How many times have you asked that question? I ask it at least once a day. Usually I can come up with an answer that almost sounds good, so all is not lost yet. But other times I really don’t have an answer.
I study the quilt pattern usually for weeks before I actually start a quilt. But it never fails, I make a mistake somewhere along the line. Sometimes huge, sometimes they are the kind only I will notice. Sometimes they really aren’t mistakes at all but simply decisions along the way of designing a quilt.
Like what size block am I going to use? I love the look of small blocks in a pattern. We all know that with the smaller blocks there are smaller pieces. And the smaller block also means you need more of them. But sometimes I don’t think about exactly how many pieces or parts. At least not until I’m half way into it.. them it dawns on me I need four hundred and I’ve only done 175 so far. The twister on my front page was like that. That’s a four-inch block and a queen size quilt.. that’s a lot of little blocks! Don’t get me wrong I love the way it turned out but seriously, it would not have hurt the design to make six-inch blocks!
Sometimes it’s the colors. Black , white and red can get really old after making a king and two queen quilts in the same colors. All three of my sons wanted the same colors so by the time I made the last one it looked boring to me.
The big whopper is when I don’t figure out if I have enough fabric before I start the quilt. Yes, that happens too often in my quilt room. Usually I guesstimate and sometimes I’m way off. I only do a quarter of the cutting at a time so it’s not till I’m halfway in that I notice. Usually it’s not the main fabric so I can hide a different fabric by altering the design slightly.
With my last quilt, none of those mistakes.. I got all the half square triangles sewn and assembled them all into a different pattern altogether. I was putting the first half onto the design wall and I couldn’t figure out why it looked funny! The problem there was that I was making two similar quilts at the same time both using half square triangles.
Usually I find that when I’m asking that question I need to step back because something is off. That’s the time to go back over my notes step by step. Most of the time that works and I can find a fix, get more fabric or radically change the design of the quilt.
Then there’s the other times like when I cut a six-inch hole in the center of a quilt while attaching the binding… then it’s time for a drink.