Project Quilting: Season Five, Challenge Four

This week’s challenge for Project Quilting was to make a quilt using the inspiration “Across the Universe.” I had planned to make a sewing basket, because my sewing things (threads, bobbins, scissors, rotary cutter, scraps of fabric, etc.) have taken over the high (out of reach of little hands) surfaces of the living room and these piles were getting a little out of control.

But no. I was inspired. This is how we travel across the universe in our house:


I’m calling it “Venture.” (Of course the flash caught the metallics more than anything else. It’s not this bright in real life.) The quilt is about 15.5 x 26 inches, and I made it in Ontario, Canada. My three year old adores this wall hanging. He keeps asking about the story coming out of the book, and he insisted that I include a train as one of the appliquéd shapes.

Besides the design being a challenge, a lot of the technical aspects were also a challenge as I tried lots of new (to me) things with this quilt. Hexagons–I  figured out the Y-seams by the end. Fabric painting–so much fun! Free motion quilting without following a pattern–nice to get the hang of, wasn’t nearly as hard as I expected, and it turned out much better than I had hoped. The appliqué with metallic thread–so frustrating, as the fusible web I used continuously gummed up my needle and broke my metallic thread (this was only a problem with the metallic thread). It also turns out that the fine details on the appliqué take A LOT of time, both for cutting out and sewing on. Quilting on top of fabric paint–not quite what I was expecting, but the holes ended up looking like stars/constellations, which was a nice touch to the overall design. And the time–THE TIME!!!–a definite challenge to get it done within the week!


I’m VERY happy with how this quilt turned out. I have a feeling that this is the quilt I’ll look back on in ten years and be amazed at how much my skill has grown. Lots of my ideas for this project changed along the way. I really enjoyed  the process of having a vision in my head, and having to be flexible and come up with new ways to make the various ideas come together when I couldn’t always do things the way I originally planned.

For the next challenge I’m definitely making something smaller/simpler (maybe a sewing basket?).