As I found furniture and started to get all the basics together, I decided that my big wooden table needed a runner. I liked the raw wood, and didn’t want to cover it all up. I wanted something colorful and geometric to go with the raw planks.
When you have something very specific in mind, it is easier to make it then find it; which was all the excuse I needed…
I had shipped my machines from America via UPS. It would be generous to call UPS’ management a “fiasco,” being slightly more disorganized than the Bay of Pigs invasion, it took two months to get my machines through the various UPS shipping centers. Forms were lost, misplaced, boxes went missing. Calling international to explain that you couldn’t “come in.” It was the kind of experience that makes you look forward to doing your taxes.
The poor things finally arrived, aside from small dings, in good condition. It was a learning opportunity
Following the advice of some other ex-pat sewers, I bought a BESTEK voltage converter, which seems to work reasonably well. It is a little loud and I feel like my machines are more jerky. I don’t know if that is a different power frequency or 10,000 miles of jostling?
A nearby fabric store provided me with some great prints and this delicious Japanese shashiko stitched canvas. It’s dark indigo is offset with rust orange thread stitched into alternating blocks. While it is very visual, it also has a very three dimensional and tactile quality.
I supplemented my three fabrics: blue shashiko, orange foxes, and green and white stripes with some mode quilt squares.
Cut, Iron, Repeat!
All quilt patterns are more ironing and cutting than anything else. I started with the mode squares and made stripes of squares. Then I sewed strips of primary fabrics into larger fields, which are then cut apart to get more strips of squares. After ironing, sewing, cutting, and ironing again; I realized that that the blue shashiko fabric, while delicious, was built to fall apart. Each cut was fraying. Places where it had already been sewn to other fabric seemed to be dissolving into thing air.
I went over every blue seam with two zig-zag stitched (one each way), and finally it seemed stable. There was a couple close rage-quilt moments where I considered ripping out each piece of the blue fabric.
Once I had a long enough piece for my runner, I finished all the edges in a three stitch overlock from my serger.
Now, we shall see if it holds up in the wash?