With persistence, all 326 inches of the binding was hand stitched to the back and done before I went home for Easter.
Here is a full view of the quilt:
It contains 44 of the 45 blocks from Lori Holt's Farm Girl Vintage book. (I omitted the "Old Glory" block of the American flag.) The setting is my own invention. It needed to be created to accommodate my combination of 6-inch and 12-inch blocks.
The sashing is proportionally a bit wide, but I wanted the centre of the quilt to cover the top of a queen mattress. I think it also helps to calm the quilt down a bit because that is a lot of busy blocks all together!
Looking at it now, I would have liked the green diamond accents to have been larger and perhaps centred differently. But there were constraints presented by the way the sashing was constructed and the fact that a 12-inch block is not as big as two 6-inch blocks plus a sashing in between.
The corner blocks of the border are also an issue as they don't appear to be centred in the space because the outer triangles match the border fabric. I'll have to research how to do it differently, or just use a different block as cornerstones. (I did consider star blocks but I wanted to keep the borders simple and clean. Maybe I should have used the maple leaf block.)
Don't start thinking that I don't like the quilt because I certainly do. But I can't help but evaluate what I think worked and what I would do differently next time. And this is the place where I record my thoughts.
One thing I am happy with is the look of the blocks. I was going for a low-contrast look and think it worked out. The contrast between the different block pieces isn't really stark but it's not all mush either. You can still easily see what the blocks are.
I don't think I've showed the binding yet:
I cut the backing and batting about 1/8" past the quilt top so that I could sew the binding on with a 3/8" seam. This way binding will be completely "stuffed" by the batting but you won't end up with a really thin binding on the front.
I basted the flange down first with a zigzag stitch so it would tamp down the outer edge at the same time. I cut the binding at 2.5 inches (worried it might be a bit large) but am very happy I didn't go with 2.25 inches. There ended up being a few spots I had to trim the extra batting and backing down a bit so the binding would fit.
This was the first quilt where I sewed down the mitred corners of the binding. I never really believed it was necessary or made a difference, but dang if it didn't look a lot better!
|Sewn on right; not sewn on left.|
After the quilt was done and I could sit back and look at it, I was surprised at how well centred the quilting pattern turned out. You can see on the farmhouse that the pattern has loops exactly on both chimneys and first floor windows.
I mentioned that I pieced the back:
The back ended up quite a bit larger than the front, which is good for loading it on the long arm machine, but did result in some funny spots on the back. Like here:
On the sides, the outside 10" blocks were cut off to just a few inches:
One thing I noticed while doing the binding and my nose was just inches from the quilt, was a lot of spots on the back where the batting was pushed through the fabric and where the needle tore through the fabric instead of piercing it cleanly.
While visiting at Easter, I had a little quilt show and tell at my mom's house of my recent quilts. Here is the Farm Girl Vintage on her bed:
And I know you've been waiting for this too...here is Kim's quilt:
And here's one more shot of my quilt on the bed we set up for my sister (a different sister) in the construction zone:
Project stats and facts:
- The quilt is 74x84".
- The project was started in January 2016, and one block was done each week throughout the year as a quilt-along with my sister.
- The blocks are a mix of hand sewn and machine sewn.
- Although I would do it if I had to, I have no desire to work with 1" and 3/4" pieces again!
- I spoke to this sister more in 2016 than any other year of our lives as we Skyped each week to show our blocks.
- Most fabrics were purchased as I decided on a 1930s theme and had none in my stash. (A few stash fabrics that fit in well enough were used.)
- It was the third quilt I have done on a long arm machine. I created the pantograph pattern because I wanted the look of chicken wire.