Monday, November 5, 2012

Latest charity quilt finish - Purple Plaid FMQ Craziness

So, I'm more than a little excited about my latest charity quilt finish.  I absolutely LOVE this quilt, and while it is extremely tempting to keep it for my future child (or to claim that in order to keep it for me!), I bought this fabric from Connecting Threads for a charity quilt, so I will give it away to hopefully make a child in need have a brighter day.  But wow...this one will be really hard to part with!  And I'm most definitely going to be making it again in other fabrics (probably purple batiks if it is really going to be to my taste)!  I love the finish that the cream binding gives the composition - and I machine bound it again.  This time, I used 2.25" starting width double-fold bias binding, because I made the binding awhile back, and I had 3 places near the corners that I had to go back and hand-sew, but not bad.  (My new technique is to make the binding before quilting a quilt, so that I don't get bogged down at the end...though the quilting part still seems to be the real slow-down in the process.  I actually enjoy the piecing and binding way more than the sandwiching or quilting, but I'm hoping to change that!)

Hey Angela Walters, don't worry...I'm not quitting my day job (but I do like your book)!
I decided when I pieced this one that it was the perfect design to really practice my free-motion quilting skills, and I'll be the first to admit, I need a lot more practice!  The final side definitely saw some improvement from the first side, but I have a long way to go before I'll feel really proficient.  But..."they" say practice is the key, and I certainly got a lot of practice with this one!  I even tried just following straight lines with my fmq foot, and by the end, I had somewhat even stitches. I also learned that since I can't draw a smooth curve, I shouldn't be surprised that I can't quilt one either!  And yes, I had to take a picture of me snuggling with it mid-quilting.  

I used cream and purple Mettler thread, a little bit of my regular quilting/walking foot, a lot of my FMQ foot, and Warm and Natural batting (that's the big roll behind my head that I got for $200 during a Jo-Ann's sale for all of my charity quilts, though I've since decided I slightly prefer Quilter's Dream batting).  I spray-basted this one at our DC Modern Quilt Guild Sewing Day at Material Girls in La Plata, MD.  (I love Jessie's blog-post about that!)  And now I'm about to go throw it in the wash to see this crinkle effect that everyone in blogland is so in love with that I normally try to avoid since I like my precise piecing/quilting to be evident!  This time, though, I'm hoping that it will dramatically improve the look of the quilting (aka hide the mistakes a touch), but I had to put a few detail shots here pre-wash so that you could see the myriad that when I'm really good we can all have a laugh about how far I've come!  ;)

When I finish the entire current batch of charity quilts (inspired by Katie through 100 Quilts for Kids), I think I'm going to have to find an old cool split rail fence to hang them all on, since they are going to be quite a sight!  2 completely finished so least 4 more to go!  I started quilting on the first pink one last night, and I'm hoping to finish it this evening while my husband is back in New York City for the rescheduled concert from last Sunday.  I made him be my quilt holder before he got on the road, so for once I actually have an outdoor picture of a quilt.  Don't faint!  ;)