Sunday, December 25, 2016

Flying Blue Box Mug Rug

Foundation paper piecing was one of my favorite techniques just a few months ago ... but then I made a puppy quilt for my daughter, all paper pieced, and it took so long that I kind of burned out on it. I decided to pick it back up, briefly, so I can make this Tardis mug rug as a Christmas present for my husband. (We're both big Doctor Who fans, and I seem to have developed a habit of giving him Doctor Who handmade presents for Christmas.) The pattern I used is from Soma Acharya of Whims and Fancies.

It took me a little bit to remember how to paper piece, but it quickly came back. It was sort of tough to piece everything together at the end, all on bias-edges and non-right angles, but I managed.

The toughest thing about paper piecing, especially on such a intricate and small scale, is the bulky seams that are inevitable. Or is it preventable? I'm not sure, it might depend on the piecer. In my case, they're pretty bulky, which posed a challenge when quilting, especially since I quilted this on my Pfaff and the hopping foot had a lot of problems with the bulkier intersections. (I'm surprised my needle didn't break. That's Schmetz for you.) I quilted this like an art quilt, covering almost every surface and filling it with different designs. Again I didn't plan it, but did it serendipitously, combining free-motion with the walking foot. This was incredibly fun to quilt.

No Tardis is complete without the Police Box lettering, right? That I had to do by hand ... resulting in my first wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey "hand quilting" job ... well, it looks organic, at least.

Besides the Tardis-in-Flight, Soma has a slew of other Doctor Who paper pieced patterns, and they're really really well done. Her Weeping Angel, in particular, is amazing. I would consider it the Magnum Opus of my paper piecing career if I can put together a sampler quilt of paper pieced blocks all from her Doctor Who collection, but alas, I don't know when I'll be able to manage that.

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