When All Else Fails - Start Over

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Last month, I discovered a new account on Instagram called Curated Quilts. According to their website, "Curated Quilts is a printed quarterly journal that will curate a gallery of quilts, share current trends, impart interviews with artists and lend inspiration through techniques and patterns in quilting." They put a call out for mini quilts to feature in their premier issue "LINEAR." I wanted to be a part of it!

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts


To be considered, the mini quilts needed to be 10-16" square, use a specific color palette, and be inspired by a series of architectural photos on their Pinterest board.

Inspiration for Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

I really wanted to use solids for my mini quilt. However, I couldn't find the specific colors needed locally. I did the best I could, but had to mix brands of solids to do it. Even then, the way colors appear on a computer or phone is very different than they are in real life! Is that dark pink or coral? Is that dark color black or navy?

Color palette for Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

One photo on the Pinterest board immediately stood out to me. As soon as I saw it, I could picture the quilt I wanted to make!

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

I used my EQ7 software to draw up a plan. I wanted to aim for a 12" finished mini quilt. I drew 1/4" lines and printed paper piecing templates to get started.

EQ7 design of Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

Even though the design appeared simple, the paper piecing took much longer than I expected!

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

Once I started sewing the strips together, I discovered that I forgot to print the paper piecing templates as a mirror image. So the quilt was "backwards" to what I had planned. Strike one.

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

I decided to press forward. I had already invested much time into the quilt and didn't want to do that all over again! However, after sewing all the 1/4" strips together, they were very wonky. The small strips made it too difficult to rip and re-sew. Strike two.

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

Still not wanting to start over and "throw away" all the time I had invested in the quilt so far, I tried to brainstorm a solution. I used the drawing tool on my phone to draw on top of a photo of the quilt so I could get a visual of what different changes would look like. My best idea was to cut the bottom half of the quilt off and make it a solid navy. However, after drawing it out, it completely changed the feel of the design. Strike three.

When all else fails, start over.

Honestly, it was quite hard for me to accept that I had to "throw away" the hours of time I had put into the previous version. It would have been easier to "throw away" real money! Proves that my sewing time is still very precious to me!

I drew a new design in EQ7 using 1/2" strips instead of the 1/4" strips of version 1. Version 2 still had the same design feel, but would be easier to piece. And I made sure to print the paper piecing templates the right way!

EQ7 design for second version of Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

This time, the pieces came together much better!

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated QuiltsLinear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

Once the top was finished, I pin basted with my go-to Fairfield 80/20 cotton batting. I used the solid navy for the back as well. I quilted the mini using my walking foot on my Juki TL-2010Q. I stitched using navy thread just a smidge inside the ditch on both sides of the navy strips.

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

I trimmed the quilt to be 11 3/4" square, then used the navy solid fabric to machine bind the quilt.

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

In the end, I'm very happy with my decision to start over! I think the finished quilt is exactly the quilt I had originally envisioned when seeing the inspiration photo.

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

The mini quilt is due May 1st - nothing like the last minute! Now I will wait to see if my quilt is My quilt WAS chosen to be one of the quilts in the first issue of Curated Quilts! Be sure to follow me on Facebook or Instagram so you will know!

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts


This is my 16th quilt finish for the year! Only one more to hit my 17 quilts in 2017 goal!

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

As you may know, I started my blog as a way to record the story behind each quilt that I make. At the end of each year, I have my blog printed as a book so that I have a physical quilt journal that will be around for generations. For the purpose of that effort, I am adding what was happening in real life while making this quilt.

Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts
Linear mini quilt for Curated Quilts

We have received 15" of rain in the past two days and 6" in the 14 days before that. We live on a hill, so we did not have any issues. Our driveway and road to get to town washed out some, but is still passable. However, others have not been so lucky. Many local roads have washed out completely, and many homes and businesses have extreme flood damage. We had power the whole time, so it was actually a great time to sew! Sewing kept me (and my mind) busy during the rains and while we were stuck at home and couldn't leave for a few days!

A nearby dirt road (photo by Erica Rogers)
A nearby highway (photo by Greg Donley)
Highway where a bridge used to be! The bridge is now downstream! (photo by Ozark County Times)
A nearby dirt road. That's the road! (photos by Jennifer Harrison)
This is our road to town! Yes, a road! (photo by Julie Berry)



Linking up with Let's Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts,Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation, Thank Goodness It's Finished Friday at Devoted Quilter, Can I Get a Whoop Whoop? at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Finished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts, and Finish It Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.

18 comments:

  1. And persistence pays off! I can definitely see the inspiration photo in your mini quilt, and it looks wonderful. Congrats for working through the issues! I'm happy you were still able to sew while receiving all that rain and didn't have any flooding or power loss. :)

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  2. Love how you kept at it and it turned out just as you imagined in the end. That rain looks unbelievable.

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  3. Your vision was worth pursuing. This mini is a perfect interpretation of that photo! It was very interesting reading about the process of getting there. Fifteen inches of rain! Incredible!

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  4. Your quilt is amazing! I love the little pop of color. As much as it sucks to start over after so much work, your second one really does look much better. I'm glad you stuck with it to get a result you're truly happy with.

    The rain you've been having is crazy! Stay safe!!

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  5. It can be so hard to know when to start over, and the finished mini is worth it. Wow, that is a lot of rain for such a short period of time. I am glad you are Ok and your power stayed on.

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  6. Fantastic your quilt Thanks for the pictures so I can follow the proces of making this fantastic quilt

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  7. Beautiful quilt. I love it!

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  8. Glad you kept at it. Your finished quilt is perfect.

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  9. I love the quilt, it looks great! I wonder if you could cut the first version up and rearrange it somehow to make a new design...

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  10. I totally empathize both with the desire not to start over and the relief when starting over is just what is needed. Lovely interpretation of the photo.

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  11. I give you kudos for sticking with it. It's hard to toss an idea and start over. Sometimes it comes together, sometimes not so much! I love you final piece and you should be very proud of that one!

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  12. I love this mini, Laura! I would have resisted starting over too, but the new version looks like it was worth it :) That flooding is unreal. Water can be so damaging sometimes.

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  13. I think your mini turned out wonderfully. I know it is hard to give up and start over, but it looks like it was the right decision to make.

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  14. What a fabulous design! I think you could save the first version, it may not be what you wanted for your entry, but it is still lovely. It is a little warbley, but I kind of like it that way, it looks more like reflection of sunlight on water through the slats of a wooden dock. This design would be wonderful as a full size quilt too!

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  15. Thank you for the head's up on the IG account, I've joined up.
    Popped by from FIUF.

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  16. Gorgeous mini quilt! I admire that you stuck with it and got it finished. I probably would have pooped out in the middle.

    I hope the flooding subsides soon!

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  17. Beautiful mini quilt, and I love your inspiration, well done for persevering and starting again, it really paid off. I also love that you make your year's blogs into a book, what a great idea for a memory keepsake. :)

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  18. Love your little quilt! Miniatures are so adorable, but people don't always realize the work that goes into them. So glad that you persevered!

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