Isn’t it exciting to begin the year by creating a fun mystery project? Welcome 2013!!!
If you have done any mysteries before, you pretty much know what’s coming. I will give instructions (or clues) and you have time to complete them until the next instruction is given. The clues will be open to your ways of quilting/sewing and choices of color. This is a modest project (top is about 42" x 54") and I will try to make each clue as clear as I can. This is my first created mystery so ask questions if you need to! We will be completing our mystery in mid-February.
The level will be experienced-beginner to intermediate sewing skills. If you have not sewn a seam in your life or have not learned basic quilting skills, please find someone who can help you or print the instructions and return to them when you have the ability to do them. I have a list of supplies I recommend having on hand in order for you to complete the project with most success.
With THAT being said, let’s get our stuff together!
- Sewing machine. Yeah, I know I didn’t need to say that. Please take the time to know where your ¼” marking is and how to line up your seams. This is important in keeping your project to line up well when matching pieces. For suggestions on getting consistent ¼” seams, check out my post about it. Clean out the fuzz from the inside of the bobbin area, give it a dose of oil (see my post about maintenance) and fill up some bobbins! If you have an extender table, grab that and set it in place. I like using one almost all the time. For vintage machine owners, please check out the Featherweight Skill Series for tutorials on the basics of sewing.
- Cutting tools: scissors, rotary cutter, cutting mat. Use sharp cutting tools! Get a new blade for your rotary cutter. Have large and small scissors handy. Your mat is a useful tool. Having the mat be 18” x 24” or larger works well for piecing. If you need a new one, get your hands on a 40 or 50% coupon and pick one up in the sewing department!
- The Easy Angle Ruler and a long cutting ruler/guide. The cutting guide should be as wide as your cutting mat, or at least 18”, so your cuts can zip along without interruption. Stopping in a cut and repositioning the ruler or folding the fabric so it will fit under the ruler results in wavy edges. Use that 40% off coupon if you need a better guide! As far as specialty rulers, they are beginning to grow on me. This mystery calls for only one special ruler – the Easy Angle. I just learned about it a few months ago and highly recommend picking one up. Mine was $8.99 with 40% off so I got if for less than $6. Well worth the price! If you don't have one, I'll give instructions for how to cut without it as well.
- Fabric! Our mystery calls for 3 fabrics.
Think of your favorite color and choose fabric in that tone. We’ll call this the base color. A dark or medium shade would look nice. You can use a solid or a print but choose one or the other. If you want a print, have it contain most of the color you want so when you look at it you will think it is that color. If you want you can use all the same fabric or mix and match with your scraps, either will work. Just keep the scraps in that base color. How? If you set all the pieces next to each other on a table, all the shades of the color should all look like they belong together. If one is sticking out like a sore thumb, don’t use that one. 1-3/4 yards of that color will be plenty for the project and will give you some “wiggle room” as well.
Now choose a second neutral toned, light color that will go with your base color. We’ll call this the neutral color. White or cream will look great, but any fabric that is very pale in color will work as well. Just set it on the table next to your base color and see if you like the way it looks. This can be done with one fabric or scrappy, just keep all of the light colors very light. Gather together 1-3/4 yards of the neutral.
Lastly, pick out a really dark color. Choose something that is darker than your base color or a very dark complimentary color to your base color. You could pick out a fabric with both of your base and neutral colors in it. That would look great too! I would recommend keeping this all in one fabric; get 1-5/8 yards of it.
- Misc stuff. Pins, iron, thread, spare sewing machine needle, etc…. Yes, I’m being thorough again. Need I say more on this? No, I didn’t think so.
Try to not reason things out too much with a mystery. It’s going to be a fun project! Now, go get all your goodies together and I will give out the next clue on January 10, 2013. May the mystery begin!