For anyone who reads my blog regularly (thank you - you're already ten shades of awesome) you've already seen this quilt and heard the story of it's existence . You were right there beside me through every blog post where I whinged , whined, griped, bitched and moaned about pretty much every stitch that went into this quilt. You got excited along with me when I finally cracked FM quilting with this quilt and was so darn proud of myself , because lets face it - I didn't think it was ever going to happen. So I wont be offended if you back out slowly without making eye contact with me , and go and do something more exciting - like folding your socks. By all means stay - but you know the rule, you have to drink a cocktail while you're reading this post, which could be very interesting for some of you since while it's night time here as I type - its breakfast time on the other side of the world.
For anyone who happens to visiting from the Bloggers Quilt Festival - Don't you go anywhere ...I have fresh blood to show off this quilt to and I'm so glad you dropped by to have a look. I won't impose the cocktail rule on you. Pull up a chair - help yourself to tea or coffee and sit for a bit. I'm a chick that loves to spin a tale or two and no quilt I ever make comes without a back story.
Compared to lots of other people I haven't been making quilts all that long - I think I properly started about 6 years ago . I'm still learning all the time and trying new things sometimes with disastrous results. In August 2013 I decided to make an orange peel quilt and a couple of the girls in my sewing group showed me how to freezer paper applique (mainly because the way I was trying to do it was totally irritating them )and this quilt was officially started.
The plan was to use scraps and leftovers from other projects. This quilt went a lot of places while it was being made including work, family functions, in the car (obviously when I wasn't driving ) to Brisbane when I went and visited my friend Little Miss Sunshine (whose scrap bin I coincidentally raided while I was visiting ) and also all the way to Vietnam. I actually became a bit of a scrap scab while making this , constantly pestering people for their scraps so I could incorporate different fabrics from some of my favourite people.
Sometimes I would get a bit tired of it and ignore it for a few weeks, but mostly I worked on it fairly consistently. There are 144 peels in this quilt, and sometimes it felt like this was the groundhog day of all quilts and that I was doing the same thing over and over and over. I'm pretty sure I heard angels singing when I put the final stitch in the final block.
But eventually, after months of hand sewing this project was ready to be made into a quilt top. Isn't she pretty? Can you tell I like colour?
So - once at the flimsy-is-basted-and-ready-to-be-quilted stage, I was faced with the dilemma of exactly how to quilt it. Straight lines just weren't going to cut it and that's pretty much all I knew how to do. Free Motion quilting and I were not friends owing to a few bad practice runs in the past that had severely crushed my confidence. How to do this quilt justice? Well - you just put on your big gal panties and decide to kick some FM butt . Not for me a practice sandwich or a mini quilt to start the process. Nup - that's not the way I roll- I decided to jump right in and start meandering like an old pro all over that quilt. Sometimes not thinking about stuffing up is the best way to go.
I love vintage chenille and have approximately half the world's available supply stashed at home. I decided it was time to cut into some of the vintagey goodness and put it to use so I backed this quilt in soft pink chenille.
Add some spotty binding and you can't go wrong. Spots and stripes are my very favourite types of bindings.
I meandered ( and sometimes stippled if truth be told ) everywhere except the peels , which really made them stand out. And when It was done I stood back and couldn't believe that I had actually finished something so pretty! (and that I had broken the back of free motion quilting - GO ME!)
Every year I end up with a favourite quilt and for 2014 this is my very favourite one. Its kept me warm while I blob round on the sofa at night in my living room all winter and gets dragged to bed with me each night. Thank you for stopping by and having a look at it. And a big thank you to Amy who hosts this fabulous shindig for us twice a year so we can be inspired and get our fill of eye candy!
Im going to enter this into the applique category for the festival ...and cant wait to see what all you other clever people have chosen as your quilt to showcase.