Continuing with my quilts for 2018, here is a quilt I made in January this year, but never got around to sharing on my blog.
For this quilt, I recycled an old bottle green khadi silk saree, which I have had for years (and which has its very own story) and an ikat silk dupatta in cream and green with a border in plum red. I designed a really easy pattern-joining simple panels with minimum seams-to take into account the unravelling which inevitably comes hand in hand with working with silk. One day, perhaps, I will write down the pattern and publish it-it is something even a total beginner can handle!
I bagged the quilt with a backing recycled from another favourite saree, this time a muslin,with a Bagh block print.
I had it hand-quilted in the market by a tagaiwala, a quilt-maker whose family has been in this profession for several generations. The quilt is filled with nearly two kilos of carded cotton-wool and is really, really warm, to take care of winters in Jaipur, where we have no centralized heating. I think he has done a great job of the quilting, don’t you?
I just realized that I had not shared my finishes for 2018 here! So here come the fitted box cushion covers I made for an ell-shaped bench at the entrance of my son’s house. My daughter-in-law had seen these cushions and loved them, so I thought of making similar ones for her.
The cushions were 15″x 24″and 15″ x 39″ and deciding the size of the windows posed a problem! I decided to make 4.5″ windows and add a 1.5″ strip along the back and side edge. The math worked perfectly and it turned out quite well, I think!
You can see another of my cathedral window finishes here. And if you want to make your own windows, there is a tutorial I did in two parts. In yet another tutorial I discussed the cathedral window math.
As you can see, this is probably the only kind of patchwork I have done more than once! But, at the cost of repeating myself yet again, cathedral windows–no, never again!
This 6″ block of the Salinda Rupp quilt was fairly simple, as you can see! I opened the seam at the edge as I plan to eventually assemble the blocks by machine.
Incidentally my new machine has arrived, haven’t had a chance to open it yet. It sounded like a great buy–has ten feet, including walking foot and free motion quilting feet and an extension table too! All just for $140 from Brother– I think it is Model 3340.
There was finally some progress on my Nearly Insane blocks, thanks to the fact that I was without a sewing machine while visiting my son! I had printed out patterns for the first fifty blocks at home and had the sense to carry them with me along with the Summer Breeze III fabric by Moda that I am using for my quilt. With time on my hands, I sat for several hours and cut out the templates for foundation paper piecing ( hundreds of them!) before it struck me that I couldn’t use them without a sewing machine! Now what?
I could, of course cut out the fabric for the blocks. I had the pieces done for five random blocks, when it finally dawned on me that I could piece the blocks without the machine. English Paper piecing it was to be. But for that, the templates had to be cut again, into individual paper pieces. Not a happy thought, as the average number of pieces in each of the blocks must be around fifty.
It was certainly a tedious job, but I finally had the pieces ready for EPP.
Prepping the pieces for EPP
I started on this particular block, but gave up half way to do a really easy one–Block 2.
But before I show you Block 2, you must see my Block 1, completed on my sewing machine before I went to the US.
Isn’t it pretty? I attempted some fussy cutting with this one.
Paper foundation pieced
No of pieces: 37
No of templates for fpp: 5
Level of difficulty: Moderate (because of the tiny square in squares in the centre).
Completed in August 2018
The white floral fabric isfrom a charm square I had lying around for years!
English paper pieced
No of pieces: 21
Level of difficulty: Real easy–had I foundation paper pieced it!
Completed in November 2018
This block was foundation paper pieced it came up quickly!
Foundation paper pieced
No. of pieces: 37
No. of templates for fpp: 9
Level of difficulty: Easy
Completed in March 2019
This block had 10 templates, so I would call it moderately difficult! The 3″ centre portion within the yellow strips had to be pieced in six steps (templates)!
Foundation paper pieced
No of pieces: 36
No. of templates for FPP: 10
Level of difficulty: Moderately difficult
Completed in March 2019
Here is another block I started while in the US.
The inner 4.5″ portion on this was English paper-pieced, it had 28 pieces!
But wait – the outer 1″ ring had 48 more pieces coming up. Terrifying! There were 16 half square triangles, 1″ each, besides four 4-patches of 1″!
I thought it would be sensible to wait to foundation paper piece them on a sewing machine. I finally sewed the 4 remaining templates of the block last week, when back in India. I discovered that I had made a mistake when drafting the pattern and I ended up hand-piecing it partly!
English paper-pieced, foundation paper pieced and hand-pieced.
No of pieces: 76
No. of templates( had it been foundation paper-pieced): 14
Difficulty level: Difficult!
Completed in March 2019
Find out more about Salinda Rupp’s Quilt, popularly known as the Nearly and my version of it here! To see more blocks from my quilt, link on the `Nearly Insane’ link in the page menu.
I show you how to frame your finished quilt behind glass, even adding a border!
My quilt Seasons in the Sun has been lying around in a shelf for over three years now! I live in a dusty place and it was necessary to put it behind a glass frame. In any case, it did not even have a hanging sleeve!
I was also not sure how to hang it behind glass and browsed the web for a solution. I finally decided to get a box frame made, fit it with a hanging rod and hang the quilt inside. The carpenter was ready with box frame a few days ago, but I could not get myself to stitch yet another quilting sleeve (after two on the Dreamcatcher and another on my son and daughter-in-law’s portrait quilt! That reminds me that I am yet to share pics of that portrait here).
So I was saying that adding hanging sleeves must be the most tedious part of quilting and I wanted to avoid it come what may! I decided I would mount it on board, like pictures are, but how? I did manage to work out something, and here is a mini-tute explaining what I did and why.
How to Display a Finished Quilt Behind Glass
Preparing your Quilt
1. Measure your quilt as accurately as you can, including the binding and then measure the finished binding. My quilt measured as follows
36.5″ x 50″ including binding. My binding was 1/2″ finished, so excluding the binding, my quilt finished at 35.5″ x 49″.
2. You need to decide if you want a border around the finished quilt. I had to add a 5″ border beyond my final quilt size, because I was working with a frame that was already made.
3. Once that is decided, you can calculate how much fabric you will need.
If adding border:
Fabric 1: Can be any solid ; I used inexpensive poplin. This has to be equal to the size of the quilt minus the binding plus total 1/2″ for two seams. I will call this the backing fabric.
Fabric 2: For the border. I could not decide what I wanted for the border. I would have liked a sky blue mitered border, but I did not have enough of the fabric in my stash. I also did not have enough green fabric in a single colour, so I pieced my border using whatever I had at hand.
To calculate the fabric needed for the (unmitered) border:
Width of border:
Width of border+ width of binding + 1/4″ for seam joining border to backing + 1.25″ to wrap to the back of the mounting board.
In my case this was 5″ + 1/2″+ 1/4″ + 1.25″ =7″
Length of border:
2 readied strips, width of border x length of backing ( for me 35.5″x7″)
2 strips of width of border x width of backing plus two widths of border minus 1/2″
( for me 7″x 49.5″ plus 14″ minus 1/2″, that is 7″x 73″)
If not adding border
Make a backing fabric equal to final size of quilt plus 1.25″ all around ( to wrap over and to the back of the mounting.
You may be tempted to skip the backing all together, but adding an additional backing protects your quilt, because it ensures that it does not come in direct contact with the board.
4. Prepare your backing by adding the borders. Spray starch and press all seams.
5. Sew the backing to the quilt:
Lay the prepared backing flat, right side facing up. Arrange the quilt, also facing up, on top of the backing. ( I spray basted the two layers together!)
Pin-baste these two together, so that the binding seam of the quilt falls exactly over the seam joining the border to the prepared backing. Now we are ready to sew.
You can machine sew, exactly at the inner edge of the binding, turning over frequently to check that you are not straying from the seam line on the fabric below. I did not feel confident about machine sewing, so I flipped over the pinned- basted layers. I folded the border back on the backing and slip-stitched the two layers together. I could ensure that the seam line on the backing fabric was joined to the seam line of the binding on the quilt exactly. That at the end of it I was left wishing I had stuck to a hanging sleeve, is quite another matter!
Once this was done, I folded the border back and ironed it. Here you can see how it looks. The binding is free, not stitched down, and I like that ‘quilty look’.
If not adding a border, the mount has to be exactly the size of the quilt.
I do not know any technical carpentry terms, so this is going to be written in a layman’s language!
I wanted teakwood for the 2.5″ wide frame, but the carpenter recommended pinewood, saying it was lighter. I did not want a simple frame, so I extended the bars beyond the frame. I designed the frame with the horizontal bars longer than the vertical ones to enhance the expansive feel the final picture would give.
The original plan, as I mentioned, was to affix a rod inside the frame and hang the quilt inside. But, with my change of plans, the hardboard that was screwed on to the back of the frame was removed and trimmed to fit inside!
– So, first the glass was fixed with strips of wood (1/2″ square section). I hunted across my city for plexi-glass, which would be non reflective, but it was not available anywhere. I then opted for the thinnest glass, 4 mm(?) thick.
– Next, the prepared quilt was stretched across the mount, the edges wrapped to the back and secured with painters tape.
We did think of gluing it to the back, but decided this was a better solution, as it would be easier to remove in case needed.
-The quilt was now placed inside the frame. Note that it does not touch the glass, because of the 1/2″ thick wooden strips between the quilt and the glass.
– The hardboard mounted with the quilt was secured with wooden strips nailed over it into the frame ( the way glass is). So no nail goes through the fabric anywhere.
I do believe this looks much neater than just hanging a quilt inside a glass box! I am now planning to frame more of my quilts to display them without fear of dust ruining them! And without harming the quilt in any way with glue or nails etc!!
I am so, so happy to present to you this gorgeous version of the Dreamcatcher Round the Year Quilt made by Vicki Trerotola.
I personally would have never have thought that the blocks would look so amazing in shades of a single colour.
The lovely quilting by Mary Jane Wherle so beautifully complements the perfect piecing done by Vicki.
Do notice the walls and the headboard – aren’t her colours just perfect for her room?
Do you want to make your own Dreamcatcher Quilt? The patterns for the blocks are free and can be accessed from here! Please do not forget to share pictures on my facebook page in case you do make something using my patterns! Thank you!