Greetings! Stella Nova is almost complete! The night before last I put in the last hand quilting stitch:
and this AM I have only a quarter of the binding left to do (click to enlarge):
I’m very happy with this quilt in the “folk art” style. Finishing a quilt is always exciting. I love the magical transformation of taking out all those basting stitches, cutting off the excess batting, and adding the binding as the quilt assumes its final appearance. I remember the exhilaration I felt as I completed my very first quilt and this experience is repeated with all my major projects, especially since so much time and effort goes into them!
Of course, when one finishes a quilt, one must begin another!! I finished the top of my first doll quilt for this year’s “trio of doll quilts” which, as you may remember, was made with circles as I wanted to continue the circle theme for this year after completing my circle improv quilt. Here’s the doll quilt top:
Completing this meant I had no more circles to work on and it’s way too early in the year to stop making circles!! So…I have started another circle project. This time I’ve decided to use mostly the same designer Japanese fabrics that I used in “Joyful Noise”:
In that quilt the focus is more on the overall design and the prominent red in the background. The special designer fabrics are thinly sliced for the palm leaves. Cutting circles from these fabrics should show them off more. These designer Japanese fabrics are somewhat like Liberty fabrics that people collect – distinct and more expensive – and these are even harder to find than the Liberty fabrics. These are quite different from oriental style fabrics from companies like Hoffman, Kaufmann, Kona Bay, etc. There is no metallic in them and they are bolder and more graphic and asymmetrical and the colors are brighter and more distinct. I can easily tell them apart from their American counterparts. Here are just some examples from my collection over the years:
I decided to try using gray as the background color and am using a range of grays from light to dark. Here are my first 4 circles:
This will be another “improv” quilt, meaning that I am sewing first and designing later! Lots of possibilities are already running through my head for arrangements, embellishments, and borders. I’m having a lot of fun playing with ideas – and isn’t that the point of what we are doing with our quilt making?
Meanwhile, I am also spending time appliqueing leaves for the border of We Are Stardust:
“The Wheel” has been waiting since last winter for me to get back to hand quilting it which I now can do with Stella Nova done:
I have lots of hand applique and hand quilting to do but no piecing project at the moment. I certainly don’t need another project to “scatter” my attention, but I am pretty sure over the next few weeks I will be deciding on a primarily pieced project to begin making. There are times when I like sitting and doing hand work, but there are also times when I enjoy sitting at the machine for a while and letting the machine needle do the stitching while I direct the fabric through!
Happy stitching everyone! Be grateful, be kind, and cherish each day. Gladi