Lowering the bar!

Well!  Just two days into normal, post holiday, routine and I’m feeling a bit weary!  I have been greatly encouraged by other quilters as they’ve posted beautiful photos of their 2014 projects and given hints of what they’ll be working on in 2015.  Though I did read one comment that I felt qualified to help with – someone feeling they had seen too much perfection and amazing output!  She asked for some tales of projects getting stuck and not working out as well as planned.

So I shall lower the bars of ‘speedy finishes’ and ‘beautiful craftsmanship’ with the sorry tale of one of my UFOs.  Here it is, a quilt made using a Moda jellyroll (Padstow Range).


I modified a pattern from Pam & Nicky Lintott’s book, ‘Jelly Roll Quilts’, by introducing triangles into the corners of the blocks and setting them on point.  I used the snowball block method of sewing squares onto the corners and then flipping them back to make triangles.  Only I couldn’t decide whether to cut away one or two layers of fabric behind the flipped corners so some are quite thick and many of the seams don’t meet at all well. And some of the squares created from 4 triangles have odd numbers of the dark and light fabrics while others are balanced so altogether they look a bit odd to me.


Dear me! Look at those poorly matched points! And the unbalanced mix of dark and light fabrics. Can I count this as a learn?

The problems caused by these triangles became even bigger when I wimped-out of machine quilting and decided to hand quilt instead – it’s no fun trying to push a needle through lots of thick seams!  But, to make matters worse, I’d not given much thought to my selection of cotton wadding and it’s a nightmare trying to pull a little between needle through the sandwich layers of this quilt.  (More of wadding/batting selection in a future post…).

Spot the other mistakesSONY DSC I’ve made with this quilt…  I stuffed it into a quilt bag with the between needle still tucked into the fabric and all the safety pins in place and then abandoned it for at least a year.  I’m very lucky none have gone rusty and stained the fabric!  (This happened with a cross stitch sampler many years ago and I can still spy the rust spot!).

So there it is, a far-less-than-perfect project with some tough decisions to be made.  A clear example that all is not perfect in the blogging world – well not in this little region of it anyway! I’ve decided I’ll live with the poorly matched seams and points but what to do about the quilting?  Can I really struggle on as it is and hand quilt?  Should I undo what’s been done, take a bravery pill and put the quilt under my machine needle?  Or should I take the whole sandwich apart and replace the wadding with a variety that’s better suited to hand quilting?  Your advice and encouragement welcomed!

Nevermind, there’s always the next project!  Thanks to A & T for the Christmas pressie of these lovely fabrics – I do have an idea of what they will become…  As for how long it will take and the level of craftsmanship, well, the bar’s not set too high!



About allisonreidnem

New Every Morning – About Me Hi! I’m Allison, an obsessive patchwork-quilter who has no desire to be cured! I’ve been developing my skills and knowledge by paying attention at my local quilting group and by putting my questions into the computer search engine. I’m so grateful to the generous people who have taken the time to share their knowledge with me in person, via YouTube videos or their blogs. I’m intending my blog to be a link into the worldwide patchwork and quilting community and a means to contribute helpful hints and inspiration as I continue to discover more about this addictive craft. So, why ‘New Every Morning Patchwork and Quilting’? Well! I am a morning person! I often wake in the wee small hours and think through design and quilt construction issues. My woolly–headed evening brain finds such issues far too difficult to resolve! If I’m disciplined enough to be asleep by 10pm, I can be up cutting, piecing, pressing and quilting before sunrise! By the time daily family routine kicks-in I’ve had a satisfying, soul-feeding creative fix. (I should mention that ‘family at home’ is: my patient, faithful husband of 27years; and our equally patient 16 year old son, who acts as our in-house IT support complete with sighs and rolling eyes! Older daughter and son have both recently flown the nest). Not only do I find early mornings my creative time I also find it a time for receiving spiritual nourishment. I often find myself humming a gentle chorus and reflecting on God’s constancy as another new day dawns. ‘The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning, new every morning; Great is thy faithfulness, O Lord, Great is thy faithfulness.’ Edith McNeil’s chorus is based on verses from the Bible – Lamentations 3: 21-23.
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2 Responses to Lowering the bar!

  1. Colleen says:

    Hi Allison, good on you for keeping your blog real. Many blogs out there would lead us to believe it is all sunshine and roses when real life always has it’s ups and downs. The only advice I can give you is not to injure yourself with the hand quilting. Some things, carpel tunnel syndrome for example, once done, don’t heal very well. I would probably go back to machine quilting with a heavier needle.
    The hst templates I was talking about in my post are available to anyone – go to this page and look for issue 11 once you open the free download you can print off the templates.

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