Thursday, June 10, 2010

Quilting, in progress

This was my first time spray-basting my quilt top/batting/backing sandwich. And hey, I liked it! My first thought was to do it outside to avoid the fumes...but it was too windy. Then I thought I'd tape the backing to the floor like Sarah suggested. This might have worked if it was the cats' naptime. As it was, they believed I was laying a blanket out for them to bathe, wrestle, and lounge upon. Why, oh why do they torture me? Sigh. I was about to shut them in a room for awhile when I realized, hey, I like to pin my quilt backs to the carpet anyway. So I got out my t-pins and did that. Kitty footprints don't mess them up quite as much.
I followed Sarah's method for spray-basting and it was easy. Although I had opened all the windows, the fumes were not bad at all. I still want to try 505...I had even gone to North Syracuse to The Mission Rose but they were all out. Oh well next time.
I started by quilting in-the-ditch around the borders. Basic stuff.

I only have one teeny pucker in the back. I'm going to pretend it's not there. I won't even show you because of course it's NOT there.
Then I moved on to stippling. Now it should be noted that the only quilts I've stippled before are placemats. I did experiment on some scraps but a large quilt is a very different experience. I felt like I was not in control of the pattern/quilt/machine and it was really really frustrating. After I did about a quarter of a column I got so aggravated that I ripped out all of my stitches. It took forever and I seriously felt like crying. Ridiculous I know. But I was disappointing myself. Why should this be so hard? It's called "meandering," for heaven's sake. I tried again on some samples then moved to my quilt. Also a disaster. I took a break and rethought the whole thing.

Maybe I should admit defeat and do a grid pattern. Friends, I was very close. But I really really REALLY wanted a stippled quilt. I re-read Sarah's tutorial and she inspired me to relaaaaaaax, take a deep breath, and go for it. At this point I was so exhausted that I think it helped. I lost my tension and just figured what the he--. It's not going to be perfect and that's just the way it is.

I definitely got into it. It was...dare I say it...Fun. Once I just let go and took the pressure off myself, it worked.

There are some good parts...

And not good parts...oopsie!

But those I can live with. I have half of the quilt center done. I tell you, my arms have been getting a workout! Quilting gloves definitely help. And an actual sewing table (where your machine bed is flush) would be awesome. I keep getting the quilt caught on the edge of Bitsy. What's nice is that I don't have to tape straight lines to quilt. I am using a ton of thread though!
So that's my story so far. I'm glad that I stuck with it, it was close for awhile there. I'll show you when it's all done.

♥ Jen


  1. Beautiful! I'm a real newbie, so my "stipling" (I didn't know it had a name, I just called it "free-hand" LOL) isn't nearly as purty as yours.

  2. Well that is some 'story" my friend!!!! but good for you for keeping at it and for rereading the directions---I find that often helps--the rereading part---but---I am bad about it!!!! You are ahead of me on this machine "stuff"--I am in the old school--doing it by hand!!!!
    Hugs, Di

  3. You go girl! Stippling scares me! I'm proud of you for relaxing and braving it out! I can't wait to see it all done.

  4. Your stippling is lovely, Jen. And so is your quilt. Your should see what I try to stipple. Disastrous! Have a great Sunday.


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