Wednesday 7 January 2015

works in progress

Everything I have been working on this week is not originally my project. However, they all need to be completed for the Airing in April so I had to get them done, sooner rather than later. Most of my own projects are at the basting stage and I need to make a trip to my LQS to use the big table there for that process so now was as good a time as any to work on other people’s projects!

Here’s what I've been working on (or plan to work on) this week:
  1. four patch quilt – to be bound and labelled
  2. triangle brights and flowers – to be bound and labelled
  3. pink brights and gingham – backing required
  4. K’s project – quilt, bind and label (binding supplied)
  5. QAYG string blocks – 14 more blocks needed
At our community quilting group, when projects go to the long-arm quilter, there must be a top and a backing. When projects come back from the quilters (who volunteer their time to help us), the project is usually given back to the original maker to bind. Sometimes the original creator is not there – either they are a member who is absent that day or the quilt top was donated.

Projects #1 and #2 came back from the quilter but the original makers were not there so I ended up with the quilts to bind and label.

For some reason, the member who donated project #3 did not provide a backing so I was asked to make one.

Project #4 was donated to our group by my quilting teacher – the quilt sandwich is made so the trickiest part is done for me!

I have already made a quilt from the donated QAYG string blocks (project #5) but I still have 28 x 9” blocks left. That’s not enough to make a quilt in the size required in our group so I will have to make some more blocks which shouldn't be too much of a hardship given the number of scraps around here!

So, how has my week gone so far?

I didn't do any cutting or sewing: the heat/humidity has stopped me sleeping well and I was too tired to use my rotary cutter and sewing machine safely! Instead, I auditioned fabrics for bindings for projects #1 and #2, both 280” around.
 2017 binding fabrics
Then I read a novel in a day! It was The Dancing Master by Julie Klassen – historical, romantic (Christian) fiction. Ms Klassen has been described as a ‘modern day Jane Austen’ – I’m not so sure but it was a light, enjoyable read.

I auditioned fabric for the backing of project #3 then put the fabric in the washing machine (on the  ‘easy iron’ setting) because it was stiff and very creased. It’s the same pink fabric in the photo above.
I cut the binding strips, joined them and made binding for both quilts. I then made labels for both quilts from leftover triangle scraps (note to self: write the label after attaching it to the quilt – or write smaller!).
2015 label for Triangles Brights and Flowers
I had to watch a video on binding, because I haven’t bound a quilt for over a year and couldn't remember how to start! Thank goodness for YouTube and all the generous video makers! Eventually, I attached the binding and label to project #1 and began the task of hand-stitching the binding down – I got a little more than halfway (the quilt is 280” around) before it was time for bed!
What looks like a brown and white check is actually tiny white stars on a brown background; which I didn’t notice until I’d already cut the binding strips. It doesn't look like a good choice with that blue backing; but the quilt was mostly browns – here’s a hint (see the checked fabric in the block?:
2015 binding Four Patch not mine hint of front
I started writing this post before I got on with attaching the binding and label to project #2, then I watched another video on mitred corners because mine just weren’t working! They are fine on the front but the back is terrible! I attached the label to the quilt then started sewing on the binding. I got to the second corner and realised there was a hole in the fabric, eight on the fold line of the binding. I had to undo twenty inches so I could remove the hole – it was close to a join in the binding strip – and rejoin the strip. I was about to start sewing again when I realised I was attaching the binding to the back of the quilt! *sigh* 

If it were my quilt, I might have been tempted to keep going but it isn’t and I couldn’t take the risk of bad corners on the front of someone else’s quilt so I spent more than thirty minutes un-sewing the rest of the binding! :-(

Things improved somewhat; I got the binding on eventually. It’s not perfect but it really is the lest I can do. After pressing the binding (I can’t remember ever doing that before but I think I must have – my teacher is very big on pressing) I moved onto project #3.

Piecing a backing involves a bit of maths and, for me at least, the rough drawing of diagrams. Eventually I had it sorted and went to find some strips to join my pieces together – I can’t help myself; it has become my signature to have a panel or some sashing on the back of my quilts. This isn’t mine but I did it anyway. I cut the pieces for the sashing and for the backing. There was some more reverse sewing after I sewed the right side of one piece to the wrong side of another piece but, all in all, with the help of lots of pins, I got the backing finished.
2015 backing for Joyce's quilt
What looks like an off-what fabric is actually a very pale pink. It has some lovely details on the fabric which, of course, can only be viewed close up.
2015 backing for Joyce's quilt detail
Because I have so many other projects to quilt in the near future, and because I think J. would like this quilt in this year’s Airing, I am not going to attempt to quilt it myself. I will pass the backing and the flimsy on to our coordinator, who will in turn, pass it on to one of the long-arm quilters. If I feel so inclined, I may even make the binding to go with the quilt. I’m thinking I’ll make it out of the same fabric as the back – I have some binding left from project #2 and lots of that fabric left. I’ll think on it – it may be too much having the same binding as backing fabric.

So, here it is, Wednesday evening, which still leaves me two full days to work on the other two projects and to get the binding done on projects #1 and #2. I’m linking this post with WiP Wednesday over at Lee’s blog, Freshly Pieced.
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
What about you? Are you crafting this week or is something else occupying your time?


  1. I think you've handled quite a list very well.

  2. Wow! your group is just great!! Looking forward to seeing what other projects you take on this year!

  3. You have had a very productive week, a wonderful start to the new year.

  4. Watch out! It's a LONAR-Lynne on a roll! lol Great accomplishments! Amazing how much you can do when you are home, feeling good and haven't any interruptions! Good for you.

  5. Lots of projects on the go. Right now I am getting ready to teach my first quilting class. Two of the ladies have never seen before. Hugs

  6. Great work. I need to get that organized this year!

  7. Sounds like your community quilting group is very active & productive! Your backing looks great with the added pale pink sashing! Linda

  8. Wow I'm worn out after reading about your sewing. You have been very busy and it looks great.


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