Techniques: Foundation pieced, Hand Quilted
Techniques: Foundation pieced, Hand Quilted
My last finish of 2013:
A scrappy quilt off to the nursing home ministry at my mother’s church.
And my first finish of 2014:
I started this little improv baby quilt back in fall of 2012 as a teaching tool for a class I led for my guild and I just bound it up on 1/1/14. Good to start the year off with a finish!
One of the fun commissions that I have is making church activity bags for the children of Chapel Hill Mennonite Fellowship. They get filled up with coloring books and the like for the kids to entertain themselves during the service. Each child that regularly attends gets their own personalized bag and there are generic bags for visitors.
This latest batch of kids gave me some challenges. Four or five letters fit pretty easily on the bags, 6 or 7 can happen with careful tiny piecing. But this time around I had Wycliffe- great eight letters!
Tons of tiny seams!
But it got done in less the bag width of 13.5 inches. Thank goodness for skinny L and I!
Now, we’ll just have to hope the kids all like their bags!
The couple this quilt is for asked for hexagons and I was a bit concerned. I knew I didn’t have time to hand piece. And it was for a boy, so I knew I wanted something other than the common flower garden lay out. When I saw this pattern, I was sold. Well, mostly sold, I did make a few adjustments. I didn’t want my hexagons to get cut off, so I nearly doubled the background triangles to extend the white to the edges. But I nearly followed a pattern, which is a big deal for me, I rarely have that kind of patience.
I’m so excited about triangles now! Seriously, I have triangles on the mind now and can’t wait to do them again. Maybe a a star layout?
I used a bold Ikea print for the back. I’m totally addicted to these right now. So many things to love about Ikea fabric for backs: Fun designs. Good prices. Wide width=no piecing needed for baby quilt backs. Just wish they would carry more quilting weight fabrics.
This is off in the mail to Chapel Hill Mennonite to welcome their newest baby!
This is not the first time this quilt has shown up here, but it’s a pretty epic finish for me, as well as a very special gift, so I hope you don’t mind me sharing it again for the Blogger’s Quilt Festival! This quilt was on display for almost two months at my guild’s quilt exhibit and there were a few questions that consistently came up, so I though I’d share them my answers with you here, along with the whole start to finish journey of this quilt.
1) How long did this take you? I worked on it for 18 months. But it was fairly sporadic at points and there were months when I didn’t touch it at all, so how many hours- I have no idea. A lot. See next question.
2) How many stitches do you think are in there? Well, for the machine piecing/binding and the hand binding, again, no idea. But since the quilting was one design repeated 16 times, I could measure the quilting of one block and then do some math. Turns out, there are roughly 3,696 inches of hand quilting in this and I averaged 5.5 stitches per inch in the quilting, which brings the grand total to 20,328 stitches, give or take.
3) How much would that cost? To borrow from the good folks at Mastercard, “There are some things in life money can’t buy, for everything else…” and, no, I don’t accept Mastercard. 20,000 hand stitches is my way of saying I love you. Really love you. It’s not for sale.
Thanks for sharing the journey with me. I’m happy to say this quilt is finally in it’s new home (you may have noticed it was a little overdue if you read the label with the wedding date closely) and it really was wonderful to be able to give something so special to my friend Megan. She has been a pretty incredible friend to me since our very first day of college when we moved into the same tiny dorm room together, worth every stitch.
There is a long standing theory/myth that traditionally quilters made one intentional mistake in every quilt- turning a block wrong, using a different color patch, etc- as a religious tradition. Because only God is perfect, no one should attempt to make a perfect quilt, so women supposedly included a “humility block” in all their quilts. According to quilt historians and scholars there has never been a single documented case of this. There are plenty of quilts with one mistake in them, but no evidence from a primary source that they are intentional.
When putting together my last post, I discovered my very own “humility bl0ck” and I assure you, it was fully unintentional. I didn’t see it when I laid out the block, sewed the block, pieced the quilt, sandwiched the quilt, or even quilted the mistake block itself. In fact, I didn’t see it at all until I posted photos of the quilt. Our eyes are incredible editors aren’t they?
I’m totally okay with it my humility block, I think it gives the quilt character! A little mark of my humanity in the work.
My family has been involved in the Somerset Historical Society’s Mountain Craft Days nearly as long as it has existed and it’s a tradition that I love. Growing up I was knicknamed the “Butter Girl” because I ran the Jr. Historian’s butter making booth for several years in high school. Although I had fun (and adore freshly churned butter), I’m pretty glad to have graduated to a much cleaner task- demonstrating quilting and telling the history of the Adam Miller home (an original Somerset County home dating back to at least 1798).
This was the first festival in several years with good weather and the crowds were amazing. There were some 6,000 people on Saturday alone!
All and all a great, if exhausting weekend. I hope I’ll have enough finger strength left tomorrow to type at work!