Thursday, August 30, 2012

dear Chicopee

You all know that there are a LOT of great collections coming out right now.  Too many, some would even say.  But, I think when they say that they're mostly feeling that all the options make it incredibly hard to choose what to actually buy, with a limited budget and all.  (I think we all have those?   The limited budgets?  Yes.)  But still, I'm sure we'd rather have this problem than the lack of temptation.  We're so brave!  Soooooo brave.

dear Chicopee


Well, after wading through the fabric onslaught I came out with a personal favorite, and it's Chicopee by Denyse Schmidt from Freespirit.  I think after working with Flea Market Fancy so much this year, I just plain "believe" in her for one thing.  You see, I had missed the original Flea Market Fancy release and never actually tried Hope Valley (shhhh... don't tell anyone).  And then we don't have Jo-Ann's near bye, so I've also never had a chance with those Schmidt fabrics.  Flea Market Fancy was my first. And I'm sold.

warm and spicey Chicopee

It seems to me that Chicopee has many of the classic Denyse Schmidt characteristics that make her fabrics so nice for patchwork:  small scale, lots of basics shapes (dots and stripes), limited color schemes for easy mixing, and a full range of values (from dark to light colors).

my favorites from Chicopee

I ended up getting the whole collection.  The day it arrived I took a million pictures (mostly in bad lighting - I was desperate) and whittled the collection down to these, my favorites.  Or, at least I think they'll be my favorites.  They're what I would have definitely bought if I'd had to choose just a few, at least.

Denyse Schmidt's Churn Dash

That very night I lay awake mulling over quilt ideas.  I know this has happened to you.  I've been told it's completely normal.

Anyways, I'm thinking in multiples here.  Definitely 2 quilts will come to be before I let this collection settle its way into my fabric stash.  The first is a simple quilt from Denyse Schmidt: Modern Quilts, Traditional Inspiration - the Churn Dash, so named for its resemblance to a manual butter churn one learns in the historical intro from Denyse' book.

Chicopee in Churn Dash

Quickly, eagerly I made up a few blocks in nice, dark values. I'll be reversing Denyse' use of value in her Churn Dash quilt by making mostly dark value blocks and sprinkling in a few light values.  The two prints on the left are among my "favorites", but I actually adore the print on the right, called Duet Dot,  now that I see it sewn up.  It doesn't look overly sweet anymore, cut like this.  And it is such a nice contrast to the Kona Bone I'm using for my solid.

so far...

I'll be adding to this quilt here and there throughout September in between the things I really "ought" to be doing.  I've spent so much time working on the craft show that I have some catch up work to do in September.   It's rather out of character for me to start something else "for fun" in such a situation, but sewing is fun.  So there, left brain.  I'm going to enjoy this!

Chicopee is available at these great online shops:

Intrepid Thread
Pink Chalk Fabrics
Fabricworm
Fat Quarter Shop
Sew Love Fabrics
Lark Cottons
Stash Modern Fabrics
Mad About Patchwork
Sew Modern
Marmalade Fabrics

33 comments:

  1. love love love! I can't wait for mine to arrive!

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  2. Ciuldn't resist this collection and I chose bone krona to pair with mine too! :) can't wait to cut it all up and get going...

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  3. I just ordered this collection last week, got it this week, and cannot wait to make something!! I love the churn dash blocks!

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  4. Your first paragraph sums up exactly how I'm feeling right now. So many collections, so little funds. My two favorites right now are The Birds and the Bees, and Field Study. I think I'm going to save for TBATB because it keeps calling me. I think it's interesting how photos by different people, of the same collections can turn you on or off to it.

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  5. Rachel, you chose a perfect pattern for Chicopee. It's going to be fabulous!!!

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  6. Chicopee is on my shopping list too. It's so beautiful! I am a Denyse junkie, big time! Thank goodness I have a JoAnns in my town or I'd be crazy! I really like your Churn Dash blocks. Very nice! Show us more :)

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  7. Hah I know exactly what you mean in that first paragraph - when I was stressing over which collection to buy this fall I had to stop myself and say "this is not a real problem"!

    I also ended up going with Chicopee - it was a hard choice but I knew I made the right one the second it arrived. Can't wait to see what you do with it - love this quilt block!

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    1. Exactly - not a real problem. But, still, quite a decision to make!

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  8. I have to admit I haven't be that excited about this line but seeing you use it in those churn dash blocks really makes me love it. Cool!

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  9. What an enjoyable distraction!

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  10. I've ordered some of this too, can't wait to see it! Your churn dash blocks are looking good :)

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  11. I love the Churn Dash block! It's such a classic, and it looks great in Chicopee.

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  12. You've totally just explained why I love Denyse's fabric so much! I love the simple geometrics, vintage inspiration and the scale and the variation of value - they're just so perfect for my own scrappy/modern style of quilting! Love your churn dash quilt - and can't wait to see what else you make!

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  13. Oh boy! I'm totally agreed with your first paragraph too! That's exactly how I've been feeling...

    I LOVE what you've done with Chicopee, and you may have persuaded me to buy that book too! Lovely stuff!

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  14. i must admit, i semi-hate this collection, but they look SOO much better now that you've cut them and sewn them up! i actually (gasp) might LIKE them now! (ok nobody hate i've just never been a schmidt lover...) also, they look very masculine to me. i like that, since that's such a hard look to get, especially since i didn't expect that feel when i just saw the larger pieces of yardage. great work!

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    1. Amy, I'll admit my first reaction (to the fabric swatch collage online) was not good. But, the more I looked at them, the more I realized how useful they would be!

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  15. I became obsessed with Denyse Schmidt since I got a few tiny scraps of the original FMF in a scrap bag. I don't usually pay attention to names. You need to buy some of her Joann's fabrics. They go so well with her designer lines! I have an entire shelf of her fabrics. I don't have Chiccopee. Yet.

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  16. Wow they really are gorgeous prints. The pattern idea is great for them =D

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  17. I almost never pass up a chance to buy Denyse's fabrics. They really are perfect for patchwork. With all the new lines coming out I really had to limit myself, but I had to have the Birds and the Bees and Chicopee. I haven't quite decided which pattern to use yet, but I think you went in the right direction with a traditional quilt block. Her designs always have a distinct vintage feel to them that really works with traditional patchwork. Thanks for sharing your beautiful blocks with us!

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  18. Chicopee will definitely be my next purchase. I have been waiting and waiting and waiting for its release. There are very few things Denyse Schmidt does that I don't like. I also missed the first release of FMF but you better believe I jumped on that legacy release the minute it opened. Thanks for reinforcing just how much i need this! haha

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  19. I pretty much love everything she comes up with. katie jump rope was the first FQ bundle I ever got - and I fell in love.

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  20. That is going to be a fabulous quilt...love the traditional look of it! Denyse Schmidt is genius...I remember when I first started sewing I bought some Hope Valley simply b/c it was popular. I never really liked it until I started using it all together and then I absolutely LOVED it. And her fabrics seem to blend with everything. I'm stuck on if/what I would buy that's new. I **think** the one I love the most is Indie, but sometimes I have to wait around and see what people make from the new collections before I can decide.

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  21. I so agree! I am drawn to so many lines right now, but I think this one is top on my list. But I have so many projects (real and imagined) that I have already bought fabric for, so anything new will have to wait. And yes, it IS normal to lay awake at night thinking of quilt patterns...
    PS Are you going to Quilt Con??

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    1. Yes, I am going! Sounds like I'll see you there. So glad that registration is over. I was nervous!

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  22. I've been dreaming of a nice churn dash for over a yr, but haven't found just the right colors yet :) Can't wait to see you churn one out. Sorry :b. Love the inspiration!

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  23. Loving the blues of this line...had to order a few for my stash and am eagerly stalking the mailman waiting for it to arrive!
    Toni
    www.lifeinapinkbunnysuit.com

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  24. i love good old fashioned calicoes and Chicopee (and Hope Valley) really do hit the spot. your churn dash idea is perfect for highlighting the prints. now you're making me want to launch into my fq stack!

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  25. I love how the diagonal plaid looks on the churn dash. Looking forward to seeing your blocks as you go along. I was just thinking the same about fabric - I've been trying to plan my purchases well ahead of time and stick with that. As you said though, it's great we have so many choices!

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  26. That's a great pattern for those prints! I have a JoAnn's nearby - if you ever would like me to get some DS prints for you, let me know.

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  27. You cannot go wrong with churn dashes. I made a churn dash quilt for my step-daughter and son-in-law and they love it. It looks really nice in Chicopee.

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  28. Yesterday I cut the pieces for a + block, outer fabric printed fabric (Daisy Mae) and had the same experience you had with the "cute" fabric. I didn't like the colour and pattern but cut up and sewn together I start to like the fabric. Funny, isn't it? I resist Chicopee since I have Hope Valley here and didn't use it by now. *ehem*

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  29. i love Chicopee too!! and it's definitely my favorite this fall... sew on!

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