Thursday, January 24, 2008

Quilting mojo!

Finally! My quilting mojo (that is, my desire, motivation, and inspiration quotients as related to quilting) has returned. It's been awhile. I only managed to complete two quilts last year. Something to do with having a baby, maybe? But, the fire is in me now!

My first project: A Journey to Light, a quilt designed by McKenna Ryan of PineNeedles Designs. I've almost completed block 1 (only have the hand stitching left to do... berries and bunny faces and such) and am excited to start work on the second. I'm planning on doing the entire quilt (as opposed to individual art quilts), and my goal is to complete it by Christmas. I think that's a pretty reasonable goal. We shall see.

I purchased the patterns for this quilt at the 2004 International Quilt Festival in Houston. I've been collecting batik fabrics since then. Of course, that didn't stop me from running to Keepsake Cottage Fabrics on Tuesday to pick up some more fabric (I just didn't have the perfect snow... now I do. Along with some wolf grey, bear black, and mountain purple.) But I think I really am set at this point, and my stash will suffice.

Block 1 isn't perfect, but I think it's good enough. And I've learned some things that will make my future blocks better. The main one: when the pattern says, "Do not use this guide for tracing and cutting pieces," it also means, "Do not use this as a guide for direct piece placement." I literally stuck my applique pressing sheet on top of the placement guide and placed my pieces according to the lines. But the lines aren't exactly to scale. So my snow banks don't go all the way to the edge of the background, and my stuff isn't quite right. But really, no one will be able to tell once it's in the quilt. Secondly: my snow is pretty sheer. So you can see the pieces behind the snow. Again, this isn't too bad, and I think once quilted, it will be barely noticeable. But now I know to either trim carefully any pieces behind the snow and/or use two layers of snow to provide more opacity.

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