Friday, January 8, 2016

2015-16 Works in Progress - Triangles

When we packed our bags for our temporary stay in the apartment, I was under a false sense of security that our house was going to sell soon and we will find our new home in the same time frame.

I also thought I was going to explore the city and this small place will have no space to do much of sewing. Needless to say, I did not pack a thing!

No handwork, no fabrics and definitely sewing machine.

Wasn't that silly? Stupid? Crazy?

All of the above, right?

Only explanation is "The Move"

We were so busy getting ready to move, sewing was the last thing on my mind. I finished one quilt I absolutely would not have left without and then decided to "wing" it once we moved.

Within two weeks of being in CA, I realized how big of a mistake it was! I should have shipped my machine, I could have mailed some fabrics.. I spent my empty hours in those days thinking of all the should've, could've-s.

I came up with the best possible solution. I went on line to search for a fabric store near by thinking to buy some fabric and hand stitching needles and applique a few things. I friend suggested a store in downtown, I walked to the place and bought needles and white thread and walked  back home with spring in my feet.

Applique did not go too far for some reason. I needed the humming of a machine to sooth my soul. I ask my friend of 30 years if I could borrow her machine she bought for mending purposes. I brought it home along with a pair of scissors fit for a kitchen. Next day I set it up on a little desk in the corner of my apartment.

Now I needed some fabrics!

Guess what? The Goodwill store is ten minutes away!

I began this part of my journey in stitches.

It started with shopping at the Goodwill Store with self imposed structure.

Purchase only the ones on sale.
Limit two or three at a time.
Wash, deconstruct, design and sew.
When run out of fabric, go back to the "fabric" store.

Buy any size that allows to grow as a designer..

Fabrics from tiny shirts add little bit of surprise in the design. That tiny shirt can add just what I need in terms of added texture and spark.

Here is a tip for taking those buttons off.
Use seam ripper instead of scissors. My seam ripper came with the bag of doo-daas attached to the sewing machine.

 I started with freeform hourglass blocks.

For some reason they turned into freeform triangles. I kept making them with no particular plan. Two shirts at a time, I used every bit of usable fabric and then moved on to the next pair.

This is how far I have reached. This picture was taken before the strips were pieces. My space does not have enough light to take great pictures. My design wall is space near the kitchen, couch if pieces are small enough or bed when the quilt wants to grow. 

I am not sure which direction this quilt is headed but just like my life, I believe it is evolving into something bright and beautiful. Lot of visual inspirations and emotional moments are being stitched together two pieces at a time, evolving into my new story.

Stay tuned!



  1. Neccessity is the mother of invention so they say - you are certainly following this, good for you!! I too find quilting soothing and a wonderful antidote to stress. I love your creation Sujata and the bright red strip in the centre reminds me of the tree trunk supporting all the branches and roots of life.

  2. Oh how wonderful--you are "starting all over again", a new house and a new piece of work....
    hugs, Julierose

  3. Sujata, this quilt top has a great start. It is full of joy and puzzlement, wonder and thought.
    There is nothing like making to give us feelings of well being. Congratulations on your resourcefulness. x

  4. 90% of my fabric if from thrift stores (charity shops) here in UK. I love that nobody else may have the same fabric that I am working on. Another good thing - I ordered your book online and it arrived today, so something for me to read over the weekend. Happy sewing to you in your new home :)

  5. been there - in a temporary space without machine or fabrics. I love your solution.

  6. This is a beauty. I love your idea of adding the fabric from kid shirts. They are usually so much more colorful. Great plan.

  7. I'm so glad that you have found a way to get in the needed "quilt therapy"! I love that you are "making do" and doing what you need to. It can be very satisfying. And I love what your pieces are looking like, too.

  8. Sujata you are inspirational as always! Love to hear about your journey. Take care!

  9. Lovely sentimental stitches. And you know what? This post helps me start putting my cultural fusión Quilts book to work. I did not know how to start. Now i do! Healing and helpful.

  10. And that quilt will always have a very special meaning to you...yet another bonus.

  11. over 30 years ago, I was in a small apt for 3 months while my husband was in pilot training. I was so thankful for my featherweight sewing machine & cross-stitch project. Fiber & fabric does sooth the soul.

  12. Great comes anyway...

  13. Love it. This could be the start of your best one yet. I received your greetings from Jerri last night at guild. Hello back!

  14. An inspiration. Thank you for sharing.

  15. You found a way to quilt again... and a pretty great way too Sujata! That is so nice of your friend to lend her machine. Love how this is coming along! I need to shop at Goodwill more often.
    I love what O'Quilts said in the comment above: " comes anyway..."

  16. I think this is truly inspired - whether from necessity or not. And OH, do I understand your comment about needing to hear the hum of the dyeing machine .....


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