Saturday, June 23, 2012

Feeling Brave...

 ...or foolhardy, I'm not sure which ;-) I have been working on my quilting spree, still quilting up quilts from that first pin-basting spree. With the baby quilt I finished quilting today, I only have one pin-basted one left to go, then I can bind the quilted ones, and start on pin-basting the next few.

This is the baby quilt I was working on today. It is flannel and denim, and reminds me of my mother's china. Because I've been quilting on denim quilts, I have been doing pretty simple stuff, trying to avoid corners where all the heavy seams meet. I did a couple denim quilts with spirals in each square, and a couple with these wavy lines. When I got to the border on this quilt, I was sick of doing what I had been doing, and I figured I'd try making feathers.

Now, I've never made feathers before, and I considered going upstairs to watch a video on how to do it (I have watched them before, but not lately) I decided I was likely to wake the twins up if I did that, so I didn't. I have never practiced drawing feathers, like I had with some designs, but I just felt like trying it, and I knew the fabric in the border was busy enough that if they came out lousy it wouldn't show too much.

That busy fabric with matching thread made things more difficult than they needed to be as it turns out. It was hard to see where I had been to exactly match the return path. I couldn't really remember how to start, so I made a wavy line in the center of the border all the way around it. I didn't mark it at all. I made all the left hand feathers first, going all the way around the quilt, then all the right hand ones. I went up from the bottom, and I think a lot of people go the other way.

Here is a view of the back of the quilt, where you can see a little better how they came out. I didn't even try to make all the feathers the same size, because the wonky feathers I've seen are more fun to me.

Now, I had never made feathers before, and I had certainly never turned corners with them, but the way I started I had four corners to navigate. I just winged it along with everything else.

Here is one of my corners, not the best one, just the closest one to me when I was taking pictures.

They are not the prettiest feathers, but not bad for being completely unprepared and doing it on a whim. Quilting sprees really work best for me. When I have multiple quilts to quilt, I get a bit braver on tackling new designs. When I am only quilting one at a time, I tend to stick with what I know and am comfortable with. I wish my quilting spree for this year wasn't going to be quite so long, I let way too many quilt tops build up this time. I think somewhere in the four to six quilt tops in a spree would be better, not the twenty-five or so I had at the beginning of this quilting spree.

I am working on a couple other projects as well. I got the machines back from the repairman, and I tried playing a little with the featherweight. I can't find those accessories I bought in Flagstaff, so I was stuck using the foot that is on the machine. I am really glad I ordered a 1/4" foot for it, because the foot that is one it too small for me to feel comfortable with it. I was trying to make some string blocks with it, and I just wasn't getting into it, though the machine runs well. My new presser foot will get here Tuesday, so I will just wait for it.

The treadle will have to wait, DH wants to have the cabinet refinished before we put the machine back in. I am hoping we can just repair the bottom of the cubby that fell out (still have the piece, it just needs to be secured), and refinish the top of the cabinet.The sides and front of the cabinet are in pretty good shape, and I'd like to keep it as original as possible.

My piecing project on my Aurora is Double Delight. I can't believe still haven't finished that quilt, it was a mystery quilt from 2008! I have been chuckling as I have been working on it. I only went scrappy on two colors in that quilt, because my stash at the time didn't have enough variety to go scrappy on more than that. Even on those two colors, I know I went and bought some fabric to have enough variety. Even though I was a fairly new quilter then, I was already breaking rules, and I am setting the quilt differently and using different borders. I recently cut my pieced border for it (on my trip to Flagstaff last month) and it will be much scrappier than the rest of the quilt. I am assembling the quilt as leaders/enders while I work on the maple leaf border blocks. It is slow going, because I am trying to put most of my sewing time into my quilting spree.

1 comment:

Kristie said...

Wow! I think they look great! Ya know, I've never tried feathers either. I'm always afraid so I just end up sticking with a pantograph design. Maybe someday I will try...