Sunday, 4 May 2014

International Postage Stamp

My Quilting Class were inspired recently by a gorgeous WIP Postage Stamp Quilt that is being made by Nora, an accomplished Tuam Quilter.  We were all taken by the concept of a large, simple design that promised hours of intrigue and interest.  It's not an easy task to start one of these quilts however, especially if you are a relatively new quilter like me.  You need a super stash of scraps and then some!  To put together a kingsize quilt, you have to accummulate almost 2000 x 2.5" squares - easy enough, just alot of cutting and trimming, right?  Wrong!!   The idea is that the quilt would have no repeats and that means you need 2000 DIFFERENT fabrics to get an authentic Postage Stamp Quilt!  Hmmm, slightly harder!

Operation Scrap-Stash-Building!

We started our collection in class, we each swapped 20 squares with about 14 people, that was a lovely start - 280 squares!  Then, I cut up squares from my own collection and that bumped me up to about 500.  That meant I had still only 25% of my intended collection!  I know many spend years stashing away these little squares to make the quilt when they have enough.........I suppose I could have done that, but I'm terribly impatient.  I may not finish everything I start straight away but I am GREAT at starting projects and I NEEDED to get this one off the ground. 

By chance, I came across a couple of groups on Facebook where I thought I might be able to swap some squares and suddenly the ball was rolling.  I received packages from Ireland, England, across Europe, America, Tahiti and Canada.  Some were swaps but many were donations towards my project.  You remember that excitement when you first started using the internet and you got an e-mail........ I was like that when the postman arrived!!!  Sifting through the scraps, cutting them down, counting them into bundles was a job in itself but an enjoyable one.  The range was something I would never have collected by myself - I had received a little taste of so many other quilters taste and I think it really adds to the flavour of my project.  If I was using only my own fabrics, I would have an overall pastel, pale pretty girlish colours I think......and while I obviously love those colours, it's wonderful to have such a selection in a quilt like this!

One of my favourite blocks........ I know my boys will love it when they find this hidden away on the quilt top!

I was really touched that this lovely quilters from around the world were willing to take their time to sort through their stashes, package them up and send them to me!  I've been able to return the favour a few times already in small ways - it's our very own sisterhood of the travelling scraps!  hee hee

So, this is the where I am currently.  I've been joining the squares in 4x4 blocks.  Then I laid them out to see how it's looking.  This pictures shows 54 blocks of 16..........that's approximately 800 squares so far....... about 40% of the total!  I haven't joined them together yet, I want to wait until all the blocks are made but I'm loving the look so far.  This will be a super large quilt, I'm impatient to move on with it..........

  Can't wait to show you my progress on this one! 

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