I finally started quilting the purple collage that has been featured here periodically. It was good to sit down at my little Elna "Grasshopper" again, but the long hiatus in sewing has resulted in a regression of my already meager free-motion quilting skills. I'm not concerned about my skills on this one, as so far I am only outlining the major pieces of fabric. The quilting isn't readily apparent, something that I like. There are quilters out there who make some amazing designs with thread, but for my style of art quilting,that doesn't work. I want my quilting to be structural, and not a feature of the overall design.
I'm not a fan of scrutinizing the backside of art quilts. I understand the importance of having even stitches with balanced top and bottom thread tension, and the concept of good craftsmanship throughout a piece, but in art quilting, the maker often has different qualities that she wants to emphasize. All the interest in my art quilts is on the front, the back is my place to anchor everything. There is nothing great to see back there.
I suppose my feelings about the backsides of quilts comes from my very early days in acrylic painting. Paintings of any type are usually framed, and the back of the piece is often covered in the framing process. No one wants to see the backside of a painting. This is a portion of the flip side of one of my high school efforts:
Nothing at all of interest to a viewer! There is a reason why one side perpetually faces the wall, and so it goes with art quilts in my world.