Why should you read my blog?

Why should you read my blog???

Because I said so! No not really...But reading my blog will hopefully be more entertaining than just sitting at your computer with nothing to do. I like to write about a variety of topics depending on my mood. So be sure to check in since you'll never know what kind of mood I'll be in!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Project Evolution - Making Stained Glass Quilts

Have you ever noticed that you may start with one idea about a project but then end up with a totally different result? Not necessarily better or worse, just different. That happens with projects of mine ALL the time!! My church just moved into a new building that used to be a headquarters for a construction company. So since we didn't have stained glass windows or really anything up on the walls yet, I came up with an idea for a wall-hanging quilt that I wanted to make for the church.

My original idea involved hills of grass with three cross on top. Then it would be surrounded by a curved gold border and stained glass around that. I was aiming for the quilt to look like stained glass windows. Well I finally finished the quilt last week! And while it did not turn out exactly like my original sketch, it is still beautiful and will look lovely on our wall at church!
So it is not the tall window shape I originally planned. And there is not as much of the stained glass that I originally planned. But I think this is what will work better with where I am going to hang it in the church. Making the stained glass was the best part though, so I wish I had used more of it.

1) I took 8 different color fabrics and cut them into squares about 8 X 10 inches. It could be whatever size you want though. Then I stacked the 8 squares (one of each color) very neatly so all the edges line up.
2) Using a straight edge and a rotary cutter, cut slices through all 8 pieces to make shapes. The key is making sure all the squares are cut identical. These pieces will be your separate stained glass "chunks." I made an image with Paint to show what I mean by slices and shapes. Obviously, you want to have straighter lines than what I managed using Paint! lol

3) Now you should have 8 squares cut into identical stained glass shapes. Since I had 8 different color fabrics, I cut each square into 8 different shapes. Then I mixed and matched all the shapes so that I still had 8 squares but each square was made up of 8 different fabrics.

4) Then you just have to sew all the pieces together. For this example I would sew the purple and pink piece together first because they shared a full side. Then I would sew the green piece on to that. Then the yellow and so on. It all depends on the order in which you made your slices.
The great part about the stained glass is that you can cut the slices at any angles you want! But it is good to stick to straight line cuts. I liked that I could do each set of 8 squares differently. Then when I put it all together it had that nice random effect. When you have all the squares you can cut them into smaller strips/sqaures like I did or you can sew them together as is. This idea can be used in many different ways! Whatever works fo you project!

Sometimes it is best to let the project take the lead and decide where it wants to go.