Wednesday, 11 February 2015

First loves and first quilts

My first quilt was a Lemoyne Star, hand pieced with white satin and bronze crinkled polyester. Yes, crazy I know. The poor choice of block (for a beginner anyway) and fabric just shows how naive I was. I still haven't finished piecing it to this day and it sits, all alone, in a little box in the corner of my lounge. Poor thing, I must finish it at some point.

My second quilt was a brown and orange disappearing nine patch monstrosity (I nicked named it "Thing") which I machine pieced on my old Brother. I purposefully chose cheap and ugly fabric so that I would be disappointed if I ruined it. I tried to free motion quilt on the Brother but, despite what everyone tells you, it just wasn't possible on a machine which couldn't drop its feed dogs and had a very flimsy foot and ankle. After two broken needles and almost an eye injury, I ended up doing wobbly straight line quilting with a walking foot. But I didn't care about clashing fabric, mismatched seams or wonky lines - I was in love with quilting.

My third quilt was a simple window box design using a jelly roll and a charm pack of Town Square Quilts by Kathy Schmitz for Moda was straight forward sashing. The finished top was so beautiful that I didn't want to sully it with my feeble attempts at quilting so sent my little quilt top away to be quilted by someone else. And here it is in all its glory.

When I received the finished quilt I was delighted with the work but felt that I had somehow abandoned my little project. I'd bought, planned, cut and pieced it but had somehow let it down at the final hurdle. It didn't feel like my quilt anymore. The fact that the quilting was so perfect and finished the quilt so completely somehow made things worse. I was determined from that moment to find a way to quilt my own pieced tops. As a result, I bought Naomi, my Janome, and together we have pieced and quilted many quilts, play mats, candle cozies and more. 

So it wasn't my first quilt or even my first machine that got me hooked. But without that Lemoyne star and the very basic Brother, I wouldn't have Dresden plates, double wedding rings and Naomi.

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