About six weeks ago I finished the quilt top below. I was very proud of the design so decided to send it out to be customer quilted.
The decision to outsource is where the saga begins. I love, love, love designing and piecing tops but my quilting skills are not at the level that I would like, so I outsource a number of tops to be quilted by others. My favorite long arm quitter is Joanne at Splitting Stitches, she works closely with her clients, provides good input and feedback, communicate all through the process and provides quality work, unfortunately (for this project) she only does edge to edge work. So, I had to look for a long arm or free motion quitter that would take on a custom project.
After much searching I selected a quitter in Maine who has been doing custom quilting for others for 3-4 years. I approached her with photos of the top, an explained the inspiration and vision behind the top and asked her if she would be interested in working on the project. She said that she would be very interested and the initial communications over pricing, batting and possible design techniques went well… I was a bit concerned with her need to have all ribbons if the quilt was shown and placed, but that was a small detail since I wasn’t sure if the piece would be appropriate to show in anyplace other than my home. Once all of the were worked out I mailed her the quilt top and backing.
A month went by and no communication. Then a couple of days ago I hear from her and she states that she is thinking about putting my piece on her machine and to start thinking about the stitching (not sure what she did with the information from our last conversations). So we email back and forth again (she not will to talk on the phone about the project) about the design for the quilt top. Yesterday she decided that she didn’t want to quilt the top after all. I have now wasted 7 weeks with this women and out a bit of money in postage and purchasing the type of backing that she wanted over what I had originally envisioned for the quilt. Now I am waiting to see if I get my top and backing back… be very careful who you choose to work with you on projects. Lesson learned for me.