Tuesday, March 24, 2015

How Shall I Quilt This?

Every quilt is unique. Colors, design, size, they all come out differently. And as every quilt is unlike any other, each quiltmaker has their own likes, dislikes and favorite themes.

Some clients bring us quilts to quilt with a definite idea of how they wish it finished. Thread color and design have been decided upon before we ever see it. Often we receive a top with the direction to quilt it as we wish. That's almost always fun. I am happy to comply with either request.

I do get a little anxious, though, when someone with whom I'm discussing designs states: "You're the expert!". I feel an obligation to explain that Tom and I've been in this business for barely more than a year. I am not an expert. Between the two of us, we have quilted perhaps sixty to eighty quilts, anywhere from an intricately pieced 25" square to several king-size spreads, more than ten feet square.

Now here is my own conundrum. I have been working on a labor-intensive quilt since November, the pattern/technique from a wonderful book called One-Block Wonders (Maxine Rosenthal). I've been thinking about how to quilt it for a few months. Now I am very close to finishing the top. No particular quilting pattern seemed to "speak to me". It's difficult to describe the top, so I'll just have to show you. I haven't gotten a photo of it neatly pressed, but I think you will get the idea from it casually thrown out on a table to see after getting the borders sewn on.
Now, as to how I should quilt it, I'd come up with a few thoughts, but nothing that really grabbed me.
Today as I sewed with several friends, one of them brought out the quilt I'd quilted for her recently, and we all admired her (nearly finished) project with its binding attached. I'd quilted it with twisted ribbons, a fun pattern with swoops and loops that looks like ribbon twisting back and forth. 

Suddenly I knew how I'd quilt my project. On the suggestion of one of my other quilt pals, I will emphasize a few of the stand-out hexagon blocks with their own quilting pattern. But when I've chosen and quilted those, the rest will be finished in twisted ribbon! (Thank you Glorieta and thank you Cathie.) I am still unsure about thread color though -- am thinking I will quilt this in different colors at different sections, keeping the thread as little prominent as I can.

However, if you, dear reader, have other thoughts, please let me know. I'm always open to suggestion. After all, I am no expert!