Thursday, March 29, 2012

Last night I sat up late working on one of these little lovelies:

I have enjoyed the heck out of stitching these little girls, my own interpretation of Sunbonnet Sue. I started this project when I was living out in the Aleutian Islands, isolated and a long way from any quilting help. That was 13 years ago! I have thirty of them and I have been working on them on and off ever since. Each one is fairly small, about 7 inches. We lived out in the Aleutians for four years and I had quite of stack of appliqued sunbonnet girls by the time we moved from there to begin a stint in Palmer about an hour out of Anchorage. It was there, in Palmer, that I showed them to a quilter who said, "But these are just basting stitches. You have to make much tinier stitches than this if you want them to stay on for a quilt." I thought they were quite small stitches, but I leaned that "tiny" is the work for any quilt stitching. Well! I took them home and commenced going around each one of the thirty darlings with needle and thread again, this time making the stitches TINY. That finally done, I have been embroidering. I get them out from time to time and submerse myself in embroidery, learning as I go. These blocks, and hence this eventual quilt, will be a veritable record of my emerging growth as an embroiderer, something I would like to know more about. They also are a record of how I learned suitable stitch length as I left my larger stitches in when I made the tiny one, though nobody will ever get to know that story once the quilt backing is on. Surface embroidery is yet one more thing I look forward to learning about first hand from real people rather than books and videos once I leave Alaska this spring. That is another way needlework will help me emotionally make the change from isolation to civilization.

1 comment:

  1. I love your little girls . . . it will be nice to see them done! :-)