Friday 3 June 2016

Pattern testing

When Erica from Kitchen Table Quilting asked on Instagram if anyone wanted to pattern test the first quilt pattern she was going to sell, I offered.

Not because I fancied pattern testing per se but more because the pattern fascinated me. I could see there was a lot of precision cutting involved (and subsequent trimming of blocks which I hadn't really factored in ) which I thought would be a challenge.

It's made up of two different blocks which are then set on point.
Each square finishes at just 1.75" so it's a great scrap buster for using up even the smallest scraps of fabric.

Did I mention there was trimming involved?

I don't often follow actual patterns these days so I never worry about whether I have 'enough' of one fabric to make the quilt. I was about a third of the way through this quilt when I realised I did not have 'enough' of that yellow floral I was using as a background.

Cue cutting up a sort of lime yellow dotty fabric to fill in the missing bits.

Which obviously was a deliberate design decision.

Then it was on to quilting and I went for a zig zag (ish) stitch.

Which I think gives a lovely texture.

And then it was on to binding and it was done.

For an early morning  photo shoot which seemed to make the quilt glow.

And then when I'd finished I added it to my pile and decided I really ought to try selling my quilts locally.

I approached a lady who runs a sort of craft gift shop in town with this quilt. In my head I was thinking I would be happy to part with it for around £250 but she told me that she had kantha style quilts (made in India) in her shop that she struggled to sell for £69 a piece.

I was amazed. We live on an affluent island and have over 100 cruise ships calling in here each year, bringing thousands of tourists.

Reluctantly, I decided to sell it for £150, less her commission, just to see what would happen. Within a week it sold but to a quilter who told her she understood the hours that went in to the making of it.

I gave the lady another quilt to sell but I have mixed feelings. On the one hand I don't believe you could charge what it actually takes in man hours to make a quilt but on the other hand, what is an acceptable and reasonable price?

I'm not doing this to make a living; rather quilts just happen to be a by-product of a hobby I love to do. Is it because quilts that ultimately end up on beds are seen as utilitarian and therefore attract no greater value than what you could buy in the bedding section of a department store? I don't really know.

Meanwhile, in other news, I finished the outside of my Weekender Bag but that's for another blog post when the lining is in and I can reflect on its making.

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday

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