Does This Quilt Make Me Look Fat?

This is Fog, my latest finished quilt.  I can’t believe I’ve been working on this for a YEAR!

white house finished (1)

When looking at a quilt, people often ask me, “How long did it take you to make this?”  This is a tough question to answer.  In this case, I started last August.  After about 4 months of pattern making and piecing, a weird thing happened.  I just couldn’t figure out how to quilt it so it just hung on my design wall and stared at me for a long time.

I took it to a breakfast with a group of girlfriends and I showed it to them (all non-quilters) and as luck would have it, light was showing through it from a window behind me as I held it up for the girls to see.  Here’s the conversation from that day:

Them: Hey Val, after you quilt it, will you still be able to see the triangles?

Me: Huh?  What triangles?

Them: The triangles all over the thing!

Thankfully, one of them held it up for ME to see and, sure enough, I saw triangles I’d never seen before because I never saw it with light showing THROUGH it.  Like this picture, here:


Well, it took the providence of that comment and seeing with my own eyes to show me how to quilt it.  I didn’t want to loose those wonderful triangles so I machine quilted them to highlight them and the result was that the quilting looks like little cowlicks of horse fur.  PERFECT, I thought.

The problem with me (and believe me, this is just one of many) is that my machine quilting skills (and I use the word “skills” loosely) are kind of crappy in a mighty way.  Oh, man, when I put those feeddogs down, that needle gets out of control right away!  Anyway, because this was SO challenging for me I worked on it only now and then for about 8 months.  I just opened a big can of laziness and ate the whole thing.  Finally, VERY slowly, when I got close to finishing last week, I was like a quilter on crack; up all night, unable to stop!  Sleep, eat, wash the dishes?  Forget it!  I just sewed.

So now it’s done and I like it.

I couldn’t have done this without the visual inspiration of artist, Katie Upton’s fantastic work.  Thank you Katie!  Check out her work here.

Also, I credit the book by Cynthia England shown here for teaching me the addictive paper piecing technique.

white house finished (13)

If you’d like to see a little of my design process and the back-story on Fog’s beginning, click here.

The practice of art isn’t to make a living,

It’s to make your soul grow.  —Kurt Vonnegut


  1. Congratulations, Val! He’s beautiful. I’m in awe of your talent and your patience for details. What an amazing piece of art. Enjoy and thanks for sharing!

  2. Mary & Joe Armato says:

    Val, thank you for the email. Good to hear from you. The quilt is unbelievable.We enjoyed your web page.
    Very newsy and informative.
    Love Mary & Joe

  3. Wow what a fantastic piece of art. You are truly talented, dare I ask what follows.

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