Friday, October 1, 2010

Sewing is my THERAPY...only more expensive.

Those of us who enjoy sewing use it as a form of therapy. (You all know what I mean when I say more expensive. Take a look at your stash.) It most likely makes us happy (most of the time), we feel productive, it nurtures our creative mojo and so on. When you own a business that is centered around your form of "therapy", it is very easy for the "therapy" part to fly out the window (along with the sewing machine). It becomes a "have to". Lately, sewing has very easily ranked right up there with doing the dishes, the laundry and even cleaning out the garage (scheduled for this weekend). But I have started a project that has brought back that sense of calm that I can only find with the purr of my Pfaff!

Traveling the Quilt Show circuit means that I have to have samples on display of the quilt kits I carry. As you can see above, my booth is plastered with them! It makes it easier for a customer to see a finished product than just looking at a picture. I normally stick to projects that are simple with big pieces. Most of my customers are like me, I don't have the time or space to have a project laying around for weeks or even days for that matter. Quick and easy is what I'm all about! Unfortunately, that frame of mind has brought a "manic-ness" to my sewing life.

I have started a quilt by Pat Bravo using her Sugar line of fabric. I bought the entire line for our shop and planned on using this pattern to make kits. It's a beautiful quilt but when I sat down and started reading the directions, I wondered what the heck I had gotten myself into.
One inch strips? Are you serious? And to top that off, I need about 800 of them. Not to mention the roughly 250 triangles. I don't know why but triangles scare me. I'll find just about any short cut to avoid piecing a triangle.

I've done some work with selvedges but I foundation pieced them onto muslin so it was a breeze. These little 1" fabric worms are just being pieced with a 1/4" seam and it scared me. I sat down at my machine and started to sew...because I HAD to. The way these blocks are put together it was very easy to organize myself into a chain piecing party so I took my first unit and laid it out on my sewing table in order and started to piece.

Can I just tell you, I have no idea why I was fretting so much over this quilt. And I don't think I'm ever going to say that I'm not a quilter ever again. The peace and tranquility that came over me while I put these units together was blissful. My family wasn't too happy as dinner was completely forgotten but I was in "the Zone"!

It helps having the best sewing machine ever! She and I will never part! I love my P-faff as I lovingly refer to her. I replaced my open stitch plate with a closed, put my 1/4" foot on and engaged the IDT. A little Bravo on TV and I was good to go.

Sew a set of strips and turn in my chair to the pressing board to iron them flat and back to sew the next strip. I took them in sets of 18 and that was perfect to keep me alert and interested in what I was doing.

Here is my beautiful rainbow of scary triangles and 1" strips. Isn't it pretty? I was going to show you a picture of the finsihed quilt but it's one of those computer generated deals and I thought it would be fun for you to see the progression!

In Pat Bravo's directions, she suggests getting a 6.5" square ruler to do your trimming. I wish I had one and I probably will head out this weekend to get one but my regular 6" wide ruler is proving to be just fine. I need to pay a little more attention to the lines than I would with the square ruler but it's cool. I can manage for now.

So this is Unit 1 (and flipped upside down is unit 4) for my Combo #1 block. There are two combinations of blocks that when pieced together make a gorgeous, sparkling beauty!

When finished, this quilt is 80" x 80". The kit includes over 10 yards of fabric for the top and binding. Another 5 1/2 yards is suggested for a backing. The kit retails for $99.75 and comes in two different colorways: Fruity Sherbert and Creamy Gelato which is the one I decided to do. For the first week of October, I am offering free shipping within the United States too! I'm so excited to be working on this quilt and sewing is no longer a "HAVE to". I'm finding my happiness in sewing again. If only cleaning the garage made me this happy....I might be able to pull my car in!


Leslie said...

Triangles scare me too, but I'm trying to convince myself to just do it. How bad can it be?

And how cute did your block turn out?!! Love it!

A Joyful Soul Fabrics said...

EXACTLY! How bad could it be? I'm telling you, it really wasn't as bad as I was making it out to be. Just try it! (The closed plate really helps if you have one!)

Robin said...

OMG, it's gonna be so cute in my house!!!! Thanks! ;)