Sunday, January 10, 2016

Quilting Friendlies and a Portrait

Quilting Friendlies can be found wherever quilts are being sewn, quilted or shown.  The ones I have met are so congenial and accepting.  I was in WI for Christmas where my daughter is a professional longarm quilter and quilt appraiser.  She took me to a couple of her sewing groups for sessions of sewing and socializing.  These ladies were all so friendly and accepting of me, a stranger.  Everyone is interested in others' projects and helpful when needed.  Of course we all have one common interest, which helps, and the variety of inspiring, creative artistry is endless within such a group.

I did not take my Phoenix bird with me, which was a mistake, but did take the portrait that I had designed and was ready to start.  It is a small project so was perfect to transport.  It started out great, but gradually devolved into a practice project.  Below is a small crop of what I did.

Black Belt
I am generally content with the overall technique and learned a lot about the sewing as I went, but discovered numerous problems, and am not happy with the end result.  My thread colors are really bad - way too red for Asian skin.  The ear is too defined, so it needs to be softened.  The shadow side of his face (not shown in this crop) turned out to be wayyyyyy too dark and wayyyyyy too red.  The eye is OK as the white part of it is really white, but doesn't show properly in the photo.  Some problems could have been solved, but the dark shadow on the other side of the face is awful.  The hair I love - it is perfect, but I will start over with new thread colors for the skin.

TIP:  Don't get too discouraged when a new technique doesn't work out right.  Sit down and figure out where you went wrong.  If you find you don't like working that technique, that is a positive too. It is OK to say, "forget it" like I did with landscape quilting!  If you enjoy doing it and are happy with some of it, keep plugging.  Each project will be better as you become more competent.

I had a great blog-cation, but it is nice to be home and set up to sew in my own space. My sewing room is now cleared of all the stuff that was transported back to WI and MN and feels almost spacious.

Sew a happy seam this week.


  1. I think this quilt is lovely as it is. I don't know much about this type of work, but I wonder if adding more thread that is the color you think i should be would work. But if it really is as bad as you say, have you thought about cropping it and making a smaller quilt? At least that way you can salvage all the work you have put into it.

    1. Thanks for the comment and suggestion. I am a great one for testing, but didn't do it on this one and had already bought the thread. I really feel that the work I did was not lost as I learned a lot. My goal for perfection requires that I do it over and I am looking forward to that. I have a new method for picking the colors and making the underlying photo with color. When I get started again on it, I will write about what I did -- and if it works.

  2. It sure looks good to me, but then we are usually our own worst critics.

  3. Lovely work, but I can see the redness so if you're not happy, why not redo it? Please blog about what you learn on your second try because it will be so helpful for those of us who might also try this technique!