Kansas Troubles troubled by the summer heat!

It has been very hot here (well for Northern Europe!) since the middle of June: days have been averaging out at 30°C and higher, with not much cooler at night. As the Ice Bear Quilts Studio is on the third floor, under the roof, it has been hotter still in the studio: way too hot for sitting down behind a sewing machine. So the Kansas Troubles quilt has literally been in trouble: I haven’t been working on it, except the odd bit of late night cutting, but have been confining myself to some hand sewing on the cooler first and second floors. Now we have had a series of truly spectacular thunderstorms and a days long deluge of torrential rain the temperature has dropped and I have been back behind the machine.

When I last blogged about the quilt I was trying to choose a colour for the inner border: I chose the dark brown and got that sewed on just before the heat got us.

The inner brown border sewed to the central area of the Kansas Troubles quilt top.

The inner brown border sewed to the central area of the Kansas Troubles quilt top.

The next step was to make the actual Kansas Troubles blocks for the corners in the border; I cut out all the fiddly pieces and that was where I stopped. Yesterday I made all twelve blocks, from a mixture of batiks and prints. Each block has a green polka-dot  plain half and a fiery batik triangles half.

One of the Kansas Troubles corner blocks (not yet trimmed). There are 12 of these in the quilt.

One of the Kansas Troubles corner blocks (not yet trimmed). There are 12 of these in the quilt.

For a stash-buster quilt I only allow myself to buy one extra fabric: usually for the border, because of the amount. I found a great orange batik sunflower pattern at http://www.equilter.com and last night cut the pieces for the second border. Now I have the corners and the orange border on the design wall to look at, and I am thinking about what colour to make the binding. The sunflowers don’t show well in the photo, but they really are there!

The quilt on the design wall, with the second orange border, including the Kansas Troubles blocks, pinned into place.

The quilt on the design wall, with the second orange border, including the Kansas Troubles blocks, pinned into place.

In the original design (see below) the binding is orange, but I think dark green or brown might be better, to link to the inner border and tone down that orange! In the meantime I have cut out all the appliqué shapes for the corn stalks that I am going to appliqué on the top, as per the original design. But first the outer border has to go on, because the appliqué overlaps the borders. I am pleased with how the quilt is shaping up: it looks really autumny and that was the idea. I’ll have to get going though, or it won’t be hanging this year!

Kansas Troubles designed by Margrit Hall from Benni Harper's Quilt Album by Earlene Fowler and Margrit Hall

Kansas Troubles designed by Margrit Hall from Benni Harper’s Quilt Album by Earlene Fowler and Margrit Hall

 

So now it’s full steam ahead in Kansas.Watch this space.

 

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