ScrapHappy March 2022

Today I have two projects — one is finished and one is in progress.

First up, I have the second chair with a seat repaired with paracord.

antique chair with paracord seat
This picture makes it look like the paracord is sagging, but it isn’t. I think I just didn’t push the rows straight enough.

As I wrote in an earlier post, these were originally caned, and I re-caned them back in the ’80s, but they had developed broken spots. I ordered cane and started re-caning them the traditional way, but the cane just split and snapped, so I had the idea of trying paracord.

For the first chair, I ran out of red and finished with black — I didn’t like the look but I knew it would be covered with a seat cushion. For this second chair, I ordered 100 feet of red paracord in size 325, and that was enough to do a four-strand weave, with some left over. (So technically, that is new material, but since the chairs are about 100 years old, and I am giving them a third life, I think that balances out.)

At that point, I felt like it was strong enough to hold a person, and I did not relish the idea of trying to get more paracord through each hole, so I stopped with four strands instead of the traditional six.

Compared to traditional cane, it was a dream to work with. It was smooth, and I didn’t have to have my hands wet while working with it. I had the happy notion of using a flat wire loom heddle as a giant needle to pull the cane, and that was flexible and easy to thread through the holes in the seat.

It took about 6 hours to do this seat, and the paracord cost about $12, so it was a good way to salvage an old chair.

The second project is a scrappy quilt top. This pattern is called “Block Party,” by Sharon Tucker. It was in American Patchwork and Quilting, in April of 2017. [Correction as of December 2022 — the magazine put a little graphic of “Block Party” on the photo of the quilt  — its real name is “String Theory.” ]

scrappy quilt blocks

I absolutely loved working on it. Previously, when I had a lot of skinny strips, my inclination was to put them together in log cabin blocks. But that meant constantly trying to pick out the right length of strip for each iteration, and constantly pressing and trimming the blocks as they formed. With this pattern, I could just sit and sew long panels of parallel strips, then press them once, and then cut cross-wise into 2 1/2-inch strips.

It was fun to combine the strips in different ways.

Sharon used solid fabrics in red and cheddar yellow for her framing squares. I used prints that read as solids from a distance. Right now it is about 60 inches square. I may put borders on it.

I really love this pattern and I can see myself making it in lots of colorways!

ScrapHappy Day is the 15th of each month, when various artists and craftspeople celebrate scraps. It is hosted by Kate and Gun, the first two names listed below. It is always fun to see what these scrapsters are up to!

Kate Gun, EvaSue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe,Turid,Susan,Cathy, Tracy,Jill,
Claire,Jan, Moira,Sandra, Chris, Alys, Jule,
Kerry, Claire, Jean, Jon,HayleyDawn,
Gwen (me!),Bekki,Sue L,Sunny,Kjerstin,
Vera,Nanette, Ann, Dawn 2,Noreen,
Bear,Preeti, Edith, and Viv