Thursday, February 12, 2015

The Vera Quilt

I made a quilt!  I know, no big deal but it's been over six months since I set out to build a quilt and I missed it terribly.  Yes, there were smaller projects here and there but I was craving something bigger, more involved, and creative.  It just kind of happened, right when the new year began.  I started playing around with the circles that I had cut out at Sew-OK and built from there.  There weren't any rules, there was no recipient in mind, and there was no deadline. 
This quilt was pure therapy.  After everything that happened in the past six months and the lack of time and energy to cathartic-ally create, I was way overdue for a quilting binge.  Boy did it feel good.  I've dubbed it the Vera Quilt because she was also my therapy through that rough patch and she was my sidekick while making this monster.  When I wasn't working on it, she would be asleep atop it, waiting until I returned.  And she coordinated so well with its colors.  It made sense to name it after her.
Design-wise, I freaking love this.  Love, love, love.  The colors are soothing to me, the fabrics work incredibly well together and are a nice mixture of vintage and modern.  I utilized new techniques in my top construction which led to some cool elements (hello circles and points!) but also brought about some issues.  I know that many quilting purists are totally against serging their quilt tops but I personally love it.  I feel it gives it extra security which I value in my quilts because I want them to be used and used!  With this particular work though, I decided to traditionally piece it which meant no serging.  Everything seemed fine until I washed it all and I then had several popped seams.  Talk about gutted.  I didn't touch it for weeks.  I was SO upset!  I finally sucked it up and went back and hand stitched all of the popped seams.  I owned it and I learned from it.  And honestly, I don't think any of it is even that noticeable except to me. 
I pieced the back with scraps and a large vintage sheet that I thought complimented the colors well.  I straight-line quilted the whole thing which I love the effect of.  I was lucky enough to find some bias tape that matched the background color and went with that.  It ended up being a perfect queen size quilt and with the lines, it looks SO good on a bed top.  I attempted photos of it on our bed but could never get the lighting quite right so you'll just have to trust me.  ;) 
Another random thing I encountered with this quilt was photographing it!  At our old house, I would hang everything on our deck.  It was the perfect situation.  At our new house, we don't have anything that high to hang something this large!  We tried standing on a ladder which produced a few shots but I wanted to try something else as well...  At our new shop, we have a large two-story fire escape that I thought may work well to hang things from.  Borrowed some clamps from my dad and two of the guys to hold the corners (thanks Oklahoma winds!) while I shot a few and was pretty pleased with the outcome!  I wasn't able to get detail shots like I normally do but I'll figure that out in the future.  Quilt photography learning curve! 
I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it.  It doesn't have a designated home yet I have offered it to a few that have mentioned wanting a queen-sized piece.  It can certainly live at our house...I'm sure Vera would be ok with that!

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