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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Juggling Summer Complete: Things I've Learned


The quilt for my oldest granddaughter was finished one day before her 12th birthday. I love to cut it close! Her Papaw and I joined her and the rest of the family for an early celebration at Saltgrass, and she seemed very happy, not only with her quilt but also her birthday cash.


Since her bedspread is a black and white zebra print, and her current color love is mint, I purchased a fat eighth bundle and a jelly roll of a collection I love - Moda's Juggling Summer, which blended well with all of that. I chose a mint print from Moda's Noteworthy line and a coordinating Juggling Summer print for the backing, and the neutral fabric is White Out, a white dot on white pattern. I pieced the binding from all the black prints of the collection, and it may be my favorite part of the quilt. Black really made all the colors pop.


I named her quilt "Dream in Color", which is my wish for her.

My son snapped this shot of her enjoying her quilt at home.

I employed my walking foot to quilt mainly large zig-zags, straight lines, and squares, with the only curves being in the inner border.

Here are more Things I've Learned during the creation of this quilt:

I learned that pattern instructions are not always clearly written.
I am not criticizing the person from whom I purchased the pattern. I am guessing that it is difficult to write a quilt pattern! In my inexperience, my first glance at the downloaded instructions indicated they would be easy to follow, but I discovered that there were too few illustrations, and many of the directions were vague. It is possible that a more competent quilter would not notice the lack of details. Either as a result of the pattern itself or my cutting errors, I had trouble with the inner border, and I had to add pieces to make everything fit. I loved the pattern, and I was able to figure it out, so all was well in the end.

I learned that I need to slow down and pay attention.
I noticed that as my time ran out, my mistakes became more numerous. I even put my bobbin in the wrong direction once and quilted an entire area before I noticed the funky look of the quilting.

I learned that I am getting more relaxed with machine quilting.
I am not as critical as I was with my imperfect quilting, and I am learning to look at the big picture. People who don't quilt don't see these imperfections. They see the quilt and think you are amazing for making it.

I learned that I love every step of quilt-making.
There are parts of it that I like better than others. For instance, cutting the pieces is not my favorite part, but using a rotary cutter is actually fun for me. There is no part of making a quilt that I don't enjoy. And the sense of accomplishment is, for me, indescribably fulfilling.

Katy the kitty, whose tail is lower left, and Buddy the dog had to see why my husband was holding a quilt on the staircase.

8 comments:

  1. Thanks for commenting on my blog. Anyone who can make quilts like these should have no fear of puff pastry, and I encourage you to try the churros. They are really that easy. Secondly, I am a HUGE James Herriot fan too! Have you seen any of the TV series? It's from the 70s, I think, but utterly charming.

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    1. Oh gosh Pattie, I lived and breathed the series, had the theme song running through my head, wanted desperately to visit his countryside. I loved the series, used to belly laugh through it and when reading his books. Good times!
      Thanks for the encouragement. ;)

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  2. I love this quilt and I know your granddaughter will treasure it forever. I've also noticed that some quilt patterns are a bit vague. I thought it was just me since I'm so new to quilting. I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one who sometimes has trouble. And I think you're right - writing a quilt pattern would be HARD!

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    1. I'm glad I'm not the only one that thinks patterns are vague. ;) Maybe we will get more blase with them with experience!

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  3. I can just imagine this quilt with the zebra comforter. I bet it looks great! My favorite picture in this group is your granddaughter under the quilt. That should go in your quilt scrapbook for sure, if you have one. Loved the pieced back!

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  4. This quilt is beautiful! I just purchased this fabric and now I have an idea of what to do with it. What pattern did you use?

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    1. Hi Tracy, thank you! The pattern is a jelly roll pattern called Pickup Sticks at LittleLouiseQuilts on Etsy. She has other patterns. I have found many of my patterns on Etsy as PDFs, so I don't have to wait till they are shipped. :)

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