Monday, April 28, 2014

Back in the Bee

You guys, I have so many things to blog about that I've mostly just avoided it altogether.  I know, not the end of anybody's world. But I actually do want to share lots of these things because they are exciting to me and I like them. I've taken up a new crafty obsession, I've made progress on so many projects, I've learned new sewing skills and I really need to tell you guys about my recent Sewdown weekend because it was pretty amazing.

So instead of overthinking it, I'll just tell you one thing at a time. And probably still in my slow and forgetful blogging style :)

I recently re-joined the charity quilting bee, Do Good Stitches. I left my original circle of the bee last year just to take a break, which lasted about 9 months. But then Rachel so kindly invited me to be in her circle, along with several other of my favorite online quilting buddies, and I just couldn't say no. Plus, this time I'm only a stitcher and not a quilter. That means I just make the assigned blocks each month and I never have to be in charge of planning and finishing the quilts. That feels much more manageable for me right now, so I was super excited to get back into it!

Mystery Star

This block was for Rachel's March assignment. You can read about her instructions here, but she basically wants to make a quilt with a very eclectic piecing style but cohesive color scheme. So we had a lot of freedom of choice here. She did want our units to be traditional style blocks though, which she will put together in kind of an improv-y modern way. Cool idea, huh? So I had recently learned to paper piece (finally!) from my friend and boss at Sewn Studio, Julie. I was itching to try  another paper pieced block that fit the traditional bill here, so I tried Faith's Star of Mystery tutorial. It was so fun to put together! I can totally see why people get so easily addicted to paper piecing. I also sent along some tiny hourglass units with my star for Rachel to work into the quilt somewhere. I can't wait to see how she puts this one together!

String blocks for Jacey

This month, Jacey asked for simple 8.5" scrappy string blocks with solid blue center strips. This was quick and fun for me since I just recently made a whole quilt that's very similar. This time, I didn't put any wonkiness into my cuts though, and tried to mix in more thin strips. I love them. I need to just always be making string blocks once in a while- the pile of string scraps is constantly growing!

DGS Love Circle

DGS Love Circle

February was my first month with this group and Natalie (soooooo talented. I love everything she does!) asked for improv blocks that were one color each, but went from darker value in the center to lighter value around the outsides.  Now I also want to make myself a scrappy quilt in this style. She gave no size specifications for the blocks, they didn't even have to be square. I think that variation will make the whole quilt so interesting. 

Isn't this group awesome? It's nice to just follow someone else's directions when there is a perfect balance of guidance and creative freedom given. I can never wait to see what we are doing next. 

If you are interested in joining the bee, you can find sign-up info here, in the group news section. And if you are interested in seeing more timely, but less wordy updates from me, @alittlegressica on Instagram. 


  1. Gorgeous blocks! I really love the star, so pretty! I just joined IG so I will see if I can find you!

  2. I'm so glad you've joined our circle, Jessica! I'm working with your blocks for the March quilt today. Love them all! I enjoyed making those strings blocks so much, which sort of surprised me. It's great how simple sews can be just as satisfying as the tricky stuff.

  3. How fun! I especially love those last one-color blocks for Natalie. Beautiful!

  4. Glad I'm not the only one who hasn't posted about Sewdown yet!!! Trying to do that now. Love your bee blocks. I just joined a Do Good Stitches circle and am enjoying being part of that group.


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