I am so excited that Luke's robot quilt using the Flock block is all finished! I love how it looks in his room with the black furniture and I'm pleased as punch that it's completed. I hope he uses it to the max and enjoys it as much as I enjoyed making it for him! He's only three months old now, but hopefully he'll be romping around on it soon enough.
Although this is not the largest quilt I've done, I would call it my most ambitious so far. There are several things I did on this quilt that I've never done before and I think my future as a quilter is brighter because of these little changes. Let me show you how I've expanded my horizons thanks to this project:
FABRIC: I used much more bold fabric than I ever have before! Of course my inspirational fabric was the Japanese robot print, which I still adore:
Then I added some of the fabrics I found at The Stitching Place in Iowa:
I was planning to make this an all gray, blue and white quilt. I'm not generally a fan of red, but red was just what this quilt needed to make it pop and I'm glad I took the plunge and used it this time.
PIECING: Next, I used the Flock block for this quilt. I've pieced five other quilts so far in my quilting "career"/hobby but I'd never done half-square triangles until now. My previous quilt designs were definitely chosen because they appeared easy, but I'm so glad I tackled something more challenging this time. Although it was tedious work, it was really fun and rewarding and I don't think I'll be afraid to do half-square triangles in the future.
Speaking of tedious, I did another thing I've never done before - I pressed all my seams open on this quilt! It does lay nice and flat with no wonky bumps and my sewing machine really didn't jam up during the final piecing of the whole front together, so that turned out to be a good idea I'll repeat in the future, too.
BACKING: I usually use one or maybe two fabrics for the entire back of the quilt, but I didn't have enough of my top fabric choices this time. So, I took some of the principles I learned in my Denyse Schmidt workshop and did an improv-pieced back that I think turned out really fun! I like it maybe almost as much as I like the front.
HAND-STITCHING: I've hand-stitched the quilting on all five of my previous quilts but I didn't realize until recently that the goal of hand-quilting is to get the stitches as small as possible and as uniform as possible. I think I've done well with getting my stitches uniform in the past, but my stitches were definitely too big on previous projects to be overly impressive. This time I at least got a few stitches on my needle before pulling it through as opposed to the one-stitch-at-a-time method I followed in the past. This one undoubtedly looks better than the others, but I still have a long way to go before I could hold a candle to the Amish talents.
All in all, it was a super fun project and a great learning experience. I am looking forward to the next project on tap!