Friday, June 24, 2011

Farmer's Wife Friday: Living in God's Open Air

When Carla from Lollyquiltz and I decided to do the Farmer's Wife quiltalong together, we tossed around a couple of different ideas on what would work the best for each of us. We finally landed on the idea of just starting with the first letter in the book and go through the book sequentially, doing the two blocks pictured with each letter. I had started reading the letters and found them fascinating so it seemed like a good idea, and the blocks would essentially already be chosen for us.

6" blocks. I thought, "how tough could it be?" I've been making quilt blocks for over fifteen years. I started with Cut Glass Dish. Wow. 51 pieces in a 6" block.

I looked at all those 1" HSTs and tried to decide the best way to achieve some accuracy. I finally decided to make them oversize and cut them down to 1 1/2 inches unfinished. That turned out to be a good idea, for me at least.

The second block, Kitchen Woodbox, looked like a snap compared to Cut Glass Dish. But I'm here at Lakeview with a computer but no printer, and for some dumb reason, I didn't print out the template before coming up here. So I kind of had to wing it. And the sun had gone down so the picture is taken in a cabin with really bad light. (Hey,  Lakeview Cottages has an electrical system from about c. 1917 so we use 60w bulbs). Now that I think of it, these cottages are nearly the same age as the Farmer's Wife challenge.

I'll be making all my blocks using Kona snow and Kaffe Fassett shot cottons.

The first letter, "Living in God's Open Air," really resonated with me, because this was the view from my porch as I thought about the letter written all those years ago.

I chose the colors for my first two blocks based on the colors I saw today in God's open air, the blue of the water, the green and  brown of all the beautiful trees surrounding the cabins, and even the brown and green of the cabins themselves. It is all so beautiful. To answer the question, "Would you have your daughter marry a farmer," the writer says," I would have her marry a farmer because there she has the chance of living in God's open air, of living a pure life, away from the meanness of a rural town..."  That's what I was feeling today, the beauty of living in God's open air.

Check out Lollyquiltz and see how Carla interpreted these same two blocks.


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Mary said... #

I love these blocks with the shot cotton! Your quilt will be fabulous!

http://thankfullga447 said... #

Nature is such a wonderful gift, water is so effective in one's life. I love the blocks. This morning in Omaha, NE it is a beautiful day unfortunately people by the river will have to evacuate because of the flooding.

Stray Stitches (Linda G) said... #

Your blocks are wonderful! I like that you are using solid colors in creating your Farmer's Wife quilt. I'm quite envious of your daily view :)

Mrs Flying Blind... said... #

Oh how beautifully expressed - what gorgeous views and the blocks are lovely too - great start x

Jodi said... #

Wonderful post! And I love how you're using all solids - great idea - wish I had thought of that! Now none of mine match, and I've got ten blocks done so far - oh, well. I'm having fun anyway, and yours are great!

nancgard said... #

I started with the first block too and because I used the templates at the size they were, I ended up with HSTs that didn't fit the squares. Now I know I need to make them larger and cut them to fit the squares. Sooo because there were so many pieces in the first by the journal entry, I went to the first block shown in the middle of the book. I have 7 blocks done and continue to learn with each one. Thanks for sharing your blocks and the lovely setting you are in to enjoy your quilting days.

Flo @ Butterfly Quilting said... #

51 pieces !!! Yikes! That would be enough to scare me off!
I love your idea of using the colors from nature....Mother nature has such a wonderful way of mixing and blending colors. Your quilt will be amazing!

Cheryl Arkison said... #

Love your fabric choices! It will be stunning.

Needled Mom said... #

Those look beautiful!!! Great job on the blocks.

Terriaw said... #

How fun to see your process and progress on this project, which looks like quite an undertaking! I love the colors you chose, based on your inspiration. I also love your idea of making those small HST bigger and cutting them down to size for accuracy. Genius!

Anonymous said... #

I love making these blocks. I've started at the beginning of the book. At first I thought I could make some of them without the templates but the accuracy just isn't there. I'm keeping a binder of the template printouts along with the template. Choosing the right fabric has been a bit of a dilemma but I think Hope Valley is looking good. Miss Luella

Linda said... #

I'm a new follower of your blog. I'm so glad to have found you! I love the blocks!

Poppyprint said... #

I love the mindful way you are going to progress through this sew along. Your blocks will be beautiful with the shots and I cannot wait to see more of them come together!

felicity said... #

I think this is my favourite post thus far about this QAL. Krista's word "mindful" is perfect. I also loooove how the solids/shot cottons are looking together.

Letterpress said... #

I've done an album-type quilt and while this series doesn't pull me in, your writing about it (and me being able to read about) is going to be the highlight for me. I love how you have the block that looks like sunlight dancing on the water, and the block that looks like the logs of a cabin for your first two blocks. And your writing about these is so evocative and lovely, esp. considering the setting where all this creating is going on.

Thanks for such a lovely end to my busy day.

Elizabeth E.

Jen said... #

Great post! I love that you referenced the letters. I've seen a ton of FWQA pics, but yours is the first to reference the letter! Thanks!

Angela {fussycut} said... #

your blocks are gorgeous, I'm so happy you are sewing along! your quilt will be amazing.

Twinfibers said... #

hmmm...beautiful! :)

Rene' said... #

Making these blocks in all KONA and Kaffe shot cottons is brilliant! If the first two blocks are any indication, your quilt will be stunning! Thanks for sharing how you came up with the colors for these based on your morning's view. Looking forward to hearing more about your lake cabins next weekend.