Monday, December 15, 2014
Grand Illusion Clue #3
I am working away on clue 3 of Bonnie Hunter's Grand Illusion mystery quilt. This week we are making a kind of double four patch block. There is a lot of speculation flying around cyberspace as to the function of these blocks in the final quilt. I have heard several people mention that they think the blocks will be in the border. Bonnie likes pieced sashing, however, so that is definitely also a possibility, I prefer just to go with the flow, make the blocks, and wait and see where everything fits in with the final reveal.
Bonnie warned us to make a practice strip and double check the finished size to ensure proper sized blocks - much like making a swatch when knitting to check your gauge (which I always hate to do). I did it this time and lo and behold I wasn't as accurate as I thought. So I made a couple of minor adjustments to my seam width to get the blocks to come out to the right size, which is 6.5" x 3.5" unfinished. To see everyone's progress, click here.
I haven't gotten as far along as I would have liked. Friday I couldn't sew at all because it was my mother's 92nd birthday and I wanted to spend some time with her. Our guild Christmas party was Friday evening and that required some last minute preparations on my part as program chair. And I can't honestly say what happened on Saturday, although I did manage to get 36 blocks finished (120 are needed), which is as far as I have gotten. Today, between grocery shopping, cookie dough making, skyping with a friend in Germany, Christmas letter writing, and card addressing - not to mention making acorn squash soup for dinner - the day just flew by without one minute for sewing. I'll get there by Friday, though. just have to have a couple of days uninterrupted.
THURSDAY EVENING UPDATE: ALL 120 BLOCKS OF CLUE #3 ARE DONE!! Ready for clue #4.
Not such a great photo, but this is one tray of Springerle cookies from my efforts today. For those of you not familiar with this southern German specialty, it is an old style cookie, anise flavored and imprinted with wooden molds. You can't really see that very well in the photograph. They have to dry overnight and in the morning they will be baked in a low oven (275-300 degrees). The cookies will spring up (hence the name) in a certain way. I will post another photo after they are baked. My brother-in-law, whose grandmother was of German descent, loves them as I do. He will get the majority of what I make, as all but six will go to him as a Christmas present.
They are particularly good with a cup of strong tea. I have molds that I bought while a student in Germany 40 years ago and a good friend gifted me her mother's wooden molds after her mother's death. You can still buy the molds today, of course, but as the good ones are still hand carved, they are pricey. Here's a link to some really spectacular ones: the Springerle Baker.
Last, but certainly not least, welcome aboard to Rhoda and Carla, new followers. I am also finding new and interesting blogs to follow through Bonnie's Monday Mystery Link-ups!