Friday, November 17, 2017

Going to the chapel

Hi all, and happy Friday!  I hope you've had a good week.  Mine was seriously busy, but I did get a lot done.  I have several non-sewing projects going on, all of which are really important, and all of which are due at the same time.  My brain is working over time.  And of course my computer updated right in the middle of everything, too.  I really dislike when that happens, don't you?

I did finish up my little free-pieced chapel quilt, though!  Here's one of the few good pictures I managed to get:

I love this!  And you know what?  It really looks like Joan of Arc chapel!  It's kind of a blurred or softened version of the chapel, though.  I think quilting will add some really necessary details, like the fretwork on the upper window and the panels on the doors, not to mention the separations between the stones.

I had a lot of fun making this little chapel quilt.  It was all free-pieced with no pattern using the techniques in Julie's book Build A Barn, No Pattern Construction.  The book describes barns, but the techniques can be translated to any building.  When choosing a building, though, I recommend that you choose one you don't have a deep personal or emotional connection with.  The only thing that was hard about this piece was the feelings I had about the real chapel, which made me scared to mess up the quilt.  Yeah, feelings are complicated and often get in the way of things.

I learned a lot from making this, and I will definitely make another one.  I'd like to make a seasonal sampler with four different churches or chapels in the different seasons.  I've already identified two possibilities--that I have no emotional connection to!--and am looking for a couple others. These are semi-historic churches with clean lines and interesting details, and I think they'll look good together.

Morning sun bleaches everything!

A few things I learned:
      --Free piecing takes more fabric than you think.  Have a lot on hand.  I ended up piecing the sky more than I wanted to because I ran out of big pieces.
     --Cut with abandon.  If you need to cut from the center, cut from the center.  If you're making something, you're not wasting the fabric.
     --Cut larger and don't trim until you're absolutely sure that you have things stitched the way you want them.
    --Always keep a straight stitching edge.  The unstitched part can be pieced and ragged, but if you're stitching a seam, you'll need to keep it straight.  This will make life easier. 
     --Make use of your seam ripper.
     --Patience is key.  Take as much time as you need to think it out and strategize.
     --Finally, realize that you are making an interpretation, not a copy.  You don't have to include every single detail. There are ways to make copies, of course, but if that's what you're going for this is probably not the technique you want.

So there we go, that's the chapel!  I can't wait to quilt it up.  Sadly, I have to finish these other things first.  Don't they know I have sewing to do? 

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!  Our relatives are arriving Sunday.  I better buy some turkey!

Sharing at Finished or Not Friday, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, and crazymomquilts.


Quiltdivajulie said...

Magnificent!!! You did a great job and your take-away lessons are oh SO true. Well done - and I really like your idea for a four church sampler. said...

This is so sweet and is going to be sweeter once it is quilted. Very interesting technique for making it, enough to pique my interest in taking a look at the book. This is the way I would like to paint with fabric.

LIttle Penguin Quilts said...

Your chapel is beautiful, Mari, and thanks for sharing some of your tips with us! I'm interested in the free piecing process, too, so I'll to look for Julie's book.

PugMom said...

Your chapel looks great! I hope that you used some of the fabric we bought together in PA Dutch country! And I loved your orphan quilt in progress. It's going to be amazing!
Pugs and kisses,

Louise said...

Your chapel is so good! It's hard to believe this is the first one you've stitched. You've definitely got the knack :) I really like the idea of a four season chapel/church quilt, too.

piecefulwendy said...

Yay! You finished your chapel, and it turned out great! I think free piecing is such fun. Can't wait to see how you quilt this little lovely. :-)

MissPat said...

Your chapel looks great, but the quilting detail will make it awesome.

Bernie Kringel said...

This is so pretty Mari. The way the trees look behind the chapel is perfect. I can't wait to see it with quilting. Very nice!
I HATE computer updates. Windows makes me so angry sometimes. ;-)

Nann said...

Lovely! I like the daisy "field" in front. And how nice to have a sunny autumn day to display it outdoors.

Kate @ Smiles From Kate said...

Great chapel, it looks like the doors will open any minute and a bride and groom will be there with all their smiling family and friends spilling out after them. Love it!

Kate said...

Congrats on a great looking Chapel! It looks a lot like the picture you started with.

Preeti said...

Four churches for four seasons - that is a fantastic idea. Love love love the steps - so subtle, so detailed. If this one is any indication, I am sure that the next one will be an architectural masterpiece. Wishing you a stress free holiday.

Sandy Panagos said...

It really looks great. I can't imagine free piecing a block like this!

Sandra Walker said...

Mari, this is breath-taking. It literally glows, just so very realistic. I just ... love it seems trite, but I do, I am in awe of it and how you created it. Love the stone work, so mason-true. True also is the feelings, but I don't know, it adds to the piece IMHO.