The Big Hairy Scary

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Several months ago, I noticed that Curated Quilts (a quarterly magazine) was taking submissions for their January 2020 Black & White issue. So began My Big Hairy Scary. It felt like a call to action to submit a design of my own to be considered for publication. Black and white was already in my wheelhouse. I am drawn to minimalism, simplistic, modern design. I love to allow fabric, texture and pattern tell the story. Initially I had two ideas, one design I’ve had rolling around in my head forever. I thought I could really bring it to life using 2019’s pantone color of the year Living Coral. I ended up making it first as a baby quilt. I chose to use some stripes in this quilt because I love the motion that they can add to a piece. Some may say stripes are unflattering to wear, but not me, I love them. They can change everything with just a tweak in their angle. Stripes don’t need to be treated like the ugly step-sister, embrace what they can do for you!

My previous design sketch to use for reference.

My previous design sketch to use for reference.

Little preview of the rejects.

Little preview of the rejects.

Fabric options and of course that Diet Coke. Future sponsor?

Fabric options and of course that Diet Coke. Future sponsor?

Part of my process is that I have strike when the iron is hot. Unfortunately, I don’t always get to choose when the inspiration comes. Some nights that means I pop out of bed at 2 AM and begin to cut and sew.

My other design ended up not turning out the way I had in mind… for now. Maybe I’ll pull it out of the “rejects bin” in a month or two and give it another try?

Late night sewing selfie! This seemed like a great idea at 2 AM. Should I make “quilt selfies” a thing? We shall see…

Late night sewing selfie! This seemed like a great idea at 2 AM. Should I make “quilt selfies” a thing? We shall see…

I have truly loved this process of going after The Big Hairy Scary, there is something about the thrill of the chase. I’ve never felt I knew myself like I do now. Something about this creative flow has really brought me into my own. I do have to thank my friend Michelle for giving me the push to do bigger, harrier, scarrier things. She wrote a post about one of her BHS goals and it inspired me to get out there and do the same. She’s amazing, follow her on Instagram @driftwoodstudios.

Submissions were due August 31st, and I haven’t heard anything yet! Whether I get published or not doesn’t really apply anymore. Here it is, for the whole world to see. I love this. ALL of it. I won’t quit just because this particular piece doesn’t end up in a magazine. (But if you’re reading this @curatedquilts, publish away!)

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Jill Johnson