Thank you Bonnie Hunter

I don't know how many of you are familiar with Bonnie Hunter's blog and Quiltville and her books. Nancy-Rose at Life is a Stitch brought Bonnie to my attention. Nancy kept blogging about her leader/ender projects and after a while, my curiosity was piqued. I went out in search of information and found Bonnie's website. And, then, I decided to make her Scrappily Happily Irish quilt. I've been working on it for over a year and had made 31 pieced blocks and some of the other pieces preparing for the plain blocks. My leader/ender wasn't going very fast. But, that's because I was really doing it as a leader/ender, which meant only sewing two pieces together at the beginning and ending of anything else I was piecing (like ending a string of chained piecing with a leader/ender).

But, this week, I just needed stuff to sew that I didn't have to think about. So, I sat down and started sewing squares into rows. The only thing I had to think about was light, medium and dark and I have my squares already separated that way, so just reach into the correct bin and add a square. I was chain piecing, not even thinking about leading and ending. I was using the rows I was creating as leaders and enders in a leader/ender project.

Then, I ran out of medium squares and needed to cut more. And, while I had the scrap bin down, I decided to start cutting 2x5 bricks for a Texas Braid quilt from Bonnie's book Adventures with Leaders and Enders. More stuff I could do without having to think about it.

So, thank you Bonnie for helping me find work I could do while I don't want to think. It is really helping me out.

I've been splitting my scraps into strip widths, 1", 1.5", 2" and large scraps. I'm envisioning a string quilt, my Scrappily Happily Irish, a Crabapple quilt and the Texas Braid, all from this book, and all from my stash.

Unfortunately, my stash started as a mish-mash all in the same bin, and while I have tried to stop throwing scraps into it without cutting them down to squares, I started late. The more weight I took from the top of the scrap bin, the more the bottom part expanded to fill the space. I could cut several quilts, just from these scraps. So, I'm going to have to take another of Bonnie's suggestions and cut for a few minutes every time I want to sit and sew.

We'll see if I ever get to the bottom of the bin. But, for now, I'm just glad to have work I can do that doesn't require a lot of concentration. Just pick a size and go with it. Thanks, Bonnie! Hope you had fun in Sisters. Wish I had been there. Maybe next year. Lane


Becky said...

I have Bonnie's book and it is in my stack of future projects! I might have to sneak it closer to the top!

Elizabeth said...

I love that Irish chain of Bonnie's! Another blog I follow did just what you're doing and so I was inspired to start using a project I already had cut and waiting as leaders and enders. It is so fun to do something productive with the leaders and enders! Please post pictures of your project soon! I'm really interested to see what you've done. Your work is always so beautiful.

xo -E

Coloradolady said...

Sounds like you made progress...oh, and I want to go on that cruise she is going to teach at....bad!!! Did you see that???

Sisters is another destination on my list....I'd so love to go next year. Someone told me Lane, that ANYONE from ANYWHERE can enter their quilt in the show at Sisters and every quilt gets a ribbon....think about that....go for the big guns...you are that talented!!!

Quiltluver said...

Looking forward to seeing pictures!

Bonnie K Hunter said...

Lane! My ears have been burning all day and now I know why! :c) Thank you so much for the shout out. I'm so GLAD you are having fun with the scraps. I can't stand to sew anything now without another pair of something to leave under the presser foot...it's amazing how fast units grow, and all the many things you can do with 4 patches even if you build them without a purpose. (until you have enough to decide to do something!) I even love it how those leader/ender projects start to niggle and naggle at you and beg to become primary *REAL* projects..please, please, pretty please, just SEW ME! :c)


Quiltluver said...

I see Bonnie gave your blog a plug on Facebook. Looks like you have a fan!

SubeeSews said...

You have officially been bitten by "Our Bonnie Bug"!!!!!!!!!!!!!
She has so changed the way I look at my fabric stash.
And those bins of scraps multiply..they seem to grow when you start using from them.
Pictures please.....