I Quilt: Imperfect Perfection


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Welcome to I Quilt, a weekly linky party all about quilting, here at Pretty Bobbins.  I have to say, I am still in shock by all the amazing linkers last week!  Thirtynine fabulous quilters linked up and yes, once again I am still getting through all the blog posts…  I hope y’all visiting a few other linkers too, there’s nothing like quilty comment love <3  Don’t forget to add a link to my blog or the linky button to your post or sidebar :)

Image used with permission by katyquilts

Image used with permission by katyquilts

This week I’m featuring the very talented Katy of KatyQuilts.  Katy shared a practice piece that she was working on.  Katy, I love you for sharing this!  All too often we see the polished, perfect, errorless final product.  But this linky is about process and we all experience tension issues, design imperfections and quilters block at some point!  Thanks so much for sharing Katy!  I think your feathers are beautiful, but if they’re your practice piece then I can’t wait to see where you end up!  Oh!  I’ve just checked out Katy’s post this week, make sure you pop over!  Great stuff!

Image used with permission from katyquilts

Image used with permission from katyquilts

Katy’s post got me thinking about how it’s important to look at the entire quilt, not just elements of the quilting design in isolation.

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This week I’ve been working on my very first customer quilt and I’ve been super critical of myself and spent ages working out the design.  As always I just jumped in and I didn’t mark anything other than the points.  I did use my straight ruler and whilst I still need a lot of practice, I’m happy with where I’m at.

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My customer asked me to incorporate the art deco style arum lily so I went to town creating art deco designs for the whole quilt.  I also incorporated the recipient’s name and I LOVE how it turned out (I did mark the letters first)!

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Quilting the lillies was kind of death by nerves.  I started with the bottom two leaves, then the stem, then the petals, back down to the bottom and then the curly bits up the sides.  I honestly was not a fan but once I’d finished the first lilly and stood back and looked at it in context, rather than isolation, I actually loved it and am really proud of my efforts.

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I’ve said before, and I will continue to say, please don’t worry about achieving perfect quilting.  If you aim for perfect, every little error will erode your confidence and you won’t be able to appreciate the big picture.  Whenever I quilt I work on an area or specific aspect of the design and then I stand back, re-evaluate the quilt and only then do I come up with the design for the next stage of quilting.  I try not to worry about the little errors, rather, I focus on the whole design, how the next stage of quilting will improve on what I just did.

I love to quilt and I firmly believe it should be a fun, enjoyable experience.  Sure, quilting my first customer quilt was terrifying, but once I forgot the nerves I had a great time!

So here’s to imperfect quilting, to having fun and to not worrying about every single mistake!

Happy quilting :)

P.S.  I have to apologise about image quality and tardiness of this post.  My laptop is officially dead and I’m working on my husband’s itty bitty 10″ laptop.

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10 Comments on I Quilt: Imperfect Perfection

  1. Vera
    February 7, 2014 at 12:18 am (2 months ago)

    Thank you for all your encouragement to give quilting a go :) I would find quilting for customers really hard as some fabric combinations might not inspire or speak to me if you know what I mean.

  2. Katy S
    February 7, 2014 at 12:19 am (2 months ago)

    Thanks for featuring my funky feathers! I LOVE your quilting on this quilt. Wow! How long have you had that long arm???? Seriously, if I lived in your corner of the world and didn’t have my long arm, I would ask you to quilt my quilts. Beautiful work and I am sure your customer will be thrilled.

  3. Jayne
    February 7, 2014 at 1:31 am (2 months ago)

    Beautiful quilting! One thing about my quilting…you don’t have to worry about perfection!!

  4. Shannon
    February 7, 2014 at 5:50 am (2 months ago)

    Beautiful quilting! I especially love the Iris, I’ve never done one of those before.

  5. Kathy
    February 7, 2014 at 6:01 am (2 months ago)

    What beautiful quilting! Goodness, looks perfect to me!! Thank you for hosting this linky party and allowing us less than perfect quilters to share what we have fun doing!

  6. Renee
    February 7, 2014 at 7:32 am (2 months ago)

    Your quilting looks great! And those lilies are beautiful!

  7. Alyce {Blossom Heart Quilts}
    February 7, 2014 at 12:28 pm (2 months ago)

    I’m so glad you’re having fun with your first customer quilt!! It’s looking gorgeous!!

  8. Lorna McMahon
    February 7, 2014 at 1:14 pm (2 months ago)

    The lily is absolutely stunning! Wow!

  9. Dorian
    February 7, 2014 at 11:27 pm (2 months ago)

    WoW, you did such a beautiful job on those lillies! I really enjoy your Thursday posts, thank you.

  10. Serena @ Sewgiving
    February 9, 2014 at 12:47 pm (2 months ago)

    I’m about to take my new Janome out of the box and start “playing” with it. I’m glad I read this post first though, as I always get stressed trying something new (I’m a classic “who moved my cheese” girl) – so I’m just going to try and have some fun with it … watch this space lol!


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