Sunday, April 19, 2009

Blue Portal Done....Live and Learn

Well the portal is done, but I think that I should have just quilted around the stones rather than quilting inside the stones. I also quilted some vines going up the building, but I am not sure of those either. As you can see I still need a lot of work with my free motion quilting!!!
As someone once told me, "It is just some fabric." So I think I will make another portal, but I think I will do something more abstract.

Lessons learned on this one.
  1. Plan the blocks out better rather than just winging it.
  2. Make things straighter.
  3. Use fusible web the next time.
  4. Only quilt outside of such small blocks or quilt differently.
  5. Make it bigger the next time. This was only 8 inches by 10 inches.


  1. I like your portal but I don't agree with all the things you learned. There is a lot to be said about be spontaneous and just cutting.

  2. Do you know Chris, I would just leave it as it is - I love it! I don't agree that you need more free motion experience at all - it looks fine to me. I've just finished a machine quilting class and I think it looks a lot better than what I've produced!

    If you do decide to make another please don't throw this in the bin - email me for my adress and I'll give it a good home ;o)


  3. I, too, think it looks wonderful.

  4. Wow I did not realize it was so small!

  5. I like your portal and I think that the quilting on the stones is very effective. I enjoy reading your blog.

  6. I like the quilting on the stones and the vines add another dimension to the piece. What a fun size to work with when you are trying something new. It's just perfect. Can't wait to see what you do next.
    Janet Hartje

  7. I think this piece is perfect just as it is. I love the effect with the stones.

  8. It looks like a castle on a door. Now you just need the turrets and Mote! And maybe The little girl with Golden hair- Rapunzel. What was the textile used, it looks like felt???

  9. The quilt is all cotton except for the light blue tulle that is over the window fabric.

  10. Well...I don't know nothin' about quilting..but I know what I like!!! And...I like this piece!! :-) I really like the sewing within the blocks and the vines are cool! I think all the little details add a lot of depth and interest to the piece!! We are always our worst critics!! I think you did a great job!! :-)

  11. As always - "wow". Interesting to read what you learned, too.

  12. I agree that the quilting over/within the stones is too much of a good thing. I think the cleaness of the previous picture shows this work to better advantage.

    This is always my fear with machine quilting - when is enough enough and will I add one more thing that makes theoretical sense but in reality just detracts? Sometimes simplicity really is the best tactic. I have an awful time visualizing my results in advance.

    However, it is still a lovely little piece, and I like that you have learned from it, instead of just calling it a failure. It succeeds if only because you've chosen to allow it to help you grow.

  13. Idaho Beauty, I completely agree with your comments. I think that for such a small piece that the thread within the stones overwhelms it. The thread sticks out way too much. Maybe if these were large stones that I could have done the stitching inside the stones and even so I should have used a thinner thread.

    I had a similar issue with my house quilt with the trees behind the house. The trees were made of small pieces just like the stones in the portal piece. Initially I did quite a bit of free motion quilting inside the pieces. I ended up spending hours and hours tearing out all the stitching and then just quilting around the pieces. It looked 100% better doing that.

    This time I will not take the time to tear out all the quilting. In fact you would have thought that after all those hours of ripping out stitches I would have remembered why I ended up doing that and not to do it again. I am going to keep this quilt so that if I ever think of doing this sort of thing again, I can look at this portal piece and see why I should not! It is a lesson learned and lessons are good things.


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