Wednesday, February 23, 2011

One Step Forward, Three Steps Back

I know, you're probably saying, "Where's the baby quilt you promised us?" Well, the problem is that when you're learning a new art, especially one as complicated and precise as quilting, you're bound to make some big (read "stupid") mistakes. Shucks! I thought that after three quilts I'd reach perfection. Okay, maybe not, but close. I'm not a patient person. Here's the story...

Last week I was flying through this quilt. On Saturday as you know, I pinned away on my kitchen floor and started a bit of quilting. I was excited to be quilting again. My stitches are coming along, thanks to Rita over at Red Pepper Quilts (which is one of my favorite quilting blogs, just amazing!) who mentioned that she uses a stitch length of 4.0 instead of the 1.6 I was using. What a huge difference in stitch quality. My lines are getting straighter. Things were really looking great...that is, until I turned the quilt over and I saw this....

Oh, the horror!

I admit, not happily, that if it weren't for my lovely husband, this quilt would probably have stayed that way. I intend to sell this quilt on Etsy (and after this post, "try to sell" might be more accurate) but instead of thinking about fixing the problem, I instantly started thinking, "Okay, well would someone pay forty dollars for this quilt? Thirty?"

Enter Mr. Side Stitches noticing my gloomy disposition. He didn't let me get away so easily and simply said that if I plan to sell it, I should aim for perfection.

Enter Mrs. Seam Ripper. She's lovely and pink and we spent a lot of time together this week.

I ripped many seams, unsafetied many pins, scrapped my horribly pieced back panel and began cutting again, very straight this time. I'm not done yet, so I don't want to ruin the big reveal, but my new back puts the old back to shame. No yikes moments.

I would just like to say though, that while going through this slightly annoying process, I'm also thankful that somehow the Lord led me to quilting. It challenges me in some very good ways.

1.) Quilting requires patience. I get impatient when my husband uses the sink to wash his face when it's clearly the next step in my nightly routine.
2.) Quilting requires precision. I'm the classic B student; as little effort as possible for an acceptable outcome.
3.) Quilting requires practice. What, I'm still not as good as Rita after three quilts?! I quit!
4.) Quilting requires perseverance. See Quilting requires practice.

I rejoice because even though quilting has been a challenge and is at times tedious, I still really love it.  I look forward to sitting at my sewing machine for hours at a time and sewing lots of fairly straight lines. And like all good artists, I'm even learning to enjoy the painful editing process.

1 comment:

  1. God is so good to show us the less-desirable parts of ourselves through activities that are challenging, but enjoyable. I feel the exact same about jiu-jitsu. I keep wondering when someone's going to start handing out my black belt and trophy. Thanks for being so transparent and I would buy your mess-up quilt without a moment's hesitation.