I completely missed the boat to register for any classes at QuiltCon–classes really do fill up in less than an hour–so I spent most of my time looking at the quilts in the exhibit, for hours and hours. The range of styles and needle craft on display was astounding. I posted a few of my favorite quilts in Instagram but there was something to love in each quilt. I had never appreciated dense quilting until I saw some of the amazing work in person. My own little quilt was hanging among the minimal design quilts and that was somewhat humbling–even though I was very proud (and frankly amazed) to be included in the show. I came away with three lessons: 1. Kona snow, which is my go-to white looks sort of quaint in an exhibit. I still love it, but would maybe not use again for a show. 2. A crib size quilt (40×50 inches in my case) is a neither here nor there size. I loved the scale of the larger quilts and the mini quilts are a whole new concept for me that I am excited to try. But, I’ll definitely go bigger or smaller next time. 3. Do not pre-wash an exhibit quilt. My quilt looked a little homey and crinkled next to all the super smooth finished works.
This leads me to my greatest quilting discovery of late–the Hera marker. I’ve known about this wonderful tool for years but never tried it, until I made this Modern Hexie pillow, pattern by modernhandcraft.
For my first attempt, I used a water soluable pencil that I’ve used for many projects, but this time the lines did not disappear despite a thorough soaking. Fortunately, those little hexies are so fun to make I did not mind starting over. The pattern suggests using a Hera marker so I did for my second attempt, and I love it! The tool has a sharp, smooth edge that makes a crease in your fabric that serves as a quilting line-so much faster than marking pens or pencils and really accurate. Plus, no need to wash a finished quilt to remove marking lines–provided I keep my kitty from snuggling with works-in-progress.
What’s next for me? I think I’ll make a mini quilt to try out some new ideas–matchstick quilting? intricate piecing? bold colors? I have no idea, which is the best place to start, I think.