Monday, November 15, 2010

October Bee Blocks

After the whirlwind of the past few weeks (quilt market in Houston! more on that soon ...), I spent this past weekend trying to catch up on some bee commitments. It felt good to knock out some small projects and cross a few things off of the ol' to-do list.

First up is a block for Modern Quilt Guild headmistress and sewist extraordinaire, Alissa (from handmadebyalissa), for our {Bee} Imaginative quilting bee.

She was inspired by this photo of a contemporary woven tapestry seen on Cathy of California's blog, and asked us to interpret this design in our own way to create a rectangular quilt block.


Here is the amazing fabric collection that Alissa pulled together for this project:

Bee Imaginative Fabric

And here's what I created:

Bee Imaginative | October

I had a lot of fun going back to something purely improvisational, making it up as I went along. It was a great way to spend my Friday night. Can't wait to see Alissa's quilt come together!

Bee Imaginative | October

On the complete other end of the spectrum was a much more traditional, paper-pieced block for Mary over in the Buzz Cuts bee. The funny thing is that I enjoyed making this more traditional block, where accuracy and precision was key, just as much as I enjoyed making Alissa's block. Having made them both in one evening, it was a very cool exercise in contrast, and flexing both sides of my brain!

Buzz Cuts | October

I am still not very comfortable with my paper piecing skills, but I only had to rip out one seam on this block. I also made a corresponding alternate block that Mary is going to use in her quilt layout:

Buzz Cuts | October

And here they are both together:

Buzz Cuts | October

There's lots of good chatter going on right now about virtual quilting bees over in the Quilting Bee Blocks group. For me, I am really enjoying being in 2 bees at the moment ... down significantly from the 6 or 7 I was in at some point over the past year!

How about you? How many bees are you in? How many is too many? And if you're not in a bee yet, what are you waiting for?!

15 comments:

  1. I'd love to be in a 'bee' but haven't found one yet, sad to say. No one I know is interested (besides the fact that the holidays are coming up). Any ideas for me?
    by the way, love your blog!

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  2. Squuueee! Oh I do so love it! This quilt is gonna be so great! Thank you!!

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  3. I love your inspiration... I love your creation! I'm sooooo wowed by that, John!!!

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  4. Wowser....all three blocks are great but I am really inspired by the one you made for Alissa...that is exactly how I would like my quilting to evolve. Oh Quiltdaddy....can I copy thee?:)

    Nope, haven't been in a Bee yet...love the swaps....been too chicken to try a Bee!

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  5. Great blocks, such different styles! I'm not in any bees yet. I just started my blog a few weeks ago and I'm trying to get more involved. I am participating in a few quilt alongs. I don't think they are quite the same as bees... I have to check it out :)

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  6. I am just loving Alissa's choice of block, and seeing all of the interpretations of the inspiration photos.

    I recently screwed up the courage to join in the fun of online bees, and I'm now in two. It's a fantastic way to "meet" people in the online quilting community, not to mention stretching your skills and creativity. And work with someone else's beautiful fabric.

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  7. I just signed up for my first "bee" at 15 Minutes Play, and I am in a Hexie swap that I think fits the definition of a bee too. I would love to join some more too, I just worry I wouldn't have enough time to commit to them!

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  8. Not quite sure how they work. Sounds like fun though.

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  9. I'm only in one right now (Sew Bee Wonky) and that's about perfect for me although I do get the "itch" to join another.

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  10. I'm in one (Bee Splendid) and don't want to get overcommitted, so I'm staying with one right now. My time is not my own, because I am heavily into my church's quilt ministry!

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  11. As a novice quilter, I have not tried to "bee" yet. Where do you find bees to be in? BTW, glad to see so much talent in the Raleigh/Cary area.

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  12. Hi John,

    You are the winner of the Sprout colorway (Parisville) on my blog. You can email me here with your address: freshsqueezedfabrics (at) gmail (dot) com

    congratulations!

    I am not in any bees, but I am participating in my first swap---the pillow talk swap. So far so good. I am enjoying all of the encouragement from the flickr group!

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  13. Haven't jumped on the bee wagon just yet... but each month that goes by i do think....what am i waiting for!!

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  14. Love, love, love your improv block John! Great job!

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  15. I'm not in any bees or swaps because I'm still just not confident enough in my own abilities. I read other people's blogs and they seem so creative and I feel like I pale in comparison. I'd hate for someone to be disappointed in what I sent them, so I just don't send anything. Pathetic, I know. One of these days I'll get up the nerve. Maybe that can be a New Year's Resolution - to participate in a Bee or a Swap.

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