2016 Crafty Planner Challenge for January

Last year, I focused my creative energy on the Learn More, Sew More challenge and developing the podcast. I loved working on both activities and have decided that this year, I will continue working on the podcast (my goal is one a week!). For this year, I decided I wanted to experience with establishing my own artistic body of work. The podcast with Gwen Marston and her idea of fabric sketches inspired me to pursue my own creative exercise. My goal is to produce one quilt project a month. Partnered with Northcott Fabrics, all of my quilt projects will be made in solids. Have you seen their solids? The hand is butter-like soft and the dye saturation is gorgeous. I love that their colors stay consistent from batch to batch so there is no worry about trying to match them if you run out of a color.

For January, I wanted to work on a red/Valentine’s Day improv mini quilt. The idea of a patchwork background has been rolling around in my sketchbook for awhile. For Valentine’s Day, a monochromatic design sounded perfect.

January Red Challenge Front

Remembering my lessons from Victoria Findlay Wolfe, I gave myself permission to play. I was not a slave to “quilt rules” yet I also wanted my mini quilt to last. (Translation: I kept my 1/4″ seam allowance but played around with binding methods.) I enjoyed the constraint of three colors and tried to find different ways to bring contrast and diversity. With these luscious colors, it was hard to go wrong.

January Red Challenge Corner Closeup

Since I have fallen in love with hand quilting, I decided to hand quilt this mini. I also upgraded my thread from embroidery thread to a variegated thread from Sulky. There is no comparison. The Sulky thread didn’t shred and the color is fantastic. I even decided to bind the back of the quilt with visible stitches.

January Red Challenge Binding Closeup

I love how the stitches look and will consider binding future hand quilted pieces in this way. It’s a nice touch.

Next month has not been decided yet but that is the fun of the challenge. I get to look at my sketchbook and decide what I want to explore next!

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