Happy Third Sunday of Advent!
Today I’m showing you a Christmas present for Z’s dad J. (Not to be confused with Z’s grandpa, Mr. J. This is how I differentiate between them when I speak to them, actually.) Months ago I went to the LQS near my parents’ house with my mom and I bought the fabrics I would ultimately use for my magnum opus. While I was there, a runner kit caught my eye. They were selling this pattern, “Braid Runner” by G. E. Designs, with all nautical fabrics. It was adorable, and perfect for Z’s dad, who spends much of his retirement at the beach, or out on the water fishing. I had to buy it. (When I started telling my friends what I was making for Z’s family this year they thought that everything in their house must be patriotic/nautical and I’m trying to match it. I had to explain that, no, that’s not the case – at least not until I started making things for them hehe.)
I made it over the summer, knowing how crazy December would be, present wise. Z doesn’t read my blog and I don’t think his dad has any idea I even have a blog, so I feel comfortable sharing it now even though I won’t give it to him until Christmas.
I cut the fabric for this, the flag quilt, and the flag pillow all at once so I could use scraps in the different projects if I wanted to (and so I’d know if I needed to buy more fabric for Z’s quilt). I used some of the same fabrics in the quilt and the pillow. I might have used leftovers from the runner in the binding for Z’s quilt but now I’m not sure. I’m keeping all my red, white, and blue scraps together for future projects!
This kit is quilt as you go, which I’d never done before. (After this I did my butterfly doll quilt partially quilt as you go, but this was my first time.) I’ll tell you what I liked about it and what I didn’t like:
I liked that I finished it all in one go and didn’t have to go quilt it once it was all pieced and sandwiched.
I didn’t like that I had to keep taking it off the sewing machine to go pin the next piece on. I like doing all the cutting at once, and then all the sewing at once, and then all the ironing at once. It disrupted my rhythm. I also didn’t like that if I made sewing mistakes they showed up on the back in the quilting. I forgot about that until I had made a mistake and then I could see it on the back.
I hadn’t even thought to change threads – I could have used a pretty pale blue thread that might have blended into the back, but by the time I thought of it, it was too late. I used white thread instead because that’s what I always use when I’m piecing.
I accidentally left in a safety pin holding the batting and backing together. I later had to cut it out. It doesn’t show too much, I don’t think. That’s my own fault and carelessness, not necessarily a problem with quilt as you go, in general, but I could see myself having the same problem in the future.
I do think the quilting looks good on the back despite my mistakes. I wasn’t sure about binding a non-square object but that turned out okay. I’m very happy with how the runner came out. Also, I would recommend this pattern if you find it appealing. Although I struggled a bit with adapting to quilt as you go, the pattern itself was pretty easy to follow and I think it’s really cute. (Ignore the unevenness of my borders. Obviously I did something wrong there, but that’s user error.)
I never took a picture of it after I sewed all the binding down – sorry about that!
Z told me his dad will love it, once I explain what a runner is.