I have been away for a while, from here as well as the other blog. But that does not mean I have not been making stuff. Actually I have been very busy. And I have a stack of quilt tops and unfinished cushions and pillows to prove it. But instead of showing you all of that now, let’s do one at a time, one finished project at a time that is. I did make a promise to myself that I will be finishing from now on, until I am done… finishing. But sometimes it is hard to do only finishing without starting something new. Especially if finishing takes a looong time…
But now for the finished Chiara quilt. Chiara is a little girl who is going to be receiving this quilt any day now.
Inspiration for this quilt came from this mug rug in my flickr favs… I shamelessly copied it; made 4 different blocks and then sewed them together. I had to make this quilt very quickly – I had less than a week. Can you do a quilt in less than a week? Yes, but I wouldn’t recommend it. And I will never try it again.
I originally intended for the quilt to be bigger, but then, wisely, made 2 less blocks and finished it off. What worked for me is that I actually ended up making a little bit bigger half square triangles, so the quilt actually ended being a nice size, even without those 2 extra blocks.
Then… I planned to made the background in natural linen. But… I didn’t have enough. I couldn’t believe it. It was Thursday evening, quilt was supposed to be done by Sunday morning, and the closest fabric store is Jo-Anne’s where I do NOT shop for linen. I really had to finish cutting that evening, and I did NOT want to do the white background, so what to do? Ahhhh… that humongous pile of thrifted sheets! I tried a few, and this dotty, light green 100% cotton worked the best.
(pictures were horrible, most of them taken at very bad light, some even at night, so they are heavily post-processed and not very good). This is the first block. And I was very happy when I finished it. I really liked the background. The light blue might not be working so great, but I had no time to go choosing new fabric combos.
Block #3, and…
Quilting… ahhh quilting. I always like to do as much quilting as possible. But I didn’t know how I would do with time, so I decided to just outline the squares as a first step. I was right, I ran out of time, so there was no second step. Even though adding diagonal quilting lines would have been nice.
And then… this dotty, repurposed fabric… well, it’s a nice quality sheet, but it was a bit slippery and stretchy. Also, probably a little denser weave, since the needle kept skipping stitches. I need to change the needle, the thread and due to stretching… I had to quilt from inside out, like you baste the quilt. If I tried quilting from edges, nightmare, even with many pins. The fabric would bunch up and move… So, using sheeting fabric has it’s negative sides too.
I also had problems keeping stitches at a constant length. I had to go over skipped stitches (there was no time for unpicking), it was really a nightmare. And very time consuming. I though it would look horrible. That I would not be able to finish it – I mean, I cannot gift just anything…
But I kept my fingers crossed. And finished it. And washed it.
And it looks really good. The fabric stretched and got wrinkled, or something, but you cannot see any quilting flaws. And I DID look closely. I have to say, I am really happy with how it turned out.
But I will never, ever again attempt to make a quilt in 4 days.
Oh, yes, and for the back, I also used a thrifted sheet. This was was also 100% cotton, brand new.