The stuff I pick is not written in stone either. I have changed fabrics in the middle of making a quilt, sometimes because I didn't check to see if I had enough or another pattern or color just looks better.

    Feb 19****************************************************************************
    Yippee I finally get to start piecing! First I have to cut out my first pieces from the paper pattern.

    Now I iron the pieces to their respective fabrics and lay them out more or less how the quilt will be pieced. Yup I do each piece individually since my pattern is not geometrically perfect. It's really close though, but not enough to 'cookie cut' the pieces.

    Now I pin the first 2 pieces and start sewing.
    And the next, and the next and so on...

    And sew on...*ha* I use the alligator clip to maker sure that my points are exactly lined up. I sew from point to point with a little backstitch to hold it in place. The other marker tick sticking out on the right side is where the two pieces underneath must meet. Each tick is a mark where pieces will be connected point to point. I use pins to hold the pieces in place. This keeps my lines exactly matched up when sewing them together
    I end up here for the night.

    Feb 20****************************************************************************
    I am finishing up the rounds I started yesterday. Not too shabby so far.

    Now I cut out the pieces for the next rounds.

    I iron the pieces to the fabrics. Oy this is exciting....(extra sarcasm here). Each piece is traced with a washable marker and labeled on each side with a number of the piece it connects to. The circled number is the actual piece number assigned to it.

    The pieces are laid out in the general area where they will connect to the first rounds.

    These rounds are finished. The paint splashed board is just the general board everybody uses for all sorts of projects. Lots of quilting and painting get done on this board, but of course not at the same time...although...
    And I am done for the day.

    Feb 21****************************************************************************
    I am working on the 3rd set of rounds. I am working with the pics from the round at the bottom of the pic.

    I iron and trace out the pieces on the fabrics.

    Things are starting to repeat themselves. I lay the pieces out.

    I pin the first two pieces.

    Three pieces are sewn together.

    The pieces are sewn to the main round.

    The finished main round...for now.

    I draw where I want to put the trapunto. Here is where I end for the night.

    Feb 22****************************************************************************
    Today was a major FAIL day. Remember I said I wanted to try some trapunto on this quilt?

    Trying a bit more....Ewwwwwwwwwwwww! That does not look good at all! Pieces are ripped out and new pieces made,so I am back to the end of the day on Feb 21. Yup I'm even posting fails on here. I think I will use my embroidery skill on those drawn parts later on, unless I think of something better.

    Feb 23*********************************************************************
    After a lot of messing around and experimenting I am going to do a regular trapunto in certain areas. I sew on the back pieces.

    Adding some bobbin stitching to bring out the design. I use punch embroidery thread on the bobbin. I can see all kinds of potential for this bobbin stitching technique. Woohoo!  Trinity is doing some of the trapunto stuffing.
    As a side note, I really need to make sure my pics have the same editing styles. Ah well I 'm also experimenting with Win 8 photo editing and Photoshop. I haven't reached the proper look yet I see.

    Feb 24****************************************************************************
    I am stuffing the trapunto today.

    The stuffing is finished. I'm not sure I like the resulting puckering of the round. The center rounds don't lay flat anymore. This might be a factor later on when I need to have it flat so I can quilt properly. We shall see if the trapunto stays or not. The pink will stay for sure though.

    Oh boy time for the 4th set of rounds.

    Nice pile of pieces I have here. This is going to take forever to iron and trace.
    Feb 25************************************************************************
    I didn't count how many pieces I have to iron and trace, but I know there's over a hundred.

    Now I create sensible sewing groups.

    All the pieces are accounted for and grouped. There are 16 groups of 17 pieces each so that makes 272 pieces to sew. Yes, this section is going to take quite awhile. 

    Feb 26****************************************************************************
    I sew the first group together.

    Then I sew it to the main round. I decided I don't like the trapunto after all, so I took it out. My quilts are usually pretty puffy so trapunto won't show up anyway. 

    I got 3 groups done today.

    Feb 27***********************************************************************
    I added 2 more groups today. I'd guess there will be a few more days of just adding these groups to the main round.

    Feb 28****************************************************************************
    One more group is sewn on to the main round. 

    Mar 2****************************************************************************
    And one more added today...

    Mar 3****************************************************************************
    I add 2 groups.

    Mar 4****************************************************************************
    And 2 more...

    Mar 5****************************************************************************
    Adding one more group...

    Mar 6****************************************************************************
    Add 2 more...

    Mar 7****************************************************************************
    I add the last 2!

    Ok now I can do something different. I mark/sew the areas for the next bobbin stitching round.

    Mar 8****************************************************************************
    I do some bobbin stitching with punch embroidery thread.

    Now I can start the 5th and final rounds.

    I iron and cut out the pieces.

    And set up for the first seam. There are 3 pieces for each group this time. 

    Mar 9****************************************************************************
    I sew the first group on.

    I get a little more than 1/2 way done with the 5th rounds. I have changed some fabrics/colors around. 

    Mar 10***************************************************************************
    And the 5th rounds are done! 
    Mar 11***************************************************************************
    I sew the marking lines for the bobbin stitching.

    The bobbin stitching is coming along nicely.

    Mar 12***************************************************************************
    The bobbin stitching gets done.

    I can do the border.

    Whoopee the piecing is officially done! I prep the layers and get ready to do some 'stitchin in the ditch'.

    Mar 14***************************************************************************
    I quilt the lines coming from the center. Nope they aren't perfect, but I sort of like the imperfect look. I might add some goofy stuff in the more open areas to break up the lines.

    Mar 16***************************************************************************
    I've been 'stitchin in the ditch' for the top quilting the last couple of days. Picture progression didn't change enough to warrant an update to this. Now it's done and washed. I need to put a sleeve on the back, give it a name and get a much better picture to put into the gallery. That will get accomplished in the next couple of days. I don't think I will add to it.
     It matches up with the original design very well. The original design was a bit messy. When I work from my designs I most often adopt the feeling that I get from the them. This is why I wasn't looking for perfection in this particular quilt. The design felt like it could be scribbles or graffiti on the Colosseum in Rome if one could scribble on the whole thing at once from above like a little kid. Ok there's my artist mind talking. It doesn't always make sense to my practical side either.