I have had a couple friends complain that I am not keeping up on my blog. First off, I want to thank the two of you who have prodded me <grin>. And of course, you know who you are! But, more important, it is always a good reminder that life happens and it is my turn. This is not to say that I am not inspired ("Jill Inspired"). But rather I have been so inspired and have had a chance to see so many insights that I am nearly breathless with all the inspiration around me and haven't been able to juggle the priorities around to documenting this journey. While I could express regret that I've not done more, I try hard to never live in regret. So, let's just take the newest happenings....
I have been zentangling up a storm, having filled up my second notebook, I can see it oozing out into my handwriting and into my quilting. Zentangling is an art form. Well, indeed, your teachers likely told you to quit doodling but you should have responded, "I am just getting in my Zen." Read more about zentangling in one of my more recent blog posts.
Most recently, I worked on the Attitude Girls by Mary Engelbreit. In true ME (Mary Engelbreit) fashion, she speaks the truth with charming antecdotes and her classic style. This is a charming little kit I picked out in the store and danced around a little diddy bit of my zentangling....done with a needle and my Bernina 830 and her Bernina Stitch Regulator. When I pulled the panels for these kits, I had no idea what the pieces would work out to be. Like many of you, I need time for fabric to speak to me. Then when I sit and study it, I can see it with clarity. If I don't see it clearly, I wait for it. As I looked at these sayings, I realized, they really shouldn't be (for me) all in one project. But rather these are truths that I want spoken to several friends and loved ones. We weren't talking about big pieces but rather something that could be hung like a poster or on a bulletin board.
The kits included three other fabrics (three 3/4 yard cuts) from ME's collection from Moda. I was able to border the pieces with 3" strips and put 3" cornerstones. I had enough fabric to border them and bind all of them. As a bonus, there was enough fabric to use backings for two of them. After I got them started, I realized that they were just screaming for rick rack. Like all of you, I have some stuff in my stash of sewing stuff. Then I went to the store and bought some of my favorite cherry colored rick rack. You will see the darker rick rack that I had at home and then the more perfect cherry-colored rick rack that I got at the store. (Please note that some of us might be tempted to think a mistake was made by using two sets of rick rack. However, these pieces are going to different individuals, not hung as a collection. Plus as ME says, "A Mistake is Simply Another Way of Doing Things."
I just needed a little bit of quilting on these pieces because they are designed to be wall hangings for friends. (Don't we all have friends that need these tidbits of wisdom?) I also used a new product that we have been featuring called Battilizer™. I love this for smaller pieces like this because it is batting melded with stabilizer. It isn't as expensive as melding these two products together. It gives me a crisp set of corners. Many of us struggle with wall quilts and our traditional batting choices. Our favorite batting choices are designed to make quilts soft with some nice drape to them. However, Battilizer™ is designed to give me my choice cotton batting with a base that will create a wall quilt that will hang with more crispness. I won't get corners that tip in and out. I am less likely to get a bunch of waves in my quilted piece.
When I quilt the elements, I didn't do a bunch of tracing of the designs. I simply stitched nearby the girls. Didn't go around each letter but rather hit corners. However, on the "Snap Out of It" piece, I made sure to stitch in the curve of her underarms. I wanted to accentuate that detail.
Likely my favorite one is "Well, Ain't You Something!" I think we should each have this one posted next to the mirror we look at in the mornings. While you might not exactly feel that way, I DO believe that the process of regularly reminding yourself that you are SOMETHING important is a very healthy perspective.
All the Best to You....
You ARE Something....SPECIAL