Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Clamshell Basket(case?)

Clamshell basket

Ok, so I'm actually glad that no one guessed I was making another mini basket.  I hate to be entirely predictable!  But, yes, I had another little gift to make, so this was the perfect way to see if my clamshell obsession could be righted with just a quickie make.

It wasn't.  More on that after these photos...

Clamshell basket

Scrappy nonsense.  I actually used circles cut for this ill-fated project.  So nice to recycle abandoned wip's.

Clamshell basket

The inside is a gorgeous bit of Liberty Lifestyle, gifted to me by a friend and thus so fitting to gift to another.

Clamshell basket

Twill be hard to let this one go!

Ok, Clamshells.

I think I need to make a genuine, serious, no-holding-back clamshell quilt.  And it needs to be washable (no raw edge applique), not painfully slow and certainly not hand sewn.  Are you tracking here?  (If you're not sure what all the fuss is, check out this dreamy quilt and this punchy piece.  There.)

Certainly, one can machine piece large clamshells, but I like them smaller.  I think applique is way easier with this shape. So... how about machine applique, quilt-as-you-go clamshells.  Takers?  You can cut yours with a cutting die OR by hand with a template.  We'll press the curved side of the clamshell under and applique in one long row at a time, much like I did with my tutorial yesterday.  I'm thinking to get my stuff together to launch a quilt-along in February.  Just wondering if I'm the only one...

xo,

Rachel

p.s.  Of course, I'll show you how!

43 comments:

  1. Good morning

    Loving the basket. Before you launch into your clam shells, have you seen the technique using the drunkards path block? You might like to check that out. Cheers Linda

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    1. Thanks! Yes, I saw that method today. But I think I really prefer the look of whole, unpieced clamshell curves.

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  2. Great little basket! Although I was rooting for you on that rug endeavor - so sweet. I can see why it would be pricey! I wish I had a Go! I want to try some of those clamshells. Maybe someday I will treat myself. Love the links of the little quilts, too!

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  3. I have a bag of Amy Butler scraps just waiting to be made into a scrappy clamshell pillow. I'm with you!!!

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  4. This is lovely! These baskets are so cute and quick to make, the clam shells add a nice element in lieu of the patchwork. You're very ambitious teaching your classes AND possibly hosting a quilt-a-long with baby on the way :)

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    1. I know, right? It may be a crazy January thing...

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  5. I am definitely intrigued by the clamshell quilt-a-long idea. I can't promise I'll be able to fit it in (but I don't know how you could guarantee that either, given that I know you are just about one month further along pregnant than me!!!), but I can guarantee I'll be following along to some extent and that I'm already picking out fabrics in my head...

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    1. Ah well, I have to keep working! And sewing is also my treat for myself, so I don't plan to disappear much. If anything, I'm eager to get back to quilts after all this baby sewing. I am planning a break time for myself immediately after the baby is born (1-2 weeks) but then I'll be back at it =)

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  6. Yes to clamshells. But if they are appliqued by the row it implies that only one color of thread will be used--and that might not produce the best results with patchwork clams. If we change threads along the row, then it will be time-consuming.
    Re--a new project and pregnancy (you)--I think it's great that you plan to continue your regular life and do the things that make you happy--which in turn lead to happy children. Life does not have to come to an abrupt halt with a new baby--although the first few weeks can be taxing. Yeh on you.
    P.S. I like the quilt you linked to where every second row was the same fabric. I think doing clam shells in a clam shell shape with that skinny bit down the middle would be torture.
    Could the clam shells be sewn together in half circles and then appliqued (ie self-lined). That would eliminate that fussy pressing.

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    1. I like that quilt with every second row in low volume too, Sandra. I am considering going that route. I will use the same thread all the way across for my applique rows. But, it's good for you to point out so folks can realize that the thread will contrast sometimes.

      I do think you could do self lined clamshells. Not sure if you mean to eliminate the pointed end of the shape by using half circles? I like the point. The good news is we won't have to sew along that point if we applique them in rows.

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  7. Oops. More on my comment. Obviously it would have to be whole circles with a bit for turning to effectively do the clamshell design or the backing would show through. Or making a slit for turning. It's sounding more and more complicated all the time! I think I'll stick to your method.

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  8. Absolutely, yes, please! I was just researching all things clam quilts and would love to follow one of my favorite bloggers on a clammy adventure!

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  9. I would love to join you!! I love the dreamy quilt you mentioned so much!! I think I already have the perfect fabrics in mind!!! Thank you!!!

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  10. I would love to join in! I'll probably cut with a die cut, but do appliqué style qayg. I love the method where you turn the raw edges under using a smaller cardboard template and wrapping with aluminum foil before pressing. I've been wanting to make one for forever!

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  11. This sounds totally fun!! I'm game!

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  12. Clamshells have been on my list forever! This would be a perfect opportunity to get that one off my list. If you have a QAL I am in!

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  13. I would love a clamshell QAL!! I'm usually not interested enough in the pattern/design to do a QAL, but the clamshells are gorgeous and something I've never done before. Hope you do one!!

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  14. You certainly have my attention! I did the flowering snowball along with Mary Dugan.....this would be even a step further out of my comfort zone with the qayg! Think, think, thinkin... :)

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  15. I'm a little hesitant about clamshells. I don't know why but they intimidate me. I think I would join along though! Nothing like a good tutorial (because you're so good at them!) and my own pace to break into new territory.

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  16. Rosemary B here:
    This little basket is very cute! Now I know what you did with all of those circles :-D
    That rug of balls seemed like such a great idea too. I would have instead made myself some slippers though to skate around the kitchen in them lol.
    it is good to keep busy, It took me a while to blend my regular carefree life of doing what I please to taking care of the 91 year olds. After two years, I am getting better at it, but even though mom and dad are in an independent living Erickson community, I have to check on them daily. Every day is something, almost like a toddler....... mom to various eye doctors, dad had to get his denture repaired. I have to look in their fridge for old food, ...
    Enjoy making things. All of them are treasures, Rachel!

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  17. Ok, when I saw your IG post, I thought you meant raw-edge appliqué, and I was definitely not interested. But after reading your post here, I am all for a 'real' clamshell quilt! It's been on my bucket list for a looong time! This is exciting!!

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  18. Yes,I should be able to do a clamshell quilt along since I'll be taking a class on curves (with the best teacher) very soon ;)
    I love the basket and can see why its hard to gift it. Does Eleni need one for her room :)

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  19. Yay!! I am all up in there with you on a clamshell quilt along!! I want to do the second one with all the colors. I saw the conversation above about changing thread a lot or having contrast and I think I would be okay with contrast. Oh, and I like points to the clamshell, too. Not that it matters much what I think, haha, just agreeing. Whatever you choose to do I'll be grateful and happy. A clamshell quilt became one of my goals shortly after I got interested in quilting because I fell in love with one, hook, line, and sinker! Oooooh, and it should go particularly well with a class on handwork (with the best teacher) that I will be taking, also! I can just see beautifully embellished clams in my future. And I'll learn about curves this way (if my sewing is up to it, but I'll be working hard!) Yippee! Unless you decide to do something else, I know this is just in the tentative planning stage right now, which is fine. And I'm about to shoot you an email because somehow I have messed up my class registration. You know there's always one... and it's usually me, sigh. Magistra13 at yahoo dot com
    Beth

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  20. sweet. the inner fabric is really fab.

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  21. Interesting, tempting, curious. Love to make a little something for me with clamshells.

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  22. Oh, man, you are tempting me. I have always wanted to make a clamshell quilt. Ok, I will say maybe, for now.

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  23. Oh, I am so in! I've been staring at clamshell quilts all (last) year.
    PS. that lining is making me so happy!

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  24. I'd love to do some clamshells!

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  25. I am also tempted- they just look so great!

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  26. I just ordered the clamshell die so I am in

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  27. Hello Rachel,

    I also like to do a machinesewed clamshell quilt because I couldnt sew it by hand and dont want raw edges. I think I will do it using the y-seam technique of Blueberry park...i havent try it but, i think that should work

    maybe that help?

    Anja

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    1. Glad you're thinking of joining in! Machine piecing them, like Blueberry Park, will produce a very nice quilt. I want to do 4" finished clams, which is kind of small for machine piecing, but possible. For me, it will be easier to applique, I believe. Machine piecing is especially smart for 8" and 10" finished clams, since those big curves are pretty easy to work with.

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    2. Have you seen the technique think fast used for her dots quilt, maybe this works also for clamshells, but you need to be very precise and using a clamshell template with a bit more fabric at the bottom may create to much bulg.
      I d like to do a restblock right now, but live is to busy at the moment but maybe at the end of the month... i will show you the result.
      8"or 10" clamshells may be easy to sew, but i dont like them so big, also its faster to get a whole quilt

      Anja

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    3. Maybe this way would also work, if one can accept the zigzagstitch
      http://sdquilters.blogspot.de/2012/09/english-paper-piecing-tutorial-no.html?m=1
      I think this would look good with one row printed/coloured and one row solid or another colour, maybe also another machine embroidery stich would work... you see i am in ;)

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    4. It's amazing how many reasonable ways there are to patchwork! That's one thing I love about it. Glad you're in!

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  28. Trying not to overcommit! Clamshells look so fun though...

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  29. That sounds like a great idea, but I don't think I'll be able quilt along. I will definitely bookmark it for later, though. I have like, 8 baby quilts to make this year.

    Do you think it would be easier to do the sew and turn method for the circles, or would that be too much bulk?

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    1. I think the sew and turn method (like we used in Penny Sampler) would totally work for clamshells. It wouldn't be too bulky, but it would use lots more fabric. Definitely one to consider! Maybe you need to make a clamshell baby quilt, wink.

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  30. I can't wait to learn clam shells in CURVES CLASS!

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