Over the past few years I've shared several rows that I have created using patterns acquired as part of the annual Row by Row experience. I do need to confess that, even with the rows that I have managed to complete, I probably have at least that many more unfinished ones in the designated drawer in my craft closet. That being said, I have been working hard not to acquire new projects, but to focus on completing the ones I have.
For me, the week between Christmas and New Year's Day is a time where I give myself permission to set work aside and to enjoy some devoted days in the sewing room. During this year's break, I decided to pull out a couple of rows that I had collected and to get them completed. These rows happened to be from the same shop, Davidene's Quilt Shop, in Park City, Utah. One was from 2016 and one was from 2017. If you happen to be in the Park City area, Davidene's is a great little shop and well worth your time to visit.
Both of these rows feature moose and involve machine appliqué. Although I do like the moose, I do have to confess that the prep work for machine appliqué is not exactly my favorite. I have to really want to do a given project to put myself through the tracing, fusing, cutting, and more fusing - especially when rather small pieces are involved. Once the pieces are fused in place, however, I enjoy stitching them down and watching the appliqué scene come together.
For the most part, I use a blanket stitch for my machine appliqué work. My machine is a Brother brand, and the blanket stitch is Q-14. Once you have selected the stitch, however, you still have to decide how wide and how long you want your stitches to be. Over the years, I've come to prefer a 2.5 mm width and length for my appliqué designs. If I am working on a very small piece, I will go as narrow as a 2.0 mm width. Otherwise, I find that the stitch really isn't wide enough to adequately tack down the fabric.
Here are a couple of close-ups of some of the detail on the "Home Sweet Home" row. The row features a printed cloud background. Here are the house and the birdhouse before I added the lace curtains and trim to the roof. One of the things I like about this shop's row designs are the added embellishments.
Here are the three mini-quilts before they were hung on the clothesline. I added some batting and machine quilting to give them a little extra interest.
I do hope that you have had a good start to your 2018. For me, this has been a month of some new and unexpected opportunities - some more challenging than others. It's also been a bit of a season of finding myself experiencing a lack of clarity in some of my projects while also having unanticipated opportunities for future projects. In the midst of these issues, I've found myself needing to slow down, be still, and reflect on some of the simple truths from God's word. The verses that have come to mind and are guiding me through this season are ones that, perhaps, are familiar to you as well. Whatever pathway you may find yourself traveling at this time, keep your focus on God, and allow Him to guide your path.
Trust in the LORD with all of your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all of your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.