My covid quilt

I thought I knew how I wanted to start this blog post but I am not sure now. Anyway, here I go.


Last four months were what everybody says a strange time. In Ireland whole thing started at the beginning of March and on 6th we were at our daughter’s college to see her getting an award. That was the beginning of their spring break but the college didn’t reopen since Ireland went lockdown on the following week.

I finished a commission shortly after that but couldn’t deliver until yesterday(another story perhaps sometime). And after that, I started making face coverings or masks which lasted until the beginning of June which strangely stopped as the lockdown was eased.

From the start, there was a lot about lockdown/covid quilt on the social media and I thought about joining the craze but at the height of it, I didn’t have time to make any proper plan.
Also I don’t usually have half finished or abandoned projects or several projects on the go. I am one quilt at a time quilter and also need some time for planing.
And finally when I got time, I was with no quilt in waiting. On top of that was I too late to join? Since full lockdown was over?

Either way, I needed to do something other than mask making. As usual I consulted to my scrap boxes sorting when I don’t know what to do. It is a kind of mindless or mindful process for me.

Back in early May, I saw this article.

http://www.spoon-tamago.com/2020/05/06/gifu-shimbun-secret-social-distancing-message/

Those circles gave me an idea but with more colour to become a quilt, don’t they.
The question was what word to use for this. I didn’t fancy creating a sentence like on the newspaper. That will make a huge quilt. So some short word with a discrete reference to the lockdown and whole situation.

And then to create that word with circles which was really difficult. The idea was this word is visible/readable from more than two meters away. However in order to rearrange circles I had to stand close to them and once I had the image I could see it no matter of the distance. On the other hand, my hubby couldn’t see it even five meters away!
On top of that, I run out of scraps! Well not really but I ran out of good variety of fabric to make circles looking scrappy.
So the two meter rule may not be applied to this quilt!

All the circles were raw edge appliqué which were iron fused on the background.

In the ideal situation, the black background fabric should be on the very top to avoid casting shadow through light fabrics. Since all the circles were raw edge, I had to place the black on the back and I can live with a bit of shadow.
Also I thought about adding a border outside to make the edge much simpler shape but that may not look very interesting and I left it as it was, very random scallops.

And quilting. It was easy to decide to quilt circle parts as abstract/doodle but I wanted to add some sort of meaning on the letter part. What should that be? My first idea was more words but when I faced with the quilt, it didn’t feel like a good fit. After while of wondering the options, quilting wave pattern looked right. More discrete and beautiful quilting texture.

And a few days of quilting densely to flatten the circles, it looked like this from the back.

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The view from the other side of quilt!

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And the last part, the edge treatment. Probably the easiest option was to add facing. However all the circles were raw edge and there is no way I can turn 1/4″ of them without destroying the circle shapes.
So binding or cover with satin stitch? I thought some over lapping parts were too thick for my smaller machine to do satin stitch as well as I didn’t really fancy that. So that left with binding, the most basic.
What colour? Maybe black. Would it look good? Maybe. But if I can keep the all the colour going all the way to the edge, much better? Yes.
But the colour changes and no one wants to deal with the extra seam thickness hitting the V valley and on top of that, getting the length right would be a pure nightmare. Slightly off would do good.

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Slowly getting there. #binding #quilting #patchwork

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It wasn’t still easy. Some circle were 4″ in diameter and some V valley was too narrow. But I did managed it.

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It needs to be neatened here and there but binding is done!

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Stay away. Keep away. Move away. Go away.
Wave away.
Away.