In 2001 the quilt market was flooded with tin cans packaged with 2-1/2-inch strips of fabric called "worms" as a result of Debbie Caffray's book "Open a Can of Worms" featuring scrap look designs using these strips. Today it's "Jelly Rolls", but the idea is the same.
Our quilt group had a year-long exchange of "worms" where we had a planned theme of prints or colors for each month's exchange. After a year of collection, we each had plenty of fabrics, so we started to use one of the quilts in the worm book each month for our community service project and at the same time learn the techniques for each design.
My records show that in March of 2002 I presented the "Friendship Braid" pattern. After completing one top I set aside the pieces I cut until I uncovered the stash last month. OH MY! I had a huge shoebox full of cut pieces, both of prints and muslin for background, and a large pile of strips sewn together. Since our monthly quilt group challenge was trapezoids, I decided to accept the personal challenge and use up my stash of cut pieces.
I discovered that I needed to piece a few more strips to have enough for three quilt tops, so piece I did. I really did not enjoy the joining of the strips or adding sashing as all of the outside edges of the strips were on the bias. I have decided that I will work with the "Picket Fence" design that I started before the pieces were put away years ago. I must have tired of the braids and the bias edge even then.
I have completed three braid tops now, and they are ready for quilting. I think I really must stop piecing and quilt! The first top I made six years ago is not quilted, either. Although I am not done with trapezoids, I am DONE with this pattern for braids.
I had torn yards of stripe fabric that had been donated to our group into strips of various widths due to the type of print, so had plenty of fabric to set all of the quilts. In fact, I'll have to come up with something else to use all of these strips up! But all those strings from the torn edges! My sewing area is a mess with dog ears and strings. I'll think hard before sewing hundreds of trapezoids and tearing yards of fabric again.