Plaids and Polka Dots

Yes, more Ps. Though I’m particulately delighted with these ones, I have to say. Plaids and Polka Dots have infultrated my crafting. And I’m very grateful. Sometimes you have a lull in the creative output and you’re just not sure where to go next. Up until a couple of days ago, I’d been feeling that way about my next quilt endeavor after Birds in the Air (which is basted and waiting to be quilted together, though I’m debating between different ways of going about this: traditional, not traditional? but I digress…) I’d been waiting hopefully and futily for that spark of inspiration. Since it hadn’t yet hit, I decided to occupy myself with another one of those quick little patchwork projects and, pretty much out of the blue, came up with this plaid and polka dot purse:

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I think the theme is pretty clear. Of course, I couldn’t help mixing things up a bit with the lining:

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It’ll make a wonderful little clutch: the perfect size for keys, cell phone, etc. But even better, this random little project turned out to be just the inspiration I needed for embarking on my next quilt. In the spirit of both tradition and innovation- and continuing with this combination of plaids and polka dots- I am embarking on a Log Cabin quilt.. witha twist. So far I have two blocks that capture the overall images I’m going for:

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I love the play of hard-edged geometry and circular motifs and it’s mirrored (in reverse) in the patterns on the fabric. Furthermore, this satisfies my craving for some classical quilting (though I’ll admit these are unusally large Log Cabins) and my own touch. As soon as the idea entered my head, I knew this was it. I’m still nor sure how I’ll combine the blocks, how similar the polka dot squares will be; I like to let these sorts of things figure themself out during the process. Nothing feels better than the excitement of a new project. However, for the record, circular quilting is just plain difficult- I could only do the smallest circle by hand. I will persist nonetheless since I love the look and every bit of practice helps.

Now, I have recently been accused of becoming more of a ‘quilter’ than ‘knitter.’ I promise it’s not the case!  I’ll admit that quilting has been taking up a lot of my creative energy these days, but knitting is still my constant companion. And thanks to many stolen moments of stockinetting (while reading, before lectures, etc.) I’ve actually progressed quite far on my other Log Cabin project:

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As you can see, I opted out of the cardigan. There are two reasons for this: 1. I have enough cardigans and 2. I clearly wasn’t going to have enough yarn for long sleeves. Actually, three reasons: I became enchanted with the idea of a roomy vest-like sweater, something I can wear in the winter over long sleeves but into the Spring as well. Now, what I didn’t anticipate is not having enough yarn to finish the right shoulder. Yes, at the end of the second to last blue stripe, I ran out of blue. Unsurprisingly, my first reaction was: it doesn’t get more annoying than that. But necessity is indeed the mother of invention (who knows that better than a quilter?) so I’m going to roll with it and somehow (I haven’t  decided how just yet) the upper right shoulder of my Log Cabin sweater vest will be quite unique. Perhaps I’ll mimic my quilt-in-progress and do some polka dot knitting! It’s delightful how stumbling upon one little element of design can offer so many possibilities.

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Filed under accessories, knitting, quilting

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