January 4, 2022: New Year – New Project!; A “Near” finish!; Earthly Delights

Greetings dear readers! 2021 was a year of applique for me – a ”tsunami” of applique! I put a lot of time and energy into the borders of ”Maple Leaf Rag” and ”Stormy Weather.” My goal of finishing those 2 tops in 2021 was too ambitious, especially after committing to Monthly Minis, but I should be able to finish them in 2022😊.

On MLR, one and a quarter borders still need to be embroidered then attached to the center. The corners need something that I’ll have to design and add. Then I’ll have to face the ”hand quilt myself or send out to long armer?” decision.

On Stormy Weather, I am gradually making the leaves for the final border – half done. But still need to applique down by hand 2 1/2 borders, i.e. around 560 leaves!😊 I really should be able to get the top done in 2022.

Because of all the applique in 2021, I stuck mostly to piecing for all of last year’s monthly minis, using minimal applique. I’ve missed working on a large pieced project; I really enjoy spending some time at the sewing machine and not just doing hand work all the time. So…With the new year upon us, I started looking for a substantial machine piecing project to work on for 2022. For inspiration, I have lots of books. I also have a sizable stack of articles and patterns torn out of magazines before discarding them and I have them separated by technique. I started looking through the pile of piecing patterns and this one by Timna Tarr piqued my interest:

I was intrigued by the challenge of piecing hexagons and making them fit together and I liked the secondary designs created and the idea I could use lots of color. I like that it’s foundation paper pieced. Here’s a closer picture:

I decided to try it out, knowing that if I didn’t like it, I could quit. After studying the pattern, I decided to reverse the location of the light and dark values for a somewhat different look. I copied the given FPP pattern:

Here’s my first block without the added applique center:

I am pinning the centers on for the time being until I get a layout determined because I want to maintain the flexibility to change their colors. The appliqued centers are a great thing because there’s a lot of bulk there with 12 pieces coming together and the bulk can be cut away after the applique is done. I wasn’t thrilled with this first block, but decided to keep going:

Much better – starting to see the secondary designs! I kept going – the blocks are pretty easy to make:

And right now I have 10 blocks on my design wall:

I’m liking this, but have no idea yet where I’m going with it😊. To me it looks, on the surface, like flowers, but if you squint a little at it, you can see the secondary designs. Obviously I’ve chosen to use my Asian fabrics for this – “Oriental Meditation #10” in the works?🙂 Am I one of only a handful of quilt makers still using these fabrics? I still find them beautiful and am not sure why they are out of style. You will be seeing more of these blocks in upcoming blog posts!

I met my goal of finishing the hand quilting on Golden Glow in 2021 – just under the gun on 12/30!! On the 31st, I ripped out all the basting stitches – one of my favorite activities because it means the quilt is almost done!

The binding – the same red as the sashing and narrow outer border – is cut and ready to go.

I decided not to quilt within the sashing, leaving it somewhat puffy – hope that decision is right:

I also did very little quilting inside the applique shapes; the thick wool batting partly fills them up for a bit of a trapunto effect and I don’t think extra stitches are needed. I’m excited about this going into the museum exhibit this summer!

I’m hoping to get a ”looking back at 2021 and looking ahead to 2022” post done for next time. Meanwhile, did you see this photo of the mirror on the new space telescope that was just launched?

The familiar EPP double round hexagon!!!😊 Amazing! Maybe it’s a sign I need to make something with this pattern?! Not kidding…..🙂

We finally took our Christmas tree down on Sunday and enjoyed a final look at some favorite ornaments:

Walking continues to provide me with great exercise and quiet time with the beauty of nature:

Always looking for color in winter. The buttery/amber birch leaves hang onto their trees longer than any others:

I believe this is a fungus, though most fungi have disappeared by now:

Wishing you all a healthy, satisfying, and creative 2022!

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day, Gladi

26 thoughts on “January 4, 2022: New Year – New Project!; A “Near” finish!; Earthly Delights

  1. Susan January 4, 2022 / 1:42 pm

    I rule love receiving your posts! Your energy is mind numbing, your projects are all beautifully amazing and very enviable and your photos of your walks are lovely. What I like best though, is that your kindness and grace show throuhh. Thank you for the inspiration.

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:34 pm

      Thanks for your very kind and supportive comments,Susan! Being kind is something I strive for every day. I love that the Dalai Lama says “kindness is my religion.”😊

  2. barbvedder January 4, 2022 / 2:07 pm

    Happy New Year!
    Your new project is so intriguing and it will be fun to watch it grow and expand.
    Golden Glow is magnificent! Red binding will be perfect.

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:36 pm

      Thank you Barb! I’m enjoying the new project, but am thinking I don’t want it to be too big. I think sewing the hexagon blocks together is going to be a challenge!😊

  3. Tracy January 4, 2022 / 3:25 pm

    A very inspiring post, thanks. I’m sort of floundering around starting this new year, I want to finish UFOs and a few BOM’s, but I also want to start a long term project. The Catena flowers quilt is so pretty and I may even have that QN issue :).

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:38 pm

      Thanks Tracy! Wishing you good luck in finding a long term project you will love. Sometimes the options can be overwhelming!

  4. Kelley Secrest January 4, 2022 / 4:41 pm

    Happy New Year! Maple Leaf Rag is so warm and beautiful. The embroidery on the border leaves is such a nice embellishment – the leaves truly come to life. The new project is very interesting and I look forward to seeing where this one takes you. I enjoyed your nature photos this morning – so peaceful. The silence of the woods in winter is magical. Wishing you a blessed day!

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:41 pm

      Thanks Kelley! The silence in the woods is one of the things I love most about them! It truly enhances their beauty and relaxes me.

  5. Kyle January 4, 2022 / 8:04 pm

    Your newest design is very intriguing and you’ve already done so many blocks. Yes, 2021 was definitely the year of applique, but it is all truly beautiful.

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:45 pm

      Thanks Kyle for your kind comments and support! Making something beautiful is almost always my intent, but it’s a challenge. So satisfying when it works!

  6. Robin January 4, 2022 / 8:06 pm

    The new hexagons are very lovely. I’m sorry that Asian fabrics aren’t as popular as they once were. That must make them harder to find. Don’t worry, they’ll come back around. Your maple leaf quilt is dazzling

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:48 pm

      Thanks Robin! I’ve never forgotten the advice to “make what you love.” The implication is to not make just what’s popular. I follow my muse and that makes me happy.

  7. audrey January 4, 2022 / 10:06 pm

    What a lovely new project! Lots of interesting things to think through while putting the blocks together! Do you reinforce the seams underneath in the middle of those blocks after cutting away behind the applique? I generally always cut out the underneath parts, but get a little squeamish when there’s lots of seams.

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:53 pm

      Thanks Audrey. I haven’t thought far enough ahead to decide whether some reinforcement is going to be needed after the centers are cut away. Right now the circles are just pinned on – no cutting yet. I’ll probably try cutting a couple and study them to see if it’s obvious they do or don’t need reinforcement. The 12 layers is so thick, I just can’t see leaving them there.

  8. grace thorne January 4, 2022 / 10:21 pm

    thank you for a year of glorious inspiration! i love the pieced hexagons…can’t wait to see more and what else appears in 2022!

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:54 pm

      Thanks Grace and thanks for alerting me to the Circus Wheel quilt in Bonnie Hunter’s post today!😊

  9. Marie Tymrak January 4, 2022 / 11:11 pm

    Oh, oh… so appreciate both the pictures and your comments. The Maple Leaf Rag is my hands-down favorite each time it’s pictured, although all are outstanding. The comments about unused Asian prints could’ve been inspired by my own shelves if these lovelies. I so appreciate another comment that they’ll return in popularity! It’s a gift to share your thoughts.

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 9:57 pm

      Thank you Marie; good to hear from you! I have a large enough stash of Asian fabrics to last me until the next time they become popular!😊

  10. Pat in WNY January 4, 2022 / 11:32 pm

    I love where your new project is heading. I love Asian fabrics and have a small bin of Japanese yucata fabrics that I hope to work with this year. Golden Glow lives up to its name, it does glow! Beautiful!

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 10:02 pm

      Thank you Pat! I hope you do work with the Yukata fabrics this year and let me know how it’s going. They are so distinctive that it can be hard to combine fabrics and design with them. I assume you are aware of “Okan Arts.” She has an online web site and shop and has classes in how to use those fabrics.

  11. Janet O. January 4, 2022 / 11:38 pm

    Your gorgeous applique projects ALMOST made me want to try it again, but I quickly came to my senses. 🙂 They are both such lovely pieces, and I feel joy when I look at them.
    Your new FPP project is beautiful. Those fabrics are not something I ever had or saw locally, so I wouldn’t know about them being in or out of style. I just know they make very pretty blocks and the overall effect in this quilt will be wonderful.
    Golden Glow takes my breath away. It looks perfectly quilted to me.
    My tree has yet to come down. I got it up so late, I will continue to enjoy it through Epiphany.
    Thank you for sharing your walks with us.

    • gladiporsche January 5, 2022 / 10:07 pm

      Thanks Janet for all your kind comments! Hand appliqué is not hard and it’s so relaxing once you have the hang of it! BUT, I agree, it’s not for everyone. As I said to another commenter, “do what you love.” I’m so glad you enjoy my photos from my walks.

  12. Jocelyn Thurston January 7, 2022 / 3:00 pm

    Another enjoyable post, Gladi. Thank you for those nature photos…I spy those same yellowish fungi and looked them up once. Of course, I can’t remember the name but they are “normal”.
    I’ve been hooked on blocks that make a secondary pattern after that Jewel Box pattern. Two things I love about your new block…foundation pieced which I’ve newly discovered, and those Asian prints which I think are gorgeous. I have no idea why fabric that is so lovely could ever go out of vogue.

    • gladiporsche January 7, 2022 / 10:06 pm

      Thank you Jocelyn! I enjoy your nature photos too. Secondary patterns are a lot of fun. It’s been a while since I did one – happy to come back to it! These Asian designs are timeless and I feel certain they’ll be back!!!

  13. marissthequilter January 8, 2022 / 10:29 am

    What an inspiration you are! Your finished applique quilt is tremendous and awe-inspiring. The borders for the other two quilts also take my breath away. And now you are piecing perfect windmills. It’s going to be a spectacular quilt.

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