The Free Motion Quilting Project: The Half Way Point

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Half Way Point

Today is What's Leah Working on Wednesday so let's step into the studio and check out what's going on.

This weekend after a furious 3 days of hand stitching, I completed the Beginner Filler Quilt!

free motion quilting | Leah DayI'm really pleased with how well this quilt turned out. It's very dark because I have to use black fabrics in order to get a good contrast on video, but I used navy blue binding to bring some color and I really like the way it finished.

Yesterday this quilt was professionally photographed for the cover of the DVD so that means all I have to do is put everything together and the DVD will be complete!

I really think getting professional photos of all the quilts you make is very important. I used to think this would be horribly expensive, but it's actually not.

I found a photographer in town that will shoot 5 photos for $25, which is a bargain! Most photographers already have rooms set up for head shots and family photos that work perfectly for shooting artwork. All you have to do is pin your quilt to the black backdrop and make sure the colors come out true.

So for the rest of the day I'll be taking my new photos and turning them into the cover and then burning the master DVDs.

Hopefully I'll have time at the end of the day to get back upstairs and work some more on Shadow Self. She's back off the shelf and yesterday I muscled through 2 green rays.

This one had Cucumber Vine in the center of each pebbled section.

free motion quilting | Leah DayAnd this one has Bleeding Hearts:

free motion quilting | Leah DayAt this stage, the quilting is more than halfway done and I'm still madly in love with her.

I want to quilt on her 24/7! I want to turn off my computer, lock the door, turn up the music and quilt for the next 14 days without stopping. Of course, it's not possible to do that, but it's fun to fantasize about it!

I find it really interesting that this quilt is halfway finished right now.

Today actually marks the halfway point of 2010. There are 12 months in the year and we are on the very last day of the 6th month, so I call that halfway!

I like to look back around every 2 months and check back in with my resolutions and goals that I set for the beginning of the year.

I especially like to check in at this at the end of June because the year is halfway over. With only 6 months to go, are you on track for the goals you set back in January?

I've thought about that question a lot today. Back at the end of December I wrote this post summing up all of 2009 and set intentions for 2010.

Reading through it today was interesting, both for what has and what hasn't happened in the last 6 months.

One of my intentions was to start getting up in front of people, teaching, and lecturing. I used to think I was afraid of doing this, but after 6 months, it's no problem at all. In fact, I LOVE it!

Another intention was to be better to myself: do more yoga, get more sleep, eat healthier.

I've gotta be honest that this intention has totally flown out of the window! I haven't been to yoga in 3 months. It's the one part of my life that just feels like it's "too much" and I can't seem to make time for it right now.

I do eat fairly well and I have definitely started to deal with stress and my work-a-holic, type A personality a bit better.

But I've also had to deal with somethings I didn't expect. My parents splitting up and my mother's subsequent negative behavior has caused a rift in our relationship.

I've also changed more by creating Shadow Self than I ever though possible. The last two months have been very tectonic: huge shifts in emotional understanding and feeling. With this quilt I have taken a huge internal problem and literally "quilted it out" of my body and mind.

free motion quilting | Leah DayBut I've also dealt with one of my biggest quilt failures. My Cup Runneth Over is still hanging on my wall, half quilted, and will probably never be finished.

free motion quilting | Leah DayDon't get me wrong, I think this is a GOOD thing. My Cup Runneth Over was about feeling the abundance, of appreciating and accepting all the love within my life.

I realize now that where I am now, at my maturity level, with the issues and hangups and baggage I'm still working through, it was impossible to create this quilt.

That's not to say that she will never be made, but I've finally accepted the fact that she can't be made right now.

Instead I needed to take a trip to the darker side (kinda sounds like another Star Wars sequel), to deal with all my "stuff" first.

Shadow Self was the first step down that path. My next major quilt will be titled Sinkhole, and it will be even darker, this time dealing with the major issues of my family: alcoholism, abuse, dysfunction, and depression.

While it's not usual to deal with these types of issues so publicly, I feel the need to be open and honest, so that through writing as well as quilting, I can find a place of healing.

One day I will return to My Cup Runneth Over and to another quilt that's been designed for 2 years now titled Emergence, but in order to emerge I really have to get out of the dark first.

So that's it for this Half Way Point. Here's to another terrific 6 months of 2010!

Let's go Quilt!

Leah Day


  1. We are here for you, as we are here for each other every day. Your work is beautiful. I do so admire both your quilting and you as yourself!


  2. Hey Leah,

    I've found your blog yesterday, I got myself a shiny new free motion foot and wanted to start quilting straight away lol! I was unpleasantly surprised how difficult this is! I'm practicing now with your tips and video's. Thank you so much for sharing :-)
    Browsing through your blog looking at your quilts I'm even more in awe with you. I love how you are brave enough to take inspiration from the darker sides in life and turn this into lovely quilts. I saw the tree quilt, the one that's split {can't remember what it's called now}. I felt similar after giving birth to my son and seeing your quilt gave me such a boost. I can't put it in words very well, but you gave me a visual, an image, something tangible to go with that feeling of being 'split'.
    Well this comment turned out much longer than I intended!
    I'm following your blog and intend to practice more on my free motion quilting :-)


  3. Good Morning Leah,
    I've been with you all year and I admire your creativity with designs. I have learned so much from you and just wanted to say that you keep me inspired to try new things. You have been a blessing to me. Keep up the wonderful inspirations.


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