After YEARS, this piece is finished. I am pretty pleased with it. I think it looks good and I did a good job on the quilting (click on the photo to see the quilting close up).
Please do look at the quilting, because it was a pain to do and I am pretty proud of it.
As you may already know, I started this piece in a class with David Walker, held in Capitola, in 2003. I can’t remember who sponsored the class. I want to say a shop, but I am not sure that is right.
The piece includes Machine quilting, fusible Applique’ with satin stitching, and reverse machine applique’. This is one of the few art quilts where I have not added beading or hand embroidery with Perl cotton. I just didn’t think the piece need it even though I had planned on doing both.
I was pretty proud of how you could see the quilting so well on the back, but after facing and labeling, there isn’t much to see.
I actually sewed the label on by hand, which I don’t like to do, but really had no other choice. The piece didn’tlend itself to including the label into the back.
This piece is based on a Chinese character, the character for our word “See”. I made it as a reminder to really look at things, not just glance at them, snap a picture and move on. It is an ongoing process for me to really look and see things.
This has more significance than just a finish, because it means I can cross it off my UFO list. When I do that, it will mean that I am one step closer to having only current projects, albeit a lot of them, but current projects only.
I spent last Saturday making the facing for See. I merrily cut strips (straight of grain), pressed hems and sewed. The whole process was going so well!
I put all the facing strips on to the piece and was about to press them all to the other side, when I realized, as you can see from the photo, that I had sewed them to the wrong side.
I ripped out all of the stitching, which wasn’t hard, but, apparently, required lots of sighing. What an idiot. Finally, I was done and sewed all the pieces to the front. I made a few adjustments that I was only able to do because I had noticed them while I was ripping.
The photo shows the facing before I pressed it to the back. Hopefully you can see two important things:
the sides of the facing do not go all the way to the edge of the side – this is to minimize bulk in the corners
the sides of the facing are on top – this is so that the top and bottom facing strips can encase the side strips and make a nice finished edge.
After I pressed the facing to the correct side (front to back), I made a tiny sleeve. I have been stitching away on the facing while watching TV. I have all but a few inches of the facing sewn on. The sleeve comes next. I hope to finish soon.
I find that once I get started on the quilting of a piece I stay and quilt until I can’t move. Not being able to move is a bad thing.
Still the quilting is done on this piece! After so many years of not working on it, I finished the quilting.
This does not, as you can see, mean the piece is done, but I am so much farther along. The quilting is really a block for me. The quilting hangs me up.
Perhaps I’ll consider this a turning point?
One of the biggest problems with a project lingering so long is I forget the details. Did I use up all the background fabric? Is there anymore left? If so, where is it? What did I plan for the facing? Did I start a label? Sometimes these are important details and another good reason to work steadily on one project (and I don’t mean ONLY one project) and not let it languish.
I also, after working on the lanyard and the lovey blocks and the Fish Postcard that I got back to See. I spent about 6 hours quilting and saw a lot of progress. The background isn’t done, but I probably have a quarter of it left to stitch.
I am following the grid lines on the fuchsia fabric. It is going well, though I am starting to sink a lot of threads. the piece will be pretty tightly quilted when I am finished.
I was in a phone meeting the other day and was looking at this piece as I listened to everyone talk. I am really pleased with how the background quilting is coming out. I need to get to work to finish the piece.
As I mentioned the other day, I did all of the satin stitching over the preceding few days and was on to the quilting.
If you make the photo (left) a little bigger you can see the quilting around the eye and in the orange character.
I used 50 weight Aurifil, mostly because I have a lot of colors, but also because I didn’t want it to be shiny. You may be able to see the diachromatic thread peeking through the orange. I don’t mind that little bit of shine. In a show, the light will reflect off of those small bits and, with any luck, make the piece shimmer or glitter a little.
I am thinking of using free motion quilting on the black part. I want to practice and test the machine before I do, though.
I have the BAMQG personal challenge to do and that will be a good free motion quilting test.
I dragged See out of the Fabric Closet on Thursday with the intention of starting to finish the satin stitching. The photo to the left is what I remember the piece looked like, but when I looked at it the blue curved line and one circle were missing. Even though I remembered that there were other pieces, I couldn’t find them and decided to soldier on.
I fused everything that wasn’t fused and started satin stitching. The orange character had diachromatic thread stitched around it, but it didn’t differentiate the orange against the pink background well enough. In addition to stitching around the two remaining circles, I stitched over the the diachromatic thread in orange and all around the other parts in matching thread.
I ended up with a piece that was ok. That was when I found a photo that reminded me of the blue curved line. I took a whole pile of orphan blocks, Sampler blocks, hand printed fabric, etc from my “must stay flat pile” out of the closet and started rummaging through all the bits and bobs until I found the blue line.
I fused it on to the piece, but since I had already started quilting the orange, I had to unpick a bit so I could satin stitch around the blue line.
Shortly thereafter, I passed by a mirror and saw the third circle stuck to my bathrobe.
Very strange, but I fused that on and well, satin stitched around the last circle and got busy quilting. As of now, the orange character and some of the eye are quilted. I feel like I zoomed through what I have done so far even though it was a stopping and starting kind of ride.
Right now the hold up is the label. I don’t know whether to do a regular label like all my other quilts have or to just put a small label with my name on it. I am well into quilting so I need to decide soon.
This is a project that has been languishing for a long time. I am glad to finally be making some progress on it.