Well. I lost my sewing mojo after a brief flurry of activity in January. Mostly, I think I had too many things happening all at once and my sewing space is limited and gets messy very quickly. Finally I just put everything away in a fit of annoyance. My parents visited recently and getting the house together in anticipation of their visit led to tidying up in the sewing area as well. I’m hopeful that this will lead to more productivity on my part, now! I’d like to at least finish ONE project on my Q1FAL goal list.
One problem I’ve run into as I’ve started making slightly larger quilts is that I don’t have a great place to lay those quilts out as I’m putting together the blocks and then the rows. My bed is fine for baby quilts, but anything larger and it starts to get a little weird. Not to mention that my six cats are very interested in this whole process, so I try to keep this away from them if possible! A design wall would alleviate some of these problems. I wanted to build my own, but neither my car nor my husband’s will fit the large insulation panels that are used as the foundation for these walls. So that project lingered in my mind for a while — and while it shouldn’t have, it probably contributed to some of my sewing malaise. Because how can I sew when I am fixated on getting a design wall in my house?! ;)
A solution came in the form of my parents’ van. They drove down rather than fly and they have one of those vans where the seats fold down into the floor. It’s kind of amazing, actually. You can fit a ton of stuff in the back of one of those vans!! The insulation panels were still right at the limit of what the van could hold, lengthwise, but we made it home. I think I ended up with 3/4″ panels 4′ wide by 8′ long. I knew that would be a little too tall for how I wanted to use them, so I cut the panels down to 6.5′ tall. I want to be able to move them around my house so that I can store them away from cats, but bring them out to where I sew when necessary. The full panels would have been the perfect size if I was planning to attach them to a wall, though. In the end, I have two panels 6.5’X4′. I like that I can move only one out at a time if I want.
You can see in the pictures that I was not especially concerned with keeping my cut lines straight. I don’t anticipate this being an issue — I’m not really using the wall to square things up so much as to see the larger picture on a neutral background. If it really gets to me I can trim it down to be level. I also went with felt as my fabric cover for the walls — I know that batting would probably be a lot “stickier” but felt was a lot more affordable for me and…somehow I have a hard time putting batting that could be used in a quilt to a use like this. Maybe I’ll upgrade to flannel at some point. For now, this works. I may have to pin things occasionally, but I’m happy with this for now.
The quilt blocks on the wall were just to assess that the wall worked the way I expected. The final layout will be quite a bit different. I’m also realizing that I probably made double the number of blocks I need for this quilt, but that just means I’ve got a second quilt nearly done, right?