Distractions & A Bargello Quilt Along Plan

Wednesday night, after coming home from a dinner with the hubs, I went into my sewing room and looked at The Butterfly Quilt on my sewing machine waiting for some more quilting to be done on it. I seriously am considering naming the quilt “That F*@$#ing Butterfly Quilt” because of the anxiety I develop before sitting down to quilt a section.  What was I thinking when I decided to do free motion feathers inside of the panels? Argh! Add to my frustration my other great decision to do microstippling where my feathers didn’t fit.  This quilt is gonna take a while to finish.  I need to re-think my desire to do a Wholecloth quilt.

Here are some recent feather additions:

I stare at a section for about five minutes now before deciding how I want to quilt it out. Tuesday night I grabbed my water soluable pen and drew a stem so I could follow a curve and it turned out sort of okay, a few wonky feathers in there but you can’t really tell unless you look closely.  I’m not entering this quilt into a show for judging.  I might display it at the quilt show next year though.

I am getting better at doing the feathers at various angles without having to rotate the quilt under the needle.  Before I could only quilt the feathers going UP and have them look okay – I’m getting better at doing them from the left and right.  Still can’t do them coming towards me (down) but maybe by the end of this I’ll have mastered that too.

I shoved that quilt out of the way and opened up my Christmas fabric drawer to put more fabric inside of it.  Then I decided it was time to organize it so that is what I started doing.  Lots of fabric going on mini-bolts now!  I have a decent start to a Christmas fabric stash!

All wrapped onto minibolts and the scraps have been put into a hatbox!
Wrapping up my fabric onto minibolts is so rewarding.  I do need to get some more t-pins though. And cotton clothesline.
Bargello Quilt Along
On the MSQC Forums I posed the question “What quilt pattern have you always admired but never attempted to try because you thought it to be too difficult?” Bargello came up over and over and I thought that sort of odd since you’re piecing strips of fabric together! I’ve never done one myself, it has always been on the “to-do” list of the future, especially after finding Bonnie Hunter’s Scrappy Bargello pattern.  I’ve been saving 2.5″ strips of fabric specifically for her gigantic bargello quilt.
So in January of 2012 I’m going to host a Bargello Quilt Along on my blog to do a set of bargello placemats.  I’m designing them now (Excel can be fun for quilting!) and will begin sewing up a test sample this weekend to make sure my fabric calculations are on spot.  I do hope you will join me!  More photos and icons to come.


  1. I have been afraid to do a Bargello quilt. I have also been saving 2.5" strips. I plan on joining you! Placemats seem very doable. Thanks for hosting the QA.

  2. I would love to know more about how you use Excel to design quilts. Maybe you can post a tutorial for that?????

  3. Your feathers are looking fine, though! Yes, it makes it take a lot longer, but I bet you will like the result.

  4. Hmmm I have always considered doing a Bargello – I even have a couple of patterns / books for it. So, if you would not mind a "not new at all" quilter joining in with you. I shall try to fit the Quilt-Along into my schedule. It might give me impetus to do it I think.

  5. Hmmmm. Katie – I can't help but notice that the Scrappy Bargello was a low priority item on your last post.

    By the way, despite how frustrated you are, the feathers look fantastic!

  6. Yep you got me Colleen! I don't think a set of placemats will be as time consuming as a large quilt though and I wanna practice my technique anyway 🙂

  7. I think your feathers look fantastic. I've never worked up the nerve to try doing them. Go easy on yourself…. You're doing great.