Saturday, December 5, 2015

This quilt is a STAR!

My new quilty friend Nadine brought this quilt to me and gave me "quilter's choice" freedom to choose the quilting designs. She just said she wanted it to be a custom job (as opposed to an all-over quilting pattern) and told me to do whatever I wanted.

I knew that I wanted the stars to stand out, so I quilted them less densely than the adjacent areas, leaving the batting within the stars to puff up in a 3D effect. I used a very traditional continuous curve motif to work my way around these perfectly-pointed stars.

Swirls in the white areas around the big stars.

Serpentine in the white areas around the small stars. Overlapping ribbon candy in the gray half-square-triangles outside that. Swirls in the white areas outside that. Ribbon candy in the flying-geese black triangles.

In the setting triangles around the outside (see below), I quilted arcs with overlapping ribbon candy on the inside and feathers on the outside. 

In the black sashing strips that wove their way amongst the quilt squares, I stitched serpentine parallel lines. 

The funny thing about these serpentine lines... I'm pretty good at quilting/drawing a straight line from top to bottom. Less good from bottom to top. I pretty okay at quilting a straight line from left to right, worse from right to left. You know what I'm pretty darn bad at (and didn't realize prior to this project)? Straight, parallel lines that are DIAGONAL. And that's exactly what they were all over the body of this quilt. After about 6 inches of the first strip, I had to step away and sketch for a while, because it was a PROBLEM! I tried to contort my body from side to side, so that I could imagine I was straight on. Next time, I think I'll just do lines up and down! 

One thing that did help was using my hand to press down on the ruler-base-extender on my machine, to create some drag and keep that free-floating machine under a little more control. Finally my left hand can contribute to the quilting process!

On the outer borders I stitched pearls on a string for the spine of feathers. Every time I use a string-of-pearls motif, I think of Glenn Miller.

All-in-all, I think it turned out great, and I sure hope Nadine thinks so, too!

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