At first it was just a hassle to have to stop, get the new spool and re-thread the machine. But then I started thinking how many hours of enjoyment I had obtained from that 3000 yard spool of thread.
It was used to piece an unknown number of quilt tops…quilts for babies, quilts for Veterans, quilts for charity and quilts just for ME!!! It was used to practice machine quilting, to piece endless scraps together and even to mend a few clothes along the way.
Sweet Claire used it on quilts made for herself, her brothers and her friends…….
….and my friend Ruth used it make a Christmas gift for her husband…..
After remembering all of these fun memories, I looked at the new (6,000 yard) spool and started dreaming of new projects to come……what will they be????
A couple of months ago my “Cre-8” group issued a new challenge to use quilt sashes in a new way AND to include a fair amount of this fabric…….
When we received the fabric it was folded to the lighter side and several of us didn’t realize that and started planning a quilt using the “wrong” side of the fabric!!
I kept coming back to the idea of a lattice so, as is my normal way of working, I started a search for any photos showing lattice work. After drawing out several sashing designs from lattice patterns (and not liking any of them), I started thinking about making the entire quilt one big lattice…..
Now the problem was figuring out exactly how to piece this design. I really wanted the woven look to hold up so I realized that there were going to be a LOT of partial seams!!
I pulled out some scrap fabrics and started practicing the piecing process…..
The piecing worked, but I didn’t like the proportion of lattice slats to blocks.
I tried again…..
This time I liked the proportion better but didn’t get the feeling of a wooden weaving.
Then my eyes fell on this stack of fabric……
….and the top fabric in particular. The color seemed a bit intense, so I turned it over and found that the back was perfect…..
It even looked like weathered wood!!!.
So I started piecing…..using the BACK of the lattice slat fabric and both the front and back of the grey fabric. It is so ingrained in me to always sew with the right sides of the fabric together and I ended up ripping several seams out before I was through. It was apparent that I needed this meme……
As I started sewing, I realized just how important it was to keep my seams perfect or else the whole top would be skewed in one direction. (It is amazing how much difference a small sliver makes.) This was good thinking, but not so easy to do, especially as I came to the end of the stitching line……
Oops!!! After I fixed a couple of these, I switched to a different foot that would keep a perfect 1/4 inch seam. It made a huge difference to my piecing…..
Once I got into a groove, I realized that I could piece 4 patches together before I added them onto the quilt top…..
This made it a little bit easier to keep track of where I was on the quilt. I finally started putting a mark on the pattern for each block group that I added……
I also got tired of trying to remember which was top and bottom of the quilt top so a strategically placed flower pin reminded me where the bottom was.
As I mentioned earlier, there were TONS of partial seams…..
….and I quickly tired of sewing thru a scrap fabric between each one.
Now, I LOVE technology and have always wanted to make each piece of equipment do whatever it can to make my life easier, but I have never used the thread cutter on my machine. For some reason, I had in my head that the next seam wouldn’t sew correctly if I had cut the threads so close to the edge. But, this little scissor button…
……worked perfectly and made my life SO much easier!!!! I can DEFINITELY get used to using it!!!
In a relatively short time the top was finished (but not trimmed down to the final size)…….
Now the question is “what am I going to hang on my trellis????” Interestingly, as I was working on this, I was watching an episode of “Quilting Arts” where Susan Brubaker Knapp was demonstrating the making of free-form flowers……..
Maybe that was divine providence????
But, the fabric that I was waiting on has arrived so I can get back to my Color wheel quilt….providence will have to wait!!!!
One of my favorite parts of the guild meetings is our Show and Tell time. There were two quilts shown this month that I really wanted to talk about.
The first one was made by my friend Nupur, an avid scientist, mother, wife, chef, reader and blogger. This is her FIRST quilt and I am so impressed with it and happy for her!!!!
My friend Sue showed this wonderful Christmas friendship quilt and gave us a great hint for how to put something like this together. She worked in rows, selecting the tallest block to determine the height of that particular row. She then added to the other blocks and added bits and pieces to bring every other block in that row up to the same height.
The result certainly doesn’t look like it was done in rows but sure made the piecing easier!!! Thanks Sue for the great hint!!