Light Coming Home

I started this quilt the week of the Eastern Kentucky floods. I grew up across the border in Southwest Virginia. The images of the debris entangled against the bridges and houses. The lives lost. I processed this through making this quilt. Lots of curves and sharp lines.

When I began, I thought I would use more of the rust fabric, but it felt important to use the vanilla fabric as a dominant background with the black fabric and thread outlining each piece. Mildred Haun’s short story, Darkness Coming Deep, inspired the name of this quilt. It is the story of the death of a child. I wanted to express the opposite of that pain, Light Coming Home. This quilt represents lightness coming to me through the making of this piece.

This quilt will be exhibited at QuiltCon Atlanta 2023 as part of the Windham Fabric Ruby & Bee Challenge.  These are the colors:

  • Russet 51583-40
  • Mandarin 51583-31
  • Vanilla Custard 51583-53
  • Pool 51583-45
  • Cornflower 51583-46
  • Stormy 51583-44

It measures 52.25″ x 52.25″.

I took some risks with the quilting. I used 30 weight Aurifil in black to define all of the seams and to add the illusion of piecing growing from each section. In some places I stitched in the ditch more than once. In other places, I used Sulky 28 weight in white. along with blues and rusts I had from my mother’s stash; some are probably 50 years old, but they worked great.

QuiltCon Obsession

Since 2014 I have entered at least one quilt to be considered for QuiltCon. The first one I made was a quilt for the Michael Miller Fabric Challenge. You can see it here. It wasn’t accepted and I tried to figure out why, so I studied the quilts which were accepted. Before this year, I had four accepted:

Random Perfection
How to Play Hopscotch
Mod Drunk
Couch to 5K

This year I have two accepted:

Off the Square
Splitting Cat Hairs

My quilts have never won an award. I’ve entered quilts in Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival as well. The judge’s comments usually compliment the design and there’s almost always an execution suggestion. I was particularly surprised that the judges believed the hand quilting on Mod Drunk was distracting and the tension was too tight. Because of those comments, I have tried to be more conscious of “mistakes”. I fret over the binding and the quilting. But, I make mistakes and don’t notice them until it’s too late to fix them. Sometimes I’m impatient to finish a quilt and I’m not mindful of all the details. I enjoy the design process more than I enjoy the execution part. I’ll continue to make and share my work. I do enjoy receiving congratulations from you. I feel accepted and loved.

Couch to 5K to QuiltCon 2019

Couch to 5K full view

Couch to 5K

My husband and I started an exercise program called Couch Potato to 5K this past summer.  It’s a phone app.  The app starts with a warm up, followed by one-minute runs and one-and-half minute walks.  During our “training” one morning, I commented that “little by little” we would reach our goal– just like quilting.  To document our progress, I made a small block representing how far we had gone each day.

But, once football practice started, we stopped running and we didn’t run a 5K.  I did, however, make a quilt with the ones I had pieced.  Five weeks of running! With such small piecing, resulting in bulk, I struggled with the quilting and used only a few straight lines for each row.
Couch to 5K detail view[3172]

It finished at 26″ by 31″.  I entered it into QuiltCon 2019, small quilts category, and it was accepted.

I’m sure there is a moral to this story.

Keep moving,

Wanda