Hand quilters of all skill levels, or just talk about hand quilting. All welcome to share ideas, comments, ideas and helpful hints.
Latest Activity: 8 hours ago
Started by Rebecca Keith/VA. Last reply by Sandy Larkey May 11.
Started by Carla. Last reply by Sandy Larkey Feb 19, 2018.
Started by Ann/FL. Last reply by Sandy Larkey Jul 16, 2016.
About basting quilts: If you've got an "in" with your local long-arm quilter (for example, she belongs to your quilt guild-hee hee!) you might could talk her into basting a quilt for you. What my friend/long armer did was to make rows of very long stitches, 4 - 5" long, every 6" apart. That way, nobody had to get down on the floor to do it. My mother and grandmother had a different way of doing it. They set up their quilt frame at the size they'd need for the quilt, then basted the backing onto the frame, layered the batting, then the top and basted everything together. Have to admit, basting the middle did require someone to get down on the floor, namely me, to poke the needle back up. They generally used either string or a very coarse thread and made their basting stitches quite large and far apart--just enough to stabilize everything while they rolled the quilt up around the end rail, to get a working area of about two feet deep. Have to admit, one of my nit-picky bits with the Nelson group; they use safety pins to attach the quilt to the frame, usually one set holding the back, then another set for the top. And sometimes, the tension against the frame results in little tears in the quilt top.
Speaking of UFOs, my very first bed-size quilt is still a UFO. I designed a sailing quilt and stitched it together while we were in Louisiana, to fit the queen-size bed we had on the houseboat. And then hand-quilted two baby quilts in a hoop while on the boat. Decided right then and there that trying to work with a large quilt in a hoop in that small living space wasn't going to be very much fun. So put the quilt aside until we moved to this big old Victorian house. And got a king-size bed! So now the quilt doesn't fit. I keep thinking one of these days, I'll enlarge it to fit. But that's a major undertaking. The design is such that I can't just remove the borders and add another row of blocks--I'd have to take off the two outermost rows of blocks and extend the design. And of course, there is no way I'll ever be able to match the fabrics.
I did get Ellie a Thundershirt. Tried it on her yesterday, and it seemed to stress her a bit more than she already was about the fireworks. Somebody more authoritative than me must have discussed the situation with those kids--haven't heard any more of the big boomers, M-80s or larger, since last Sunday. But since Ellie wasn't very comfortable in the Thundershirt, I guess we'll go out for a long drive this evening.
Gail, I wholeheartedly agree with you about the pain it is (literally and figuratively) to baste quilts. I have never enjoyed doing that part of making a quilt, but since having both of my knees replaced, I dislike it even more.
Beautiful quilt, handstitcher! I love that you used the bubblegum pink (at least that's how it looks on my monitor) to showcase them. Very appropriate to the time period of the original blocks. I also like this one without borders and just framed with the dark binding. It really lets those blocks shine. I like to think the original maker would be so pleased to see them set together and finished. Nicely done!
Cat Lady, we won't discuss UFOs, it's too depressing, you know all the good intentions we have not to let them pile up. Mine don't "pile up" they are all neatly hung up in a closet waiting for me to open the door and hopefully select one of them to reach completion. I've been pretty good about not starting anything new before finishing some, ofcourse, most places being closed around here helps.
I actually like hand piecing,some of my favorite quilts have been hand pieced. Sandwiching them is the part that I dislike the most, especially since I've gotten too old to get down on the floor and do it.
Hanstitcher, love your quilt. I really like the little fabric patch to make the HST big enough on the bock you show.
I have been doing mostly hand piecing these past few months as most of my sewing time is spent at the VA during DH's cancer treatments. Even though I am mainly making blocks using squares they do not always come out the size that mathematics say they should. I can totally understand how hand pieced blocks can vary in size.
Funny thing is even though I am hand piecing, I now have 3 different hand-pieced projects in various stages of progress. Of course I won't tell you how many machine pieced UFOs I also have.
Your Monkey Wrench quilt is lovely handstitcher. I have often wondered if some of those blocks were made by young women who really didn't have an urge to learn how to sew, but were made to do so anyway. I know my maternal grandmother didn't know how to sew, but my mom & one of her older sisters were both very accomplished seamstresses. My aunt was the sort of person who could see a dress in the window of a store, go home & draft her own pattern & then make it. I don't think my mom ever did that, but she sewed the most beautiful garments.
You’re so right, Gail! We have to respect our foremothers for their work, especially under conditions that would daunt most of us. The seller of the blocks wrote something in her description about the maker doing the best she could with what she had.
Handstitcher, the Monkey Wrench is really great. I just love the look of those older blocks. I know what you mean avout the sizes. I have gotten some old blocks that were very crudely done by todays standards, but it was a different time when they were made. Gals had a lot more to worry about than a perfect quarter inch seam, theyused what they had usually a pair of scissors, some not so great thread and a needle and poor light, usually at night. If they ever saw rotarycutters , mats and the rulers we have today as well as templates, stencils and all the gadgets and detailed patterns they would be in shock. I have some of those old patters fron the newspapers in the 30s and they are really pretty vague. Besides, finished is better than perfect.
I finished my monkey wrench quilt this week. These are the circa 1900 blocks I bought in Etsy. There were only 23, so I had to make one myself. It’s hand and machine pieced and hand quilted. Finished size is 44 x 66. I really enjoyed this one. The blocks have between 2-6 fabrics in them and the sizing varied widely. Some are a little wonky, to add to the fun.
Handstitcher, that pink polka dots does seem unusual for that time frame, but you know they say "what's old is new again." I know even now my grand kids tell me things that they think they have invented and I tell them hat I did or saw those things when I was young and they are astounded. That glazed finish on those fabrics almost sound like chintz, that was very shiny and looked glazed. It was very popular, cotton, but with a glazed finish.
Sandy, you are so lucky to be able to see your quilter group and actually get together, I hope you are all being careful and staying safe. I hope Ellie can get her Thunder Shirt, I have heard nothing but good things about them. Sometimes I think I could use one myself, it's like a great big hug and we can all use those.
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