crazy quilting with colour complements hand-dyed embroidery threads
The start of a new crazy quilting project.

I don’t know about you, but I always get quite excited when I start a “new” project.  I love selecting fabrics, colours and embellishments.

When I was finishing up my black butterfly quilt from last year, I began thinking about what I would do for my next project. 

I moved several years ago which involved purging.  Over the years I had a collection of four bins of silks, satins, brocades, laces etc.   With purging I dropped to one bin which should probably last me for the remainder of my lifetime.  We all know, it does not take particularly large pieces of fabric for crazy quilting.

I will be sharing my process for my 2019 project today and again in upcoming blog posts.

So, let’s get started. 

My normal process involves deciding on a theme or colour combination but this year I did things a bit differently.  When I purged prior to my move, I had an assortment of old embroidered tablecloths, runners and handkerchiefs. 

Some of you likely have the same with the thought of keeping them for use in that “special project”.  I decided it was about time to use these treasures instead of waiting for that special project so I included as many as I could in my blocks.

I like to begin by clearing my workspace and sorting my fabrics into colours.  Then further sorting into fabric types – silks, satins, cottons, brocades etc.  Following this, I start pulling out trims, laces, applique motifs and ribbons.  I do often dye some of the laces to suit the chosen colour palette.

I cut my muslin foundation and start sewing blocks using Judith Baker Montano’s piecing method.  I choose two trims/laces/ribbons per block and add these as I sew.  Once the block is complete, I sew the edges to minimize fraying.  A serger would work well for this if you have one.

Usually I will make a minimum of 12-16 blocks of about 12 inches in diameter because I like to have a few extra just in case.  After this, I sew a 2” strip of scrap cotton or muslin in a solid colour to the edges with a long machine basting stitch.  I do this so I can stitch the block in a frame. 

Yes, I stitch all my blocks in a frame.  Many crazy quilters hold the stitching in one hand and stitch with the other.  But, I have always found this quite cumbersome and I prefer to have both hands free.  Naturally, this is a personal choice.

That’s it for today.  Stay tuned for my next post where I will discuss the next stage.  So, would you like to join me.   Why not sew up a few blocks and stay tuned.

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