Sunday, June 27, 2010

Lessons learnt....the hard way

I was recently inspired to make the strip quilt that appeared in the May edition of Australian Better Homes and Gardens. I started work on it during the week and was having a lovely time matching the gorgeous Woodland Delight in coral and aqua and Flights of Fancy fabrics by Paula Prass. Everything was going swimmingly until I realised that the little bits on the end that I was trimming as I was going were getting bigger. Sadly it was late at night and I was head wasn't joining the dots so to speak. Whilst I was aligning one side of my fabrics, or so I thought, I was actually coming in slightly with each strip, so the other end was being trimmed far more than it should have been. The next bit was a disaster. Once I realised what I'd been doing, I had to rectify the alignment as best I could. So trim away I did. What should have been a 111cm(43") wide quilt ended up being 93cm (around 36"). This meant that the length was all out of proportion, so I had to adjust that too by taking out several rows.
I've rescued the quilt as best I can but I am worried that the sides may still be a little on the diagonal and not sit as straight as I would like.
I'm thinking that for future strip quilts I'll iron the strips in half (or finger press) and align from the middle.
The left over bits have not gone to waste. I've used them in a peiced strip of piano keys on the back.
I'm quilting in straight lines of quilting using my walking foot and aligning the rows either side of the seams and if the strip is wide enough, just in again the width of the foot.
Looking at it now, this was probably not the ideal quilting method for the pieced back because the quilt lines haven't matched up perfectly on the back with the pieced section. I should probably have stippled and then it would not have been so obvious. So whilst I haven't wasted any fabric in the scheme of things, I'm not totally thrilled with the outcome. Just lucky I haven't any plans for a recipient just yet. I'm holding out that it still might all work out in the wash but if not, I'll put it down to a very big learning experience!

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