Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Of Bags and Boxes

Casting my eye around the sewing room for fabrics and a potential new project or two has found me digging into more 'archives' and returning to yet more projects long forgotten, like this Pineapple Tidbits. This is one that my sister Frances and I learned how to make years ago -1996 to be exact (more carbon dating!). I remember coming across it in the window of a little quilt shop near my brother/sister-in-law's apartment (they lived above a great toy store) in the north end of Toronto and just falling in love with it. I was even happier when I figured out that they were offering a class.

A true scrap quilt, we all had to bring dark and light strips for a fabric trade to create maximum variety and advised that 'you will surrender control of colour and let fate and the fabrics take over, including some fabrics that you might not ordinarily choose - uglies, muddies, plaids, stripes, geometrics, large scale florals and tiny calicos.' The only thing we were to avoid was florescent, white or very light fabrics.

It is made using a technique called under pressed foundation piecing - transferring the pattern to flannelette blocks and then sewing the strips to the pattern.

Two very cool things happen in the process - all of the uglies meld together when you tea dye the finished quilt top giving it a lovely, aged feel and making it look like your fabrics are anything but 'uglies'. Then you dry it in the dryer, giving it the 'quilted' finish as the flannelette shrinks a bit. No quilting required. Sounds a little odd but it works wonderfully. It's then tied to the backing with Perle cotton and it's finished.

It sounds more complicated than it is and I think a few photos would help explain it better, so the next time I'll try and illustrate the process for you. In the meantime, those bags and boxes seem to be destined to be emptied, or at least moved along a little bit....M


Kyle said...

What an awesome time capsale of fabrics. Glad you're moving those scraps and blocks forward.

audrey said...

Sounds like a great project to revisit! I used to think I wanted to make a pineapple quilt, but now I'm a bit leery--so much work!:)

Aunt 'Reen said...

I love pineapple quilts and your method for making this one sounds very appealing.
With all the piecework required to make pineapple blocks this quilt-as-you-go method would definately be a big time saver.

Thanks for sharing!

Karen H said...

What a blast from the past! I too took a class to make this quilt around the same time! The teacher was Kim Denton Khan. I put a flannel back on my quilt so it is heavy but very warm and cozy. My daughter now owns and uses the quilt.

Brandie said...

I am very curious about how this is done. Specially is those ugly pieces turn into those gorgeous blocks.