This weekend I got to go on a quilt retreat with my guild. I love getting together with these ladies, but lately quilting has felt like something I should be doing rather than a passion. My poor husband came home from work Friday morning to find me in a puddle of nerves contemplating staying home curled in a ball. The poor man hadn't slept in 20+ hours, but kindly spent time talking with me to figure out what the problem was. (See why I love him.) We realized that this year I've been doing a lot of "should" sewing. I've been making things for other people and focusing more on their tastes than my own. Don't get me wrong, it's great to be generous with your talents and to consider what the recipient likes, but these past few months none I've been fighting to include a whisper of my own voice in my quilts. My husband asked me what I was taking with me on the retreat and realized that my packing list was full of more "shoulds."
I did have one more piece of required quilting that I needed to get done so Friday I focused on that. This year is the 75th annual Orange City Tulip Festival, and they asked our guild to make a quilt in commemoration of this. I figured that with my passion for design this was a project I should participate in. We decided to make a bunch of Dutch houses and buildings. The only way I could figure out to make it work was paper piecing, however now I know how to design paper piecing patterns in EQ7.
I took this picture Friday night before I called it quits. I haven't figured out how to print patterns in color so I was working from a grey scale for my paper piecing. I sewed all four houses at the same time, and only had six pieces that were wrong. Considering all of the pieces involved in these houses I think that's pretty good. Unfortunately I was so happy to move on to the quilt that was for me that I forgot to take a picture of the finished houses, but this gives you a pretty good idea of what they look like.