Wednesday, March 19, 2014

a purple lap quilt for her

my sweet niece is in her second semester of her freshman year of university. she's adjusted so well and has become quite independent. it's a blessing to see dear babes become responsible, happy adults.

i remember many, many years ago how wonderful it was to receive a "care" package from home, or from a friend, when i was in college.

hopefully we've not completely lost such kind gestures because of this age of technology.

after making a lap quilt for an older niece who is in her own apartment and has returned to study nursing, i wanted to make one for our freshman.  i asked her what her favorite colors were. she said she would like purple and light purple. the child knows how to get straight quick to this heart of mine. i really like purple. it's just plain fun.

i found fat quarters and fabric yardage in awesome shades of purple, threw in some white and decided on a nice, striped pattern.

and added blocks for the borders, keeping it simple since the fabric was so rich.

for the back I found this 118" quilting fabric of lavender daylilies here.

i had every intention of quilting, but ended up tying the entire quilt, using a curved needle to thread DMC embroidery floss at the corners of each block in each strip and in the border blocks. i was trying to stitch in the ditch, but i could not feed the quilt, all bundled up and rolled, adequately through my machine to get nice, straight lines with tidy stitches. after it took me two hours to rip out two lines, i knew i needed to stop, take a deep breath, and tie.

then it took me between ten and twelve hours to tie. i even woke up one morning at 2:30 AM and tied for 2.5 hours. i couldn't sleep, wondering why i was having such problems when i hadn't before. in those early morning hours, i relaxed and let the stress roll off my back.

the binding went on quite easily. i've heard and read about nightmares regarding machine stitching binding, but i actually like it! i cut my own which i've realized goes on much straighter with no wrinkles then the store bought i had previously used.

as i mentioned in the previous post, i like to use a decorative stitch to secure and give my binding, front and back, a finished look. i am so very happy with the end result!

i've the perfect sized box ready to package this baby off, send it on its way.

and i've decided i'm going to stick to smaller quilting projects, things i can do fun designs with, in sizes my machine can handle. like this wall hanging i did before the holidays...

Sewing should be fun, not stressful! And if I do decide to do something bigger, like lap size, I'll resign myself to tie it from the beginning. It's just as secure and the knots are cute anyway.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

a new look...

I've been missing from this space for some time, but decided yesterday to give it something of a new look, add some items over on the sidebar where you can find me on other social networking sites and to give you a sneak peek at a lap quilt I've been working on. I recently purchased a Brother XR9500PRW Limited Edition Project Runway sewing machine at a great price on amazon because I really wanted an inexpensive machine with lots more decorative stitches than my Husqvarna Viking Scandinavia 200. I like to use them to secure and give my binding a nice polished, finished look. This is my very first time using the machine! I positively love the sweet, loopy stitch. It looks so nice, front and back. And the stitches are neat and tidy. That does my heart good!

I've made another quilt since I was last here and have made several sets of "prayer" or "peace" or "garden flags."  I don't have too many photos of these projects except for a few I took with my iPhone. My goal is to photograph what I do have and share here at some point.