Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Sorting for the strata -

The other day - Linda - asked me to show how I sort the strips -
For my Upstairs/Downstairs tops - 
So I thought I could use the "Christmas colors" that I just sorted - 

But - I needed to "reverse it" first -
To get them back to where I started -
And then "sort" them - again -
In order to show you the "process" -
So - here we go - LOL - ;))
For my favorite version of Upstairs/Downstairs -
6 x 8 layout - 48 total blocks - 
10" blocks - 60" x 80" -

I need 80 strips -

So I need 4 rolls of 20 - or 2 rolls of 40 -

This is the jelly roll as it came out of the package - 
20 different fabrics -
Each strata needs 5 strips - 
And this roll splits nicely into five groups of 4 strips each - 
All I need is one strip from each group to make a strata - 

Starting with the "lightest/neutral" ones -
or in this case the "white/beige/brown" ones - 
I make four piles - 

I take the next group of four strips -
And add one to each pile - 
Don't overthink it - just add one to each pile - ;)) 

Then take the next four strips -
And add one to each pile - 
Again - don't overthink it - you just need one in each pile - ;))

Rinse and repeat - 
With the next two groups of four strips - 

And that's all it takes to sort the first jelly roll - 

Four piles with five strips in each pile -
All shading from darkest on top to lightest on bottom - more or less -
I see now that some of the greens could "shade" better in some piles - 
And I can always change them before I actually sew the strata - if I want to -
But to be honest - it isn't that big of a deal with this pattern - LOL -
Each strata will be sewn in the same sequence - 
Red #1 - Red #2 - Green #1 - Green #2 - Neutral - 
And the darkest RED will be the MAIN diagonal in each block -
I had already decided that I want the RED to be the dominant color in my blocks -
If I wanted the GREEN to be dominant - I would have put the GREEN strips on top -
And would sew them Green #1 - Green #2 - Red #1 - Red #2 - Neutral -
That way - the darkest GREEN would be the MAIN diagonal in each block -  

Then I take a second jelly roll - 
Another 20 strips - and do the same thing -
Split the roll into the SAME five groups of 4 strips each - SAME as above -
But when I make the piles - 
I mix up the order of the strips in each group just a little - 
So I don't have EXACTLY the same fabrics in each pile as the first batch -
What I want/need is EIGHT DIFFERENT sets with 5 strips in each - 
For EIGHT DIFFERENT block combinations -  

They may all look alike at this point - but that's part of the "magic" - 
They are all similar but not exactly the same -
Once I'm satisfied with the fabrics in the EIGHT ORIGINAL sets - 
THEN - I make a second MATCHING set for each of them - 

One set of 5 strips - one strata - is enough for 3 blocks -
Two MATCHING strata will give me SIX MATCHING blocks -
What I want/need is SIX MATCHING blocks -
In each of my EIGHT DIFFERENT block combinations - 
For my 48 blocks total -  
Trust me - it IS easier to DO than it is to EXPLAIN - LOL - ;))
Sorting strips for the strata is the first "color/value" part of this magical pattern - 
The second part is the "layout" - 
I'll do another post with some examples of that - 
After I sort through some old photos to find the ones I want - 
I have a basic "formula" that I use for the "layout" - 
And it's easier to DO than it is to EXPLAIN, too! - LOL - ;))
But before I do that - 
I thought I would give you some more examples of strata sorting - 
From some of my recent projects - 
It might make it easier to "see" what I'm talking about -

All of the other steps - sewing the strata - pressing - cutting the segments - etc. - 
are the standard steps for making "Trip Around The World" - style blocks - 
But I have "my way" of doing it - and may do it a little differently than most - 
so if you're curious about any of that - just ask - LOL - ;))
I finally have my "system" down on this pattern - so it's fairly routine for me now -
which is one reason why it's my favorite no-brainer - go-to pattern - 
And I think it's nice to have at least one of those in my toolbox - LOL - ;))


Talk to you later - gotta go - gotta sew - 


Gene Black said...

Am I seeing correctly that in the sets you keep the reds in the same place/same order?
Is that how you get the strong main diagonal?

Barbara said...

Always thinking! 😋

Linda Swanekamp said...

Ok, I think I have it. Just a couple of questions. Do you have to use all identical jelly rolls? Also, is the basic pattern from Bonnie Hunter or MSQC? Thanks so much!!

Jocelyn is Canadian Needle Nana said...

I had to go back to check which is UPstairs Downstairs...reminds me of Trip Around the World...so pretty how it turns out. Thanks for the instructions. I don't like to do that myself but love it when others do. All your quilts are gorgeous.


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