Friday, April 3, 2009

Quilting success!

So I've always considered myself to be an anti-quilter. What's that you say? Yes it's true - most traditional quilt patterns are just so not my style and after a disasterous attempt about 20 years ago, I decided to shelve it. Quilts and I were not to be friends. But I've been sewing for decades and just recently decided to give quilting another thought. I do like the designs I've seen with some of the newer and more modern designers on the block.

Like most sewists I'm amassing a huge collection of scraps which I refuse to part with and as my daughter grows older - aka less interested in wearing my cute designs - I needed a new outlet for the fabulous fabrics I see all the time, not to mention the scraps! So I decided, that in my years, (sheesh I'm starting to sound like a geriatric) I've learned a thing or two about sewing and I certainly realize that I might be a more skilled sewist now than 20 years ago - oh and I have nicer machines than I used to. So empowered with that knowledge and an "I refuse to fail" attitute, I decided to revisit the quilting world.

I made my first quilt top last night. Totally winging it - I like that approach - I just flipped around online until I saw something I liked and went at it. A friend who quilts, had suggested starting small - so I decided to work on a doll quilt. My daughter had just recently requested a blanket for her dolls bed - so this seemed like a marriage made in heaven. Here's the top - awaiting quilting, that's next. Still trying to decide whether I should go with the easy straight stitch quilt, or something more free flowing. Apparently now I also need new tools. BSR or walking foot?? I like the idea of the stitch regulator (BSR) because having tried the free-motion quilting approach with my darning foot, I can tell you this method is not for me - my initial attempts were horrendous - the BSR sounds like the solution to my problem, plus an easier way to do it - and I'm about making things easy. Have to visit a dealer and figure out if this will work on my machine.

Ok onto the next part, not having any special quilting tools on hand, I ended up using my embroidery machine to stipple the star pattern onto the quilt. So a little cheat I suppose. It was thin enough that I was able to hoop it without a problem. I free-handed the wavy pattern along the border using a water-soluble marker. I used a very thin layer of cotton quilt batting - thin enough that I was able to sew on it with my ordinary presser foot and I reduced the tension a bit to account for the increased thickness of the piece. This worked great on a small sized quilt such as this one and no puckering. Finally, I used crazy mom quilt's handy dandy binding tute to finish it off.

Here she is:

Do you think the dolls will be pleased?
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