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I like it/I don’t . . . I like it/I don’t . . . Tackling The Quilt-Making Seesaw

What a coincidence, I'm using a Carolyn Friedlander stripe in my quilt.

What a coincidence, I’m using a Carolyn Friedlander stripe in my quilt.

Despite fighting the flu, I did start 2014 in a fever (ha-ha) of industry. So far, I’ve made one quilt, plus I finished a little quilted portrait of my mother. Then, I segued into a quilt for my own use, but I’ve gotten a little stuck. Frankly, this quilt is starting to resemble a Seinfeld character—do you remember Jerry’s date who looked beautiful in full light but downright scary in the gloom? That’s my quilt!  (2/1/14:  See my edit below!)

The quilt that livings on the floor of the guest-room-in-the-making.

The quilt that lives on the floor of a guest-room-in-the-making.

As it happens, I’ve got the half-sewn project spread across the floor of a room we’re slowly transforming into guest quarters. I tend to like the quilt when the light catches the colors just right as I pause in the open doorway. But then, if I stop to tweak, I lay into myself with negative critiques:  should’ve done this; maybe change that; this is so gag-worthy–a pretty standard hyper-critical interior monologue.

The “quilting” reality we face as we build our quilts is that every design decision we take both closes and opens opportunities. To illustrate:  I elected a simple format of purple crosses set in plain background for high contrast. Then I mottled the background with 4-patches made with multiple neutral prints for a textured effect.

Yeah, fine, I did that, but the BIG but is the quilt isn’t that interesting now that it’s partially sewn. (By the way, one could avoid this whole mind-spinning rigamarole by actually drafting a colored schematic, which I did not do because I thrive on half-baked ideas.) Where do I go? Well, I guess I’m left with devising an answer that doesn’t require  tearing out seams. Time to get creative and open myself up to other ideas.

When all else fails, add miniaturized design details.

When all else fails, add miniaturized design details.

Okay, how about scattering mini crosses around the perimeter of the quilt? Yup, that’s one part of the solution. The other I’ll reveal in the quilting phase. It may answer the challenge of adding visual interest when the finished quilt top is pretty much a done deal.

Quilt-J:  Detail Crosses Quilt

Yes, that dark purple mini cross on the bottom right has to move.

Giveaway Results

Ah, yes, giveaway results. I must tell you how much I enjoyed the comments. Do you realize how many of us love “crisp” fabric?  Everyone as it turns out. And, interestingly, virtually every one of us would sacrifice chocolate for fabric. Too funny! I’m also tickled to see how you too are embracing Carolyn Friedlander’s fabric and patterns. New voices in the craft are so exciting to experience and share.  The giveaway winner is Elizabeth Clark. Congratulations!

Other News for Bay Area Locals

My blogging sister Pati has a fun class coming up in Danville, CA. Don’t forget, she’s also spearheading the effort to build an Indie Modern Quilt group on Thursday, February 6. Both events are slated for Wooden Gate Quilts.

2nd Dresden promo

For more information click the picture to travel to Pati’s blog.

Until next time, may your seams be straight and all your fabric extra “crisp”!


p.s.  You’ve been very generous with your suggestions. I did a casual edit last night and will probably follow the new route–lots of seam ripping in my future. Thank you, thank you for your input.

Oh yes, I much happier quilt now that I'm abandoning the color-value layout.

Oh yes, a much happier quilt now that I’m abandoning the color-value layout.

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