Not too long ago, Rita of Red Pepper Quilts, referred to Jane Brocket’s, The Gentle Art of Quiltmaking , in one of her posts and, as I was on a putting-things-on-hold-at-the-library kick, I added it to my queue.
When I received it last week, I quickly flipped through admiring the bold, color-rich, floral explosion of Jane’s quilts and then got down to reading. I love the way this book is set up with a story behind each quilt. Jane finds her inspiration in her garden, in beautiful dresses, in hammocks and beach huts, and then makes these wonderfully simple yet intensely colored quilts. If you want to quilt, but are afraid it’s too difficult or that you have to be too precise, read this book. Jane’s keep it simple, keep it fun approach to quilting is very refreshing if you spend most of your time drooling over intricately pieced, delicately stitched quilts.
While I can admit, I hope with no offense to Jane, that I prefer fewer floral prints and more negative space in my quilts, I was quite inspired by her hand-quilting technique. She keeps it so simple by quilting with colorful thread in 2-3 mm stitches instead of fussing over the more accepted tiny pin-prick stitches of more traditional hand-quilting. She actually made me want to try it. And on top of that, she usually just does linear quilting, pretty much in the same way I’ve done my machine quilting in the past. So guess what, for better or worse, I’m going to try it on my Modern Meadow quilt. I was a bit nervous at first since I have in mind that I want to post this one on Etsy and I’m not sure whether hand-quilting will make it more or less desirable. I’d appreciate your input. But really, it can’t hurt too much to try, right? I need to be willing to push myself into new territories if I want to grow and learn. So I’m going with two different colors (the obvious pink and green) and am going to get right to work. Anyways, after a few rows of quilting, I love the way the stitching pops and it makes it look even more cute and summery than before. My stitches aren't perfect yet, but for a first attempt, I think it's turning out beautifully. I'm so excited to see it all finished!