Welcome one and all to the the Pick Four Blog Hop, for those of you who have been travelling with us on the tour bus, I hope it was a pleasant flight back from Paulette's over on Vancouver Island and welcome back to Blighty! Are you refreshed and ready for another day, and another chance to win your own signed copy of Pick Four? Grab yourself a cuppa and help yourself to a slice of Lincolnshire Plum Loaf, with or without butter (apple and/or cheese optional)
If you are not familiar with Sue, then please take the time to visit her blog at Quilt Times, say hello, and enjoy all the wonderful patterns, quilting eye candy and amazing quilting. I've been very lucky to have met Sue last year, and what a delightful lady she is!
So lets get down to business, Pick Four arrived on my door mat and I was so excited, I just had to read it from cover to cover and admire all the wonderful quilts in it before I could truly appreciate the book in all its glory.
Sue openly admits she doesn't 'do' scrappy, this little nugget allowed her to realise just how she puts together her quilts with a limited colour pallet. Now I'm not one to shy away from colour, choosing colour or even scrappy for that matter. My immediate reaction was to take four, and then turn it scrappy, but actually, I don't do scrappy well, it tends to be controlled. Whilst I have not done that, I will give it a go for the next quilt. For the new quilter and to be fair, so many experience quilters alike, choosing fabrics does not always come naturally. Sue leads you through your choices, how to choose, where to start, and the whole mystery that choosing fabrics can be.
What a relief, finally some sound, honest and lets face it, damn good advice on where to start and how to go about the process!
And that is the whole feel of Take Four, the techniques are clear, concise and easy to follow, as I read through the book I can hear Sue talking to me, in her calm, considered manner, leading me through all the decisions, as I go along my quilt journey.
There are so many beautiful choices to make when it comes to which quilt do I make first, I had a hard time deciding. In fact, I changed my mind several times!
But I finally settled on 3D Naughts and Crosses ....
so I set to with the instructions and completed the cutting for the centre of my quilt.
Now a word on instructions. Pick Four leads you through all the cutting and piecing in a clear and methodical manner. Again that sensible voice of Sue was with me with great little tips like "...since you'll be cutting the squares of dark tan and light tan along the bias edge, I recommend that you apply spray starch to these fabrics and press with a dry iron rather than steam before cutting." It's little nuggets like this that make all the difference in the success of your piecing, and ultimately the your finished quilt.
Attention to every detail of the process had be paid, including specific pressing instructions (which frankly I loved!), there are even colour options to give you an idea of how each pattern would look. Sometimes you have to decide is it the colour choices or the design that really makes me love it.
Now I have to say, although this will be a big quilt, the piecing really didn't take that long. Those of you who are regular visitors know I am very much a procrastinator, however, when I sit down to do something I can get a lot done in a relatively short space of time. I only started this quilt last Thursday. And I've been 'busy' with something else too.
There's 20" of the light mauve left, JUST enough for middle border so this is what I went with ( a slight deviation from the pattern, but that's OK, it's my quilt after all ) ...
and now I only have 5" of dark mauve, less than a meter of the white on white and just over a meter of cream. Now that's a result! This is all from stash! (and I even have found just the right backing fabric in my stash too! Bonus!)
I thoroughly enjoyed the whole process of making this quilt, and Pick Four leads you through the process from start to finish. This is the book for any novice quilter, AND experienced quilters too!