With 2-1/2 weeks of school left for my kids, I am happily sitting in a good place on my purple whole cloth quilt. Every spring, I try to get the quilting on one of my show quilts at least started. Generally I begin this process in April, but this year it was a bit later. This is the 3rd time I have put this quilt onto the machine. To quilt it continuously, without removing it, would require a minimum of 4 weeks, and I don't have that kind of time. I have some clients patiently waiting for quilt, and the majority of these will be quilted in the next few weeks.
When working on my own stuff, I am notorious for over-thinking designs and stitching patterns, and then consequently, wasting all kinds of time ripping out stitches. The past 3 days, I have been stitching the outer border. It's 3-4" wide, and has a line pattern like what I show here. I am barely lukewarm about the fills I used, but that is well beyond what I wish to rip out. I used these because I used them in another place in the quilt, so it seemed logical. Repeat, resize, reuse - we all know this motto of good design.
I've been itching to use this herringbone pattern on a quilt for a while now. In retrospect, I should have written "I've been clawing out my eyes because I used this herringbone pattern"! It is stitched on a 1/4" grid, which must be very carefully marked. Did you know that if you are stitching on a 1/4" grid, it is very hard to see anything underneath a 1/2" hopping foot?! Sheesh (taken from my oldest son, who uses this "sheesh" on me routinely), who knew?! The first of these patterns took nearly 3 hours, but the other 3 were barely an hour. Good thing or there might have only been one. I really like using patterns that relate to the design of the quilt, and this one is like that garden path.
(As an aside, those "wheat things" that I used to fill the spaces of the outer border seemed "garden-like" initially, but does anybody else look at that outer border and see heiroglyphics?! Please don't answer.)
I'll leave you with a couple more peeks. Here's the center...I added a little stitching around the periphery of the tulips to hopefully make them pop a bit (I know there's one area not done - I have a small tuck on the back to remove first).
The section just outside of the one shown above has this very dense matchstick pattern that rays outward, and has 45degree lines at about 12 per inch stitched. The angle adjusts in each ray to maintain them at 45 degrees. It looks freaking awesome! It is stitched in a deep purple 100wt silk. It doesn't really look purple, but shows deeper. The section to the far left in the following photo is done with a lavender silk - the closest match to the fabric. It mostly blends away.
And lastly...(below) the outer borders, one stitched in tight pink lines and the outermost in the deeper purple. The contrast is evident in person, but maybe not so much so in the photographs.
...And my very pink backside. As much as I swear that using a freakishly busy print will make my job easier, I can't ignore the little voices in my head that love the look of a solid back. Besides, I'd have a helluva a hard time finding the mistakes that need fixing if I had a print!