23 October 2011

Things learnt from quilting on a major scale.

A while back I tried my hand at quilting. It was a small first attempt but I was happy with it despite the fact that the littlest brother still refers to it as a "foot blanket."

Maybe I was naive or just very unrealistic but this half term I decided the time was ripe to try a full sized quilt. Yep, one to cover my whole bed.

There are several lessons learnt from this experience.

1. You need serious arm muscles to feed a single duvet sized quilt through a machine. I had no idea how heavy it would get!

2. Be careful. When quilting with such large pieces of material it is vital to go slowly. I ended up having to unpick all four sides of quilting because it was gathering up all over the place simply because I had not taken the time.

3. Pin to an inch of the quilts life. It will save so much time later.

4. When sewing keep checking that the machine is actually sewing. I got to the end of the longest side having happily chugged along, when I realised that the bobbin had run out and the machine had sewn precisely two inches. cue expletives and much shouting at the machine for not informing me of this.

5. Although quilting ( going across each square on the patchwork) seems to take an age, the end result is so worth it.

6. Thick batting is a love hate relationship. I hated working with it. It was heavy, puffed up, didn't lie flat and was generally annoying. That said it hid a multitude of mistakes and has resulted in a very thick and warm finished quilt. Bonus for when I live in Durham I think.

7. Machine sew in the day and handstich in the evening. That way Downton Abbey and quilting can be combined. Result.

8. No matter how much you talk to your little brother he will insist on calling this quilt the "body blanket." Hmmm.

Honestly though, it was such an adventure to make. For the first time I made a quilt using a set of fat quarters rather than material I had chosen. This was so much easier because the quilt is coordinated, has similar colours and all the same weight material. I am no expert but learnt so much through trial and error. The next step...double duvet sized?? Or not.

What crafty things have you been up to recently?

Loves xxx


scrappyjacky said...

The quilt looks wonderful,Abi.....and all you've learned will make the next one so much easier.
I'm taking Shimelle's latest class....and being taken right out of my comfort zone with scrapbooking!

humel said...

Love your new header, Abi :) And love your quilt! It was worth all the hard work - though I did have to laugh about the bobbin thread (sorry...) having had a similar experience this week myself. Fortunately for me it was a papercraft project so the length in question was much shorter - but then I had to try to match up the needle holes exactly, as paper is rather less forgiving!

Beverly said...

Abi, I am always so impressed by your desire to try new things and how well they turn out. The quilt looks lovely! My mil is a quilter and recently made a king (not sure if ya'll use the same sizing over there but it is huge. She was commenting on the immense wgt she had to work with as well.