Archive for category Sewing
By the skin of my teeth, or at least at the very last moment, I’ve managed to finish the quilt! I even have two days to spare before I fly away. It’s not my best work in some places, partly because I was in a hurry. But this is my second quilt that highlights the fun things you can do with triangles, and the first quilt that uses rhomboids. If I ever want to get each point matching perfectly up with the other points, I’ll have to work a lot harder to match centers and corners and straight, consistent seams. As it is, the illusion is not disturbed by imperfection, and my brother (the recipient of this twin-sized quilt) seems quite happy with the result. He won’t put it down.
This is the last of my big projects that I wanted to get done before grad school. I have that stupid 40s dress I will probably never finish because it looks terrible on me. I also have projects sitting in the fabric bucket (don’t judge me! I’ve become a minor fabriholic underling!) that will have to wait until after grad school or until I can move them out to Boston for that free time I hope not to have. Hopefully my next post will be more grad school related and less sewing inspired.
It’s been a month since I purchased fabric for this project, and I’m finished with the piecing, and working on the stripping. I cut several hundred triangles, which is a challenge trying to keep the grain from shifting while you cut the diagonal. The piecing of triangles around a center square is also difficult since you have to center the triangle over the square. After sewing those hundreds of triangles, I’ve become quite adept at eyeballing “center” of both square and triangle. Each quilt I make, I get better and better matching corners and keeping my seams the same width. The triangles added a challenge to those corners, but putting the strips together have been fairly easy since most things match. My triangle to triangle corners aren’t perfect, but I don’t have the patience to rip seams out to get them there. It’s just not worth my effort or time. The latter is especially limited since I have only a month to finish the quilt before I jet off to Boston and the thrills of grad school.
I am doomed. My cries a month ago for “never again” will I make a quilt that large have faded into the not-so-distant past, and I am once again embarking on a new quilt piece of art. It is slightly smaller than the one I made for my sister, but the piecing is more intricate. Until I get a long-arm sewing machine, I’m sure that either the piecing will be elaborate or the quilting will be elaborate. Hopefully not both.
The pattern is frequently called Storm at Sea (go google it for yourself for an inkling of the coolness and the beauty of other individual’s interpretation). Usually in a blue motif, as suggested by the name. But I’m going to shake up the typical a bit, and do it in mossy greens for the poor soul who doesn’t know it’s coming. After a quick trip to my local Jo-Ann’s, (and when I say quick, I mean quick! It was the fastest I’ve ever picked quilt fabric In my Life!) I came up with the following four pieces. The horns and music fabric will be the backing, the other three pieces for the quilt.
As always I am extremely excited to get started with the cutting and the piecing. The beginning of the project is a magical point where anything is possible, and the anticipation of seeing the finished project is intoxicating. Ask me about in a few days, when my back hurts from cutting each individual triangle, and I look at the pile before me finished and ready to piece, which will seem to be neverendingly smaller than the pile of pieces yet to cut. Luckily this one I should be able to machine quilt, which is my least favorite part.
Onward I go! As soon as the fabric goes through the rinse and dry process. Until then, my large stack of books call.
The past four or five days have seen me madly putting together a wedding gift for a dear friend who got married today. Her whirlwind romance culminated in the ultimate commitment, and I honor her with the following gift: The peony and quail patterns were from a book in the family collection, but the arrangement and words are all my own creative process. Sometimes I amaze myself with my own creativity. It’s been a long time since I used the ol’ counted-Cross stitch skills, but it seems that after about 40 hours of work, they are still in good working order. I still have to decide how to frame the work, whether in a picture frame, or a circular fabric wall hanging. I shall test a few options before deciding, but the bulk of the hard work is finished and I am pleased with the result. Hope they will be too.
I may not be able to take my sewing machine and fabric collection with me to grad school *insert large sigh here*, but perhaps I will slip in a counted-cross stitch project to work on during my down times or when I need something to do with my hands while my brain is otherwise broken.
Congratulations to my dear friend Marissa and her new husband!
Finally, after a year of cutting, sewing, matching, stitching, quilting and cursing, my sister’s quilt is Finished. I must say, it’s probably the best work I’ve done on a quilt. The corners all match, the colors work, and the quilting doesn’t distract from the quilt pattern.
And so, I present, the queen-sized, Double Irish Chain quilt. Complete with purple theme (her favorite color), and a dragon backing (for her Chinese and Asian study love).
Remind me not to make another quilt this size. At least not for a while. I always forget just how much work it is – and how satisfying the end result is!