New Orleans House Project

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Leaders or Enders?

I was a relative late-comer to the concept of using leader-ender projects to increase one's quilt-making output.  I never used the leader-ender practice when piecing, mostly because I never saw the need for it.  But when Bonnie Hunter promoted the idea of working on two quilts at the same time - one as the "main" quilting project, the other as a leader-ender project - I was sold!  Now I feel guilty if I do any stitching and don't use leader-enders as part of the process.

The Queen of Leader-Endering - Bonnie Hunter - has announced this year's L-E quilt along will be Tumblers.  I didn't really want to jump on the bandwagon because I have other quilty ideas in mind that will work just as well as leader-enders.  But Diane of Butterfly Threads blogged about her Tumblers AND her great Tumbler templates and I started weakening.

I rationalized that I already had some Tumbler pieces cut and ready to go. 

Inspired by Karen at Nana Girl Quilts, I had cut a stack of Tumbler pieces several months ago.  I had finished making memory quilts from my late father's shirt collection, but I had way too much shirt fabric left over to just toss the remainders (the fabric is mostly poly-cotton blends, so I didn't want to mix the left-overs into my regular fabric stash).  Karen inspired me to make a Tumbler quilt to use up more of the shirt fabrics; I had started cutting pieces, but hadn't progressed any farther.

I've done some tentative piecing of the Tumbler parts, but I'm not sure there's enough color variety in my shirt fabrics for a successful quilt.  I'm trying to decide if I want to throw in some random scraps of cotton quilting fabrics that were also used in the memory quilts.  I don't have any of the scraps cut in Tumbler shapes yet, so I guess my next step is to do some more cutting.  BTW, I'm using a Fons & Porter Wedge Template because it was the only ruler I could find at Hancock's when I first started cutting Tumbler pieces several months ago.

I'm still undecided about whether I'll use this as a leader-ender project, but I think a little more experimentation will be a good thing!  


10 comments:

  1. Keep going with it! I think you will be surprised at the outcome just using the shirts from your Dad. All the wonderful memories will make it work and who said a 'calm' colored quilt is a bad thing? Just a thought.....=)

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  2. It can't hurt to just keep sewing blocks together. What is the worst thing that could happen?

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  3. I think there's enough color variety for a successful quilt. I think it will look kind of vintage-ish.

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  4. Stick with the shirtings ... Lovely soft mellow blend with memories built-in.

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  5. Looks like a great way to use up those shirting scraps Angie. I agree you may want more value in there, unless you want to go with the "low volume" look. What if you added in just one color but in lots of different prints? It could be a neutral like black or brown, or it could be a spark of color like royal blue. You could throw in a tumbler of color here and there to add a spark of interest and flow. Whatever you choose to do I know will be wonderful!

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  6. Angie, I think you'll find there is enough variety of the plaids. I found that red and orange were the colors that made my tumblers pop.

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  7. The tumblers are looking good! They look so soft and are a gentle colour, some orange could be added because that would pop, but just as it is at the moment it looks just wonderful :) I might have to cut some tumblers now!

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  8. Great fabrics! I like your variety of plaids. It will be fun to see this one progress.

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  9. I love it! I vote to keep it all from the shirts... it will be a memory quilt and reflect your Dad's colours. And it looks like it has lots of variety and interest from here :)

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