Last year I attempted to take part in the 100 days 100 blocks quilt along. I started out strong posting 4 blocks on four consecutive days on Instagram then life got in the way…
I had not attempted a Quilt Along (QAL) before… it is not that I am not a joiner, I just do not do well with enforced schedules….
I do love the idea of being given a structure to work to but trying to make a block a day can be a hard practice to get into….
I have made a quilt using Tula Pink’s 100 Blocks book before. I did not make all the blocks the first time and it was the same this time…
There are some blocks in the book that I look at and think life is too short….
But since the quilt along finished I have been making a block here and there….
I am now up to 48 blocks which is enough for a quilt I think….
I am not sure what I will do with them… actually, if I am honest, I am not sure where I have stashed them at the moment…
I put them somewhere safe and I can not find them…
Do not judge me… things got a little crazy a few months ago when our teenager moved back in with us…
and my stash and bits had to be hauled out of the spare bedroom…
I think this may be the one and only QAL I do… it will take an extra ordinary project to make me want to repeat this experience…
How do you feel about quilting along? Have you done any? What was your experience? Any tips?
25 thoughts on “100 Blocks seems like a lot…”
100 IS a lot of blocks! The QALs for easy, quick, time-sensitive stuff (hearts for Valentines, f.ex) seem more appealing; higher reward to effort ratio.
I did the Tula Pink 100 blocks and I liked the enforced discipline. Now I just need to put them together in a quilt!
I did the same thing, except it was a block a week. At some point I just didn’t want to devote my life to the project anymore. So I put the blocks “in time-out” as Bonnie Hunter says, and I’ll pick them up sometime later. Or not. Maybe there just there to be admired and move on.
Oh I love the idea of putting blocks in a time out. I have lots of blocks in time outs.
It’s not for me… But I do love most of the blocks you’ve made. To be honest, this is mainly because of the lovely fabrics; for me, it’s almost always about colour and surface design rather than the block, which is probably a lot to do with why I don’t enjoy block-driven projects like the 100-block thing. My particular favourite is Block 3.
Loved the process so much after I finished Tula’s 100 blocks in the multi colours (over about a year) I started the 365 day challenge Jan 2018. Think I’m in about May now.Lol. It’s a monster but a few blocks every now and then, it will get done….someday. Lots of other projects on the go simultaneously. It’s all about the journey 🥰
You are so right…it is all about the journey.
I did my first QAL last fall with a ghost quilt. I ended up working ahead on weekends and just taking photos in advance to post for future weeks. I’m considering the 100 block QAL this year & will probably do the same. I don’t always have time to sew every day but I do enjoy participating & seeing everyone’s quilts.
I love seeing everyone’s blocks too. It is the best bit.
Well, first I love your website/blog and all of your FPP blocks. I have not done a QAL per say, but I did a 25 Block Sampler Class where we did 2 blocks in class each week, which never really happened, and 2 more blocks at home before the next class the following week. What that actually said was that we really had somewhere between 2-4 blocks to finish each week before the next class. Talking about a lot of pressure. By the end of the 10 week class, we had a 25 Block Sampler Quilt Top that had sashing between the blocks and rows, and borders around the perimeter of the quilt. So, that sure seemed like the pressure you mention in your QAL. No, I don’t think that I would do that again. Maybe a smaller Sampler or QAL.
That is a great idea for a class. Getting support as you make the blocks helps. Angie at Gnome Angel does a good job of hosting QAL for that reason – she gives you good tips in for making the blocks. It helps.
And the right teacher really makes a difference. The 25 Block Sampler Class was fun because I learned so much and met so many new people that I remain friends with today, some seven years later. The stress that the teacher/store owner put into the class sort of took some of the fun out of it. The class was advertised as a beginner class, but for those that had less experience than myself truly had a difficult time staying caught up with the rest of the class.
I love your quilts and your blog AND am glad I am not the only one who puts projects and projects-to-be away and can’t easily put my hands on them. Also due to the grown up kids visiting… and the need for a spare bedroom. SIGH! I hope I still remember what I was thinking when I re-disover them.
Up until recently when I retired, I’ve never had time to sew EACH AND EVERY DAY. I had to laugh about you losing your blocks somewhere in the house. They’ll turn up someday when you least expect it. :c) I’ve done the same thing. You are right about life getting in the way.
One thing that I don’t like about all the different blocks in a single quilt is the hodge-podge (not sure about that spelling) look of the finished quilt. The only one I have seen that I particularly liked was this one by Lisa Bongean. https://www.instagram.com/p/Bpr1PFZFyQS/ In it she bordered each square with tiny half square triangles, then a white border between each one with a star at the intersection of the white borders. I think it gives each square a prominence.
Good luck with your project when you get back to it someday. We will all look forward to hearing from you when you find the squares (step one) and when you decide what to do with them (step two) and then finish the quilt top (step three). I agree with the other commenter—it is all about the journey.
The blocks are beautiful!! But I agree 100 blocks is a full time commitment. Make the blocks as time permits but enjoy life!! Thank you so much for your honesty in sharing with us. You are in good company here!
Block of the month is as high pressure as I go, and I’ve decided I don’t even like that. I don’t like to be forced to stop when the juices are flowing. Once put away it is hard to get projects out again as I learned with the weather quilt I am currently working on. (started with weather in 2016, last three blocks made in 2017, now finally in progress again.
I just love the palette you are using. I’m trying my first SAL as we speak. I just signed up for Alison Glass’s Trinket SAL which starts March 10 runs for 10 weeks. I suspect I will be in the same boat and life will get in the way but it’s worth a shot!
I love that pattern. I am really tempted to play along.
100 blocks….brave girl! I love yours! Your fussy cuts are so clever and fun! 🙂 And your fabrics are so great! I love BOMs and QALs. That is….I love to collect them. I have collected (downloaded from the internet, and from a couple of local guilds), lots and lots of them. Most are unstarted – filed in that way back, safe place… somewhere. I actually did complete one of them.
Bet there are tons of awesome things in that safe place. If you ever find it, will you share the GPS?
Wow, I am so glad I am not the only one who puts things away and forgets about them. I have done block of the week and block of the month then see another quilt I like and start another. Well I have been retire since 2002 and am now in a wheel chair, don’t get around to well and I’ve decided it is time to find and finish them. We just had are first great grandchild so I had got out a baby quilt I started for a neighbors grandchild. I finished it and mailed to Australia. One done felt real good about so sent my husband to the basement to find some other projects I didn’t finish. Well I could not believe what all he found that I have forgotten I even started. One was my grandaughters baby quilt. She is now 25 and just had that a baby of her own.It was the first quilt I ever stared. So that is my project now. It took quite awhile to find all the parts. So my suggestions , make sure you put all that’s needed for each project in separate bags and make sure you put the pattern with it. So when you get back to it you will know what is going on. Good luck with your projects and don’t put them off as long as I did.joan
I completed the 100 days last year 🎉 It was my first sew-a-long, I met heaps of fabulous people and was inspired by everyone’s block, including yours. I think I was only able to keep up as it was during the time when we renovated and were living in rentall accomodation. It certainly kept me occupied and filled in my day – I didn’t have time for anything else! Now we are back home I wonder how I’ll go with Gnome Angels new challenge for this year. Might have a practice run with Trinket……
I don’t participate in QALs anymore (except the BOM ones I host on my website). I loved participating in other people’s QALs for a couple of years but now I’m more focused on my own designs and I don’t want any superfluous schedules to keep track of.
I don’t do many, but one I did a couple of years ago was the Splendid Sampler with Pat Sloan, 2 blocks per week for 52 weeks plus about 20 or so bonus blocks (if you wanted to)…I did all of the blocks except about maybe 8 or so bonus ones I didn’t really care for. The blocks were released every Sunday and Thursday, included loads of different techniques, which is what i really wanted to do…really stretched me out of my comfort zone on occassion, plus I learnt heaps!
I have finished up to the binding stage (still auditioning fabrics, but I will get there this year!)
And last year I did whats called a No Fuss Stitch A Long with a great group of girls, from a book we all had…the aim was 4 blocks per month to make it manageable but no quilt police, it was all at your own pace…you could go faster or slower as life permitted. That one is a top and waiting to be quilted and giving as a gift
Found both ways to do a QAL enjoyable, although I did have to play catchup a fair bit with the first one due to a lot of paper piecing blocks.
Its a great way to extend your knowledge but sometimes the pressure of keeping up makes it not enjoyable, I now pick and choose which ones I might do…and its also a great way to make new quilty friends which is always a bonus!
I’ve done a few QALs now, and I’m most successful with those that are doing a block a month. Weekly blocks bog me down; daily blocks would definitely not work for me, much less 100 of them. I’m more choosy now. When I’m working on a QAL, I have a dedicated bin for the instructions, the fabric and the blocks. When I’m done working on it, everything goes back in the bin and is shelved. Otherwise the fabric, etc. gets left out and buried. Hope you find your blocks, they are very cute! The fussy cuts are really fun.
I like the weekly schedule myself: I have learned from Round Robin participation that I design best under pressure (time pressure), but I also hugely enjoy our guild monthly Block Lotto…because it is up to you how many blocks you make and they are all the same block, that is an easy one to use to learn new techniques. I am a big fan of therapy sewing, and these blocks would be a perfect structure for that activity. BTW your prints and print combos are inspired…I am in love with those kitties in Block 12 : )