11 November 2009

Origami Quilt, Attempt #2

I spent a massive amount of time today crawling around hands-and-knees on the floor pinning this sucker back together. I did it once before, two years ago, but after leaving the quilt rolled up and/or stuffed into one of those zip-up pillow bags and/or shoved from one storage location to another, it was in very wrinkled shape.

So yesterday, besides sewing all those blocks for Modify Tradition (one more today, I'll post a photo at the bottom of this entry later), I took at all in the pins basting it together as well as all the pins holding the petals closed (straight-pins in that case) and ironed both the top and bottom again. Today my back hates me because I pin-basted it all over again.

Now I'm itching to get it quilted (before it wrinkles all over again), but I'm no less terrified, two years on, of the quilting process. I've never done anything so large before (about 6-ft square) or with this kind of batting (the crap stuff no one but ladies as old as my grandmother uses, which I'm using because she prefers quilts made with it to those made with warm & natural style batting) or that I care so much about. I've done a few baby quilts, but any time I make anything bigger I get scared off trying to quilt it because I love them too much to ruin them.

I think I'm just going to do something terribly basic - a criss-cross grid through all the white squares and then... I don't know. I'll have to figure something out for the green. Maybe I'll figure out some sort of leaf or flower type thing I could put into those. In any case, I want to get the quilting done by the end of the month so that I can move on to other trouble-some finishing touches in December. (Opening all the flowers, stitching down the petals, sewing a button into each flower center. Binding. I've never done proper binding before and I might not this time either, maybe just rolling it over from the back.)

When I first started this quilt, two years ago, I made myself a set of goals about it. This many flowers folded by this date, then this many blocks stitched together by this date, and so on. Which actually really worked for getting the top together, but then I totally crashed and burned once it came to quilting. I stitched one line and then picked all of it out because it looked so very, very bad. Then I rolled it all up and stuffed it away. But I cannot, must not, do that this year.

As I've said, rather morbidly, before... my grandma isn't going to live forever. If I want to give her a gift from my own hands, of a quilt, as some kind of thank you for all the many quilts she's hand-stitched and quilted for me... then I need to do it now. And if she dies before I give this to her, I'll never want to look at it again.

And that's enough of that train of thought. So here's another photo...

This block, also for Modify Tradition, was meant to be one giant bow-tie, but I have a definite bias against asymmetrical blocks in samplers. If I knew the quilt would be done on point, I might be willing to do it, but in case it's not... I made my own symmetry. Also, I wanted to use more than two fabrics, which I couldn't do with a traditional bowtie.

In any case, I like my fabrics here a bit better, but I'm finding the gold much too dated looking. I don't know. Maybe I'll go back to the fabric store and see if I can find a different yellow to replace it with. It'd be easy enough to pick apart the two blocks using it so far so that I could replace it with something better and maybe brighter.

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