Saturday, October 2, 2010

One down ... one to go ...

I completed the quilting last night, washed it this morning and sat down at the dining-room table about an hour before I was supposed to leave to meet my aunt to trim the extra threads off the back.  I am embarassed to admit, the dining-room table appears not to have been dusted for awhile ... and the white front of the quilt made a brilliant dust cloth ... ugh ...

So another quick run through the washer and dryer left me <5 minutes for the photo shoot (so that meant a lot of shadows) and we were out the door.

This is my first attempt at straight line quilting (my walking foot arrived about 2 weeks ago) and it was an interesting learning experience! 

I started by quilting on either side of the "ditch" every 6" which put boxes around the 9-patches and the around the 6" white squares.  It quickly became clear that there was entirely too little quilting on this quilt, so I went to JoAnns ... spent an obscene $5 for a washable ink that I could use to draw the lines across the white squares.  Then after another 2 nights of quilting ... I finished!  The $5 pen became a real bargain once I realized that it REALLY DID wash out!

The lines aren't perfect, they go a little close at times and a little far apart at others ... but I thought it was pretty cool how the 2" squares really pop with the straight-line quilting. 

A couple of mistakes lessons:
  • The quilting lines clearly show that the piecing on the back is not straight ...if you look at the yellow and green fabric seam on the left, you can see the seam move to the right as you go down the photo and the quilting remain straight up and down ... I know this means I need to make sure the back is straighter next time, but have to admit I'm not 100% sure how to do this ...

  • I also learned the hard way that it's easy to miss a line and that it show up so easily when you're done ... the verticle line that is 2nd from the right is a single line ... not a double ... oops ... 

I learned my straight-line quilting technique on this one and I have a very gracious Aunt who will look at the fabulous and ignore the faults!  I like the straight line quilting enough that I'm going to give it a try on the 2nd nine-patch that I made for a wedding present. 

If anyone has any tips for straight line quilting ... I would love for you to share them ... I am pretty sure I'm going to be trying a number of these over the coming months!

All the best


  1. Great quilt!! I still can't spot the line you missed he he!
    What I've learned as a newbie machine quilter is feed your quilt in the center bits to keep your stitches even. The weight of the quilt made my stitches smaller in the middle sections.
    Also painters masking tape makes a great guide line for straight line quilting, and is cheap leaving no marks.

  2. Beautiful quilt! Straight line quilting is boring, but effective! The painter's tape is a great tool - don't use the low stick type, it doesn't stick well enough. Just the regular blue tape works great and won't hurt your fabric. Also, supporting the bulk of your quilt will make your stitching go easier - for example, use the dining room table (after you clean it!) to quilt, so it can bear the weight of your quilt. Also, look into organic straight line quilting - it wouldn't necessarily work for this quilt, since you are following the lines of your design, but it incorporates waviness intentionally, which is great if you are straight line quilting across large open areas! And one more thing, on the backs - I have the same problem, so if my backing has lots of straight lines, I may go with free motion quilting. Otherwise, just get it as straight as you can and don't worry about it! Unless you are submitting it for judging, probably no one will notice, or if they do, they won't care!

  3. Gorgeous! I love this! Straight line quilting is rather hard in my opinion. I thought it'd be easy and fast and I soon learned otherwise. I think yours looks great! Even though you missed that one line, had you not pointed it out, I probably would have never noticed! And the back of the quilt, that's a hard one. Personally, I think it's fine, but I know what you mean. It's super hard to get the back all matched up and straight. I have no tips for ya there! I still think it looks fine, even the way it is. So i think the only way to avoid that is to use a solid back, not pieced w/ a design. Yet, even pieced, it looks fine. Another option, maybe straight line quilt on a diagonal. But with the design of this quilt, not sure how that would look. May be interesting! Good luck. You did a great job and this is so stunning!!!! Can't wait to see the next!

  4. i really think your straight lining look great. sometimes perfect is not possible so you just go with it and let it be what it is

  5. Your quilting looks terrific! I think those occassional missed lines add charm to anything handmade.

    I pin my large quilts on a hardwood floor so I try to line my back up along the floor boards. I'm not very fussy about it though!


Comments read daily and THOROUGHLY enjoyed!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...