The Free Motion Quilting Project: Secret Project in Design

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Secret Project in Design

It's Wednesday and time to check in with what is really going on in my sewing room! Today I'm pulling fabrics and making a mess as I plan out a new project:

free motion quilting | Leah Day
Don't you just LOVE jumbo rick rack?! So cheerful!
What is this? Sorry, but I can't tell! This is a new secret project I'll be working on for the next few months. Luckily I can shoot and share photos and keep you up to date with the progress, but I can't tell you what it's for until later!

What you see in the photo is actually not going to be a quilt at all. It's a maquette to test fabric colors. I learned this technique from the Craftsy class Designing Modern Quilts with Weeks Ringle. 

Basically you pull fabrics you think will go together, piece them up, hang them on the wall and step back and take a look. I've always pulled fabrics and hung them together on the design wall, but I've never taken the time to cut and piece them together and I have to say it makes a big difference!

What I like about this process is I can also audition thread colors and filler designs and double check that everything looks good together. While I certainly don't consider myself a modern quilter, I really enjoyed learning about Weeks' approach to design and seeing so many of her fabulous quilts.

Upstairs I'm proud of my cleaning and labeling progress over the weekend. The guest bedroom actually has a floor! And I can find what I need easily!

free motion quilting | Leah Day

The one downside is I've finally organized all my fiber (wool, cotton, raw roving) and spun yarn and Houston, we have a problem! I have a ridiculously HUGE stash!

free motion quilting | Leah Day

I really had no idea I was being this productive with spinning. I spin when I want to, either by hand or on my espinner, and I dye wool whenever I feel like it too. Turns out, this kind of free wheeling creative process is a great way to create tons and tons of yarn in a very short amount of time.

This isn't a bad thing, unless you're not making use of the yarn, which I haven't been. Still, it kills the joy of spinning for me to actually force myself to make a plan and only dye and spin what I need for a specific project. I haven't figured out a solution yet, and so far this stash is manageable - at least the bins weren't stacked to the ceiling!

So that is what I'm up to today! Piecing and quilting and probably finding some time for more spinning. I'm really feeling like playing with bright, cheerful colors and shapes so you're likely to see a lot of funky stuff in the next few months!

Let's go quilt,

Leah Day


  1. I have started taking her class but have not gotten past the picking fabrics and sewing them together. Thanks for reminding me to go back to that. I am also taking your quilting class and thoroughly enjoying it. I am a free-motion beginner.

  2. I'll vote for selling or donating the spun yarn. If you're drawn to the process of spinning it but don't feel the urge to use it, then free yourself of the obligation!

  3. I think dlub's idea of donating the yarn is a good one - I'm starting to feel that way about the tubs of scrapbook card/paper/etc etc I have, hastily moved out of the guest bedroom to fit in visitors at the end of July & still stacked in my workroom!


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