A couple of my girlfriends and I decided during a quilting session that we should have an old fashion square exchange. Having never participated in a square exchange I wasn’t sure what it was all about…but the ladies quickly filled me in. We decided that our exchange would be an appliqué square from book called Circles of the East by Kumiko Sudo.
While I was game for the square exchange, I was a little nervous about the project. Prior to this exchange, I had only done appliqué once…a pillow that my friend Pam (who was also participating in the exchange) had literally held my hand through…not a slight thing considering the near melt down I had when picking the fabric out and the huge mulligan I had with the wonder–under (don’t ask). Appliqué makes me nervous (I can’t even spell the word---I STILL have to look it up). Sensing my apprehension (or perhaps it was the cold sweat I broke out in), the ladies took some pity on me and I was allowed to pick the square. I went with the gingko leaves pattern, which I thought was not only very smart looking, but also one of the more simple patterns (okay, it was the easiest….).
Along with my slight fear of appliqué, one of my other quilting terrors is batik fabric. While I think batik fabrics are amazing, if you asked me to create anything from batiks, you would get the same reaction if you asked me to do 20 push ups (which would be me laughing so hard I would probably well, you know). I don’t know why I thought throwing the batik wild card into this project would be a good idea, however, I seemed to recall day dreaming about how impressed everyone would be when they saw that I had not only conquered appliqué on my own, but had slain the batik beast as well. What can I say? Sometimes you just want to run with the cool kids.
I won’t bore you with the details of the multitude of trips to the fabric stores or the loathing and self doubt I went through, but at the end of the day, my homework somehow managed to get done on time. I have to say, after I made a slight adjustment to the pattern (shhh---don’t tell anyone) the appliqué was pretty easy. The batiks, well, we will probably never be BFFs.
The exchange itself was really a lot of fun. When we decided on the project, no parameters were discussed which gave everyone the freedom to do what they wanted. It was really cool to see everyone’s take on the squares---all the squares were so beautiful and different!
PS- Thanks for the pictures Pam!