Friday, January 18, 2019

Quiltville Good Fortune Mystery - That's A Lot Of Pieces

Every year when I am in the throws of gift making for the holiday season, I get this urge to make something for me. This year, I satisfied that urge by participating in Bonnie Hunter's mystery quilt. I have participated in mysteries before, as a shop owner, when I knew the end result throughout the process. This is the first time it was truly a mystery from start to finish. I loved it.

The first step is the announcement of a color palette and estimated yardage. These colors made me think they were pulled straight from a basic crayon box. I thought about changing them up a bit but decided as a rookie I should stick with the instructions, and, these are not my go to colors when working on my own so it's great to use up this stash.

Each Friday starting in late November a new clue was issued. I liked going with the flow. All of the steps were straightforward and easy to complete. There may have been a few times where I thought, "You want me to make how many?!?!" The number of units for some of the steps was quite large but with a little Dori inspiration (just keep sewing sewing sewing), I persevered.

Each week's clue was saved in a bag. I loved the Instagram posts of participants trying to guess the end result. I did not do any of that. I completely gave myself over to the process and enjoyed every step. It was a surprise every single week.

When the big reveal finally came in mid-January, I wasn't quite ready for it. I was enjoying the drawn out pace of making this quilt top.

It took a couple of weeks to put it all together, but here it is. When the center blocks were assembled, I wasn't sure if I liked it. The outer border really pulled it all together for me. I absolutely love it now.

The thing that impresses me the most about this quilt is the sheer number of pieces. Since I went with strip sewing rather than string sewing for the orange in the blocks and the neutral borders, I was able to calculate the number of pieces in this quilt.

Bonnie does not allow counts and quantities to be published about her mystery quilts since they are converted into patterns for sale once the mystery is over. However, I don't think this number gives anything away. There are 2,936 pieces of fabric in my quilt top. Had the mystery been introduced as... join us in making a quilt with more than 2,900 pieces... I never would have joined in. A little bit every day made this happen. And even better, every single piece of fabric in this quilt came from scraps that I already had on hand.

It will be a while before this top is quilted, as there are a few ahead of it in line. One funny thing is that I hadn't been able to really see the finished top until I took these pictures. I have found two pieces turned the wrong way so far. Maybe I'll fix them before quilting and maybe I'll leave them for character. I have plenty of time to think about that.

I will definitely be joining in again next year. Thank you, Bonnie, for a fun initiation into the mystery quilt world.
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