I read a good amount of crafter's blogs, and one thing I've noticed is that the sewers are often intimidated by knitting, and the knitters are often daunted by crochet. There always seems to be one or two crafts that frighten people who are often very skilled in many others. For me, making a quilt always seemed very intimidating. After a years work, however, I've finished my first quilt! Furthermore, I designed it myself.
I'm not sure why the process scared me, as my mother has been making quilts my whole life (by hand, mind you, she has never been close friends with the sewing machine). So I always knew all the concepts behind quilting, but the length of the project always seemed arduous. I like to sew and knit clothing. If someone can't wear it, I'm usually not making it.
One day I was perusing The Purl Bee, however, and saw this quilt, and Fell.In.Love. It wasn't exactly what I wanted though, so I sat down at my computer and started designing a variation with a two-tiered tree. Each tree would have two patterns of green foliage fabric and one of 2 woodgrain fabric's for its trunk. Here's my quilt in progress:
I made it crib-size, which was nice not only because it will be for my new baby, but because the quilting and binding processes didn't intimidate me quite so much on a smaller scale. I could fit everything onto the dining room table as I worked. In the end, I did a simple "stitch in the ditch" quilting technique, used 2 different Kona white cottons and backed it in green, also by Kona. I learned so much, and I'm so happy with it (even if I have to remind myself, as usual, that it doesn't have to be perfect).
As with any other project, once I completed it, I was already planning my next one. Maybe something with just patchwork squares, linked together in a matter of hours? I'm sure, even with that, I'll complicate it somehow. And why not? Maybe that's the way you learn the most.