The last couple of times I have sat down to quilt, my machine has acted like a bad little girlie. So after following Leah Day’s advise, I went one by one through the list of possible problems. She came back to life and stitched a picture perfect stitch when I finished the list and sewed on regular two fold cotton fabric and used the straight stitch foot that I always use. Anyway, I am back in business and the darn thread keeps coming off the first hook. My conclusion was that the spool is getting lighter weight because of the amount of thread I have used, so like any good hill billy quilter who uses a straw to keep the thread from bouncing off the spindle, I decided to add some weight with a couple or three extra safety pins in my straw. Perfect solution!!! Works like a charm.
Now I know that Leah’s UFO on Sundays is all about finishing projects. I think I may hold a record for actually taking the longest time ever to quilt a single quilt, but I am still moving on at the rapid pace of a snail on Lovely Lou. So since this is my UFO, I am going to link up with her today. I have been pebbling after watching and learning from Leah’s tutorials on various pebbling styles as well as considering the input from other bloggers who took the time to comment, and I cannot even begin to describe how much I have enjoyed this filler for this particular quilt. If you have followed any of my other posts you will know that this quilt is for my breathtakingly beautiful daughter, Amanda. As you may or may not know I decided to learn Free Motion Quilting with the help of Leah Day and other bloggers on this quilt, which is almost the size of Rhode Island—a king bedspread that will reach the floor and have plenty to tuck and cover the pillows.
Being the individual that I am, I like for there to be meaning in whatever I am doing. It’s kind of like when I see a person all tatted up, if they can explain to me why they chose the particular images that they have tattooed upon their bodies, I seem to be much more accepting and can appreciate the art value a bit more. If they just chose a random image, then I think they screwed up. It just has to have a personal meaning! Well, in that same way of thinking, I would like to have purpose for the stitches that I put into a quilt. These pebbles have a significance in our lives in that we have always collected rocks (or pebbles) from every where we have visited. My husband has a great eye for finding rocks and arrowheads and other cool items because he is always looking down when he walks. I, on the other hand, have a few scars to prove that I am usually looking up when I walk. Amanda walked many miles with her daddy as a little girl, picking up rocks and learning about nature. Anyway in my view, the pebbles in this quilt put a bit of her daddy in here and represent the love between my husband and our daughter in some odd fashion. And that makes them particularly fun for me to quilt.
Below you will see that I started in the center of the quilt and failed to follow Leah’s sage advise by making small pebbles, but as I went along I adjusted the scale which resulted in better looking stitches. The block on the left with the tailor’s tack is the center of the quilt and the pebbled blocks are 2” squares. Staying true to my word, I am not ripping out stiches unless I absolutely have to. That way at the end of the project, Amanda and I can sit and laugh at my first attempts and then appreciate my more developed skills. Regardless, she will love the quilt and so will I.