My Blog List

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

That quilt again...


Once I've started making something, I don't like to stop, but a couple of months ago I had come to a standstill with my patchwork quilt. I had finished the top part, but when it came to continuing, I admit I was feeling stumped. I read books on the subject, but somehow I just couldn't understand what I needed to do. I've explained before how hard I find written instructions. I need things spelt out and illustrated and I felt that the books assumed a lot of prior knowledge (and ownership of an all-singing all-dancing sewing machine), neither of which I have. I didn't turn to YouTube because I knew I'd need to keep on consulting the instructions and obviously you can't do that with a video. Enter my friend Lucy....she makes beautiful quilts and she suggested that I come along to her sewing group in a local village hall and bring my project with me.


I was nervous: I thought everyone else would be very skilled and would notice my big stitches and wonky lines. But, although the ladies were very talented, they couldn't have been nicer, or more encouraging, and Lucy was soon sorting me out. We used some big village hall tables to lay out my quilt.


Lucy showed me how to lay the quilt on top of the wadding, and then pin the squares to it, smoothing it out as I went. I needed quilt pins, like safety pins with a bump in them. I have now bought some and replaced all my conventional pins.


Now I have to do something called sewing 'in the ditch.' That's a running stitch, following the lines of the squares, working side to side and stitching close to the seam but not on it. I started last night. I am doing it by hand on Lucy's recommendation. It is not easy, but I am underway and it's a great thing to do on a winter's evening as it is so cosy now that my quilt has wadding attached to it.


Actually the most useful guide I've seen is in the new Prima Makes magazine. There is a very pretty quilt in there with clear instructions. Meanwhile, I am delighted to be back on with the quilt. I've sorely missed having something to make in the evenings, and now I have plenty to keep me occupied. Once the quilting is done, I'll be attaching the backing, and that will require a second visit to the sewing group. I can't wait!

14 comments:

  1. Your quilt looks so colourful and cosy and nothing can replace 'hands on' help when you are stuck.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're right, and people are really generous with their help. I can't go to sewing group every week as I work,but I want to try and pop along regularly.

      Delete
  2. This is looking stunning! what a collection of fabrics.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for saying that, I am pleased with the colours, that's what drives me on! And makes me think I'd like to do another one some time...

      Delete
  3. Love all the different reds of your quilt. Glad you found help at a sewing group and not surprised to hear they were encouraging. I go to a knitting/crochet group not every week as like you I work, the ladies there are so accomplished but very encouraging to a novice like me. Have you done the basting yet ? (new word I learned this week)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ooh, no I haven't done basting. Sewing in the ditch was enough for one week ;)

      Delete
  4. Your quilt top is gorgeous, I am swooning over your fabrics and your perfect little square blocks. I have been using regular safety pins . . . tell me . . do you like the quilt pins a lot better and why? I might just have to think about purchasing some,if they work better. I am going to spend my afternoon hand-quilting today, too. It is very relaxing to me.
    Happy Valentines.
    Your blogging sister, Connie :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Connie, my friend who makes quilts to sell recommended the quilt pins, she said you can take up a little more material and it's less likely to wrinkle. I am not sure as I am so new to all of this! Thanks for your encouraging words, I am really enjoying this! You're right that it is relaxing and I can't wait to get started tonight when everyone is out at football practice :)

      Delete
  5. Your quilt is beautiful. A simple patchwork quilt is really my favorite kind.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Love the fabric and the way the patches balance each other.

    ReplyDelete
  7. ~ Ooh WOW glad you got your quilty 'mojo' back once more...The colours are quite beautiful, Fiona! ~ patience always pays out...and what a nice helpful lady you called upon..........With hugs, Maria x

    ReplyDelete
  8. I Love the clear brightness of your blog on these grim windy days many thanks hx

    ReplyDelete
  9. It's absolutely beautiful, Fiona, and I'm so impressed that you're going to do all that hand stitching, to create what will become a family heirloom of the future. It is so happy making ... full of vibrancy, movement and most of all, memories.

    Thank you for visiting Thriftwood yesterday ... it's always lovely to 'see' you!

    Have a Happy Monday

    Love Claire xxx

    ReplyDelete

About Me

My Photo
I'm a freelance journalist living in a village in East Northamptonshire with my husband and youngest son. I love visiting car boot sales, auctions and markets and writing about my inexpensive finds, and also some small craft projects and my attempts at watercolour painting and patchworking. I'm the editor of a local magazine, so I find out about loads of interesting things that are happening in my community, some of which I share here, too.