It's time again to link up our DrEAMis/Squirrels with Sandra. Even though I don't usually have an agenda for what I sew on any given day, there are definitely projects that feel like DrEAMIs, where I Drop Everything And Make It. This stained glass looking top falls squarely in that category. I recently had pulled out this jelly roll of Nicey Jane fabrics because it was taking up awkward space in a box. Then Vicki and I were having a conversation about jelly roll patterns and as I browsed through my folder of free patterns, this Moda Bakeshop one called Noteworthy Labyrinth grabbed my attention. A little modification to the pattern and three days of concentrated sewing later, I had this top.
There were a lot of different steps in the Bakeshop pattern and I felt like I could use a leader/ender project to go along with it. Mister Domestic had posted a fun quilt made with striped knit fabrics so I decided to make something similar. These are just simple 5.5" squares of various stripes, sewn into a basketweave design. It used up some scrappy stripey pieces that were too small to use as bindings. About 80% of the piecing was finished as leaders/enders by the time the jelly roll top was done, so it was practically a two-fer-one deal! Kind of a baby squirrel.
While I was selecting, ironing, and cutting my striped fabrics, I kept picking up and moving my box of dog-themed fabrics. That darn dog box was just constantly in the way! Only one thing to do about that: open it, pull some fabrics, and make 20 Mendota blocks with pooches, pups, and pugs. This one is destined for Wrap a Smile, and I've named it Squirrel Chases Dog. Another baby rodent skittering around my studio, tamed and tethered.
But wait! There's more! More dog fabrics, I mean. After using up most of the red, blue and brown dogs, there was a nice stack of greenish canine fabrics left over. I pulled a few green blenders and did a quick-n-dirty on-point layout. I don't love this one, but it was useful to figure out exactly what size blocks to cut to end up with the 40"x50" size Wrap A Smile prefers. This was my first test piece to get the 4/5 proportions correct. Next time I'll cut slightly smaller blocks and add a border to contain all the bias edges and give it more finished feel. Once I started thinking about the quilty math, my brain wouldn't stop chasing that nut hoarder. So this is little baby squirrel number three!
And finally, when Val announced her new Eye-Spy fabric swap, I just knew I had to participate. It's no secret that I love (and hoard) kid-friendly novelty fabrics. So I had plenty on hand to cut into the required 4" squares. To be part of the swap, you send in 20 squares each of 10 fabrics. Val collects them all, then redistributes them to all the participants and you get 200 unique squares back. So fun! There's an option to send in two sets and get 400 back, so I signed up for that in 5 seconds flat. Honestly? I could have easily pulled 40 unique novelties to swap, but Val is an elementary school teacher and knows how to make it fair for everyone. (Don't be piggy, Louise!) The selecting, ironing, and cutting took about 2 hours for little baby squirrel number 4. I think that counts as a whole litter of squirrel pups!