Sunday, September 12, 2010

Do I plan my quilts or my quilting?

Truthfully, I have to answer......the quilt.  That leads me to my beginnings as a quilter.  Twenty five years ago, I would spend as much time thinking and planning how to quilt--remember needle in / needle out-- large areas and the border especially.  A feather wreath or swag, flower sprays, and hearts were common motifs I always used.  Today our quilting world has changed.   We are a faster paced world of computerized stitching, meandering, pantographs and all over patterns.  Sometimes  the quilting "design" is there to simply hold the layers together. 
What brought all this on?  Quilting the waterfall and frog wall hanging.  All the thread is adding another dimension to this wall hanging.  And my mind began to consider the quilts I have made and the type of quilting I use on them.  Have I missed a chance to add that extra layer to them?  How could I enhance the multi-fabric scrap quilt, or the watercolor with quilting?
So, the time came to quilt the final border and I was stumped.  I pulled out my overlay sheet of plastic and the grease pencil to try of couple of quilting patterns.  I thought either a single swirl or maybe the v-shaped grass around the outer edge.  When I put the overlay on the border, I knew both were wrong.  They were competing with all the texture in the center.  Deep thinking was required here.  I sat and stared at the fabric.  And light bulb moment!  I love it when that happens.....the batik border already had a pattern on it, so why not just accent it with stitches to bring it out?
This is what I ended up with.  I selected a medium blue thread to use and then just stitched around, along and over the dark vein looking areas of the fabric.  The end result is great and is more restful to the eye I think.   Click on the photos to enlarge the view and get a better idea of what I am trying to describe. 
Now to try and find fabric for the binding that blends.  I do not have any more of the last border fabric.... remember the background  was a test project from a couple of years ago that I never finished.  But I probably have something stashed away that will work fine.  
Insight Let the fabric speak to me.  If all else fails.....Simply follow the pattern in the fabric to quilt it.
I'll get a good photo of the complete project...wait till you see all the thread!
Till then, happy stitching.
 

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