Saturday, March 17, 2018

Checking In For National Quilting Day!

Before the day is over, I want to wish a very happy National Quilting Day to everyone!
Since this is my first post for March, I also wish you a happy National Craft Month as well!

Image courtesy

If you are looking for fun quilty things to do for the day, you can check out the Quilt Alliance's home page -- they have links to free pattern sites for many industry companies.  I particularly look forward to trying Anita Grossman Solomon's "Make It Simpler" Hexagon cutting shortcut for 10" squares.  I think I might be able to make it even simpler using freezer paper.  We'll see!  I loved using Anita's technique for her Anita's Arrowhead blocks a few years back so like having an opportunity to try another of her shortcut block cutting techniques.

I started off my NQD celebration by taking a page out of the blogging book of LeeAnn Paylor at the Not Afraid of Color blog and making an "I Like" list of the things I enjoy so much about quilting:

I like Quilting #1: Utility

Brrr! quilt and coordinating neck roll.
I love that quilts can be pretty but also useful.   

I like Quilting #2:  Creativity

 Always a favorite of mine:  High Strung +2
Even with basic designs there also comes the chance to play around with layouts or add design motifs in order to "add a little something extra" to the things you make or to completely reimagine them or create something new.  There are no "shoulds" or limits --- whatever you can think up, there's usually a way to bring it to life.

I like Quilting #3:  Community

With so many blogs to read, social media to follow, linkups to join, guilds and sewing groups to meet with, podcasts to listen to, Pinterest boards to ogle  -- any way that you'd like to interact with like minded people, there is a way to do it.  Many times it doesn't even require you to leave your own home!

I like Quilting #4:  The History

Block purchased at a NY Historical Society exhibit.

I love seeing antique quilts in museums and quilt show exhibits.  I can read about the background of fabric and quilt style trends in books and on websites like Barbara Brackman's Material Culture and Civil War Quilts sites.  In fact, Barbara just did a post listing exhibits across the country that will be featuring antique quilts over the next few months.

I like Quilting #5:  The Goodies

This is the prize package I won from Meg Cox the Quilt Journalist from a giveaway offered in her January newsletter.   With prizes received from Meg (the True Blue charm pack), Victoria Findlay-Wolfe (a FQ bundle of her new "Parts Dept" fabric line) and Jane Dunnewold (her Creative Strength Training book had been on my wish list!), I think I got something better than the leprechaun's pot 'o gold this month! 

 My celebration activity for today is to continue what I've been working on all month:  I've been steadily (if not consistently) working on basting my wholecloth project.  Basting the high loft poly batting for the trapunto  layer took a lot longer than I had expected.  With my larger electronic machines still out of commission, I wasn't able to baste it the "tradtional" way by using wash-away thread and stitching it by machine.  I say traditional in quotes because the truly traditional way to do trapunto is to stuff cord, thread or yarn in through the back of the quilt after the quilting is finished.  Basting the first of two layers of batting with wash away thread behind the motifs you want to make "pop" is actually the modern approach to trapunto.  Since I've been sewing on my Featherweight this year and its throat space is small, I had to do the trapunto basting by hand.  I finally finished it all earlier this week.

It's also hard to get a good shot of all that white-on-white fabric and batting!  Now the quilt is layered with the second layer of cotton batting and I'm hand basting the three quilting layers together. 

Once that's done, this baby will be headed into the hoop for what I'm estimating will be the rest of the year.  Or at least I hope I can get it done that fast -- I found a few other examples on the web of people who had completed one of these preprinted tops and they have taken as long as four years to complete!

I hope you enjoy your National Quilting Day activities and any other projects you may have lined up to work on for the rest of this crafty month!