Monday, 23 June 2008

all four blocks done

Dear Cassie,

Really, I don’t mind seeing all things blue…

Small things moved me also some time ago, the smaller and the more complex the better, but all of a sudden, the phase passed and now I seem to be into all things big and simple. It was all of a sudden, I did not go gradually from small to big, but jumped right from one end to the other.

While I was hand-sewing these huge blocks together I thought that maybe once again I have gone overboard. From the tiny hexagons to these huge and bold flowers… for sure there has to be the middle ground there somewhere. I know I said sometime ago that I plan to sew everything by hand (I will sew the binding partly by machine) but I guess I did not realize it would mean sewing seams that are more than 2 meters long and I am having second thoughts.

All the blocks are done. There was sense of relief and accomplishment after I had pieced the blocks together. I thought about adding something to these blocks all the time while appliquéing and pondered about adding flowers to the borders but so far nothing worked. So my plan today is to add plain off-white borders with no flowers and no leaves. You have kept telling me from the very beginning that quilting will be a great filler. So I will take your advice and start planning quilting designs after I have added the borders.
I have learnt a lot – about everything:

of colours - some combinations worked better than others and I have favourites among the flowers

of shapes - some are heavier than others and while at times I have felt that the shapes are too bold, I have also found beauty in the simplicity

of fabrics - some are easier on the hands and easier to fold while others cause problems with fraying and others by being too dense

of appliqué stitches - I have gone from ladder stitch to fell stitch, back to ladder and then again to fell... and the last block was done totally with fell stitch

of different methods of appliquéing - at first doing more or less everything with English paper piecing, then only partly adding freezer paper on top to the mix and then finally without any freezer paper at all

and I went from trying to be very precise to more or less free hand work.

I am very aware of the fact that I am not even half way there yet but still I keep dreaming of new quilts...

I keep coming back to this one frequently, but so far I have just admired it. As much as I love slow-sewing, there are times when I wish it just was not quite that slow.




pacalaga said...

I have loved the quilt on that magazine cover too! So far, I am too impatient for hand stitching on such a grand scale, but I have hopes for the future (once the little ones aren't so little, maybe). Your large blocks are lovely and stunning. I am looking forward to the quilting too.

Lisa said...

Your blocks are truely stunning!

beadlizard said...

Can you see the joy of the blocks together as a whole, yet, or are you still seeing your favorite parts? Sometimes I have trouble pulling back visually and seeing the forest instead of the trees.

My dad teaches design and always advocates doing less instead of more. A plain border might be just right.

Suzanne said...

Lene, your top is really wonderful and unique! One could look at it a thousand times just to see the individual fabrics and fabric combinations. Fascinating, like exploring an antique quilt with lots of old fabrics in it, always a surprise.
Upon first seeing the four blocks together, I was hoping for an appliqued border, but when I read your thoughts, I realized that an applique border is unnecessary. I'm now looking forward to the quilting.

Karen said...

Your applique piece is very, very nice.
I saved that magazine cover for a bit. It would make a wonderful quilt. I hope you make it. It would be a very ambitious project And I would love to follow your journey on it. Have I convinced you to start?

woolcat said...

Lene, I love your blocks - I am happily anticipating seeing them come together with the quilting too. The one on the magazine cover is quite stunning, isn't it? And quite a contrast to your beautiful, simple design, yet I love both of them.

Carmen said...

I LOVE this blog...the quilting diary!