The other really cool thing that came out of the challenge is that I got to meet Sarah Ruiz, first through our blogs, and then in real life. In addition to being an active blogger and talented quilter, she also works at NASA, making her a rock(et) star in my son's eyes--see what I did there? When we were in Houston, she treated us to a private tour of Johnson Space Center and made all my son's dreams come true.
|At the historic flight director console for the Apollo missions.|
|Reading an authentic mission manual.|
Me (L) with Sarah after our fun day
Which brings us back to the quilt I'm sharing today. As you may have guessed, Sarah designed this beauty, which she aptly named, Intertwined. When I saw the mini she created in January, I fell in love.
When she put out the call for pattern testers I was happy to volunteer. It was my first time pattern testing, but it's something I've wanted to do as I'm starting to consider writing up some of my own patterns. When I showed the top to a local quilt shop, they asked if I would be interested in sewing samples for them. I'm excited to see where that leads.
As a pattern tester, my job is follow the draft version of the pattern exactly to make sure that the fabric requirements and cutting instructions are correct, that the piecing instructions are clear, and generally helping the designer make the best version of their pattern. In my pre-TBI days, I was a writer, copywriter, and editor. I didn't realize until I started how my past work made this work so appealing to me.
Since this is just a draft, I won't give away too much about how the quilt was actually made, but I will show a bit about the process. I loved that Sarah included a chart to keep my fabrics straight. I rarely use the same colorway as a pattern I'm making, so I appreciated having this to keep a complicated-looking colorway straight!
One way in which I messed up is that I pulled fabric from my stash and didn't follow the fabric requirements exactly. This was all on me. I kept track of where I was short and Sarah's pattern was spot on. As for me, I had to work a little magic for some of the pieces.
Like all good pattern makers, Sarah is offering more than one size option with her pattern. I volunteered to make the lap size version, which is 60"x60". But I couldn't resist making the mini, too.
I decided to put the mini into the back of my quilt. But now I think I want to make another to put up on my craft room wall.
I purposely changed the way the lines were woven to make a cross on the back because this quilt is going to someone in our small group at church.
I did straight line quilting. I'm always experimenting with different ways to make my lines. I often use masking time, but this time I used my ruler and a Clover hera marker. I found this too be much faster. The hera maker makes an indentation on the fabric which you then sew over. No tape to adhere and remove!
The real game changer for me with this quilt came when I tried out my new Dritz magnetic seam guide. It kept my stitching much more even as I attached the binding and for the first time in 77 quilts, all of my binding was caught with my initial stitches and I didn't have to go back and attach little parts that didn't attach.
Look how pretty! (Disclaimer: it's not all this even, but much more than usual!)
This quilt was made for Melissa and Paul, friends from church who have led our small group since we joined last year. They are taking a break to deal with some stuff. When I started working on this quilt, I knew it was made for them as a reminder that we are all in this life together and we love and support them whether we see them each week or not.
To see more pictures of this quilt in progress, look for #HadnettIntertwined on Instagram. If you search the hashtag #IntertwinedQuilt, you'll find projects from the other four pattern testers. If you'd like to see what I'm currently working on, follow me at de Jong Dream House.
Updated April 5, 2017: Sarah's pattern is now available on Craftsy.