Thursday, August 7, 2008

At Home and Away - ready for binding

I finished the tying of At Home and Away. I'm also done quilting the centre of Folk Art Finery, and have a good plan on how to quilt the borders, so I might have that done by the end of the weekend. Then its miles and miles of binding - my fingers are sore just at the thought. The At Home and Away top was finished about a year ago. It has two final vertical borders of pinwheels - I remember when piecing this quilt that I designed, struggling with what to put on those last two borders. I think I spent weeks designing on EQ, laying blocks and the top on the floor, test sewing. I think I must have been pretty fed up by the time I got to actually piecing those pinwheels. While I was tying the first long border (93") - I'm thinking, gee this is sloppy - crossed points, blunted points, straight seams that didn't line up. I'm trying to hide them with my knots, but I'm getting madder and madder, 'cause all I can think is that the centre is just about perfect, but the pinwheels are like some one else sewed them. So on to the second side, about a third way through, there was some major cursing and stomping of feet as I realized that this just wasn't making me happy. The whole quilt risked being seen as poor sewing quality, all because of these darn pinwheels. I ended up ripping out the tying, and the two long borders.

The picture above shows a section of the pinwheels - yes, I might be being picky but up close the piecing "mistakes" do show more obviously. I've saved these long rows as they would make into a border or part of a strippy quilt.

I'm not sure I'm happy with the resulting "balance" of the quilt, but it was better than including yucky piecing.
Here's an EQ drawing of the resulting design -

The quilt is now about 93 x 67 - odd size because the two long borders are gone - but the rules do say "tied bed quilt - any size". :)

The other odd thing about tying this quilt, is I have no idea what the judges might be looking for in a tied quilt. Do they ties have to be evenly spaced (mine aren't - its a sampler quilt so I put them as close together or as far apart depending on the design area I was covering). Do they all have to be cut the exact same length? (I tried here, but no, they aren't). I do think its important to do the quilt in a way that will make you happy, first, and the judges second. I hand basted the edges to prepare for the binding - without the security of quilting nearer to the edges, I wanted to be sure there wasn't going to be any rippling or sliding of the backing while I sewed on the binding.

Here's a picture of a section of the tied quilt, where maybe you can see how the ties are evenly spaced within a type of block, but each type of block has its own spacing -

Tomorrow I'll have some pictures and stories about the Folk Art Finery quilting - I've learned a lot from this adventure.

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About Me

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southern Ontario, Canada
I began quilt-making in January 2001, as therapy following diagnosis a chronic autoimmune condition. I enjoy creating and exploring hand and machine applique, machine piecing, english paper piecing, machine quilting, and machine embroidery. I have been working with Electric Quilt for several years and I'm comfortable with just about very aspect of using EQ to design pieced, applique, and embroidery quilts. I'm an early retired Mom with two teenager and a son who'll be married in Fall '09. My husband is my biggest quilting supporter.

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