Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Patriotic Ponderings

My overarching sewing goal for this year is to work through projects I have started (I know, not the most specific goal, but it is what it is). This goal also includes kits that I have purchased and are still sitting in my sewing cabinet or in a drawer. One of these kits that had been lying around for over a year was the one for this patriotic-themed table topper that will be the topic of this post.
I picked this kit up at the Stitching It Up quilt store in Cedar City, Utah, a couple of years ago. I liked the shades of red, white, and blue that would complement other patriotic pieces that I have completed through the years. The center features a variation on the traditional windmill block. The white side triangles or "points" feature machine appliquéd flags. 
One of the key things I learned from putting this quilt together was a bit of a lesson in humility. Before I started sewing this quilt, I cut all of the pieces per the instructions. Unfortunately, the four center squares finished bigger than anticipated. As a result, all of the other pieces needed to be adjusted. Fortunately, the kit provided enough fabric to accommodate all of the adjustments. If you look closely in some of these pictures, you can see where I created some extra seams to meet the new dimensions. Fortunately, again, when you look at the whole, the individual flaws tend not to stand out.
Here are a few other patriotic creations from around my house. I keep the alpine tree up year round and just change out the garland and decor with the seasons. The stars are ones that I bought a few years back and use to accent the tree.
The pillow is from a pattern by Shepherd's Bush, and I picked up the bear at a gift shop in Philadelphia. My daughter aptly named her "Philadelphia."
In pondering these patriotic pieces and the flaws hidden within them, I am reminded of the need for humility, both individually and corporately as a nation. Although some good quilting can help cover some flaws in the pieced work, the flaws are still there. Likewise, our best efforts to conceal our flaws can not remove their existence. As the psalmist reminds us:
He [God] rules by His might forever;
His eyes keep watch on the nations;
Let not the rebellious exalt themselves. Psalm 66:7
The psalmist also reminds us of God's faithfulness to those people and nations who will seek Him:
Let the peoples praise Thee, O God; 
Let all the peoples praise Thee.
Let the nations be glad and sing for joy;
For Thou wilt judge the peoples with uprightness,
And guide the nations on the earth. Psalm 67:3-4