I usually have at least two projects going on at any one time...I try to have one quilt top that I am piecing (or getting ready for piecing) and I like to always have a quilt top in my hand quilting frame. That way I get to choose which project I want to work on when I'm in my quilting room. Sometimes I'm too tired to focus on piecing but hand quilting doesn't require thought...I just sit and "zen out" while hand quilting.
Yesterday I posted about the new project that I'm going to start piecing soon. I need to pull the fabrics for that one from my stash and get them cut up...I'll probably do that this weekend.
As for the hand quilting project, I had finished the quilt that was in my frame last weekend so last night I loaded a new top into the frame.
Remember this one? Cottage Rose baskets...
I put the first stitches in it today and am trying something new..."Big Stitch" quilting...
Big stitch quilting is done with thicker thread...usually perle cotton size 8...and a larger needle. The idea is to have the stitches show and give "character" to the quilt instead of the very small stitches that can't be easily seen. It is woefully difficult to find perle cotton thread in our area, so I decided to use crochet cotton in a size 10 (very slightly thinner than perle cotton 8). I originally bought some embroidery thread and was going to use 2 strands, which would equal size 12 thread, but then decided to try this crochet thread instead. If I had a thread chart to use to choose colors, I could have purchased the perle cotton online...but it is very difficult to match colors on a computer because they don't show "true" on a monitor. Just look at the difference in colors between those three pics of the same quilt.
I was hesitant to try the big stitch quilting but it is really fun, goes quickly, and gives the quilt a totally different "look"! I definitely will be doing this technique again!