Really it just means that I've begun to finish my quilt ;-)
My backing fabric came lickety-split, and yesterday I washed it up and made my quilt sandwich. I was just able to cover the back of my top with a single, 2-yard cut of 54" wide voile. I won't have the normal 1" - 2" extra buffer around the edges, so I'm going to have to be super careful with my quilting. To that end, I pinned the heck out of that sandwich!
And then I did my first little foray into hand quilting. It's really not that hard. Maybe a little straining on the hand holding the needle, but manageable.
I decided to go all the way around each feather, about 1/4" from the edge, and then down the middle of each vane. (Yes, I googled "parts of a feather" to find the correct word. Once a Montessorian, always a Montessorian! We're obsessed with nomenclature!) I used a piece of dried bar soap to mark the line down the vane to keep things nice and neat, but the outline is freehand.
You can kind of see the dimples down the center of the rachis (ha!) where I tested out how I liked stitching on that. I didn't, so I took it out.
My quilting thread matches the saffron color of the backing. My plan is to do all the outlining of the feathers first, and then go back and do some quilting on the background in ivory.
It looks pretty cool from the back too:
The hand quilting isn't as slow or tedious as I'd thought it would be, but this certainly isn't going to be quick. And that's OK with me.