Eye of the Beholder

original applique patterns inspired by the world around us

Hand or Machine. It all takes Patience & It's all Beautiful.

  Eye of the Beholder  booth at Houston International, 2013.

Eye of the Beholder booth at Houston International, 2013.

When I'm at a quilt show I love to see the reaction of fellow quilters when they see my quilted pattern samples.

Some beam and walk in like they are home. Some give the sign of the cross to ward off the evil "A" word...or worse, the evil "RA" words.  

They ask, " Are these done by hand?" "YES", I say with a smile.  

But I love hand work.  Its a meditative, methodical process.  I stitch with anticipation to see the design come to life.  The beauty is revealed, one stitch at a time, like a flower that opens in my garden. I like the portability of hand stitching, too.  It goes with me in a ziploc bag to stitch where ever I go.  Or I can be with my family and still express myself creatively.  It is peaceful.  But that's me. I'm a hand nut.

  Radiance, Medallion V . Hand reverse needle-turn applique, Hand quilted.

Radiance, Medallion V. Hand reverse needle-turn applique, Hand quilted.

All quilters admire the look of a piece done by hand, but many don't feel they have the time or patience to do it that way.  They want the beauty, but with speed. 

Machine vs hand is like the contrast between the beauty of a fireworks burst on the 4th of July and watching the petals of a flower open into full bloom. 

When fellow quilters marvel ( thank you) and think I have sooo much patience, I quietly chuckle to myself.

For me, appliqueing by machine takes patience.  I appreciate it's beauty, but I don't enjoy the process as much.  I do it, but I think it is tedious and I get tense when doing it. That's when I am reminded I need patience.

I tend to think that if its by machine it really should be able to be done today...now! And it almost can be.  I can make our Hearts & Fleurs table runner pattern by machine in 6 hours, or by hand in 15 hours.  But generally,  I know I have the wrong mind-set for machine.

  Radiance, Medallion V . Machine applique, machine quilted.

Radiance, Medallion V. Machine applique, machine quilted.

One of my quilting buddies loves machine work. And she is an awesome machine applique-er.  I think she has the patience of a saint. Slow and steady wins the race, with her, with gorgeous results.

Each applique process, hand or machine, is a skill all its own.  I have respect for you and your skills, and I know you have respect for my skills.

My hat is off to you.  You have patience, even though you think you don't!

  Hearts & Fleurs , table runner II. Hand applique, hand quilted. Made in 15 hours.

Hearts & Fleurs, table runner II. Hand applique, hand quilted. Made in 15 hours.

All our patterns can be done by hand, and most can also be done by machine and keep the integrity of reverse applique, our specialty.   These dual process patterns come with both sets of directions so you can try both ways, or share it with a hand applique friend and find the common ground of quilters, making something beautiful, with love.

  Hearts & Fleurs ,  table runner  II. Machine applique, machine quilted. Made in 6 hours.

Hearts & Fleurs, table runner II. Machine applique, machine quilted. Made in 6 hours.