Done and done!
This weekend my mom and I went on another wonderful quilt retreat. It was so lovely and relaxing. I worked like crazy and I finished my charity quilt! (Also, apparently I was wrong about the quilt recipients – they’re for summer camps for kids with cancer.)
When you last saw it, I had put my quilt sandwich together. I had also made my binding, but I didn’t include a picture of that in the last post. (I didn’t go with my original plan for scrappy binding – I used a soft grey.)
I took everything to the retreat with me, where I began my quilting.
I hadn’t decided how to quilt it, so I showed it to my mom and she gave me the idea for diagonal lines, running in parallel to the seams, like this:
I spaced them unevenly for some visual interest, using light grey thread. I thought it needed a neutral. I’d thought about using light blue thread but there wasn’t any blue in the center section, so I went with the grey instead. In some places the the quilting went into the border because I was using a different machine and hadn’t adjusted to an automatic reverse button. I have a Kenmore and I need to push and hold the reverse button, but when I release it the reversing stops. I didn’t bring the machine to the retreat; instead, I used my mother’s spare machine, which is a Viking that belonged to my grandmother before she died. We’ve never used it before. The machine has an automatic reverse where you have to take the foot off the pedal and then press the button. Then it still goes forward a stitch before it begins to reverse. Then you have to repeat the process to get it to go forward again and I didn’t always hit the button hard enough or remember to take my foot off the pedal. I have it mostly figured out now, but I probably won’t be using the machine again for months, by which point I’ll have to get adjusted to it again.
I wasn’t going to extend the quilting into the blue border (intentionally) – I was going to do some other design in the blue border – but I changed my mind. I stuck with the grey thread. I continued the parallel lines.
I had one spot where the seam hadn’t caught one piece – I don’t know how I didn’t notice it until I was quilting. I hand-sewed it closed with the grey thread.
For the side sections, I did a kind of zig zag design in parallel to the sides of the hexagons. I traced lines 1.5″ in from each edge.
For the top and bottom sections, I continued the same quilting design into the hexagons above and below the side sections. I did the same design for the other blue hexagons. For the remaining orange pieces I quilted an X across the center of each one. (What would you call the shape of the orange pieces, an hourglass?) In the picture below you can hopefully see the design traced one of the orange hourglasses. (I made a mark 1.5″ in from each edge and a mark in the center of the narrow part, then drew diagonal lines from one side to the other through the center.)
Here are pictures of the quilting from the back:
This is the first quilt I’ve ever bound. I did it all by machine because I was in a rush. (Also, because it’s a charity quilt.) I sewed the binding onto the back first, then flipped it over and sewed it onto the front. I used the grey thread for both just in case it showed. (In a couple of places, it did.) I didn’t sew the binding perfectly and I’m not sure if the soft fabric might be slightly to blame for that, but I’ll also get more skilled with this in time. (I had a needle issue, too, which we fixed later. It was my fault – I hadn’t taken out all the safety pins along the edge and I hit one.) I didn’t finish the binding properly so there’s a bit of a bulge.
The quilt is finished! Yay! This one was a lot of stress. I’m happy with the final product, but I wish I’d gone with something much simpler and less time consuming.