Nearly Insane—One More Block!

This 6″ block of the Salinda Rupp quilt was fairly simple, as you can see! I opened the seam at the edge as I plan to eventually assemble the blocks by machine.

Incidentally my new machine has arrived, haven’t had a chance to open it yet. It sounded like a great buy–has ten feet, including walking foot and free motion quilting feet and an extension table too! All just for $140 from Brother– I think it is Model 3340.

Block 81

Vital Stats

Number of pieces: 44

Difficulty level: Easy

Technique used: EPP

Block 81 Nearly Insane

So Houston, here I come!

Nearly Insane Progress

There is finally some progress on my Nearly Insane blocks, thanks to the fact that I am without a sewing machine while visiting my son! I had printed out patterns for the first fifty blocks at home and had the sense to carry them with me, along with the Summer Breeze III fabric by Moda that I am using for my quilt. With time on my hands, I sat for several hours and cut out the templates for foundation paper piecing ( hundreds of them!) before it struck me that I couldn’t use them without a sewing machine! Now what?

I could, of course cut out the fabric for the blocks. I had the fabric pieces for five random blocks, when it finally dawned on me that I could piece the blocks without the machine. English Paper piecing it was to be. But for that, the templates had to be cut again, into individual paper pieces. Not a happy thought, as the average number of pieces in the blocks must be around fifty.

It was certainly a tedious job, but I finally had the pieces ready for EPP.

Block 81 ( Work-in-progress)

Just 44 pieces in this block, on its way! ( Block 81)

I started on the block, but gave up half way to do a really easy one–Block 2.

But before I show you Block 2, you must see my Block 1, completed on my sewing machine while still at home.

Block 1 (Done!)

Isn’t it pretty? I attempted some fussy cutting with this one.

Vital Stats

No of pieces: 37

Level of difficulty: Easy

Technique: Paper foundation pieced

Block 2 (Done)

One of the easiest blocks–just 21 pieces!

No of pieces: 21

Level of difficulty: Real easy–had I foundation paper pieced it!

Technique: English paper pieced

Block 9 (Put-aside-for-now)

The inner 4.5″ portion on this is done, it has 28 pieces! But wait – the outer 3/4″ ring has 64 more pieces coming up. Terrifying, isn’t it? The are 24 half square triangles, 3/4″ each, besides four 4-patches of 3/4″!

I think it will be sensible to wait to foundation paper piece them on a sewing machine.

28 pieces here, 64 more to come to complete this 6” Block!

I have been thinking that it makes sense to do first the blocks which cannot be paper-foundation pieced on the machine. Need to identify those and get to work on them.

But before that, I am off to Houston on Thursday, to see all those beautiful quilts–and view my Dreamcatcher hanging there. I hope I can take lots of pictures to share!

Happy quilting to all of you! And Happy Diwali too! Have a wonderful year ahead.

This Week’s Insanity

 

Nearly Insane Blocks 56 (left) and 57
 

Vital Stats

Block 56

No of pieces – 64

Difficulty level – Moderately easy

Technique used – Foundation paper pieced except for centre Pinwheel and surrounding frame.

Block 57

No of pieces – 49

Difficulty level – Easy

Technique used – foundation paper pieced

Nearly Insane – Block 61

I find this block really pretty and intended it to be my first block! In the original quilt it is really striking in solid yellow and red.  

Block 61 – not as perfect as I would wish!
 

It was actually tougher than it looks. I made those 16 squares using 3 different methods. A couple of them were done with tiny squares being joined diagonally to the corners of the bigger square and flipping open the inner triangle to the corner. For another two I drew foundation paper templates on printer paper. For the rest I used freezer paper foundation piecing templates. This is how they looked, ready for assembly!

 

Ready for assembly…
 
It took me nearly two hours to assemble that – there were dozens of points to be matched, and too many layers of fabric. Not so simple in a block of this size. I am not very happy with more about half a dozen of those points…wondering if I should re-do them. Perhaps later, when I am assembling them. When compared, English paper piecing (EPP) is so much more accurate and pretty!

Tomorrow, I’ll be cutting fabric for the next seven blocks and start working on them next week.  I’ll do an EPP block next, methinks! It has 4 eight-pointed stars and is really lovely! 

One more pic of the block, on point this time!

  

Vital Stats

No of pieces –80

Difficulty level – Moderately difficult

Technique used – foundation paper piecing with freezer paper ( fold away) method

Nearly Insane – The First Two Blocks

Finished Nearly Insane Blocks 67 & 71 – Original quilt by Salinda Rupp c.1865

It was not a very auspicious beginning for my Nearly Insane Quilt! Nevertheless, the first two blocks are done.

Block 67

I started with what was a really easy block and can you believe this is what I did?!?

I also forgot there were points to match in the centre of the pieces!

The fabric looked so pretty when I cut it out – it took me ages to do that, as I fussy cut those bouquets! I picturized it as flowers from behind a trellis. I don’t think I like it very much put together. The original block has two strong contrast fabrics. Perhaps quilting will make a difference?

Here is how it looks now.

The blocks will be all placed on point, so I will photograph them like that.

Block 67 from the quilt originally made by Salinda Rupp – popularly known as Nearly Insane.

Vital Stats

Number of pieces – 29

Level of difficulty – Easy.

Partly ( corners) foundation paper pieced

Block 71

This block was, surprisingly, a toughie! The centre flower strip finishes at 3 and 5/8″. I could not draft it on Quilt Assistant, so I traced the template from the book.

Traced the block template from the draft in book by Liz Lois

I pieced all the strips first before joining them on the block template. I quite love this!

Nearly Insane Block 71 – love this block!

Vital Stats

Number of pieces – 29 (Again!)

Level of difficulty – Easy ( If you don’t have to draft the block template).

Strips pieced first and then assembled on foundation paper.

I did mention that I am working on these blocks only two days a week? Which means you have to wait for that long to see the next block!  I bid you goodnight with a quick peep into what is cooking next Wednesday!

Coming up next!

Another look at the first two together…


Happy Quilting!

  

Nearly Insane – Or Totally Mad(s)

I finished drafting all 98 blocks of Salinda Rupp’s 1860s sampler quilt (popularly known as the Nearly Insane), a few days ago. 

Today I cut out the fabric for 3 blocks. 

 

Templates and fabric for 3 blocks are ready!
 
Isn’t that pretty? I am so excited! I have made a diary, where I am making note of the fabric requirement. I plan to cut out fabric and sew 5 blocks at a time.

Meanwhile, I am having second thoughts about making all the blocks of this quilt. There are more than a couple which are very similar; so, first I am making only my favourite blocks. Then, I  may seriously consider adding instead a few Midget and Dear Jane blocks. Those will have to be re-drafted at 6″. I will probably add a few blocks of my own too! Crazy, isn’t it?

Let us see how it goes…any suggestions?

Nearly Insane – Before the Beginning

Yesterday, I drafted the first 20 blocks from the quilt on Quilt Assistant free quilt software. I have Liz Lois’s book to help me – I will be needing the computerised templates, unless I am willing to sit with tracing paper and pencil! Like I mentioned, I shall try to foundation paper piece some of it, though I have no idea how I will get the paper out from under 1/2″ HSTs ( diagonal half of a 1/2″ square for the uninitiated).  

Why does this quilt fascinate so many people? Here is picture of one of the blocks from the original quilt, taken from  ‘The Ultimate Quilting Book‘. 

 

I zoomed in on the picture of the quilt in my book to get this right. Liz Lois has simplified this block some what, but I wanted to see the original.
 
 What a striking combination of fabrics and colours! I also find those missing points from her triangles utterly charming! Salinda Rupp worked without rotary cutters and our rulers and came up with this magnificent sampler quilt. She nudged some of those blocks into size, I believe, trying to fit the block into the designated 6″.

I was planning to follow her colour scheme and even collected the fabric for it, but somewhere I changed my mind…