Saturday, 7 October 2017

Winter project link up party - October

I have been looking forward to Jennifer's winter project link party for months. It is my favourite link up. Ever. It is fun to share work in progress with you. I am sharing with you my biggest project ever, a large quilt for our big bed. I am not sure how big it is in royal sizes but the width of the bed is 160 cm. I have been working on this quilt since June and it will probably take until well after Christmas to be finished. I am guessing early spring.  I have written about its beginnings here. To spare you ultimate boredom, I'll give you a brief update each month and show you one or two of my more portable projects.

















It is a crazy quilt, just like I love it. Random, colourful and interesting. Each little block is made with three strips and finishes at 3 inches square. The finished quilt top is made of 729 blocks. That's 2187 small strips of fabric sewn together, measuring just over 2 m square. It seems slightly mad when I read these numbers but honestly, it didn't feel like I was sewing 2187 strips of fabric together. I did what I always do if life seems a bit daunting, I put my head down and get on with it. With big projects, it also helps to break things down a little. I chose to make 20 blocks at the time, for no particular reason really.

Once finished, It took absolutely ages to iron all the seams. I think it is worth the effort, it makes the quilting a bit easier.

The backing was a bit of a faff. Ikea sheets are good but of course they had run out of flat sheets in the colour I liked. I bought the largest fitted sheet and removed the elastic and unpicked the corner seams, hoping it would be big enough. It wasn't because the corners that you would normally have in a flat sheet were cut out to make it fitted.... I ripped the sheet apart and filled the gap with an eight inch fabric band made up of quilting cottons from my stash. Then I stitched another eight inch wide strip of quilting cottons to the top of the sheet.

The batting is something I have not used before: Quilter's Dream Orient, made with bamboo, silk, Tencel and cotton. I chose it because it has excellent reviews from hand quilters.

I spent about 1.5 hours on my knees to make the sandwich, taping the back to the floor and layering with with the batting and top. I pinned the sandwich with curved safety pins. It was not fun. It took great care in aligning the colourful stripe down the middle with the sides because I am a glutton for punishment and because I have a strange ability to notice even the slightest deviation from parallel lines.

I am procrastinating now, the quilting part is a bit daunting. By machine or hand? What thread? What colour? What pattern? I most fancy meandering about but I am also thinking of chevrons or maybe diagonal lines. What do you think I should do? I can't make up my mind.

For now, I'll procrastinate, I am good at this. Meanwhile, you might as well pop over to Jennifer's blog and read about her crochet adventure and while you are there, you should definitely check out the other links.

Happy Sunday! x

24 comments:

  1. All that hard work and effort has resulted in a beautiful quilt top, Christina. I love the randomness and craziness of all the fabric patterns and colours. My beady li'l eye too, always seems to pick up on the slightest deviation. As for quilting, it always takes a long time to decide which pattern to use. I rather like the thought of diagonal lines, though meandering every which way would look super. This quilt is going to look amazing when resting atop your big bed.

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  2. It is amazing and it is not even done yet! Wow, I am so impressed. I was sewing Little Buddy's Halloween costume today and it is all wobbly and wonky. But that is how I sew!!!! Can't wait to see this gorgeous blanket of ours all finished.

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  3. I'm not going to be any help Christina, sorry. I've never done any quilting or patchwork, though I did do soft furnishings at school in Needlework at CSE level. I made curtains for my bedroom with a matching sort of giant pillowcase which I put my - unzipped, flat sleeping bag inside and laid it on top of the blankets.
    We didn't have quilts and duvets, instead we had sheets, blankets and an eiderdown or a candlewick bedspread. I don't suppose many young people would have a clue what I'm talking about.
    I do love the look of your quilt, it's very bright and cheerful. You've just reminded me that I still need to finish some dinner place mats I was making. They are made with fat quarters gingham fabric that has been folded in half. I suppose with the sewn lines holding the wadding in place that's the closest to quilting I've done. I was advised to sew the bias binding, (that was attached on one side only with the machine), by hand with neat stitches. I've done 4 and I need to finish the other 4. If my sewing wasn't steady, it'd show wonky on the right side.
    Hope you can decide what is best. Cathy x

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  4. It's huge and wonderful! What an incredible undertaking. I can't imagine quilting it by hand, but then I wonder how you'd do such a big one by machine, mine would squeal its head off. Love the colors and randomness of it. It's so straight I think curvy quilting would be fantastic.

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  5. WOW! I love what you have completed thus far, Christina! Since I slowly complete small projects, my opinion about how you should complete your gorgeous, gigantic project is suspect. However, I think you should follow your heart and hand or machine quilt depending on which you most enjoy. I romantically dream of completely hand stitching a patchwork quilt, but so far it is just a dream :) xx

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  6. I'm totally impressed with what you have so far and all your sandwiching and pinning and sewing.. bravo! I actually love hand quilted things.. but I also know how long that takes.. I think a sewn chevron design would be amazing. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  7. It looks amazing, such a wonderful array of beautiful colours and fabrics. I always hand sew but that is because I am not confident with the sewing machine. Looking forward to watching the progress.

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  8. That is absolutely stunning Christina. I just love the random colours, it is so cheerful. I'm glad it is you not me who has to quilt it though!

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  9. I love how bright and colourful it is, lots of really fun fabrics, just gorgeous! Looking forward to seeing the end product.

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  10. I am in awe Christina. That quilt is looking beautiful already. I'm sure however you choose to stitch it will look wonderful. I look forward to seeing the finished item. B x

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  11. I'm all for crazy and meandering since I never feel that anything handmade should have to be perfect. I can't imagine doing all those strips and squares. It's colorful and gorgeous!

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  12. Could you go stitch in the ditch chevrons? I am rubbish at machine sewing quilts because the one down side of a brother sewing machine (new or not) is that the aperture is small. Keep us posted. Jo x

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  13. It's fantastic Christina. I do love a nice big project. I made a quilt for my bed last year; still haven't photographed it for the blog. I use that bamboo batting as well, love it. I shall look forward to seeing your progress. CJ xx

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  14. Oh my gosh, I love it. That is so cool and crazy and colorful. It goes perfectly with your colorful life, I think. My link up is your favorite ever? WOW, thank you. That means so much to me. I'm so glad you enjoy it. Thank you for joining in, I'm very happy to have you. :)

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  15. WOW those are gorgeous & what a lot of work. I would never have the patience for the fine detail work. Works of art, works of love.

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  16. oh I love it. x and I think chevrons x

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  17. That quilt is beautiful! I love how all the colours are just there, and it looks both carefully planned and carelessly thrown together at once. My friend quilts, but I don't have the patience for that. Have you used it yet, or are you waiting for the real cold winter to arrive?

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  18. it is gorgeous and a lot of effort put in. I've completed a (much smaller) top - well have to put a border around it, then do the backing which freaks me out a bit. Then binding, which is even more daunting... one day!

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  19. That is amazing! You have so much patience to sew all of those tiny pieces! I can't wait to see how you choose to quilt it. Any way you do will look fantastic

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  20. Fabulous and colourful, it looks like a parquet floor in wild designs with you standing on it. xx

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  21. Love that quilt! The colours and patterns are gorgeous. Can't imagine what it must be like to work with something so huge.

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  22. What a gorgeous quilt. Those bright bold colours are enough to cheer up any damp and dreary winter's day. x

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  23. It is just gorgeous!!! Take your time in deciding how to quilt it. Meanwhile bask in its beauty :)

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Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment, I love to hear from you, I really do. I sometimes reply by email but I am not all that reliable... Christina xx