Friday, July 25, 2014

Dancing Daisies - A "Keeping It Real" Finish



And now with those notices, let's get to today's post ;)

Yippee, today is the last day to enter the Modern Quilt Guild Micheal Miller challenge and I am posting my entry today :)  Little last minute, but sometimes you just have to roll in under that deadline :)  My entry is called Dancing Daisies and measures 49" x 50".   


When I first got the fabric for this challenge, I knew I wanted to do something with a flower design.  So I played a bit with some sketching and came up with the squared pixelated looking daisy block.  From there I added putting them in a layout that  would look like  they were blowing in a summer breeze.  So, that was my vision, and then I started working on the project.  And now,  this is where I start the story of who this quilt actually went down and totally "keep things real" around here . . . 


Never have I had so many things have to be reconfigured, redone, and just pushed through on a quilt.  There is a reason this little guy is being posted just under the wire.  Because honestly, there were many a time I just wanted to forge about it and move on.  It started with piecing my flowers.   We only had a bit of each fabric, but I wanted to fussy cut the flowers to stand out.  Well this particular fabric and


This particular fabric gave me some issues.  I got the flowers cut out, pieced them together, and couldn't stand the way they looked.  Originally, this top and bottom row were pieced in with straight lines running up and down, and you couldn't tell the difference from the petal and the background.  And the top blocks center row wasn't much better.


So, after going back and forth for a while, I decided that it would always drive me crazy and I was going to need to unpick.   So out of the center of the finished blocks came these pieces.  And then I had to get super creative in making piecing some scraps of what I had left together to make enough to replace to squares (see arrows above) and then back into the block they went.   (I was so wishing my local quilt shop carried this line at this point :)


So then, the blocks were all put together and I went to put them in the layout I had figured and realized and then smacked myself in the head, that I had accidentally trimmed my blocks down 1/2" to small.  Grrr!!!  Out comes the sketch book and a little trimming to all of the background pieces.   



 And so I finally have to top together and I am all kinds of excited to start quilting it because I know just how I want to quilt it.  I get going and the long arm just starts shredding the thread and skipping stitches.  And after a few hours I have some wavy lines, a whole bunch of skipped space because it won't do a swirl for the life of me and I am ready to scream.  (Okay, maybe I did actually scream)


And so, I move on over to the home machine to do the swirl and petal quilting ;)  And man, I can totally say I am a bit rusty on the home machine ;)  It took me a bit to get back into the swing of things, and even when I was feeling comfortable again, I was wishing that the design hadn't already been started because it was on a larger scale because of the trailing tails then I was used to quilting between my two hands ;)  But once you have started one way you gotta finish that way :)


So yup, I bet my quilt is the only one in the entire contest that is half long arm quilted and half domestic machine quilted ;)  Super special!!  I did have fun quilting up the little daisies ;)  I wanted to add to the flower effect so I did little rounded overlapping "petals" on the petals and then pebbling in the center.


I have to say, even with all of the stress of quilting this one, I am so happy with how the quilting turned out.  I really think it added to the effect of the daisies dancing on the breeze ;)  And the one part that didn't give me any trouble, the fun solid scrappy binding, which I think might just be my favorite of the whole quilt!!!


And, just when you think our story is all finished, it has one last surprise.   When I took this quilt out to photograph, I noticed in the beautiful sunlight that a few of my background squares looked a little off.  Now, I love my sewing room, but the lighting is not ideal as it is in the basement and has no windows.  Which meant, I didn't see when cutting that somehow, (see little children) my white solid pile I had been working from had a few extra pieces mixed in that didn't match exactly.  Not enough to see under florescent lighting, but it sticks out just enough in the sunlight ;)  At this point, not much I can do about that but smile through it, I just told myself it was more Modern ;)  



So how about that for a crazy story :)    I hope you enjoyed this segment of "keeping things real" but I hope not to share another one soon.   I understand that sometimes this is the way things roll but I would be happy not to roll through that again any time soon :)  But I am glad to share this story if it helps us all to remember that everyone makes mistakes, everyone has oopsies in their quilt, and sometimes we just have to move on, push through, rework to make it work,  and just try to smile on through  ;)


In the end, I love Dancing Daisies!!!  She was totally worth it :)

Have a Happy Quilting Weekend!!

Linking up this finish to Amanda's, Sarah's and Fort Worth Fabric Studio ;)

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29 comments:

  1. Call it a "happy accident" gives it more texture? Looks great anyway :)

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  2. Wow! This really was a "challenge" quilt, huh? Well, it looks amazing! I actually like the few background pieces that don't quite match. Let's just say you meant to do that! ;)

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  3. LOVE this quilt! and love your story :) The randomness of the daisies makes it fun and I love the quilting on the daisies themselves as well as the wavy quilting in the background!

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  4. Wow- really beautiful quilting!!! Great job.

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  5. Love the quilting on this! Congrrats on finishing too! It was a difficult challenge...I had no idea what to make!

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  6. Wow that was some story and challenge to get it done. I love your vision for it and even with the oops on the background it turned out great.

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  7. So cute and your quilting is amazing!

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  8. Love your quilting Melissa. Gives it so much movement.

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  9. I'm glad you told us about keeping it real, because it makes me feel less of a need to be perfect, which just isn't possible. Love your quilt and the ups and downs that made it the great project that it is. Love the quilting movement....the flowers are just blowing in the wind. Great job!

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  10. Thank you for sharing your keeping it real story. I think it helps us all feel normal. I just finished one of those projects last night -- my hexie tote from Sherri's class at the Small Town Quilt Show. I am sooo extra proud of my finished project, and I hope you are proud of yours too. You should be!

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  11. Holy cow I almost got exhausted listening to all of the struggles in this quilt! You did help me make up my mind on continuing a quilt that has been giving me fuss for some time and I can't seem to pick it back up again and keep working on it. You are right though, it DID come out beautiful and your quilting is great! Way to stick through it!

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  12. Wow... great finish. I've never tried long arm quilting, but yours is great in spite of your struggles. A whimsical quilt... so cheery!

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  13. Very unique quilt and fabulous quilting. Good luck with your wonderful entry.

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  14. Hi!!!!! It is wonderful!!!!! I do love the quilting too!!!!! So glad you shared your story!!!!!

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  15. Great finish under the wire! I love the daisies. Daisies are my sister-in-laws favorite flower and I immediately thought of her. I am amazed that you had the tenacity to stay with the project and see it to completion. WTG!!!!!!

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  16. your perseverance has certainly paid off love the dancing daisies and beautifully quilted, best of luck in the competition

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  17. Very cool quilt - well worth the effort!

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  18. Character I always tell myself!! I think its beautiful!!

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  19. Even after all that, it's still a beautiful quilt. I like the binding too. What's on the back?

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  20. When I have to work thru the problems (that maybe I created myself), it makes the finished quilt somehow worth more to me. It looks great!

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  21. Ditto what everyone else said. I mean, I know we want to be supportive, friendly, and positive, but it's nice to see that we all can embrace our imperfections.

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  22. This is a fun quilt! The pixelated daisies are a fun twist of unexpected. The scrappy binding is something I would like to embrace but I think it really works best on a quilt like yours with a lot of white space (even if the whites are off a bit :)) Great finish!

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  23. Oh wow, this were many things coming together! You can be proud of yourself that you pushed through to the end. I bet, with so many mishappenings, it could just as easily have landed on the UFO pile. And if you haven't said something, I would have thought, that you chose different white backgrounds on purpose. I think it adds interest. Great work!

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  24. Thank you for sharing your struggles with this quilt - love your honesty - especially about the screaming. I am right now in the middle of a difficult quilt. It should have been so simple! I swear I will never make a quilt with flannel again! I will forge ahead and finish with your words encouraging me. THANKS!! Your daisies turned out wonderfully well - enjoy the end result - so much sweeter for the ingenuity you needed to finish it!

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  25. hello how are you? I just saw your blog and it seems very nice, I have become a follower so as not to miss any entries. I invite you to visit my blog:
    http://awesomeneedles.blogspot.com.es/
    Hope you like it, greetings

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  26. I really appreciate when quilters (especially the really experienced ones) share their struggles - it makes me feel not quite as hopeless when I have to rip stuff out. And I will say, I did notice that the background colors were slightly different but totally thought it was intentional (and cool).

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  27. Beautiful quilt and lovely white background. Love the texture and the pink rectangle on the top!
    I have finished a struggle quilt lats week /call it adventurous actually and am blogging about it now. I think the twists and problems along the way make them more special. These off angles were just meant to be there. It is the special vibe and organic look .. you name it :)

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Thank you so much for your sweet comments. I just love hearing from you!!
Have a Happy Quilting Day :)

Melissa