Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Mystery Quilt Reveal

Mystery Quilt Reveal

Completed square
I got carried away with the holidays and didn't get as much work done on the Grand Illusion mystery quilt as I had planned. I have one block done and enough components to make three more. I have to say, if I had seen the revealed quilt instead of being introduced to it little by little, I would have run screaming from the building. It's not that it WAS difficult, it just LOOKS difficult -- and scary for a fairly new quilter like me. However, being led through this quilt a little at a time, I understand that I can do pieces that look complicated, as long as I break it down into small enough chunks for my brain to process.

Can you find the Dime Store Novel themes?

I also love the fact that I learned several new techniques and I met quilters from all over the world. I kept it scrappy and I was able to incorporate a number of fun fabrics that relate to our Dime Store Novel world, as well as some that have a personal meaning. One friend has suggested an event after the quilt is done where we display the quilt and read some of our works -- it sounds like an interesting idea.

Will I participate in next year's Bonnie Hunter Winter Mystery Quilt event?  Yes!

In Writing News

The holidays are over and we are back to working on stories and we have an exciting 2015 planned for our readers.  The first draft of Louisiana Snowflake is nearly complete and John is hard at work on the second draft of Striking Angels. Both of these books will be larger than the other books in the Dime Store Novel series -- the story grows and so do the books. 
If you have not subscribed to our newsletter, take a moment to do so. We'll have lots of announcements soon. For a limited time, subscribers can download a FREE PDF of The Canary's Silence, a short horror story inspired by the Bonne Terre mines.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Stitching a Mystery

I love a good mystery, so when a friend of mine told me about Bonnie Hunter's Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt, I decided to give it a try. I'd never heard of a mystery quilt before -- and I'm pretty new to the mysteries of quilting. But basically, each Friday Bonnie Hunter posts a piece of the pattern and we all piece like crazy. There is a linky list where people can post their progress.

We are now in week 2. The first week, I managed to put together a few blocks. I'm deviating a little from the suggested color scheme by using a "black" that is really pretty colorful. My quilt is going to have a Mardi Gras feel to it -- in keeping with the New Orleans setting of most of the Dime Store Novel series. The constant yellow is a really awesome angel design, which I chose so that the quilt would have a little of my mother in it. She collected angels and would have loved this fabric.

Some of the squares need to be trimmed. I didn't realize there was a difference between the OmniGrid and the Easy Angle ruler, so there is excess fabric. Lesson #1.

I found the week 2 blocks easier. I used the No Waste method, so I will have a bunch of small blocks left over for some future project. I also learned a new technique, so this week was a double-win.
I've got 20 or so of these done, all using the musical note neutral. The others will use different neutrals...some are musical some not.  Once again, I got daring on the blacks and used some neon skeletons and dragons, as well as the Mardis Gras masks.

I'm having a good time exploring a mystery in color and line instead of character and plot. The stories are distilling and their mysteries will emerge when they are ready. Meanwhile, I'll post my progress on the mystery quilt throughout the month of December and into January...and some day...I'll post my end result.

If you are interested in seeing what other quilters are creating for the mystery quilt, you can take a trip along this week's mystery quilt link party. I took a peek and there are a lot of fun designs.