Kaleidoscope Blocks

I’m happy to say that I’ve been doing a lot of sewing lately.  I’m not finishing any major projects or anything like that, just taking advantage of whatever free time I can get.  I now carry my English paper piecing stars with me so I can sew on the train to and from work.  Although I don’t sew every day (sometimes I sleep!), I’m finding that even a few times a week makes progress, which keeps me motivated to continue making more.

magenta star

EPP – magenta star hexagon

red orange star

EPP red orange star hexagon

I finished a few more stars commuting this past week.  I think I’m going to make this a lap quilt size, which would mean I’m about halfway there.  I’ll have to start paying closer attention to the colors I make the rest of the stars so I have a nice balance.  I have a nice stash of Kona solids so it should be fun choosing colors!

blue lone star

little blue lone star with pinned border

When I’ve had time at home, I’ve been working on finishing my little blue Lone Star.  I had to rip out a lot of the first quilting stitches I did as the block was looking quite puffy. I realized I didn’t baste it enough, so after ripping out the stitches, I put a lot more basting stitched in it and then started quilting. I watched a couple of movies I had recorded and let myself just enjoy the quilting.  So relaxing.

I pinned my dark blue bias strip to the edges just to see how it will look. It’s a great feeling to see it get closer to being finished. I still need practice on my hand quilting, but I’m glad I started it over. It was worth the effort.  If I want to get better, I have to just keep at it.  I really hope to finish this by the end of the week.  We have a major snowstorm arriving tomorrow night so if I don’t work Tuesday, I might just be able to.

kaleidoscope block

Paula Nadelstern kaleidoscope block

The highlight of my recent sewing adventures was a kaleidoscope class this weekend given by Paula Nadelstern.  I saw an exhibit of her quilts a few years ago at the American Folk Art Museum in New York and have loved her work ever since.  In the class, we learned about fussy cutting bilaterally symmetrical fabric and then drafted templates to make our kaleidoscope blocks.  I was focusing on the class and forgot to take pictures as I went, but this block is the result.  I wasn’t sure I was going to like these fabrics together but was pleasantly surprised when I sewed all the triangles together.

As I’m in the middle of way too many projects right now to make a lot of these blocks, I have enough fabric (two sets of four exact motifs are needed) to make at least one more block, so I’m thinking a couple of pillows for the living room.  I wish I had the time now to make a quilt of these kind of blocks, but I don’t, and it’s better to make something quicker like a pillow and enjoy it rather than letting these blocks sit in a box somewhere for a long time.

I’m linking up with Life Under Quilts for the Monday star count (when I get a chance during the week I’ll have to count how many I’ve done!)  and Slow Sunday Stitching.

Hope everyone in the storm’s path gets through the next few days OK.

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4 Responses to Kaleidoscope Blocks

  1. Lucky you to take a class with Paula!!
    Your stars look so pretty!


  2. CathieJ says:

    Enjoy your snow day stitching. I really love your Lone Star quilt and look forward to seeing what you do with those pretty stars.


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