My project is currently at a stand still until I can get to Regina next weekend for some fabric. I could have had someone run to Fabricland for me, but I wanted the experience of picking my own fabric and making sure I liked the colour or if there were more colours to choose from. So, it is perfect that Alec asked us to reflect on our learning projects this week. So far, I feel that I have learned a lot of new skills when it comes to sewing. My knowledge in the beginning was incredibly limited. I barely even knew how to hand stitch something like a button! I now have the skills to fix my cat’s toys, sew buttons back on to clothing, as well as patch a few holes. My confidence might not be incredible, but it’s better than it was. I think a lot of my confidence came from having a person there for immediate support if needed. I could do most of the hand-stitching on my own, but knowing that I had an inspector there for immediate feedback was a nice support. I think of Ryan, and his struggle with crocheting – sewing and crocheting from scratch, with little to no experience would be incredibly difficult to learn on your own without anyone to show you the skills needed. Of course there are plenty of online supports, but having a teacher there in person is very reassuring and helpful, even if you don’t have a lot of questions.
When I turned to the sewing machine, things got a little tricky, but I have from some great resources to help me along the way to creating my quilt – I was also recently told that “blanket” is a swear word in the quilting world, so I will now refrain from using it as I am apparently making a quilt, not a blanket. My sewing machine has proofed to be quite finicky so I have opted to use one from my school. The clothing and sewing teacher at Central has kindly offered me an extra sewing machine to aid me in my sewing adventures. I think it’s a good call as my grandmother’s is quite old. A newer machine might be a smarter move right now for my first official project.
My next move is to start sewing the flannel onto my t-shirt squares. This needs to be done individually, and then I sew the t-shirts in rows, and then sew the rows together. As I am beginning the stages of actually sewing, I am extra grateful that I do not have to follow a sewing pattern like Marley! She is brave!! And then once the squares are all sewn together, there will be another stage of sewing which involves sewing the entire back piece onto the quilt. There are actually two options for this: cut the backing for my quilt into squares and individually sew the back flannel on so that I have a square pattern on both sides of my quilt OR sew an entire back piece onto the outside edges of my quilt and then hand sew stitches into each corner of the t-shirts. There are 30 t-shirts, and 4 corners per t-shirt. This method is going to prove to be very time-consuming and profanity inducing I’m sure, so I am leaning towards the first method. If there are any quilters out there, let me know which method you think would be best!
I feel like I am on track for finishing my quilt before the end of the course. I know this is not mandatory as we are supposed to be learning a skill, but I know myself, and I know that as my year gets busier with the start of basketball season, I will be less inclined to work on this project, if I do not have the external motivation from my fellow ECI 831 members, so my plan is to have a final product by the end of the course.