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Saturday, August 15, 2009

Not Just A Potholder!

I get a little bit of ribbing when people see the potholders I make.

"Why do you waste so much time intricately piecing a potholder?" I've been asked.

It's not that I'm so lacking in ideas of other things to quilt that I need to fill my time making potholders. There are actually several good reasons why (it might seem to others that) I go a little overboard on potholders.

First off, it's a great way to experience making a new block. Heaven knows, there are more interesting quilt blocks out there than I'll EVER find time to make into a quilt of any size!

Also, it's a great way to audition blocks for a new quilt. Somewhere buried down in the deep, dark recesses of my UFOs is a completely cut out full-sized quilt that I will in all probability never finish. Loved the fabric, loved the colors, loved the block pattern . . . I thought. I cut the pieces for all forty or so of the blocks and then sat down and started piecing them. After about the fourth block, I knew without a doubt that I hated (it was drudgery, it gave me a splitting headache, I didn't want to go back into my quilt studio ever again) making that block. Now if I had test flown that block BEFORE cutting all the fabric, I would have saved myself lots of cutting time and still had the intact fabrics to use.

Something else: Making single blocks to use as potholders enables me to practice new quilting techniques. Machine applique, raw edge applique, crazy quilting, string piecing, paper piecing . . . new techniques abound and I wanna try them all!

Quilted potholders make great hostess gifts or shower gifts or tucked in with a note to let someone know I'm thinking of them.

A little while ago (well, quite a while ago if the truth were to be told), my daughter asked me for a new set of potholders for her kitchen. She requested 30s print fabrics, the colors of red, black and white. A little yellow for accent would be okay, too.

So I pulled fabrics from my stash that I thought would be appropriate and the next time she stopped by, she sorted through them discarding those she didn't care for.

Then I picked out four old, traditional blocks to use for the potholders. Ones that I thought would lend themselves to 30s fabric.

I chose Anvil, Brave World, Road to Heaven and Southern Belle.

To be continued . . .


Chicken Mama said...


UnFinished . . . Objects?

Mama Pea Quilts said...

Chicken Mama - You figured it out. It's an expression quilters use because it seems there are always those things started that you don't want to finish or can't figure out how to finish or maybe you just like to start things better than finishing them!

But I guess having UFOs could apply to all of us in all aspects of our lives, right?