Buggy Barn’s Crazy Rays……
Well years ago I saw this pattern when I was in Sandpoint, Idaho. At the time I didn’t know “labels”…I didn’t know who “Buggy Barn” was…or what they did ..and that they are actually locatted about an hour from me. But I bought the pattern because I liked it..and it was fat quarter friendly. When I was a beginner I liked fat quarter patterns. I think I was also an ambitious beginner because this pattern was probably a bit much for me at the time. In fact if I were to ever do it again ( which I think I should) I would paper piece it. This is actually done in a style of stack and whack. ( I think that’s the name?) but you take certain cuts rotate the fabric in each stack and then start sewing. The problem with this quilt is:
1. I didn’t understand bias edges…I didn’t have my own sewing place…so I had to keep moving these..in and out as I worked on them. A few times I even found all my pieces on the floor. My kids were little and the bright colors attracted them. I can’t tell you how many times I sorted these fabrics to get them back in order. they never got back in the same order…but I didn’t know at the time how important that was…or that my edges could get distorted really easily. So I have cut off points….things don’t line up like they are supposed to ect.
2. I would choose fabrics WAY differently now. I really just chose 4 purples, 4 reds, 4 ornages and 4 yellows. If I were to choose now I would make sure there was more of a dramatic effect.
3. Now I would choose a different border fabric. Probably a black or a mottled black. for one reason to frame it all in…second because I could make a dramatic effect with the quilting.
It is sometimes much different quilting now that I have long arm quilting in mind. Now I think about the project from beginning to end. I used to just think about the pattern and the fabric….now I specifically think of batting choices and LAQ as I am constructing a project. When you take it all into account at fruition you make different choices. There are positives and negatives to both sides.
I also now know what people are talking about when they say they don’t want stiff quilts.
My Freebird quilt I used one layer of hobbs poly down. That thing is really to thin because I laid down so much thread. I learned along the way that you can’t over quilt poly or it will be way to thin. But it will actually still feel soft and it will drape. So on my Stocking quilt I decided to use two layers of batting…..( which was dream green& Poly down) and then on this one, My Crazy Rays I used a layer of W&N and also poly down. When you use two layers of mixed batting and lay down lots of thread..the quilt becomes incredibly stiff. It doesn’t drape well..won’t be cozy. But it is perfect for hanging on a wall. If I put two layers of poly and over quilt it will still be pretty thin..but if I put two layers of poly batting and quilt lightily..very lofty and nice.
So now I know what to tell people. It’s all about trial and error, I guess. experimentation. Which takes me to my next thing.
I don’t mind experimenting on my own quilts because they are my own.
So if this had been someone else’s quilt I would have been safer in my designs..I would have gone with designs I knew I was absolutely certain I could pull off without mistakes…..I probably wouldn’t have chosen the variegated thread…But since it was my own quilt… well….? I need to practice some things because I won’t get to the next level with out it…so ruler work, nestling triangles…ribbon candy and pebbles with high contrasting thread. I struggle with high contrasting thread because you can see every single wrong movement…..so I want to get better at accepting little mistakes..but also not making them. I can only do that on my own quilts.
So now that I have pointed out every thing I think is wrong with this quilt….you may think I don’t LOVE it? But In all actuality I do. It shows me my progress. Progress I have made..it also fullfilled a need I had within me at the time I pieced it and now at the time I LAQ it….so it’s divenly perfect in every way.
I LOVE this!!! I love how you did the radiating lines in the stars and the border is to die for! Love how you used contrasting thread and the pebbling in some areas of that swirly free flowing design. I may just have to borrow this idea. LOL, who am I kidding I WILL borrow this idea. I also love how have shared so much info on different batting and heavy quilting. Good to know. But do you think the drape will change with laundering? I have found that with W&N it definitely changes with a wash and is less stiff.
I will let you know about laundering…I have no idea? I think it all really depends on how much thread you lay down with all the layers…I mean if there is no room for it to move and settle… I don’t know if laundering will matter. I will try it and let you know. Good question.