Wednesday, July 18, 2012


With both Spiderman and Batman movies out this summer, I'm not surprised that the boys have resurrected their superhero action figures and are saving the world in the backseat every time we get in the car.  Even adults are in on the act, re-igniting that age-old question, "If you could have any superpower in the world, what would it be?" (what would YOURS be, by the way?)

Have you seen this Amy Bradley applique pattern for SUPERQUILTER?  Following the whole "superhero" theme, someone made one of these and entered it in the fair this year!
I want to say, "the ability to heal others with just a touch," but guys, at my core, I am just more selfish than that.  When asked that very question this past weekend, I responded, "to be able to stop time for everyone except for me.  While everyone else is in suspended animation, I could catch up on my sleep without missing anything important or exciting, finish up projects on time, and come up with witty responses to snarky comments that are made to me - you know, the ones where you wake up in the middle of the night and say, 'Man, I should have said THAT!'."

(sigh) Mother Theresa, I am not.  But I was feeling a lot of self-imposed pressure this weekend.  My Pick and Choose quilt had to be turned in to the fair by Monday at noon if it was to hang in the quilt show.  I've had a quilt in the fair every year for the last 8 years, and I wasn't about to miss this one.  It shouldn't have been a problem, I was close to being done, and had all weekend to work on it.  But then, at the last minute, the boys and I were invited to a karate leadership overnight retreat, complete with ropes course participation, and I couldn't NOT let my kids (and myself) participate just because I'm a procrastinator.  So we went, and I worked on the quilt during the 10 minutes of free time after meals and surreptitiously with my Bean N Read light in the cabin after lights out. (GREAT purchase, by the way.  I even quilted at the drive-in last weekend!)  Then, on Sunday night, I pulled an all-nighter trying to get it done, taking one 2-hour nap, and then a 15 minute nap every hour on the hour from 4 AM on. 

I got SO CLOSE to being done, but not quite.  Another hour and a half would have been enough time, but as it turns out, we came home from our retreat to find that one of our hens, Peck, had died, and I had a very sad little boy to console and a chicken funeral to facilitate. (side note: I live in Rockbridge County.  After digging a grave for Peck, I'll say our county is aptly named - there are rocks EVERYWHERE!)  All that took about 2 hours, but I'd rather have a not-quite-done quilt and a kid who had someone to help him deal with his grief over the passing of his favorite hen, than a completed quilt and a bereft boy.

So, I turned in the not-quite-done quilt.  One block, which is actually at about eye level now that the quilt is hanging, is not as quilted as the other 24 blocks, and the 4 corners of the quilt have no quilting in them at all.  The judge will not like it, but let's be honest, I wasn't going to be winning any awards anyway - we have some uber-talented hand quilters in this area, and I just can't compete.  The whole point of entering a quilt is to 1) make sure I finish at least one quilt a year and 2) promote quilting and our guild throughout the area.  So I think I'll post a challenge on Facebook for my local friends - visit my quilt at the quilt show at the fair, pick out which block is not quite done, and I'll give a handmade little something to everyone who gets it right.  There is more to the county fair than the animals and the music and the midway, after all!

Now that my quilt is entered, did I take a break from quilting?  Heck no!  I had an hour at home yesterday between work and the boys' swim meet, so I sandwiched a little doll/baby quilt that I made 7  years ago from left over strips and bonus triangles from a quilt I made for a friend.

I've been wanting to try my hand at BIG STITCH quilting with embroidery floss.  So there I was at the pool for the second week in a row, QUILTING in the 90+ degree heat.  (yup, I'm that crazy quilt lady in town for sure now!)

I think it is harder to keep the stitch sizes even when they are so big, but so far, I am liking this method of quilting, and am already thinking of other quilts I'd like to do it in. 

Do you have photos online of quilts you have quilted using the BIG STITCH method and embroidery floss?  If so, I'd love it if you'd post a link in a comment so I can see and get ideas.

And once I get to spend some daylight hours at home again (not this week - I can't believe how busy we are this week!), I want to finish up blocks for my Let's Bee Together quilt.  I received blocks from 3 more participants recently, and I LOVE how the quilt is coming along!


ColorSlut said...

I find often that I think, "10 more minutes and I'll be done". But, that is never the case. 10 more minutes turns into 30 minutes - which turns into hours!

I love your let's bee together quilt!

Janet said...

Too bad you didn't get the quilt done but your boys are much more important. You are gutsy hanging the quilt in the show unfinished!

Auntie Em said...

You are a woman who has her priorities straight. Kids over quilts anytime.

Love the super quilter!

Shay said...

I’d like the power of invisibility. I’d use it to win hide and seek !

Im so sorry to hear about Peck.
And your quilt too. I still think the quilt looks wonderful Erin and Im cyber clapping you for submitting it. And by the way -you’re a fabulous Mum.

Your big stitch project looks great. I love that look. I haven’t done that myself but its on my list.

Becky said...

Of course, your kids are your top priority....he'll never forget your involvement in his bereavement. I've been meaning to ask you a your Drive-In already equipped with digital? Our local drive-in will have to close at the first of September....the distributors will not send anything other than films on digital after that date. To upgrade to digital and the new screen necessary is around $200,000 and the owners can't afford that. Wish we could find a mysterious millionaire to help us out. Happy Stitching!!

Cheryl Willis said...

so can you enter the quilt again next year as a finish- lol
I don't go to the fair to see the winners, I go to see the eye candy. Yours is going to be a must see beauty!

quiltfool said...

Oh, I held my breath as you told your story. Sorry you didn't get finished. But, I will say this. In 10 years, all you'll remember is that you had a quilt in the show for at least 8 years (and counting) and you held a chicken funeral. You have your priorities very right in my humble opinion. Be well. Lane

joe tulips said...

Poor Peck. I would have held the chicken funeral too. I thought you were going to say in your side-note about the county....that they didn't allow chicken burials. Duh.
I have used this big stitch for quilting, years ago. I don't have any pictures though. I loved it. There is just something about the chunkiness of it. I didn't do anything special with it. Just quilted like regular with straight lines.