Sunday, March 19, 2023

Project Quilting 14.6: Broken Dishes Cover

The last of this season's Project Quilting challenges was an odd one:  Conquer a Fear. Quilting fear?  Personal fear?  How do I represent that?  And what do I fear?

I dismissed most of the sewing/quilting fears... almost all those are just something I haven't gotten around to trying yet.  Personal fears?  I have some strong dislikes (like making phone calls to people I don't know).  But what causes me the most anxiety is around What if I couldn't....  I've had some illnesses that have made me too weak or painful to do basic things, like climb stairs or go shopping (let alone go dancing).  Made my brain too fuzzy to do my work.  I've been lucky - my worst problems have cleared up in months or maybe years.  But a few never got a real diagnosis, so they could return.  What if I couldn't dance any more?  What if I can't sew?  or do yoga?  can't eat real food?  have a heart attack?

My fear is becoming broken.  

How the hell do I quilt that?

So I googled "broken quilts."  The top pattern was broken dishes.  Cool.  I have a ton of scrappy 3-inch squares and a desire to make a cover for my stand mixer.  I made a mixer cover nearly a decade ago for my mother.  Always wanted to make another.  Luckily I had documented the last one, so I set to work making broken dishes.  

It took a lot more blocks than I had thought.  Lots of trimming the squares down to 2½ inches.  Then sew them together.  And of course I was designing and measuring by the seat of my pants.  So the end panels got some sold blocks on the sides rather than more HTS because I thought those panels would be narrower and most of the edge would be cut off.  Still looks cool.

I was rapidly running out of time and I didn't feel like fighting with the quilting, so I stitched wavy lines.  I really like how it looks (although there's a few more folds in the fabric than I realized at the time of stitching it.  The backing, of course, is totally smooth.  Next time I do wavy quilting with a regular foot, I should do it backing-side up!

The sides were a little long, and I decided to match the top ridge with the center of the front/back, which means the bottom edge is not a full square.  I may not be thrilled with that, but I didn't have the time to try to make it all align perfectly.  What amazed me is the points - I did not go out of my way to match them up, and yet the majority of them are spot-on.  Even along the binding.  And usually I futz around with "random" designs to try to make them even.  Not this time.  With so many blocks I just tossed them in a pile and stitched stuff together.  I kept an eye out that if I picked up two pieces that had a lot of similarities, I picked up something else.  There's one or two blocks that snuck by undetected, much to my amusement.

It was a wild ride.  I'm really pleased with the result.

Sharing with:
Persimon Dreams - Project Quilting 14.6
My Quilt Infatuation - Needle & Thread Thursday


  1. brilliant reasoning... and valid fears. I am not able to dance and it's horrible. Once I got an eye problem so I couldn't twirl, no dance. Many times back or foot injuries, no dance, now covid risk plus the dances are few and far between here.
    anyway... that's the tip of the bodily iceberg of issues.
    Your mixer cover is a great idea, plus I love the fierce face on your mixer! grrrr

  2. Quilting posts aren't supposed to bring tears to your eyes, but this one did, given that I am dealing with my mom who is very broken. What a great way to sew your fears into something fun and useful! I love all that color, too. Wishing you many more years of doing all the things you love the most!

  3. Great post. Have ups and downs physically now since 2000, when I had to take early retirement. No diagnosis but lots of help from medicines - I think the not nowing is so hard. Hope you've many days and years of dancing ahead of you.

  4. The face in your mixer is a little fearful. =) The cover is fabulous.

  5. Prayers no return of any condition that stops you from doing what you love
    Nice cover, it looks really good!

  6. I'm with you - having things happen that doctors can't define is horrific. Live as best you can as long as you can and be the fierce and wondrous creature that you are. Follow the footsteps of that mixer - if that is a decal set, I want to know where you got it!!!

  7. That's a cool mixer! I love your fun, bright and colorful mixer cover!

  8. Love the mixer cover. The stickers on it are fun. Hope all of those illnesses are well into your past!

  9. So cool to use your fears to make this great mixer cover! I love it!

  10. I can definitely understand and relate to your thought process. May you have good health for many, many years to come and may that cover be the only broken dishes that you have in your kitchen!

  11. I really love your new mixer cover, and all the courage it represents.

  12. A stand mixer cover is a great idea. And using broken dishes blocks is a great interpretation of the Fear prompt! I didn’t even think of addressing my personal fears! Love the fierce look of your mixer! Unusual! And it must make you smile every time you use it!


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