Red Star Quilt UFO – Attack!

A year and a half ago I think, I started a little group on Flickr, Project UFO (link in sidebar).  In our group, we gently support each other through the process of tackling those UFOs that we all have laying around.  You know…the projects started with the best of intentions but somewhere along the way you just lost your mojo for it?  Some of us have a lot of them and some of have less.  But we all have a goal each month of the things we would like to accomplish.  These days that goal can be “as simple” as keeping new projects from becoming UFOs.

I have made moderate progress in that time with my personal UFOs.  A lot of them are quilts that were started from bee blocks in a time when I was in LOT of online bees.  Too many.  Far too many.  lol  And that is where this post begins.  I’ve pulled one of those out and I’m attempting to do something with it.  This was a bee that was focused on the color red.  I sent out the fabrics and asked for everyone to make me a star block with the white as the background, the red as the main star color and the blue solid as the accent.  Most of the blocks I got back were really interesting.

Attacking a UFO from an old bee.

Here’s a close up on my favorite block that someone made for me in the bee.

Attacking a UFO from an old bee.

I just needed to get these out and work with them.  I’m not particularly inspired about the idea of sampler quilts these days.  And I’m trying to make life a little more interesting than a standard sampler setting.  So I ended up with this idea of splitting the blocks into separate columns with varying amounts of blocks in each.  Then I decided I need other columns to bring out more blue…and then those became scrappy…and well… you can see where I am now.

Attacking a UFO from an old bee.
sorry for the fuzzy phone pics!

or this

Attacking a UFO from an old bee.

Can you see the difference? Do you prefer one over the other?  Does any of it matter?  lol

I still can’t decide if this is utter crap or if it is interesting.  I don’t know if a border around the whole thing would make me happy and tie it all together or just be more work.  I go back and forth over being interested in this quilt and happy I got it out and just wanting to chuck it all in the trash.

I tell myself that a finished project is better than an unfinished one, but I’m finding that I don’t necessarily believe that.  I sort of want all of my finished projects to be awesome.  That’s not too much to ask right?

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27 thoughts on “Red Star Quilt UFO – Attack!

  1. I think it would look awesome to have the two red columns sewed together (so the blocks would still be offset from each other) and then put into a field of red, off-centered vertically or horizontally. Then take the middle column in the blocks of pieced blue fabrics and add more to it to make the quilt back. Or front. Because then the quilt would for sure be reversible!

  2. Sorry to say but I don't like either layout. It might be the pictures but some of the blue fabrics just don't seem to fit in there. I'm also missing some more white in it. My suggestion would be: make xmas quilt out of it. Put the blocks in the shape of tree 4-3-2-1 with your fav star on top.

  3. I like option 2 way better but am not totally loving the two layouts. I do adore the blocks themselves though, it's one of my favorite color schemes. I totally understand the need to completely love the end project. But I think however that is why I end up with so many UFOs and so little finished projects! What you make is amazing and I think you just need to play around it with it a little more. 🙂 Good luck!

    1. Thank you! But I've ripped it apart because I just didn't love it enough to tackle quilting it. I'm trying to decide on a new layout without buying more fabric…working with the stash presents an extra challenge to this puzzle.

  4. I like option two, as the second star block balances it out better, I think. Are you going to put the red text fabric around the second block if you use it in the far right column too?

    If the red seems to be too much you could quilt it to death or applique something on it.

    And if in the end it still doesn't feel awesome, find someone who thinks its awesome and give it to them – they'll be happy and you won't have the blocks taking up your creative headspace anymore.

  5. So I liked the top one better but it took me a few looks to figure out the difference lol. I think having that one big column of red balances it. I really like it!

  6. I think you are answering your own question! These are great blocks. I think you show the blocks respect when you wait until the right idea comes along. Why do we feel guilty about sitting on UFO's for a while? It sure feels great to finish a quilt, but that feeling is diminished when there is a twinge of "I shoulda…"

    For me, the red solid pieces are too heavy for the quilt. I also think a great black and white text print would go a long way to freshen up these blocks.

    I'm sure you'll come up with something fabulous! Give yourself permission to shelve it until you do!

  7. Since they are all star blocks, what if you tilt each of them like they are falling and have one actually half off the quilt (ala Happy Zombie).

  8. Do you the name of that block? It is awesome. I have to say the 2 blue chunks take away from the pretty blocks, they need to go some place more modern or with some red thrown in.

    1. I don't know the name, I'm sorry. But I think it was one that she just found for free online at some point. I do know that it was paper pieced. So you might try searching online for a free paper pieced 12" star pattern.

  9. I like #1, but they're both pretty cool. AND since you have so many REDS in your quilt, use a few sheets of Shout Color Catcher the first few times you wash it. Otherwise, you might be crying. I totally panicked on one I was about to wash this past weekend, but the Shout worked beautifully. I washed my quilt three times in a row, until the Shout sheets came out clean.

  10. Angela, they will come together, it just needs a little more tweaking and when done, it may very well become a favorite of yours.. Think about the time, love, and care that each person put into these blocks and you the same. They deserve to be loved…just patience and play will make it all come together.

    Just a thought…why not add some smaller blocks, say 6" star blocks within the columns? The columns are a great idea, but they look like they need a little something… by adding a few smaller blocks inside, I think it would tie everything together. 🙂 I like #2 better with the second block added. 🙂

  11. don't know anything about quilt designs, but I like the second better – but I also think I'd like it better if all of the columns EITHER had space between each of the blocks, OR had no space between them. Does that make sense?

  12. I don't know why but I like option two better. I think having the addition block keeps the red from being over powering. However, if you are not in love with it wait – look at the pictures next week and see how you feel then. I do not think wanting to have a quilt you love is too much to ask.

  13. Johnny come lately…here's my two cents…My eye prefers Option #2 – perhaps with the addition of some white in the midst of the blue columns to compliment and mirror the freshness of the whites from the star blocks, which by the way, I do LOVE. I love the color scheme. Could be Christmasy? It's quite fresh looking. Now that you've taken it all apart to "play with" some more, I think you'll eventually come up with the fresh look you're looking for! Be kind to yourself…give yourself a hug or two! Eventually it will a"ll come together. And if you really want to throw it all in the "circular file, I'm sure several of us would be happy to "rescue" it!

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