Monday, April 28, 2014



Working every project by hand takes time.  Today and many yesterdays and many tomorrows I will be piecing 70" x 70" Celtic Mystery Quilt by Bonnie Hunter.  I love doing it, but today  I needed a break.  So I took this wall quilt down to clean.  It's been washed, dried, pressed, and re-hung.  IRISES is one of my first appliqué quilts...made in the mid 90's.  Back then I machine quilted it...I didn't know how to hand quilt and guess I didn't know how to machine quilt was awful.    So a number of years ago, I took all the quilting out, re-did the border, re-did my first attempts at appliqué, hand quilted it, and put on the binding.   Not perfect but much nicer.

I've learned so much about myself since beginning this love of quilts and quilting.  At first I tried doing all by machine because everyone I met in the quilt world was doing it this way. For me machine work was beginning to annoy...although machine quilt work was a natural progression..I've been sewing on my own from age 12 on on Gramma's lap with her treddle from age 4...  But as I said, beginning to annoy.

 As I progressed, I discovered hand appliqué.  While many around me called it the "A" word, I loved loved loved it.  I took classes, read books, got involved with others who loved hand appliqué.  Formed a group in the late 90's (we still meet).  Hand appliqué was beautiful.  It was so much more relaxing then machine piecing.

I was still doing the piecing and quilting by machine and really not enjoying myself all that much. what was this hand quilting? I picked up a book by Nancy Brenan Daniel LEARN HOW TO QUILT IN JUST ONE DAY.   Well, ahem, it took me way way more then one day.  I worked and worked at it.  Many, many ("just one day")'s later with sore and pricked fingers, I finally got it.  Not easy for me.  No one around to really give advise at this time but no one can really teach you the hand just have to practice and keep at it.  I loved it.  Even though I was not very good at first,  I enjoyed the process.  This was fun!  Beginning to see a pattern?  Machine work was boring to me and frustrating, but I enjoyed working fabric and thread by hand.

I was still machine piecing.  ...I still do, but the process was and still is not all that enjoyable to me what was handpiecing?  I wondered if I would like it better.   Again, not much out there.  I discovered and read Jinny Beyer.  I used my EQ program to create blocks to do by hand.  No one local teaching hand piecing.  Like hand quilting, I learned from books and on line.  I loved hand piecing from the start. It's relaxing, social, and accurate.  I discovered Linda Franz back in 2006 and just recently began to use Inklingo.  Love Inklingo.  No more line drawing for accuracy.  Inklingo does it for you.   So full circle to Bobbie Hunter's Celtic Solstice.  I'm hand piecing this quilt top with Inklingo.  Now finishing up clue five.  I'm doing it all in blues and grays and creams.  Can't wait to see how it all comes out.

Celtic Solstice Clue 5