Thursday, March 11, 2021

Quilting challenges

Hand-quilting with Ryan

Sometimes, hand-quilting just plain poses challenges.

While it may appear that my problem is the snuggly kitty on my lap, that is only half of the story. 

Besides the fact that Ryan insists on commandeering my full attention, something that happens often around here, but my real problem is trying to get used to using a hoop on a stand. I had been quilting on my lap. This quilt, "#Afternoon Delight" is large and a tad unwieldy. I thought a quilt frame might tame it a little.

Hand-quilting is not something I have done for some time. The last time I attempted it was on my most recent project, a lavender Dresden Plate quilt. 

As stated in a previous post, My latest favorite quilt is done, I attempted to outline all the blades of the plates, but all the seams coming together made that nearly impossible. At the very least, it wasn't enjoyable. Quilting is not supposed to be like work. So, I finally gave up after looking at that unfinished project for too many months. I took out all the stitches and starting anew, free-motion quilting it on my sewing machine. The quilt is now done and I'm very glad I made that decision.

With this project, I decided to hand-quilt it for a variety of reasons. Much of it was hand-appliqued, as explained in a previous post: Applique--now this is fun. Also I wanted to do less showy quilting because the complexity of the pattern with all its colors deserved to be showcased rather than the quilting. But the biggest reason to hand-quilt this one, was to challenge myself to complete it. 

The jury is still out for me on using this new quilting frame. At the very least, it is good to be able to keep the quilt in the frame rather than a bunched up mess piled on the couch when I'm not working on it. There is definitely a learning curve to get used to quilting this way. I think I'm getting the hang of it. I enjoy getting into the zone. It will take me a little longer to finish this though, because I often have to take time out for kitty cuddles. But that is fine with me. 

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