TGIFF – Twinkle & The Last Two Weeks
Oh shazam. What a two weeks that was! When I left you, I shared that I was suffering from Glandular Fever (aka mono), and I had taken a visit to the emergency room. Sexy Dr. James insisted I spend the next few weeks resting into recovery. Well that lasted about three days. As I started to feel like I could actually get off the couch, I needed something to occupy my hands and brain. As I’m usually going non-stop, standing still for any length of time feels like cruel and unusual punishment. (I’m the guy that thinks sleep is a waste of time). I do realise that stillness was exactly what I needed to get better, and I promise I spent plenty of time doing just that. This quilt was definitely created one stitch at a time!
Starting off, I didn’t have any plans. I just needed to do something. The easiest thing for me to do was rifle through my stash. As I was looking through my fabrics, I noticed that some of them were starting to show signs of discolouration on the fold lines. GASP! Now, I keep my fabrics in semi-opaque plastic tubs, but sometimes I do leave the lids off of them. So whatever the reason, I knew I needed to start using some of them faster than I had been.
I grabbed most of the aqua / teal selection and started cutting them up into 5″ charm squares, avoiding any of the discoloured fold lines. I used a stashed half yard of Art Gallery’s Lace Elements in gold for the stars, and just went for it. It really got me thinking about why am I saving fabric? If I’m not gonna use it, I need to lose it! I’m not really a fabric hoarder, (my stash is comparatively small), but if I’ve had fabric long enough for it to get sun damage … Well, it’s time.
I pieced the back from Sarah Jane’s Wee Wander, Art Gallery Living Elements, and mostly Art Gallery Pure Elements. There’s a couple of pieces of Kona Peacock in there too. Looking back, I actually think it was the Wee Wander that inspired the colour way of this quilt–funny that it didn’t even make it into the front! I also started gaining some more clarity about the fabrics I love, and want to work with. More on that another time.
Since I didn’t really plan ahead for this quilt, I was one yellow charm square short. No probs! I just glue basted some scraps together, and bam, charm square acquired! If you haven’t glue basted before, grab the kiddos Elmer’s and give it a go. You can see the seam, but how perfectly does that pattern line up? Totally worth it. For the quilting, I first created an echo line around each star. I then added plus-shaped tacking at some of the charm square intersections. I don’t know if that type of quilting is a real thing, but it was easy, quick, and left the quilt with a really loose drape.
I have a small, well, okay, big confession to make. I haven’t been labelling my quilts. I know. I’ve yet to find a labelling style that really suits me. I don’t like the look of hand written labels, but woven labels don’t have all the customisable information I want to include. I don’t have a printer, and my sewing machine doesn’t do embroidery. I still include my GFB (glitter flecked binding) on all my quilts, but I do feel like that’s not enough. However, that yellow binding is working it out for me!
This quilt is not rocket science. It has no hidden agenda. It is certainly not gonna save the world. But it did save me! This one unassuming little project offered tons of reflection, and has allowed me to see some aesthetics I should be exploring, and those I should leave behind. That’s certainly good enough. It also gave me time to reflect on the role of social media in my life. I’ll be sharing a blog post about that tomorrow, and while a bit more serious, writing it was extremely cathartic.
So two weeks, huh? During the creation of this quilt I’ve been back to my GP half a dozen times as they continued to monitor my liver function tests which were extremely high. Mr. Sparkles has been taking extremely good care of me though. He’s been pumping all sorts of vitamins into me, feeding me clean foods, and making fresh juices from beets, apples, celery, ginger, and all other good things for your liver. As per Thursday’s blood work, my liver is nearly back to normal. Don’t pop the bottles just yet–I said nearly–but things are heading in the right direction. Oh and you know, I am itching to tell my liver exactly what I think of its behaviour by throwing a dirty martini in its face!
Thank you all for your sparkling support.
Size: 50″ x 50″
Pattern: Patchwork charms and stars
Fabric: My teal stash, and Lace Elements from Art Gallery
Quilting: Echoing the stars and additional tacking with Gutterman 50wt, colour 6745 teal
Binding: machine stitched with Aurifil 50wt, colour 2024 white on top and the Gutterman on bottom
Backing: Pieced backing of Sarah Jane’s Wee Wander, Art Gallery Pure Elements and Living Elements
Favourite Part: Yellow binding. Because yes.