Thursday, June 2, 2011

Farmer's Wife Quilt-a-Long, Week 1

A month or two ago, one of my favorite sewing friends Amanda and I started chatting about the Farmer's Wife sampler quilt.  Have you heard of it?  It is the gorgeous sampler quilt and book written by Laurie Aaron Hird.  It was inspired by letters from farmer's wives in the 1920's, and it is made of 111 6" blocks.  Every block is made by templates, which are found on the CD in the back of the book.  Please click HERE to visit Laurie's website and read more about it.

After realizing how much we both love the quilt, Amanda and I decided to host a quilt-a-long and make them together!  This will be a nice, long project, and our goal is to make 2 blocks per week.  It is a pretty big project to take on, so we figured a support group is necessary!

Here are just a couple reasons why I'm excited to make this quilt:

1- I love a good sampler, and this one is amazing.  Though it is a very traditional quilt that is typically done in muted colors, I'm planning on using my favorite modern fabrics.  I can't wait to see how they work in these blocks.

2- I've never had a long term quilt project.  Once I get my mind set on something, I typically work on it constantly until it is done.  This will be a nice change of pace for me.

3- I am working with my friend Amanda!  She is such a talented artist, and I am so happy that we are making our quilts together.  I am excited to see her fabric choices and how she approaches her block making.

Here are my two blocks for this week 1.  I decided to make my blocks out of order, and I started with some simple one that are made of squares and half square triangles.  I didn't have time to print out any templates, so I figured out the math and went from there.  I'm a rule breaker, what can I say? ;)  

I started with Block #9 - Box.  I used Flea Market Fancy and Cosmo Cricket for this one.  I'm not sure what the center fabric is, it was a cute scrap I found in my bin!

And my second block is #23 - Contrary Wife.  This block is made of Heather Ross Dandelions, Joel Dewberry Woodgrain, and some more Cosmo Cricket.

A note about fabric choices- I am using the block diagrams in the book to choose my colors.  For example, this the sample Contrary Wife block in the book:

There you go, the beginning of my new quilt and our new QAL!  So what do you think, want to sew with us??  I hope that you will consider joining our QAL, I think that we are going to have so much fun.  If you are going to sew with us, please know that you need to buy the book.  We will not be teaching, just sharing our finished blocks.  And we'll be cheering each other on, of course!!  Please join our flickr group, and add your blocks so we can all see.  And don't forget to head over to Amanda's and see her blocks!

xoxo, Angela

54 comments:

  1. Such a fun idea! Looking forward to seeing your blocks each week!

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  2. I just ordered the book - it looks really cool. Not sure if I'll actually sew along consistently, but I'll definitely follow along and sew along as I can.

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  3. I would love to sew with you, but alas, I am already behind and it just started!

    Mary
    http://www.quiltgenius.com

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  4. this is the neatest idea ever. I can't wait to see your progresses! You have such a good eye when it comes to pickin' and pairing, and just a great fabric collection to boot-- this is going to be extraordinary :)

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  5. Yay! Maybe I'll have a chance to go out and get the book today. :) You're blocks look great!

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  6. Lovely this looks like such a fun project, thanks for sharing.

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  7. How fun! My mom--who quilts with more traditional/reproduction fabrics is working on this quilt right now. Hmmm....maybe I can kidnap her book for a while! :) Love the idea of doing it in modern fabrics!

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  8. your blocks look SO cute!!!! I love love love them! This is going to be the best 111 blocks ever!

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  9. awesome, so inspiring! thank you much for sharing :)

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  10. I posted on Amanda's what a great idea I thought this was. I'm not going to buy the book from Amazon in the U.K. and hopefully start stitching along with you guys by next week. I am SO excited.
    Love
    Patti xxx

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  11. Ooh this sounds like FUN! I wish I didn't already have a quilt lined up to make next. I will enjoy your QAL and Flickr group picks though.

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  12. This will be so fun to follow. I'm curious to see the traditional sampler style as you both will interpret it. Thanks for pointing me to Amanda's blog too. Nice to discover a new great read!

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  13. I'm still waiting on my book to arrive ... I can't wait to start!

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  14. oh man... so tempting to join! i might have to JUST DO IT! Forget that we're selling out house, moving in with the inlaws... and the baby running around the house :-) haha
    I need some ME time! Gaah!

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  15. Ok, I just ordered my book on Amazon... can't wait! I think this will be good for me! PLUS I get an amazing sampler quilt out of the deal! woohooo!

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  16. I'm so happy that you and Amanda have decided to do this QAL. I got the book for Christmas and so far have only managed to make 2 blocks. This may just be the motivation that I need to get back to this quilt - I'm loving the idea of using modern fabric.

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  17. wow, I really need to check out that book, seems like a long term project would be really fun. :) It'll be cool to see what the end result will be. Are you just choosing random colors, etc?

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  18. I'm waiting on my book delivery just now! I think this is such a cool idea, although I have no idea what colours/fabrics to go for. Maybe I'll trail a week behind and steal everyone else's ides... ;)

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  19. Yes, I would love to do a traditional sampler quilt in fun modern fabrics. I'll go order my book ASAP!

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  20. Awesome, I've been waiting for the right QAL for me, and this is definitely it! Love the idea, the history and tradition behind this quilt, and the challenge!! I'm really new to quilting and hope this will help me improve some skills. I started tonight and made the Contrary Wife block! Now off to order my book!

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  21. I know I'll never keep up but I'm getting the book and pretending anyway! Love your first blocks (and that fabric scrap came from our very first month in the Bee-autiful bee for Suzanne's grey & yellow quilt - ages ago!)

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  22. I've just ordered the book! I love a good QAL and this looks great. Your blocks are lovely!

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  23. I was trying to resist, but this just seems like too much fun to pass up! I think it will be the perfect project for using up my scraps. I ordered the book this afternoon. When it arrives I will start on my blocks. Thanks for hosting this!

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  24. It'll be fun to watch you put this quilt together. I'm using Civil War fabrics and a BOM from Primitive Gatherings; your's will be so different to see!

    Great that you're working on it with a buddy. If I wasn't doing the BOM, I'd have quit a long time ago! Hang in there; it'll be worth it.

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  25. This is just the kick in the pants that I need. I'm making a hand sewn Red/White USA quilt using these patterns (a block to represent each state with fabric bought or sent to me by a quilter from that state) and a blue/white history quilt (where the block represents something significant to my mom's life). This QAL will move those from UFO to WIP status. Thanks!

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  26. I bought this book last year on a whim, looked at it but haven't done anything. This is just the push I need.
    thank you

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  27. I've been wanting to make this quilt for a while. Looking forward to seeing everyone's interpretation!

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  28. I just recently found your blog, and am normally more of a lurker, but I'm really inspired by what you two have done so far, and I would love to join in! Thanks so much for the opportunity!

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  29. I am set to start as soon as I receive the book in the mail. I love both of your examples and look forward to seeing how others turn out. I am starting with some red and beige I purchased and will go from there.

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  30. I said the same thing on Amanda's post... I have the book. I have fabric. I have tools. I will make time! Dying to jump in with you guys - hoping I can at the end of the month.

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  31. I have been doing this quilt for a few months, all in 1930's and I love how its turning out. I really like your idea of more modern fabrics too. I have seen it done in Kaffe Fassett fabrics and that looked really stunning. Will have to post my blocks to match yours each month.

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  32. I'm so excited to see that you and amanda started a quilt along. I had been working on the blocks on my own and stalled out. This is just what I needed. Yea!
    Now I'm following along.

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  33. This QAL is spreading like wildfire! It looks to be quite awesome.

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  34. OH, this looks like SO much fun! Got my book, so I am **IN**

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  35. I am so sad that I'm not going to have time to follow-along. This idea is awesome and a great way to learn new techniques! We can always learn from traditional patterns. I blogged about the QAL here just to help spread the word.
    http://howtobejenna.wordpress.com/2011/06/08/farmers-wife-quilt-along/

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  36. I may have to check out this book. I'm scared blind to work on tradition blocks and stick to simple kits and such. But it might be a nice challenge to get myself out of my cave and working on something with a little more spunk.

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  37. I bought the book today and excited to start. I love traditional blocks and in the new fabrics it will be so fun!

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  38. I love the book...I also got the CD so I could print some of the patterns as paper piecing

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  39. I just ordered my book...I'm in...I've been drooling over this quilt for a while now.

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  40. I have had the book purchased for over a year and haven't started it..Had actually thought about a sew along on my blog but never got it going. I have joined your flickr group and will start thinking about my fabrics. Thanks for the push to get this going! :)

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  41. I want to join! Oh my gosh, I think I'm four blocks behind, but I want to catch up!

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  42. I would like to join, I can get the book at Joann's.

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  43. Well I started by doing the Cut Glass Dish #26 since it went with the first entry based on the essays. The #1 piece will not go with the #13 pieces because the triangles when sewn take up 1/2 " and will not match the 2 1/2 " #1 pieces. When I finished the block it was barely 5 1/4 - so I guess I need to make some adjustments. First I shouldn't start with such a complex block as my first. Perhaps I will do the blocks based on your quilt along, you probably started with less pieces to a block first. Wish me luck.

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  44. I just found this QAL and am thinking of joining in! I have looked at this book numerous times but haven't taken the plunge and gotten it yet. The reviews of the book on Amazon aren't great, and that's disappointing. How do the QAL-ers here feel about the CD and templates?

    If I go ahead with this, I will use scraps and try to stay with period type colors and prints. I will likely hand-piece it, as well.

    Are the blocks 6.5" UNfinished or 6" UNfinished?

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  45. I've seen all the blocks (and love them!!!) but said I just wasn't going to jump in. Then another block would get posted...and I was tempted. But not enough to jump in. Today the mailman brought a birthday package to me from a good friend (actually about two weeks early). I opened it...and there was the Farmers Wife book!!! I think this just pushed me over the edge! I'm jumping! :)

    One question...but maybe it's been answered someplace else (I really need to read up on everything now that I'm actually doing this!): Do all the QAL-ers work on the same block patterns each week or is everyone picking whichever ones they want?

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  46. Hi Angela, you and Amanda have so inspired me and I have just received my 'Farmers Wife' book.. Can I join in...please please???... what do I need to do??? I will be choosing fabrics and starting to sew this weekend...I am four weeks behind but so want to catch up...hope I can...many Hugs Dawn
    (Australia) x x

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  47. Just bought the book after reading about your quilt along on Camille Roskelley's blog. Can't wait to start!

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  48. I'm waiting on my book to come in the mail. I didn't think I wanted to do this quilt-along but after seeing your gorgeous blocks, and a few others in blog land I HAD TO get in on it!! Love it!!!

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  49. I too have just jumped on, and have just ordered the book, and also ordered some contemporary fabrics to make it with. Now I have to patiently sit on my hands until it all arrives.

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  50. I am late joining, but count me in.

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  51. My copy of the book came on the day we left for a vacation. That was nice because on the long car trip I had the chance to read all of the letters that were written by the Farmer's Wives. I liked how the block designs sometimes related to the letter. Now I'm interested in getting going with the sewing.

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  52. When you get to more difficult ones I will be anxious to hear how you get the measurements, or are you using templates? The ones here are so easy, just HST and ending up as a 6" block. I am concerned that I do not know how to divide up the measurements. Thanks and keep up the good work. Glad I was into'd to your blog.

    Piffle

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  53. Hello there, am happy to have been intro'd to your blog. The blocks look so good. I am noticing these are easily done and divided as 6" finished. I am concerned that when it comes to the harder ones I will not know how to divide. Perhaps you are using templates that I am not using. Your blocks look great BTW.

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  54. I am looking for some tutorials, want to start the framer's wife quilt. Did you piece the blocks by machine or by hand? Do you have tips?????

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