Tuesday, April 29, 2008

quilt karma

I finally finished a doll quilt that I started before our trip to South Dakota last summer. I decided that trying hand quilting would be a good road trip project. I was wrong. Very, very wrong. Not much got quilted on that trip and the project had sat in a bag waiting patiently for me to give it a go for nearly a year. I'm not even sure what motivated me to get it out again. (Maybe it was seeing a hand quilting class at the shop the last time I stopped in to pick up some fabric.)

In any case, I got to work again and figured out a few things that worked better for me than others. A good marking pencil that showed up on all the different colors was the first thing that helped (yellow worked on this project). Small adhesive leather pads worked much better than a traditional thimble for me. Finally, I ditched the hoop and just worked with the quilt loose in my hands. It was so much easier to load several stitches at once on the needle. I'm not sure that would work for a larger piece, but then again, there's no way in hell that I'm hand quilting a larger piece. -But I just might give another one in this size a shot.

The pattern is from Fat Quarters, Small Quilts by Darlene Zimmerman. I find the subtitle amusing - "25 projects you can make in a day". If I'd stuck with my trusty machine that would have been true. By hand, it was a project that I could complete in 11 months.

Finished, it's about 18"X22". The fabrics are both old and new from a variety of sources. (Grandma Bev, do you recognize some of those scraps?)The backing fabric is the same as the borders, sashing and binding. Had I known the time that would go into this, I'd have chosen a nicer fabric. The book talks about young girls honing their skills on baby or doll quilts. I'll say this much for my authenticity. It definitely looks like a child did the stitching.

I'm considering this one a lucky charm. Right after I finished the handquilting I checked my gmail account and had a lovely quilting surprise waiting for me. I'll fill you in as I learn more.


Badger said...

My mom makes the big quilts, and she hand-quilts AND hand-pieces them. No machine involved at all. Of course, she's completely insane, so we probably shouldn't go by her.

I do not have the patience to quilt AT ALL, so I am all impressed with your quilt. It looks way cute, and NOT like a child did it!

Rebekah said...

such a cute quilt! I love all the patterns and your hand quilting looks great!

Jacquie said...

Beautiful color choices. A lovely finish!