This is the third post about the quilt that I made as a wedding present for my friend Laura. Last time I talked about process I went through to choose the design of the quilt. Once I’d chosen the design I pieced the quilt top together, by adding white fabric in between my squares. Here’s what it looked like laid out on my bed (before I’d added the white strips to the top and bottom of the quilt as I had to go and buy some more white before I could add them):
After finishing the quilt top I had to start thinking about the back. Laura had a bit of a bunting theme going on with her wedding, it featured on her save the date cards, on the invitation and I knew she had plans for bunting for the wedding itself. Therefore I knew from the beginning that I had to include bunting somehow in the gift. Rather than make it obvious and potentially tacky on the front, I decided to add it to the back; appliquéd onto a solid white back.
Triangles of heat n bond ironed onto the back of the fabric and cut out to make my bunting flags
After spending quite a while fiddling with the flags until I was happy with the layout and fused them on
Then did a small zig-zag around the edges to secure the flag onto the fabric
Now that my top and back were done I could baste and start quilting. I actually tried something different with the basting this time – I used a quilting frame (owned by a friend) to baste the layers together:
It was an interesting experiment to try, but in all honesty I wouldn’t use that method again. While it was much much quicker than the normal way of basting, and much more comfortable (no crawling on the floor!), I don’t think the quality of the basting was anywhere near as good. Because of the way the quilt was rolled onto the frame, the back of the quilt was around the outside, so it actually pulled the back onto it disproportionately to the front and I actually ran out of backing before the end of the top (problem one), and then when I started quilting it I actually ended up with puckers on the backing (problem two). I also noticed towards the end of the whole process that somehow the top had become wonky, I guess from basting it a bit wonky, which was disappointing (problem three). You can’t tell any of these three problems unless you really look for them though.
However, despite those problems I’m still happy with how the quilt turned out, I just wouldn’t use that method again. Once I completed the basting, I could start quilting. I actually already shared a sneak peek of the quilting of this quilt. I chose to stipple over the white sections and do a leaf design in the coloured squares…
I really am thrilled about how well the quilting went. It was a bit of a risk trying something new like this on a quilt that I really felt I needed to work. It wouldn’t have happened at all if it wasn’t for Sally, as my sewing machine was (still) playing up, and she incredibly generously let me use her sewing machine for the quilting. Other than basic functionality of the machine, Sally’s machine made the job easier because hers has a 12″ throat, whereas mine has a 9″ one – those extra 3″ make a huge difference!
What do you think? What quilting design would you have chosen? In the next, and last, post about Laura’s quilt I will talk about the binding and show of some pics of the finished thing!