Lockdown has been Useful!

I don’t know about you but I’ve been feeling a little bored/frustrated/sad lately. Perhaps the whole lockdown thing is getting to me? It’s Mental Health Awareness Week (18 – 24 May 2020) just when lots of us are starting to go stir crazy. Even my oldest son, who is furloughed like myself, is starting to want to take his brother to work just for the excuse to get out of the house and go for a little drive. 

Hares Wall Hanging, Helen Kent.

They say a good thing to do when faced with this mental lethargy is to look at what you have achieved so this is what I’m going to show you. I’ve finished a wall hanging which had been lying around in my sewing room for quite some time. Started at a workshop with Dawn Cameron-Dick at Midsomer Quilting, it is a reverse appliqué wall hanging with three hares leaping across the fabric. I fell in love with the pattern when I saw the workshop advertised and immediately booked on, along with my mum and aunt who both also quilt. (Any excuse for a day trip!) The quilt was a simple design for which I chose an Ombré fabric sprinkled with stars. We could position the hares in any formation that we wished and I went for three leaping across the sky using a dark batik for the under layer. After ‘storing’ for at least a year I decided it was time, during lockdown, to finish the piece. 

When faced with quilting I sometimes find it hard to decide what to do. Inspiration needs to strike and so it is not unusual for me to have a quilt awaiting completion. One night I was drifting in and out of sleep thinking of the quilt when I suddenly had that spark. Feathers, randomly floating around the hares were what I settled on. Free Motion Quilting takes practice. It’s not something that you can suddenly do and a smaller wall hanging, such as this, is perfect to practice on. 

Free Motion Feathers meandering around.

I mentally sectioned the top, filling in the larger areas first and then backfilling with extra feathers and curves. I especially love the way the curled feathers work around in a circle and doing this without drafting was fun. A watchpoint is to work out which way you are going to go so you know where you can stop and which direction to work towards. This helps you not get ‘locked’ in an area without an exit for your needle. I finished this with a contrasting walking foot quilting of lines on the sashing in a silver thread (love a bit of bling), repeating the feathers on the border. I now just need to get it hung on the wall, above the bed. Appropriate, in that sleep was where I found the method to finish it. 

Walking Foot lines in contrast with feathers.

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