Saturday, June 23, 2007

Binding is on and I'm on to the Diamond in the Rough.

Binding is the final touch to make your quilt complete, er, well, almost, one must always, always, always put a label on a quilt. The future needs to know the story about this quilt-who made it; when it was made; etc.

Off my soap box about the labels.

I like a 2.25 inch binding.
Fold it in half and sew this all around the edge. I don't trim the batting until after I've sewn on the binding.
Sew up to the corner,
all the way to the turning point, then fold back and turn the corner and begin sewing again. If you need clarity, Fons and Porter sells a great cheat sheet, tool sort of thing for this. It's laminated and well worth the money. The back shows how to make continuous binding. The card/tool also shows a great trick for sewing the binding ends together.

I'm whip stitching it to finish while watching a movie called The Good German. I'll let you know if it's any good.

The Diamond in the rough has started out as a scrap quilt (excuse my dirty floor, must quilt, not clean right I did end up buying some more scraps to match. How crazy is that? I wanted the scrappy, coordinated look I guess. Anyway, I wanted the sashing to look scrappy and was a bit befuddled at how to accomplish this. Until I read one of my really great blog inspirations (to the right), that being the Quilting Daze Blog. Funny thing is, she admitted to using another quilter's ideas and gave her full credit for the idea. I'm now giving full credit to the Daze for her sashing technique, that I'll employ in this quilt. Is that okay? Are not all quilt blocks a rendition of another quilter's work. If not today, then certainly in the 1920's or 1930's when a lot of these blocks were designed?

Even though quilting is a craft handed down through the years, I still like my technology today. I'm a full sensory kinda gal.
This is me sewing the Diamond in the Rough with my noise canceling headphones on, which are plugged into my ipod. I keep these on when my DH is watching something on TV I'm not particularly interested in. He bought them for me for Mother's Day this year-yeah DH! Notice my big radio in the background-it is my daughter's-like mother, like daughter.

Happy Quilting!

Friday, June 22, 2007

Raccoon in the daytime

This can't be good. The raccoon is probably looking for birdseed and strawberries. I hope it's not sick. It's another gray, rainy day in the Ohio Valley here in Crestwood, Kentucky, USA. So, I think I'll do some

Thursday, June 21, 2007

It's binding time again...whoopee!

The Bloomin' Roses is complete, all that's left is the binding. This is my favorite time, cause it means it's done. I like a narrow binding, usually darker than the quilt. I think it gives it a nice frame of sorts, a finish, if you will, that holds in all the business of the quilt. Also, I like lots of quilting. In older quilts, those with the most quilting usually last longer. So, for me longevity of my work is important. That goes for the bright colors too. In a few years, those super bright colors will dull down to a lovely patina. That's joy for me now and joy for me later. Don't get me wrong, I like the civil war, warm palette, or the muted Japanese/ping colors also. They will only get richer looking, if it's good fabric. But, again, I think something deep down in us draws us to something, and for me it's bright and cheery

It took about a half a day to complete the machine quilting with this set up.

The back of my quilt is usually where you can really see the quilting. Not so much on this one. The pattern of the fabric is pretty busy. If you don't want to your stitches to show, choose a busy backing fabric. This is a flannel fabric, made by Marcus Brothers. It is the zodiac, I just like the interesting colors and symbols. Plus it's flannel, my favorite backing. I chose a variety of quilting designs, all free motion-don't like them templates or drawing lines. Again, this is not a piece for a contest, so I'm happy with some imperfections. It is done and that's always better than perfect. I did echo quilting around each flower and then created my own flower in the corner and finished with quilting in the ditch on the hourglass border.

The batting
inside the quilt sandwich is silk and I'll have to let you know how it feels under it. But, it sews like butter on the machine, I don't know about hand quilting. It is thin but gives enough body to the stitching that you can see the quilting quite well.

This is a picture this morning. No butterflies for me. The strawberries were there all day, but, I'm sure the raccoons came in the evening and ate them all. Oh well, next batch of fruit, I'll leave out again, and try to be vewy, vewy

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Butterflies, Bloomin Roses and Machine Quilting... vewy, vewy quite...we're hunting butterflies...hehehehe...Loonie Tunes...remember that saying?
Elmer J. Fudd?
Not really hunting, just trying to attract them. Since I've stopped feeding the birds, as they bring along various raccoons, squirrels and shrews, we have halted the bird seed. But, there is no end to my need for cheap entertainment, thus the strawberries. I understand that butterflies like very ripe fruit. My camera is at the ready, in case we get a lovely visitor.

Shrew you ask? Yes, in our house. My husband, daughter and I chased it all over our basement and DH was able to swish it out the door safely with a broom. Cute little critters, maybe they don't eat birdseed, but, one in the house was enough.

On to all things quilting...since our Bloomin' Roses are due for the Show and Tell party at one of our member's homes, I thought I'd show the final stages of completion. It's only taken me about a half a day to complete the quilting. I'm using the silk batting with this lap quilt. My machine seems to like the batting. It's very thin. The best test, for me is the cover test. How does it feel under the quilt. I'll let you know when I get there.Here's me in at the machine. There's really nothing more enjoyable than machine quilting, free motion. It is a lot like painting. The faster you go the easier it is. I don't like templates that much, but, I know they have a place and I've used them before. Whatever you do don't throw away the leftover batting. I like to use it in pillows. You can also hand sew the pieces together to use in another quilt. Just butt the edges up against each other and zigzag sew-trying not to create a lot of bulk. You then sandwich this in a regular quilt, nobody will know.

It's a beautiful day here in Kentucky, and it's summer so that means strawberries. Here's the fruity portion of strawberry shortcake. I've got a Bisquik mix to make later for the desert. For my homesick daughter in NYC, here's our summertime backyard in Crestwood, Kentucky, USA.

Is there nothing more poetic than wilting roses? These are Chelsea's favorite flowers,
they'd be happy if she was

This, on the other hand,
makes us very happy and very proud. Way to go Jennifer!

Happy Quilting....


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