Sunday, February 15, 2015

Digging in the "Bone Pile"

While teaching my design workshop last week somehow the subject of bad or ruined pieces came up.  I told my students if you could only see my "bone pile"...the pieces that have gone wrong while working on them.  Not everything I do comes out beautiful...I throw SO much stuff away.  But other "bones" are worth keeping to work on at a later date.  This piece is one of those

About three years ago I started working on this gorgeous linen and due to "I have no idea what happened" it was a mess.  The whole outside border went wonky on me and I was certain it was beyond anything in my power to fix.  So in a fit of frustration one night  I took my rotary cutter to it and cut off about 18" all the way around.  GASP!  Did I reeeeaaaallllllyyyy just do that???  Yep.

So...the middle was now laying flat.  How about something beautiful in the middle?  Sure...I traced a beautiful applique basket design  from Elly Sienkiewica's Papercuts and Plenty book and decided embroidering it would be a fabulous idea.  Nope...that didn't work either.  So in another fit of frustration I scribbled over the whole thing to nail it down flat intending to put something over the top of it to cover it up...someday.

Well, now that "Cinderella" is done, rather than start something brand new I started digging thru my bone pile of half-finished/half-destroyed projects and this one poked it's head out and said "it's time to finish me now".    So I painstakingly ripped out all the embroidery...

I found a beautiful vintage Battenburg lace hankie that fit the bill to cover up the disaster I had created in the middle.  I put Bosal stabilizer on the back to make it more stable.  Notice that I extended the stabilizer to include the Battenburg lace.  This will help protect it during the quilting process so I hopefully don't snag it on something.  Once I'm done quilting I will carefully trim the stabilizer back to the solid linen leaving the lace exposed.

 I found another exquisite lace doily to go in the middle of that. 

Sticking with my original idea of a design from Elly's book I found this beautiful design and enlarged it to a whopping 2 1/2".  This will be quilted in the middle and the whole unit placed on top of the mess.  I will quilt a pretty background on the hankie once everything is set and then add beads of course.

I thought you would enjoy the fact that your teachers have bone piles and disasters too...just like the rest of you!  I'm glad I decided to hang on to this piece for a bit longer until I was in the right state of mind to do it justice.

I also wanted to let you know that I will be leaving Monday evening for an extended teaching engagement in Dubai, Doha and Abu Dhabi and will not be home until late on the 26th.  My schedule is very intense with precious little down time for even a full night's sleep.  If you need to get a hold of me for any reason, please wait until after the dear husband, Kent, is in charge of things while I'm gone and he's a bit nervous about it!  He has the processing and shipping of The Ultimate Stencils orders down pat and doing very well there so no worries on that part.  I'm not going to let him touch my emails!

I will have some wonderful stories on my return and will do some special blog posts for you.

Big Hugs, Cindy :)


Karen said...

I wish my bone piles were half as good as yours! This one is going to be outstanding.

Karen said...

Just found your Ultimate Stencil on your new helpful....I ordered it and also linked you on my are blessed!!

Karen said...

Your process is so brilliant!! This is going to be stunning.