This Quilt

I have stitched on this quilt until my eyes have practically crossed. Then it gets set aside for work on something else. Each week though, I consistently keep coming back to this quilt, and as always, I'm seeing the kind of progress that eventually sho...

I have stitched on this quilt until my eyes have practically crossed. Then it gets set aside for work on something else. Each week though, I consistently keep coming back to this quilt, and as always, I’m seeing the kind of progress that eventually should gain me one of those things we love to call a finish.

Baskets on the main panel….

As you know, I prepped the baskets with the outside seams already turned under on the machine. It was a great method as far as placement and speed of stitching, but wowsers! It has done a number on my fingers. Having thicker seams means that it has taken more effort to slide the needle through the edges of the applique pieces. That extra bit of ‘oomph’ slowly adds up to a very tender spot {um.. hole?} on the finger pushing in the needle. I ended up having to use a lightweight leather thimble. gah! Honestly, it just feels awkward and clumsy and I really, really don’t like using thimbles with applique work.

Tho it was nice to finally figure out that the hand motion is different {duh!} when sliding the needle in down and sideways rather than using a rocking motion like I am so accustomed to. I couldn’t figure out why my thimble was continually falling off my finger! Ah the disconnect between creativity and logic. Sometimes the most obvious things take awhile to be well.., obvious. Thankfully, after these baskets are all stitched down, I should be able to stitch sans thimble again and then we’ll be back to business as usual, albiet with a sensitive spot on my finger!

Looking at the back…

The joys of implementing the things we want to make! I have definitely struggled with all kinds of feelings in making the panel below, but the rest of the quilt seems to be getting easier all the time. A lot less dread, irritation, and that itchy ‘I don’t wanna to be doing this’ feeling concerning putting all the little pieces into place. Definitely more excitement at what it’s turning into right in front of my eyes. Hmm… crazy busy? Emotionally messy? lol

Done with this panel for now.

After the baskets, I will have three out of five panels completely done except for a tiny bit of applique work! Yay! There’s a point at the end where I just have to see everything laid out in front of me {lined up together} in order to place those littlest pieces for optimum impact, flow or spark. Whatever the word is, I’m sure you can get what I mean.

And yes, I already do that occasionally, how could I not? It’s important to continually check progression. Does it look cohesive enough? I check for possible color problems in how the eye will move across the quilt—the flow. As there is a lot of wording, I try to have different things grouped together well enough so that it’s easy to quickly understand my point.

I also try to plan far enough ahead so I don’t have to go back and change anything major, just fine tune a few details perhaps. I’ve been lucky with this quilt so far and haven’t wasted or ruined too much of the wrong thing until I’ve completely used up an important fabric. I think the main thing for me to continually keep in mind is this: whatever applique I decide to add at the last minute {and I do have ideas for that, believe me}, it will be MUCH easier to add it on one panel at a time than wait until the entire quilt top is sewn together! Experience is such an excellent teacher in that regard.*wink

Always stitching in the evening….

My youngest daughter has been especially supportive in my efforts to make this quilt which helps tremendously. It’s the sort of quilt that a few people will probably shy away from at our annual quilt show, thinking it’s really busy, odd and entirely too emotional to be interesting or relevant. Some people just don’t care for non-traditional quilts. That’s perfectly okay.

Others, especially those similarly affected by the fire, will no doubt be very drawn to it just to see what it says about our town. Ahh… They are the ones that make me extremely nervous as I’ve never entered anything remotely like this. A potentially ‘stand out in the crowd’ type of quilt just because of how ‘personal’ and ‘different’ it could be. Most people are way beyond wanting to be viewed as victims and have been busy picking up the pieces and trying to move on. This quilt could be something they don’t want to talk about anymore. Or even think about! What if it makes people angry? Sad? And so I go round and round in my mind, yet basically ignoring all my trepidation and worries anyway in my determination to be getting on with the implementation of this quilt. I guess that’s what us quilters do. Use fabric to get a message across and let everyone else deal with it exactly as they choose…..