Is pinning worth it?
Not the Pinterest kind off pinning (the jury is still out on that one), but the pinning where seam line meets seam line and the two are held together by a pin. I try to avoid pinning little pieces because I find it mind-numbing and I still trust my eyes and my machine to keep everybody on track (now that I think of it, I begin to nod off when I draw seam lines too). Chain-piecing this stack of 2.5" unpinned squares would be a cake walk for me, accept for the fact that they were not going to be sewn to each other. They are going to be sewn to long strips of fabric as they will eventually form a checkerboard of sorts for my grand-niece's (!) quilt.
It took me a l-o-n-g time to come up with a pattern I liked. I allowed myself the luxury of cutting a bunch fabrics into 2.5" squares so I could get a true sense of what the final product would look like. I did not see the point of cutting the grey strips into squares, so I left them alone. I am concerned about not having enough, so not cutting the grey seemed wise. Do I sound defensive?
Before I took the squares from my design wall, I made the postively brilliant decision to collect them in order - top to bottom - and stack the squares together, pinned with a numbered flat-headed pin. The number on the pin refers to the column. Since I have 19 columns, I need to keep this straight.
I gathered my strips, squares, pins and a nice big book and set up my little work station. A big coffee table book, like The Quilts Of Gee's Bend, provides a nice work surface and allows you to drape long rows over your lap. I put on some tea water, checked the movie listings and I was in luck - The Ten Commandments was on and at nearly four hours in length, I was good to go. Biblical epics are good for this sort of activity as is The Sound Of Music or anything with Judy Garland.
Let the pinning begin.
Another reason why I don't pin is that it drives me nuts to have to stop and start my machine and remove pins to avoid contact with the machine needle. When I realized that I don't have to pin on the seam line (if it exists), but can pin in the body of the fabric, I thought I had found true happiness, kind of like finding all of your missing sock partners.
I don't think I was into the movie 45 minutes when I was done. The pinning went quickly - the sewing even more so. The strip flew through my machine.
Here we have Row 6, pinned, on the left and Row 5, sewn, on the right. This is a perfect example of why I have to number my rows. Duh. But you get my drift, don't you?
In the meantime, I was able to get a copy of Quilting With A Modern Slant at my library. I did a quick skim last night and my first impression is it's a beautiful book. I had hoped to come up with something a bit more in depth, but after watching a four hour movie, that's the best I could do. Another time.
ZZZzzzzzzzzz. . . .