Shift Quilt | A Reflection of 2018

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As 2018 came to a close, I began a new quilt project. My festivities for the evening including an anxiety ridden dog that farts all the time, snuggling P, and not much else. Once P went to bed I started messing around in my sewing space.

At an IMQG meeting a while back I picked up some scraps from our 2017 Quiltcon Charity Quilt, as seen below.

These scraps had been sitting on a pile in my sewing space and an idea sparked. Why not just bust out one last project for the year? What came about was a quilt that resembled my 2018. Here’s how.


In 2018 my life felt like millions of pieces not really sure how it all fit together. Maybe you noticed a change, maybe it’s you’re first time here. Either way I’m glad you’re reading.

It was nice to work with something my friends had worked on. Friends helped get me through 2018 and this incorporated that detail into the quilt.

Layout | Design

The design for this quilt happened organically. My brain may have subliminally arranged the quilt. All the blocks were pointing up but one. This one changed it’s focused. It shifted. Once I saw how I had laid them out on my first pass, I left it, and knew I needed to build the quilt from here.

That’s how my life felt. My focus shifted, my life shifted. This quilt was becoming an interpretation of what I had felt. It felt like a true artistic breakthrough. Then quilty tetris happened and it I loved the top.

Can you guess how many Y-seams are in the top?

I used a Kona (maybe Navy) solid that was in my stash that coordinated perfectly with the blue in the backing. It’s an African Wax print from Crimson Tate. I had picked it up from a neighborhood garage sale site and it’s been waiting for the right project.

It wasn’t easier to piece together the top. Some time, rearranging, and lots of trial and error to get it exactly how I wanted it. There are TWO Y-seams in the quilt. They were challenging but necessary with my block placement.


As the top was coming together, I envisioned a heart in the shifted block and then quilting out ripples. My quilting had other thoughts. My heart was messy and wasn’t looking great. Let alone decent to keep going.

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So I ripped it out and started with another option. Wavy organic lines. The year had been full of curves. Some bigger and some tighter. The lines felt much better in telling the story for 2018. They are not perfect, but got better by the end.


shift quilt, quiltytherapy, scrap quilt, improv pieced quilt

I do love a solid binding. In the scraps from the IMQG meeting, I had found an orange binding ready to go and thought this could work. Once the quilt was finished it needed more of a frame to complete the piece, not accentuate it. The Kona solid binding won.

Typically, I machine stitch the binding to finish up a project. However, this quilt needs the hand stitched binding. Spending some time snuggled under the quilt, sewing along slowly, to finalize the overall look.


In 2018 my life took a change. Right now I’m not ready to discuss anything publicly, maybe eventually. What you should know that while it’s been challenging, it’s also been a time of growth. There has been much reflection. I’m in a much better spot than where I thought I would be.

Finishing this quilt going into 2019 was refreshing. I can complete 2018 and feel like I’m truly moving forward. In all the quilts I’ve created I’ve never had an AH-HA! moment. I used to call them Oprah moments when I was coaching people since those typically feel like a breakthrough.

It was therapeutic. Not sure where this quilt is going to live. In my stash or out the door. Maybe this needs to stay with me for a bit to remind me that everything shifted and I’m still fine.

shift quilt, quiltytherapy, scrap quilt, improv pieced quilt