#The100DayProject is a free global online art project I’ve decided to participate in this year. The idea is to committ to 100 days of making something and sharing your progress daily on Instagram. My chosen art form is, no surprise here, free motion quilting. I’ll be using several hashtags so that my posts show up with everyone elses: #the100 DayProject, #the100DayProject2019, and my own unique #BlueBeagleQuilts100Days for all the posts. If you’re on Instagram, follow along! The official start date was April 2nd. These are the first 10 designs I posted.
I have a few goals for the project, the main one being – have fun! Seriously, free motion quilting brings me joy, unless I get feeling too self-conscious or if I’m too focused on a deadline – so by doing a little bit of quilting every day (more on that in a minute) only for myself (more on that in a minute as well) will, hopefully, just be all about the joy.
Regarding “every day” – I can say right up front I’ll never be able to free motion quilt every day. My long arm machine is not portable, so any time I’m away from home there will be no way to do any quilting. Also, if I have a large client quilt, or one of my own, loaded on my frame, I won’t be able to do the 100 day piece. So my plan is to do several designs at once any time I have the chance, and on the days I can’t quilt, I will doodle and plan what the next few quilting designs will be. It may take me a year to get all 100 mini quilts done, but that’s ok.
Regarding “only for myself” – even though the whole project is about sharing these daily designs on Instagram, I am going to try to show the good, the bad and the ugly – or else I’ll spend all 100 days trying to get the perfect quilted piece. The point is to enjoy the process and not make it a stressful show and tell audition!
Another goal is to work on my photography skills (since I have none it should not be difficult to show improvement.) While at QuiltCon in Nashville this February, I took a workshop on quilt photography without using special equipment. The lecturer was Kitty Wilkin (NightQuilter.com) and she was fantastic – so I hope to use some of the techniques she taught us. I spent very little money and was able to buy two vinyl photo backdrops, gaffer tape and a little tripod for my iPhone – and started playing.
I am planning on making a book on Snapfish or other similar website with all the pictures – that’ll be an easy way to look back on the designs, but I do want to figure out a way to keep all the little quilt squares themselves. That will have to wait until I see just exactly how much space 100 8×8 mini quilts take up! I’d like to be able to use them later on to get ideas when I’m thinking about what designs to use on any particular quilt, or potentially show them to a client so they could have a visual reference for what they would like on their quilt top. A portfolio of sorts.
In addition to posting the designs on Instagram, I’m going to try blogging about them – maybe 10 or 20 at a time, every couple of weeks. Maybe I’ll have something profound to say by the end. But more than likely not – I just want to have fun and quilt the day away! Photos below are the first 10 designs – and my first attempts at flat lie (or is it flat lay?) photography and using my new vinyl backgrounds.
Practical notes about the process: 8″ squares, cotton fabric, various pieces of scrap batting either 100% cotton or 80/20, various threads including Madeira, King Tut and Glide, 40 – 50 wt, and a Baby Lock Crown Jewel III long arm quilting machine. Photos with my good old iPhone 5S. Note to self: variegated thread is not my favorite.