I have been pushing my quilting comfort zone by doing the Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt for the last few years. The one 2022/23 is named “Chilhowie”. Almost a year since part 1 came out, I am seriously questioning exactly what I was thinking when I started this quilt. I am not thinking that another mystery quilt was a good idea at that point in my life. Then there were much more important things in my life that demanded concentration.
Starting Another Mystery Quilt:
My intentions were great. I gathered the required colors: neutral, orange, purple, and aqua. So far, so good.
Part 1 directions came out, and I cut and sewed. Ready for Part 2.
Part 2 directions came out, and I cut and sewed. Yes, all ready for Part 3.
Part 3 directions came out. Suddenly I was stuck. I did not lose interest, but I just seemed overwhelmed and could not progress. The rest of the directions came out. I printed them off and put the directions with the fabric. It all just laid on my cutting table.
In March I gathered everything up and put in a bag. The poor thing migrated to the pile of UFOs.
It called my name. I would get the bag out and re-read the directions and look longingly at the finished photo in them. The colors were beautiful, and I so wanted to progress with this project.
I was still stuck and could not get back into working on the mystery quilt. What in the world was I thinking when I started this quilt? Maybe doing another mystery quilt just was not a good idea. Should I just quit with this and use the wonderful fabric in something else?
In the meantime, during my dithering around with this mystery quilt, another quilter here who does these same mystery quilts finished three tops with this pattern. Is it possible to have “quilter’s block”? I truly was getting nowhere with it.
By now, summer is almost over, and I still have not completed it. Ok, it is time to get serious. In another few months Bonnie Hunter will put out another mystery quilt and this one needed to be done before that. I need to get with it. My encouraging self-talks were not working.
Will Maine help?
My trip to Maine got moved back to October. I decided to take two small quilt projects and this mystery quilt. I was just going to have to force myself to complete it, or at least seriously work on it while in Maine. No buying fabric until progress was made. Hopefully, sewing with good friends would inspire me to complete what had now turned into a dreaded project.
It took me three days to make nine blocks. I have not used a seam ripper that much since I don’t know when. Ugh. Thankfully my good friends kept encouraging me as I struggled through this ridiculous project I thought I could do.
I did discover that it was easier to complete the blocks one at a time. No assembly line sewing for this one. Somehow, I needed to see the finished blocks. Plus, it seemed easier to put them together correctly one at a time. Those little pesky triangles liked to be put together wrong it seemed. I was going to win this situation.
While not a prize-winning quilt, I am happy with the nine blocks. I love the colors. Um…I made the decision to stop at nine blocks (instead of 16 like the directions call for). Borders will make it the right size. I can’t convince myself to make more blocks.
Do I hate the pattern? Nope.
Is it beyond my skill level? Nope.
Were there too many small pieces? Nope.
Pushing to finish Another Mystery Quilt
I recently changed my mind and have convinced myself that I needed 12 blocks to make the quilt 3 rows by 4 rows. So back to the sewing machine. I have 11 made and number 12 started. I hope tonight to finish that one.
Then I need sashing and posts. And outside borders. I feel like I have won some huge prize by being almost done with these blocks. Yippee! The end is in sight.
Yes, the next Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt directions are due to start coming out this coming Friday. It is in blues and named Indigo Way. Blue is my favorite color and I want to do another mystery quilt. However, this time I am going to save the directions and wait until the end before deciding whether to make the bed size quilt or a wall hanging.
I think every quilter I know has some quilt that has totally stumped them, or they just got stuck on. Some quilts become permanent UFOs. Others are stubbornly worked on until completed. This quilt is not going to best me. I am determined to complete it.
Usually, I am encouraging other quilters to finish projects. This time, it is me who needs the encouragement. I honestly don’t know why I am so stumped by this project.
I am going to save the directions for the upcoming mystery quilt. No scraps for this one – I decided to work from my stash because I have so many beautiful blues to use.
Readers, it would be great for me if you told me about your quilts that stumped you, and how you got them finished.
ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.