Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Green Spinning Stars.


I think I learned something important about the way I make through finishing this quilt.

I've always hand-quilted my quilts. I started machine quilting when I started making my drawstring quilts, when demand and efficiency called for a faster method. I planned with this quilt to use my machine as well. It would be my first machine-quilted big quilt. Then I would be a real quilter.

I started but I didn't enjoy it. I felt like I was fighting with my machine, constantly tugging and rolling and squashing through that small gap under the machine arm. My machine's not really built for it. And you know what? I don't think I am either. Not at the moment anyway. I didn't like the way the stitches sat in the quilt, unlike hand-stitches.  I unpicked the machine stitching, made myself comfy on the couch and started rocking my needle, up and down and up and down.

It's nice to do something because you like it, not because you don't think you can do it any other way. And quilting is much more fun with wine and a movie, rather than a sore neck. I feel like I'm just starting to give myself freedoms to make things that I want, the way I want, to give myself creative authority, if you like. I'm going to keep hand-stitching my quilts, for now at least. It's much more me.

What about you? Do you always follow the rules when you make? Do you feel like you can make or do something the way you like it rather than the way you should? Do you still feel like a novice, even when you've been doing something for a while?


  1. Gorgeous Jodi!! And I adore (and am envious) of your perfect hand quilting!

  2. beautiful! I love that you hand stitch...I don't think I'd have the patience for it, though I do want to try it at some point. I do still feel like a novice, I just learned to sew a year ago but am starting to try to break out of the shell of "following the rules" now that I've got a few skills under my belt :)

  3. That is stunning! Just beautiful Jodi!
    I find it hard to answer those questions because i'm still figuring things out! :)

  4. Gorgeous! If my hand stitching was that awesome, I would do it too!

    I am a rule-breaker as a quilter/crafter. I try to make do because I am frugal or because I am limited in time.

    I ALWAYS feel like a novice. A trip around blogland in about 5 minutes usually sinks any thought of expertise I might think I have! LOL!

  5. I only ever hand quilt. I tried machine quilting once and nearly ruined my quilt. It took days to rip out the stitches. I love the process of hand quilting, so satisfying, so I don't intend to change. I actually prefer quilts NOT densely quilted and find some of the machine quilted ones look too stiff with all the machine quilting.

  6. That's funny - for me I have never been brave enough to hand quilt!

  7. I think I need to come and visit you for a basic hand quilting lesson. Your stitches are so even and so straight. Just beautiful.
    I always feel like a novice - there is so much to learn I feel like I will never know all the things I would like to learn.
    I am always trying to figure out what the "Right" way to do things is. I am a bit of a follow the instructions kind of girl till I am confident with something and then I like to put my own style on it but I don't tend to Break the rules though, I never was much of a rule breaker in anything.

  8. Well you know I love to handquilt and I tried machine quilting a biggie before and hated it. As you say it is better to do something you enjoy!

    I love the quilt and the handstitching is excellent and love the thread colour too!

    I always feel like a novice and feel so inferior when I see others awesome work. You keep doing what you like and form your own style Mrs!

  9. Wow that's one amazing quilt. I really need to put in more time and be making quilts like that =D

  10. love this quilt. I much prefer hand quilting to machine quilting: its much more satisfying!

  11. What a lovely quilt! So fresh and springy! I firmly believe that you should quilt in whatever fashion pleases you the most. This is a pursuit that is suppose to make us happy! If we want stress we can just talk with our family, right?? LOL Anyway. the hand quilting looks wonderful. I myself have most of my quilts machine quilted by a long-arm quilter since my body isn't up to hand quilting or wrestling a quilt through my machine - I quilt and create to make me happy! Take care!

  12. I love this quilt and I agree it's really important to enjoy what you're making :)


I so love your comments! I read all of them and reply when I can. If you don't hear back, I'm lost under a mound of scraps or outside jumping on the trampoline with the kids. Jodi. xx