Friday, March 29, 2019

Sawtooth and Me Reimagined


I was beginning to get a little worried my challenge project was not going to see a finish before the end of March.  But in the 11th hour I was able to regroup and pull it off.  This month the good folks at Island Batik challenged us to take a vintage quilt bock and reimagine it in some way.




I played with several blocks, before I landed on the good ol' sawtooth block.  I love star blocks and have made many quilts using stars.  But as I looked through pictures of my quilts, I realized this one turns up in some form quite a bit. 

So I went to work trying to come up with a design to shake things up a bit.  If one star is good more must be better, so double the star and super size the fun for a quilt that would scream custom quilt me!

Once I decided on a design the challenge became what fabrics to use.  Part of the fun of the challenge is only using the fabrics Island Batik provides us.  Sometimes, you have to regroup your plan because the fabric allotment doesn't quite work out.  My first design looked something like this.



I love my design and had more than enough of these fabrics to complete the mission, but I just wasn't feeling it.  So back to playing with color placement.



I moved on to the one on the left, I just loved how it popped.  The problem, not enough fabrics in this color scheme to complete the mission or maybe I should say to give me the contrasts that I wanted.  So I pulled out my fabrics and fell in love with the design on the right.


I was able to use two strips from one of the stash builder bundles and half yard cuts, to crate my quilt.

Because I was working with big blocks, this one went together in a snap.


One of the battings Hobbs graciously sent us was Thermore batting.  After doing a little reading, this 100% polyester batting is very light weight and is perfect for clothing and small quilts.  


I have to say I was pleasantly surprised at the stability it gave the quilt.  There was zero bearding when I quilted this quilt.  I can admit, left to my own devices, I probably wouldn't have given this batting a second thought and just assumed it was for clothing.  I would have been wrong!  It was fantastic to work with and I see more of it in my future!

Next I chose my threads for quilting.  Usually, I go all matchy matchy with my thread colors so that everything just blends into the fabrics and any imperfections are hidden.  This time I decided it was time to let the thread shine too.  So in certain areas of the quilt I went with threads that slightly contrasted.


And shine they did.  My blending threads where Aurifil #1148 Light Jade, #2510 Light Lilac and #2024 White.  For more of a contrast I used Aurifil #2785 Very  Dark Navy, #2784 Dark Navy, #1240 Eggplant and #2775 Steel Blue.  


For the quilting in the black star, I went with the Dark Navy thread.  If you've ever quilted black thread on black fabric you know it's almost impossible to see what you are doing and where you've been.  The lighting has to be perfect.  By using a dark blue it contrasts just enough, that when you are close to the quilt you can see the quilting but at a distance, still allows the fabrics to shine.


There were points along the way with this quilt, that I did not feel so shiny, like a star. 



The past few months have been particularly stressful and I have not talked much about it publicly on the blog.  I write about this today because somewhere someone is silently going through the same thing and you are not alone.  Last month my divorce was final.  Admittedly a divorce I did not want and almost left me to a point I didn't want to quilt anymore as it was something my ex-husband did with me.  The idea of this challenge, taking the past and turning into something new, kept resonating with me.  How do you do that?  You create.  You surround yourself with positive and beautiful things.  You build something new.  I am a new me.  This quilt is a representation of the new me.  The dark center is always going to be there.  It helped build who I am today.  But it is surrounded by something bigger and brighter and that is stronger.  Bigger than it will ever be.  


And also making sure you have loved ones in your life that will keep you on track and make sure you are headed in the right direction.  I have the best quilty friends ever!  And quilting cat.

Okay, back to the quilt!  Now it is time to overload you with pictures of quilty goodness.











With the completion of this project, it is time to set my sites on April and the creative goodness it will bring.  March has been a very heavy month.  It's brought about many difficult things but also good things as well.  May April shower us with lots of goodness and leave us shining bright.





18 comments:

Janice Holton said...

Tish, you're a beautiful, strong woman and I admire you for forging ahead with the challenge of taking the past and turning it into something new. If I were there I'd give you a big bear hug (unless of course, you're hug averse!). :D Your quilting design on this quilt is wonderful!

piecefulwendy said...

There's just so much I want to say, Tish, but I can't find the words. I'm so so sorry that you have to go through all that hurt, but so glad you have your creativity and your beautiful quilting (and quilty friends) to help you process. Your quilt is just beautiful, and I love the meaning behind it. Sending a big ol' hug.

Vasudha said...

Tish,
Your quilt is beautiful. I liked seeing your deign process. The colors you picked at the end are just perfect. And the quilting is simply awesome.
So sorry for the difficult times are going through. I'm glad you are back to designing and making quilts. I'm sure it will fill you with more positive energy.

Rochelle aka Bella Quilts said...

Tish, thank you for sharing both the quilt and the personal hurdles. You have done a wonderful job with this quilt and I hope that each day ahead will continue to bring you light and courage. Your quilty friend is so helpful. Friends like that are good listeners and provide lots of love with no judgments! You created a beautiful design and I love your color choices. I also like that you've given me the idea to find something slightly lighter than black thread to use on a black background when quilting.

The Joyful Quilter said...

I think it's pretty amazing that the challenge aligned SEW well with your current stage of life. You did an incredible job on your quilt. Now, feel confident that you CAN do as well finding your way in this new life of yours!

chrisknits said...

You are a beautiful soul, do not let yourself ever doubt that. Now charge forward and don't look back with sadness, look forward with determination and love yourself!!! The quilt is awesome!

Anja @ Anja Quilts said...

It's an amazing quilt. Well done. Congrats (and some sadness) on the divorce. You will be stronger. You're an awesome, amazing person!!

Websterquilt said...

Beautiful! Your work is amazing.

Barb said...

Love your quilt and the fact that you were able to pick yourself up and continue on. My heart hurts for you. You have a good attitude and yes, do surround yourself with good friends and just put one foot in front of the other!

Carla said...

A beautiful quilt full of life and emotions. Your pictures are beautiful too

PaintedThread said...

Love this quilt. The colors are fantastic, and the quilting is terrific. Congrats and condolences on the divorce - it's such a life-changing thing to live through.

Jan Crist said...

Do you have a pattern for this? Its beautiful!!

Quilting Tangent said...

A Star being born - great job. Love all the different quilting designs. You are in the the process of recreating yourself, so this quilt is prefect. Push your limits and become that new person, that wants to burst free.

Home Sewn By Us said...

Hi Tish! What a beautiful quilt you share with us today for the March challenge. I think you met that challenge head on, as these IB fabrics and Aurifil thread sure do shine. I know it has been a heavy, hectic month for you in many ways. But it also has a bit of lightness in it as well, and a rebirth. I think it's fitting that your first month of being a IBA is the same month your divorce is finalized, as going forward you are quilting your vision and your way. I know your future is very bright and that it holds many great things. But for your marriage and the path that led you to this very point, you would be a different person and your sweet daughter may not even be. Hold close to your peeps and rest on your friends - we'll keep you upright and amongst the quilting. {{{Hugs}}} a bunch for you. Oh geez - I didn't even mention that I LOVE the sawtooth block, and this revision is just the perfect amp up to bring it into 2019. ~smile~ Roseanne

Kathleen said...

This quilt is a stunner and what a great representation of where you were and where you are. I wish you the best as you move through this. I am so glad you were able to recoup your quilting mojo. The hint about another color thread on the black is genius!!! what a stunning stunning quilt. Virtual hugs coming your way...

Yvonne @Quilting Jetgirl said...

Wow, Tish, what an amazing quilt, quilting, but more deeply, I was so moved by your description of how the quilt resonates in your life right now. Whatever the plans may be for this quilt in the future, I am glad it was there at just this right time. Big virtual hugs to you.

Alycia Quiltygirl.com said...

It is a beautiful quilt! and here is to a new you! I think you are a shining star. And re imagined ;-)

Emily said...

Wow, this is beautiful, Tish! And even more so when I understand the symbolism of the dark center and the lovely soft pinks and bright blues that burst out of that dark center. Lovely colors, lovely project, lovely reimagined Tish. Sending you strength and quilty hugs.

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