QDS Challenge 2 Designer: Marla Whalen

2012 QDS OFFICIAL LOGO4 QDS Challenge 2 Designer: Marla WhalenMarla Whalen QDS Challenge 2 Designer: Marla WhalenMQ: Do you normally choose fabrics first and then start a design, or vice versa?

“I almost always start with the design. I have a particular inspiration or an idea that has come to mind, and I sit down, usually with Electric Quilt or CorelDraw, and begin working on it. Sometimes I have an idea for the colors from the beginning, and sometimes it comes later. I do sometimes determine fabric placement depending on the size of pieces I have, as I buy mostly half yards and fat quarters.”

challenge 2 fabrics 400px QDS Challenge 2 Designer: Marla Whalen

My fabric collection for the quilt.

MQ: What was the first step you took to design this Challenge 2 quilt?

“I started with the idea of a medallion in mind, as I enjoy creating them, and my last top was an allover pieced design. So I spread out my challenge fabric to see what came to mind. Because of where the cuts fell for my yard of fabric, I only had one complete motif, so that limited my options of how to use the fabric. From there I sat down with my laptop, downloaded an online scan of the fabric, and started working with it.”

piecing on featherweight 400px QDS Challenge 2 Designer: Marla Whalen

Working on curved piecing on my Singer Featherweight.

MQ: How has this 2nd challenge compared to the 1st challenge for you?

“The design was a lot harder to come by in this second challenge. The design I ended up using for the first challenge was the very first one I designed, the very first night I found out I was in the challenge! This one went through a lot of different concepts before I found one that is working for me.

Also, my work pace was pretty uneven with the first challenge–not working on it for a day or two, then working marathon sessions. That ended up in a some stress and pain, so I’ve taken a different, smarter approach this time. I’m working on at least some part of the quilt every night when I get home from work. During my lunch break at work, I decide how much I think I can reasonably complete that night, and set the goal. If I get further along than that, great…if not, I’m working steadily towards completing my top!”

Click here to read Marla Whalen’s McCall’s Quilt Design Star™ 2012 bio page.

This update has been brought to you by Handi Quilter, one of our fine QDS™ 2012 sponsors.

Handi 200px1 QDS Challenge 2 Designer: Marla Whalen

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