August 6, 2010

New York Beauty Quilt

My how time seems to slip through your fingers! It has almost been a full year since my last post! I have missed blogging. I have thought many times about how I needed to get back to my quilting blog. Why did I wait so long? I am not really sure, but the time as come to change that!

The quilting project I am going to talk about today was been in the works for the past year. Yep, the past year. This has been a very complicated project to say the least. (Of course it isn't the only project I have worked on in the past year, but it has been the main one - I promise!) I fell in love with a pattern I saw at a quilt store. It was a version of a New York Beauty quilt. I could just see this quilt in my home! Every year my quilt guild sponsors a ribbon and an award at the County Fair. The quilt for 2010 was to be a New York Beauty quilt. There was my answer! I just had to make that quilt! If you aren't familiar with a New York Beauty quilt there are many small pointy triangles and curved seams in the traditional block. Never fear I thought, I can do it! I decided to make a sample block because I have learned the hard way that all patterns are not written or drafted correctly. I tried out a block using the pattern and it was a failure. I posted about it here. The arcs weren't drafted correctly and the block would not end up square no matter how hard I tried. Was I ever frustrated! I then had to decide if I wanted to scrap the whole project and do something else or redraft the pattern. I really wanted to get a quilt made and entered in the fair. I played around with the quilt program called Electric Quilt 6 and was able to redraft my own version of the New York Beauty. I ended up actually preferring it to the pattern I bought, which is a very good thing! Want to see a photo? I know you do, but I am going to make you wait a little for that. :)

I will let you see a few parts of the quilt though! This is part of the sashing. I used the paper piecing method to make all of the little triangles. Lots and lots of triangles. Boy was I tired of triangles when I finished the last sashing piece.

I am now working on piecing the actual blocks together.
Because the sections are made up of arcs you have to use many pins to hold the two layers together. I know I am breaking a rule by sewing over the little pins, but these blocks are 8" finished and the arcs start out so small. It would be very difficult to keep the edges of the arcs right where I wanted them without that number of pins. I sew very carefully and slowly. I don't want to break a machine needle by hitting a pin wrong. Would you like to see the whole block? You will have to wait a little for that too. I know, I am being mean here, but I want you to see the whole block pieced together first. Four of the 8" blocks are sewn together to make one big block. Since I have about half of the little blocks sewn together I am going to make you wait to see what they look like when they are put together. I know, I am doing a lot of teasing in this post. Sorry - kind of. :) A side note here: I timed myself as to how long it took to sew each block. It takes an average of about forty minutes to sew one block. Yikes! If there are four small blocks in each of the big blocks...that is over 2 hours for each block. There are 12 big blocks. That is worth a double Yikes!

Well, the County Fair is next week. As you can see, this quilt will not be in it. Why has this project taken me sooooo long? There is a very good reason, but you guessed it. That answer will be in another post. I think I have rambled on long enough, and put out enough teasers for one post!


Milah said...

Hey stranger! I hope you don't wait another year to get back with us! LOL!

I love that quilt, but I don't have the patience to work on one that difficult. Good luck to you as you proceed.

Janet said...

Glad to see you back in blogland! I can't wait to see your NYB quilt - I love that block!

Michelle said...

Welcome back!! I've always loved NYB quilts. I'm looking forward to seeing your progress.

Kathie said...

of course thats how excited I was after seeing your blocks I had to know the pattern I wanted to order it right now!
I see you drafted it yourself
I have to agree I tried using a pttern once and it iddn't line up and I tossed the project. I always loved and wanted to make a NYB quilt . looking forward to following your progress
just beautiful