Sunday, January 11, 2015

First Finish(es)

Today I am excited to share my first finish(es) of the year. I didn't sew as much last year as I would have liked so it's nice to have something to show already. These table runners are a class project from an Edyta Sitar (Laundry Basket Quilts) class I took on Craftsy. If you has asked me six months ago if I'd ever have a batik in my stash I would probably have said something like "never". I was at a retreat last fall, however, when I saw some of the Laundry Basket batiks in person and I thought the colours were just gorgeous. I kept thinking about them for awhile and ended up ordering some during all those wonderful Black Friday sales. During my glorious, wonderful Christmas break (I work at a college so sew were closed) I decided it was time to try a project with them.
Although I don't make resolutions, one thing I am determined to work on this year is my own style. I love blogs and other social media for all the inspiration they provide and I would say I have spent the last five years evolving my stash and my projects as a more modern style quilter. Recently, though, I find myself really "over" labels. That is another post for another day but my point is I find I quite enjoy mixing modern and traditional. I like making very traditional blocks out of modern prints. I'm not sure where batiks fit in (I can't believe they actually fit into my sewing at all!) but these runners explore that a little more. The letters are all made using batik fabrics (you have to admit those colours are beautiful) and the backgrounds are made with modern prints - in this case, Basic Grey for one...

...and Tula Pink for the other.

I ended up using batik for the binding on each because it helped me to nicely use up the 1/2 yard pieces I had started with. One runner is backed with the same Tula print and the other is a Cotton + Steel print that goes really nicely.
Small projects like this are a great way to practice free motion quilting on my machine. For the runner where I used the geometric Tula print as background I decided a curvy stipple would be a nice contrast:

On the other (which is the one backed with the C+S print shown above) I decided to try out a woodgrain quilting design, which I learned in a different Craftsy class taught by Elizabeth Dackson (Don't Call Me Betsy).
These runners are for my daughters, who both happened to have purchased homes with their hubbies in the last half year or so - they are looking for things to decorate their houses with and as practically still newlyweds I figured these runners would be nice for Valentine's Day - hope they like them!

I'll be adding batiks to more projects going forward, I think. I look forward to seeing where my explorations take me this year.


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