Jul 16 14
I have been plodding away with the quilting on “My Thistle Quilt,” which I am affectionately calling “Big Red” because it’s made of different cranberry/maroon kinds of background colors. This quilt is so large that I don’t have any pictures of it once I had it completely pieced; the photo above is from before it was fully pieced. (4 more borders were added to it after this photo was taken.) This quilt was basted by a long armer friend and I’ve encountered some challenges with it that I haven’t encountered before. (The reason it was long arm basted is that it has a ton of machine embroidery applique and is a very, very heavy quilt. There is just no way that spray basting would hold this baby together!) Anyway, I am having issues with shifting that I’ve not dealt with before and I believe this is due to the fact that: 1. The basting wasn’t done as densely as it should have been done and 2. It has a 100% polyester batting. Polyester is a very smooth batting as compared to a wool or cotton batting so it doesn’t “grab onto” the fabric at all and instead is kind of slick so it can move a little. This same long armer has basted a couple quilts for me before with the same amount of basting, but those quilts all had wool battings and wool has small barbs that like to grab onto things. Here is a shot of the most egregious issue I have had with it. This is in one of the center blocks: UGH!!! You can’t miss it! This happened about 4 months ago and I was so upset that I put the quilt away and didn’t even look at it for about 2 months! Now I am working on the rest of it thinking that by the time I return to fix it, I’ll have put so many quilting hours into it that I won’t be able to walk away from it again. All I can do is take out all that stitching and then try to do it again very slowly, trying to ease all that fullness in. Not looking forward to that part… It took me a really long time to simply outline all the pieces of applique shapes. For the large leaves, I felt like I needed to literally encircle all those scalloped edges like these: My favorite part so far is a leaf border zone that has McTavishing in it: That photo above is pretty realistic for the color of that particular border. This is another shot of the same border taken without a flash that gives a better sense of the texture that’s developing: There’s a narrow border that was hyperquilted that I kind of like. The first round was stitched with Gold Rayon Thread and the second round with a magenta rayon thread: You can see that I left the cornerstone blocks of that border blank. I’m still trying to decide if I should stitch something in there or just leave them blank. They are very small and I don’t want to put anything in there unless it will add something worthwhile to the overall design. There’s a ton more quilting to go on this baby but if I keep focused, I think I could actually finish this quilt in the next 2 months. It’s good to have an end in sight! And did I mention a give away? My Craftsy class is going to launch very soon…it’s called: Wow…Ultimate Free Motion Quilting!!!! Don’t you just love that title?! Anyway, I’m going to give away a free class to some lucky person. All you have to do to enter is write a comment to this blog post telling me what you’d like to learn in the world of free motion quilting. Comments need to be made by 5 pm eastern daylight savings time on Tuesday, July 22, 2014! THIS GIVE AWAY IS NOW CLOSED…THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO PARTICIPATED! The winner was Heather J!