Finished! Wanna See?

Finished, Substrata. Gathering Up the Fragments, Lori East Quilts, Lectures & Workshops

Yes! It’s finished!

You all know by now that I was working on a challenge quilt. My friend, Kelly Cline, created a challenge for members of her Quilting Vintage! Facebook waaaaay back last winter. She had a set of vintage linens to divvy up, and she drew names for participants. I was one of the lucky ones.

You may also know that I kind of freaked out a little because all of the other participants are uber-quilters. I am not. After a brief panic, I decided to forge ahead with what I do best: make it into something else.

Here is the original napkin Kelly sent me. I forgot to measure it, but it was somewhere around 16″ square. It’s a lovely piece, and the whole set was probably quite¬†beautiful once upon a time. I am quite sure the entire collection that Kelly shared, once finished by all the participants, will be amazing.

I cut this napkin in half diagonally, then cut half in half again. See if you can see the parts in the photo below.
What I started with: a napkin and this.

That napkin hung on my wall for months. I just wasn’t sure where I wanted to go with it, but finally, I started pulling out things that fit the “feel” I was shooting for. (Does “feel” make sense?) From there I just tried to work intuitively, letting it tell me what it wanted to be. As I told you before, I really love working this way. It’s all-consuming and I spend a lot of time moving things ever so slightly this way and that, ripping them out, and doing them again, but oh, it’s so satisfying to feel like I’m letting the piece dictate what it is going to be. If you don’t work this way, I might sound a little kooky, but try it…

I am very blessed to have a couple of friends who are scions of patience when I am in the midst of a project like this. They tolerate 8,000 texts or emails asking, “What do you think about this?” and “Do I need more buttons?” They also encourage me when I need to be pushed. I am forever grateful to them…I am pretty sure they know who they are.

I’ve shown lots of sneak peeks on Facebook, and teased you along. But now….drum roll, please, it’s finished! I’m pleased to share “Substrata” with you.


When you realize that this little quilt measures somewhere in the neighborhood of 18″ square, you can imagine how tightly packed all the stuff is on it. Those buttons nearly sent me around the bend.

Below are some smaller photos showing different areas a bit closer:

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So, what do you think? Was she worth the wait?