I finished my Madrona Road placemats last weekend. I had been wanting to photograph them on bright green grass, but when it snowed I thought that would be even better. And then the next day, the snow was pretty much gone save a few spots here and there. So, I took them out in the sunshine and photographed them on the bits of snow that were left.
Here’s what I’ve learned about my piecing style, as it stands right now. I’m not very good at improv. It seems like it would be quick and easy – oh! let me just sew this and this together and look at there! No. I have to think it through, sketch it out, make a plan. When my quilt guild got the fabric for the Modern Quilt Guild challenge, I settled on placemats fairly quickly. Initially I thought I would do a long strips kind of piecing. And somewhere in there I just started cutting up random pieces and putting them together. And then I thought about it. And then I over thought it some more. Then I was paralyzed by “OMG, what have I done? I have no plan, I’m just making this up and I have no idea if I’m near the end.”
Last weekend I was over seeing it sitting around my sewing room. I was going to finish those placemats by Sunday and that was that. And so I did. I used what was left over of the fabric to make the binding. Came across some navy fabric – perfect for the back! For the first time I tried free motion quilting (FMQ). I’m on the fence about it. I initially tried to do a square FMQ look. But I guess I’m more naturally inclined to go loopy. And so I went with the loopy. I thought it would be a good idea to do the other three in different quilting patterns so I could test my quilting quiltiness.
The second placemat was what I’m calling a lazy grid.
The third got a loopy loop pattern.
The fourth and final got a kind of inverted four corners thing.
That snow I talked about? Yeah, this happened Thursday
The next day? The hill looked like this
Looking forward to some warmer weather. And cicadas. Have you heard? We’re about to be swarmed by them. I can’t wait.
I cut out the squares for this a million years ago. Well, more like two months. It seems like forever. This past Sunday, my quilt guild had its sewing day* and I finally had the motivation to sew it all together.
This is what I finished Sunday.
Originally, I had planned on this being part of a quilt back. Kind of just an off center surprise. But once it was done I realized this needed to be a quilt front, for sure. Before we all packed up for the day, I cut wide stripes of white to frame it and then some other color? Or do I do a smaller patchwork of two rows as a frame around the white? Or!! So many choices.
For now, I’m leaving it up there on my design wall. One day, it’ll tell me what it wants to be. I’m in no hurry and I don’t like to rush and then regret.
So, while Heart + Throb (yes, that’s what I’m calling it) is working on what it wants to be, I’m moving onto cutting my next quilt. It’s called Chevron and On. I discovered it in Quilty. Quilty is a quilting magazine. I wanted to dog ear every page.
Most quilt magazines aren’t my cup of tea. Think of quilts as a room in a house – if the carpet is an ugly burgundy and the walls are painted a horrid peach color and there’s a boob light, it’s hard to look past that to the room itself. Quilt patterns are the room, fabric choices are paint, carpet and bad lighting. A quilt done in white and blue flowers in a fabric that evokes memories of the 70s or 80s and you’re going to scrunch your nose up. But make that same quilt pattern in an updated fabric and I bet you love it and cannot believe it’s the same pattern. Most quilting magazines I’ve flipped through have some great patterns, but I just can’t get past the fabric choices.
*I cannot even relay into words the joy that sitting in a room full of women with similar interests brings me while we plan/sew/cut/quilt our projects and chat. Finding something you love to do is amazing. Finding people who share your love of said thing is amazing to the upteenth power.
The weekend is officially over. It was one of the most productive weekends I’ve had at home in a while.
I finished a lap quilt, two mug rugs, and cleaned/straightened my sewing room. And I had a date day with the mister. Virginia Tech’s baseball team was playing Georgia Tech Saturday. It was the perfect day for an outdoor event.
Hope you had an awesome weekend, too! Let’s all aim for good work weeks.