Tuesday, 12 January 2016

falling to pieces {a finished quilt}

If you've been reading my blog for a while, you probably noticed I've been blogging less and less often over the last year or so. A lot of things contributed to this (increased work hours, and a lot less sewing time are the primary reasons!), but I'm determined to change that this year and get back to blogging more regularly and hopefully getting back to my YouTube channel as well - I have had a lot of requests for more FMQ video tutorials, and I love making them so I'm hoping they'll become a semi-regular thing. We have just come back from a fantastic beach holiday and I'm feeling recharged and inspired to sew again (after six weeks away from my machine), and I'm planning on that energy being channeled into my blog as well! 


Anyhoo, today I'm sharing a quilt I made toward the end of last year - a mini quilt made for the QuiltCon EZ Quilting Triangle challenge. This is a pretty wordy post - there's a bit of background involved in explaining why I made this quilt (not something I often need to do with my quilts), which is why I haven't gotten around to sharing this until now ;o) I did enter this into QuiltCon, and it wasn't accepted, but it was a really important quilt for me to make so I'm completely at ease with the fact that it didn't make the cut (admittedly, it probably helps that Molecular was juried in, so I do have one quilt in the show!!).


So, the background. I think I mentioned early last year that my youngest had started school and I landed a casual job as a lab technician (I'm a scientist turned quilter) as well as working and teaching at Frangipani Fabrics a few days a week. This worked beautifully up until September when one of the full time lab staff broke his leg really badly and I was offered regular hours. I went from working very part time to working five or six days a week, as well as still trying to do my normal amount of being mum/quilting/etc. Something had to give, and it just happened to be my mental state that suffered. A lot. I stopped sewing. My motivation to sew disappeared entirely. And I struggled with this big time - I had no energy or desire to pursue the one thing that instantly relaxes me and helps me find my centre, which upset me deeply.


So, this little quilt (she measures about 28" x 32") is important for a few reasons. First and foremost it's a reflection of my mental state a few months ago. But almost as important, making this quilt was incredibly therapeutic - I rediscovered my love of quilting, had a tonne of fun making it and will happily hang it in our house. It took a surprisingly long time to piece this one - the triangles are quite small (2" high from memory) and the borders are 1/2" finished, so it wasn't a quick quilt to make. I really enjoyed the process though, and I'd love to do more tiny piecing this year. I savoured the entire process of making this quilt, and that's something else I want to focus on this year - slow, deliberate sewing.

I used a double layer of wool batting on this quilt, so the texture is really gorgeous - it's all fairly simple organic straight line FMQ, using the lines in the piecing to inform the quilting. I used a variegated grey Aurifil 40wt thread for the quilting, which adds a bit of interest over the low volume background fabrics. I love the addition of that little ghost triangle too (a nod to the class I took with Krista Withers last year at QuiltCon.)



I have a few blog posts coming up in the next few weeks (my next Farmers Wife tutorial, introducing an exciting blog series I'm participating in, and a few finishes from last year that I still haven't shared), so you will definitely be hearing from me a bit more regularly. Let's see if that continues beyond this month - but I have the best of intentions ;o)

xx Jess

22 comments:

Charlotte said...

hello you! I'm sorry to hear you were having a hard time. What a gorgeous quilt to come out of it, though. It's really lovely! xoxo

Sherry VF said...

What a lovely quilt. Beauty triumphed from your anxiety. I particularly like the floating triangles and shadow quilting. Please don't stress about blogging. Share when you are able.

Debbie said...

This is really lovely and I'm glad it was therapeutic!

elizabethdee said...

Congratulations on Molecular being juried into QuiltCon and congratulations for powering through difficult times. I know the quilt title is Falling to Pieces -- and it speaks to me as well -- but it looks like you have done an amazing job of picking up the pieces. Your new quilt is so very beautiful.

Jessica said...

Missed you here! This quilt is just beautiful, Jess. Agreed, don't stress, share when you can. :)

Yvonne @ Quilting Jetgirl said...

I'm glad you were able to carve out the time to make this quilt and rediscover a bit of yourself in the process. I'm glad you had a refreshing holiday, and I hope things continue to balance out for you. Also, congratulations on having a quilt juried into QuiltCon!

Shanley said...

Looks fantastic and happy to be hearing more from you. I'm going to try to rebalance this year to sew more.

weavinfool said...

I've been wondering about you and hoping your life was just too busy. I'm glad you are back.

Mystic Quilter said...

Lovely piece Jess and sorry to hear that things haven't been going so well for you during the past year.
Hope you continue to improve and continue on with your quilting and blogging.

Ioleen said...

I'm happy you are back, missed your posts. This little quilt is amazing, glad you shared it with us. Wish you all the best in 2016.

Farm Quilter said...

Love your quilt - the colors you used, the pattern you created and the quilting (I love to do ghost quilting too!). Quilting really is therapy - something about being creative feeds us. Always happy to see an email in my inbox from you, whenever you are able to share.

Rosemary B❤️ said...

Oh my goodness, and you are not alone.
Well, the upside is that you made some extra cash$$$ and you went on a great vacation.
I hope this year is much better.
Life does get busy. I am still busting my butt taking care of my parents both 93. So i really understand that complete lack of energy!
This year we will try to carve out the time for the things we need personally.
This massively lovely quilt speaks to me. I feel this. You made a masterpiece, Jess

KaHolly said...

Enjoyed seeing your quilt. It's just lovely. Look forward to seeing more of you!

Leanne said...

I am so glad you are doing better and were able to take a long long vacation too. I totally get it, often I have to push myself back to the sewing room, when there is not time and I am tired as creating is so restorative. The quilt is beautiful and I am so glad you made it. I am looking forward to seeing Molecular at QuiltCon!

Renee said...

Aww, bummer it didn't get it (not very many of the triangle quilts did! I wonder if they only let in a specific number?), but I love that it tells a story and that it brought you back to your quilting happy place! Is your new full time position temporary or permanent?

Archie the wonder dog said...

It's an exquisite quilt but I'm sorry you went through such a tough time in the lead up to making it.

Michele said...

I like, I like. And I so understand having a lot less time lately for sewing let alone blogging. I too miss it a ton and am working hard at fitting more of it into my schedule.

cathallen said...

Love this Jess! So glad you were able to have a good break & looking forward to working & sewing with you this year! xx

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