Finish it!

Block B

I mentioned last week that I was working at clearing out some of the long-ignored projects in my workroom. I am not a good “finisher” at all, once I see what something is going to look like, I am ready to move on to the next new thing. Recognizing that, and choosing to quit joking about it and actually do something was part of choosing my 2014 word (Intent). That quilt did get done, by the way, and is now hanging right under the clock in my workroom. (Yeah, right. No symbolism there.)

“Intent.” All done and hanging proudly. Notice that little shot of blue in the binding?

I am not going to share just how many incomplete things I have going. I am not sure that I could even really count them. Besides, I think sometimes we get caught up in some sort of weird “I have more than you” competition that frankly, is just not all that helpful. Some are actually not even projects yet, anyway, but the idea of them is clutter in my brain. This is the year to put the clutter in its place so I can proceed with bigger and better things!


There are two quilts in particular that I have been trying to finish, which turned out to be a good thing in terms of the 350 Blocks Project. I picked these to work on for no real reason other than they were there, within reach, and needed to be finished.

First, I have these Robbing Peter to Pay Paul blocks, which are made from the pattern in Quilts from the Quiltmaker’s Gift book (if you’d like to find a copy, you might try looking here). The fabric I used was from the line by the same name. Yes, they’re that old.

Block A
Block A

I had pieced eight of the total 25 blocks I planned. I’m not sure why I planned only 25 blocks, since that will make a 60″ square quilt, which is not a size I would find useful (at least not this time). What I am sure of is that I was sewing hurriedly, with a toddler underfoot, which is pretty obvious by the less-than-stellar piecing and haphazard pressing. Discouraged, I knew that I had to either finish this thing or throw it out. Since everybody knows that throwing away fabric is a sin, guess what I decided to do? Besides, I still had hope for it.

Here is how I originally intended to put these blocks together, but now I have other plans!

I finished up those blocks (17 towards my 350!), and put them up on the design wall. Meh. I wasn’t in love, at least not with my original plan. I lived with them for a couple of days, but no, not in love. Not to worry! I have still some other ideas for them, so while you might have to wait to see the finished quilt, they’ll get a life yet. I’m pretty excited about what I think can happen with them. Stay tuned! There might just be two quilts from these blocks.


Another quilt I found that was almost all cut out but had only some of its blocks pieced was from back in 2003. Called, “Rock House,” it was published in the February 2003 issue of McCall’s Quilting¬†magazine.¬†I remember picking out fabrics for it while with a friend, but don’t remember why I thought I had to make it. Perhaps I just wanted to ! Anyway, I started with twenty blocks done, and then pieced until I ran out of background, making 31 more. Hmmm. What does one do with 51 blocks? I could either set them six by eight and have three blocks leftover, or I could rummage through my stash for just a little more of that yellow ground. I found a yellow that, while not an exact match, works quite nicely. I can’t even pick it out now myself! So, I ended up with 63 blocks, which finish eight inches square. Set seven by nine, I will get a nice little quilt measuring 56 by 64 inches. Perfect! I am setting those blocks together now. As is so often the case, individually they aren’t all that exciting, but set together, they’re kind of pretty.

A few sewn together



Somewhere along the way, I decided to save those little triangles that were leftover from sewing these blocks. I would swear there were three times as many little triangles as there were blocks. I even threw a lot of them away when it started feeling like work to put them together. It wasn’t as if I needed them! But what I kept are pretty cute, aren’t they? I might actually sew all these together. Or not. Each half-square triangle block finishes 1-1/4″. They do get a little tedious.

So, yes, these are some serious oldies I’m working with here. I’m getting them done, though, bit by bit, and working toward that 350 Blocks goal too. So far this month I’ve pieced 60 blocks (and the goal was 20!). Only 290 blocks to go.

How about you? Do you have some oldies you need to finish? What’s stopping you?