eight by eight

August: Finished Project by daria
October 1, 2008, 1:03 pm
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Dear Blair,

I had no idea what to do this month, so I just sat down & started cutting.

Looking at it now, it seems clear that I was influenced by all the Alabama Chanin stuff floating around the blogs, but at the time I was wiped out from a busy weekend & thought, basically, oh, good, felt doesn’t fray & then I can stitch it down & it will be THREADY.

Actually, I like it a lot more than I thought I would, especially the green section — which, as it happens, is the one I liked least after cutting, but sewed down anyway because those are the rules.  I’ve been thinking a lot about printmaking lately, about repetitive pattern & simple shapes, & I think that definitely seeped through into this piece.

I sort of wish I’d assigned the floss colors differently, so the rectangles weren’t quite so tonal, but overall, I think it turns out that I am more pleased with this project than with some of the months that I spent much more time on.  There’s something to be said for just leaning into it & letting the thread fall where it may (ha), I guess.



August: Thread by daria
September 20, 2008, 9:54 am
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Dear Blair,

You know, if months actually went at the pace they seem to in my little eightbyeight world, I’m pretty sure I would get a lot more done.

When we were making our topic list, last December, I thought that thread was a really cool idea.  I still do, WAY cooler than buttons, but I am not sure exactly how to — well, never mind, I just got an idea.

Also, the grey fabric you sent is just gorgeous.

And I really like the floss colors too.  I’m working with a lot of rich, plummy brown fall colors in my other projects right now, & I like how different, how cool & smooth these are.  (Not that the rock postcard is influencing me, or anything…)


July: Finished Project by daria
September 2, 2008, 2:30 pm
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Dear Blair,

Hi, I’m back.

Ok, so, at first I was thinking about taking all those fancy fabrics & doing a sort of undulating striped patchwork piece, meant to be wave-esque.  But, you know, slippery.

That was my best idea,  though, until the image of concentric ripples, like when you drip water into a puddle, popped into my head.

I thought it would be a nice way to manage the gradations of color you sent, plus it had the added benefit of making use of wonder under instead of actual piecing, so I was all for it.

So I organized the colors, then cut some wonky circles.  After fusing my pieces, I stitched around each one with some metallic aqua thread I had on hand.  And that was it.

On the one hand, it sort of reminds me of an egg (if the white fabric was in the shape of a slice of bread, it would look very much like my daughter’s lunch today), but on the other hand, it’s also sort of like a lily pad, which is also watery, right?, & mostly it feels very clean & simple & unfussy to me.


July: Water by daria
September 2, 2008, 1:09 pm
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Dear Blair,

I just came from taking pictures of my finished July project & realized that I had better post a picture of the raw materials first.

My first thought?  Look how slippery! So pretty, purple-blue-iridescent-shiny, but slippery!  Eventually, though, I realized that these fabrics were exactly right for a minimalist post-button project.  Plus the scraps will be perfect for the box of fairy supplies.

I’ll post the finished project in just a little bit.

I’m going to sneak in one more water inspiration, ok? by daria
August 4, 2008, 3:30 pm
Filed under: Daria, inspiration

Dear Blair,  I know that it’s my turn to post a picture of the July box, but first i just wanted to show you this picture, from a ferry trip last week.  This is just about exactly what I was imagining, can you tell?


JUNE! BUTTONS! by daria
July 25, 2008, 3:49 pm
Filed under: Daria, finished | Tags: ,

Dear Blair,

Holy moly, this one was hard. Hard!

Which, ok, I guess is not too surprising, since I am not one someone who collects vintage buttons, or thinks to use buttons for decorations on things I’m making — I have SEEN some fantastic vintage button collections, & some great, inspired, charming uses of said buttons, but it’s just not my gig, to look at a button & have a flash of design genius. But we’re stretching ourselves, right?

Though I am not sure a nine-patch with buttons sewn on is much of a stretch, & am definitely sure that it’s not genius, but focus on how the thing is actually FINISHED & humor me, ok?

For a long (long, long) time I didn’t know how I was going to pull everything you sent together, but then I noticed that the aqua in the Japanese print you sent was pretty close to one of my favorite aqua cottons, & once I had the fabrics working together, it was easier for me to let the buttons do their mismatched thing.

I had originally thought I would “quilt” the nine-patch with the buttons, only I had too many/not enough, so I tacked the corners with a machine satin stitch & attached the buttons (with orange thread) in two columns. I experimented with some orange binding, but it sent the entire project over the edge from tiny quilt to potholder, so it was a thankfully short-lived experiment.

The little silver button was my favorite, I think.

Ok, so, I have to say that this was the first project of ours that was NOT my favorite while working on it, though I did have a very satisfied moment when I figured out the background color scheme. However, now that it’s done, I’m not sorry we included the BUTTON theme, since I think that if we went through a whole year of challenge without totally tearing our hair out at least once, it’s not really so much of a challenge, right?

(I’m looking forward to getting back onto a less aggravated path with WATER, though.)


*As usual, I posted larger images than usual for the big reveal but looks like our template cuts off the sides so be sure to click the pictures for full size or check them out on the 8×8 flickr.

water inspiration, Thursday by daria
July 24, 2008, 1:39 pm
Filed under: Daria, inspiration