Friday, October 20, 2017

Halloween Houses

I'd assembled two house blocks and two tree blocks a couple weeks ago and blogged about them in my post for 10/11/17. Now it was time to join them and FMQ the resulting wall hanging. The blue swirl fabric for the night sky begged to be quilted in swirls. I am terrible with swirls so this was an opportunity on a small scale to practice them and get better. I doodled them and saved the marked plastic as a visual reminder of my goal. I chose a light blue thread and I did OK.

The green I'd chosen for the lawn area in front of the houses was not wide enough and so had to be pieced. To hide the piecing I'd originally wanted to make diagonal paths from the doorways of the houses as brown inserts. A simple task of inserts at 45°... and did it wrong four times! Aargh. Once I got it right I decided I did not like the way it looked anyway and preferred just piecing the green. Well by this point, after my flubs and extra cutting, piecing that green was my only remaining option. I joined it on the diagonal like for a sashing so it would be less conspicuous, and then decided to further camouflage it by quilting diagonal parallel lines in the lawn area. I used a rule which was time consuming but gave me practice and the results looked crisp. My swirls in the sky looked OK after all my fretting and my trees were acceptable with a simple 1/4" away echo even though I did not use a ruler for them. The pale grey/blue thread blended in.

For the houses however, I was lazy and in a hurry and did not use a ruler. They came out terrible! You know how as you start something and don't like it, but somehow stubbornly stupidly think if you do more, it will get better? It doesn't. I intend to in the future remove the house stitching, do it again with a ruler and possibly in a different color thread that does not contrast so much. The area of the wallhanging is small enough that perhaps I will use my domestic instead of my mid-arm to echo stitch the doors and windows. For now I chose to leave the ghastly stitching in place, forge ahead, and finish the wallhanging. This was to be a small project, not intended to consume a lot of time and most certainly not to become a UFO. I machine, rather than hand, stitched the binding on and to my surprise it came out quite reasonably well.

This is the fabric I chose for the backing. The words pumpkins appears to be upside but I made the majority of the scarecrows right side up. Doing both was not possible and since the scarecrows appeared most dominant, I gave them priority.

Here is the completed wallhanging in a state acceptable for viewing from a galloping horse from a great distance. It measures 28" by 16".

An activity for me, while watching TV, will be to pick out the ugly crooked stitches in the houses. I will add an update to this post once I have improved those houses. Consider it a home renovation project. For now I will be linking up to Sew Fresh Quilts's Let's Bee Social #199.