Sunday, December 5, 2010

Bloomin' Nine Patch Progress Report

Way back in July I told you about Aaron and Leah's Bloomin' Nine Patch in this post.   Since I started hand-quilting it on July 16th I have been making some serious headway and thought I would give you an update.   

I am a notorious list-maker, chart-keeper, note-taker type person.  So obviously on a project this large (the quilt is 110" x 120") I want to keep track of my progress.  It kind of becomes a game to me that way, and it keeps me motivated. (And, yes, I am extremely competitive!)  

There are 1,010 blocks in this quilt.  I knew I would NOT want to regularly count them, so the first "list" keeps track of weekly progress.  I jot down a little hash mark for each block completed and then tally them up at the end of the week.  The second "list" shows how many blocks are in each row so I can just add instead of count as I complete a row.  (And, even though adding involves the dreaded math I would rather add than count!)  The third "list" shows how many blocks need to be quilted to get to certain progress points - 1/4th, 1/3rd, etc.


I want you to know that list-makers sometimes wear themselves out before they even start their projects!

Are you ready to see how much I have done so far?  (The "so far" at the end of the sentence indicates that there is hope -- I am NOT giving up!)

I have quilted from the center working out, and I have quilted to within 15" of the edge.  Looks like a lot, doesn't it?  Well, it's NOT.  I have quilted exactly half the blocks!  Looks are deceiving for sure.  That's the problem with list-making.  I would have thought I was almost done!!

It really is pretty, though.  I am quilting around each little square in the nine-patch blocks and using a great stencil in the solid blocks.  It's called "Quilted Ball" from The Stencil Company.    A great and inexpensive place to buy stencils, by the way.   Sometimes I just buy them so my grands can trace them and then color the designs.  They love stencils!

Another fun thing about the quilting is I am using different colored threads as I move towards the outside edge, starting with pale yellow in the middle, then light orange, dark orange, red, and finally black.  I don't think it will be real obvious once it's completed, but I am NOT ripping anything out!

You may be able to see the thread changes in this photo. Maybe not.  Either way, no critiques of my work, please. My fingers are awful sore and I have to be able to think the pain is worth it!


  1. I was going to tell you that you missed a spot, but you said no critiques. ;D You know I am kidding. You are really coming along and I am so impressed. This is one beautiful quilt and I know the kids are going to love it. I wish I had your ambition to hand quilt a large quilt like this. I will forever bow down to you ability and stamina.

  2. I'm not sure what wears me out more... the quilting or the list making! :) The quilt is going to be such an heirloom when you are done, Sandy!

  3. Sandy, your work is beautiful! Your kids are so going to love having that beauty in their home! I hope your fingers hold out to get all of it done without a break. Hugs!

  4. Thank you all so much! This will be a hard on to part with.

  5. Sandy, You are to be admired and definitely bowed down to -- to take on such a huge project. I know your children are worth it and that they take good care of such an heirloom. I don't think my patience would last to finish something this big. You are my new hand quilting idol. Dar

  6. Please don't give up, it is worth it.
    I too make lists for things, I would be lost without them, and nothing would get done.
    Keep up the great work.

  7. Sandy, you are such a dear to hand-quilt this because the kids preferred it. I had to really zoom in, but can see the color changes. You're going to use a LOT of red thread!

    Something I've noticed about applique block of the month quilts: they usually include a border, which is as much work as almost the entire center!

    My DH is very impressed with this quilt (I showed him the picture on the July post). He says he'd be afraid to touch it, it looks so flaming! It certainly will be a quilt to warm the body AND the heart.