What was I thinking??? One of my current projects involves sewing a mosaic base composed of over 5000 blue 1″ finished size squares. Once the mosaic is sewn, there’s lots of embroidery and appliqué parts to go over it. Machine embroidery is new to me so some may have to be done by hand. That’s a future worry. I think I was crazy when I decided this was a good idea but I’m too far in now to change it! So to map this thing out, I bought 1″ gridded pellon, cut and sewed it to size for the full project, and mounted it on a design wall. After cutting about 50 squares from each of 130 blue prints from my stash, I sorted them into ‘cat-proof’ boxes. Can’t you just SEE the fun my little beasties would have had sliding through and playing with all those fun little squares! Whoopee!

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So now, slowly but surely, I’m pinning the squares in place. There are four quadrants to pin and I had to buy lots of pins to do all the pinning! What I’m thinking is that once the two right sections are sewn, a friend will take a pic, digitalize it, and flip it mirror image to give me the template for the second pair of quadrants so they don’t have to be pinned first—just duplicate them pulling appropriate squares from my boxes right at my sewing machine. I sure hope that works out the way it’s planned.

This is the lower right quadrant–kind of like a paint by number only with fabric. I figured I’d get the broad value bands in place with gaps between and then blend them as the last step. Once that little last bit of dark area is done and a band of mediums is in place, I’ll start moving some of the darks, mediums, and lights back and forth across all the boundaries to blend them. It looks very defined right now but the blues will be nicely blended at some point. It’s kinda fun but boy did I mention it takes a lot of pins?

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So the big conundrum is how to sew the rows of squares together from each quadrant once they’re all on the design wall. One possibility is to literally cut the pellon apart in sections with the squares pinned in place. If the pins are shoved deep into the design wall (believe me, this is one very thick, free-standing design wall my hubby built), when I slowly pull off the pellon section, in theory and with fingers crossed, the squares should stay attached to the pellon— I hope! Then the idea is to take it all to the sewing table, sew the rows into sections there, and put the parts back in order on the design wall. Another option would be to load several rows onto a flannel covered ‘paddle’, kind of like a big long pizza paddle, and take that to the sewing table, working on a couple of rows at a time. When done, back to the design wall.

I’m open to suggestions! Other than seeing a shrink for an advanced case of insanity, does anyone have any brilliant ideas on how to put this all together?

Donna