Wednesday, March 2, 2011

I heart quilting

This title is not completely true. I enjoy the sewing part more than the quilting part, but this is my first attempt at quilting with perle cotton embroidery thread and I really like this method. I like how the quilting is so visible and the thread is really vibrant and pretty. Plus, there's no pressure about the quilting having to be tiny and perfect. Some imperfection and "chunkier" stitches only add character with this method.

Candy Store quilting

So, you have guessed that finally my batting and backing fabric arrived. I ordered some Innocent Crush Woodcut, the same red print I used in the front, for the back. This fabric is so pretty and large enough in scale to make for an interesting quilt back. The batting is Vilene 275 Cotton and I really like the drape of it and have had no problems quilting so far. I'm not completely sure that I'm using the right needle, though ... What kind of needle are you using for hand-quilting?

As for other projects, I was so inspired by this, that I had to have a try with a version of it and made four place-mats (individual sized ones) from Central Park oilcloth. Central Park may well be my favourite fabric collection right now. It's so pretty and so versatile! I love this print especially.

Central Park placemat

I failed when it came to the binding, though ... I tried to make a natural linen binding, because I loved the look and the contrast of the plastic oilcloth with the rough texture of the linen, but I completely botched it up.

binding fails

I had a hard time getting it to go through the binding maker the first time, but when it came to the first seam all was lost ... Also, look how uneven the binding turned out ... So, linen binding discarded ... :-P

Now I'm thinking about other options, for now I really like this one:

binding alternative?

My issues with this fabric are that it would make the place-mats very summery and bright as opposed to relatively neutral. Another point to consider is that they're going to get stained for sure, and white binding on an oilcloth place-mat you can't wash?! J. says the place-mats are fine as they are, without binding. Dunno ... I guess I'll have to think about it some more. What do you think?


Vanessa said...

Love the fabrics in your quilt. BTW - I was given a quilt top that was made in the 1930's I am handquilting it and using wool batting. I had an appraiser come and she also helped with with how to hand quilt it. She said that for that time period they would stitch 6-7 stitches per inch - I love it! You put so much work into hand quilting that I want to see the stitches and you can use color - I have a wholecloth I am handquilting and it is very tiny stitches - I do not like it as much at all - Love the bigger stitches. Do what you want! Go to my blog and check out the quilt - I hope you do :)

Vanessa said...

BTW I use John James needles size 9 - it helps to get bigger stitches - size 10 is good for tiny stitches but they bend easy. Well for me they bend easy. I like size 9 . It is worth investing in better quality needles. Saves the frustration. :)

Kirsty@Bonjour said...

Egads, your man might be right! Either that or I'm seeing charcoal binding. Or a super-deep dark teal. Or just go with what J said :P
No help with needles, sorry, I just grab what I see in my pin cushion. This is probably why I have trouble with hand quilting! Did AMH have anything to say about needles in that post she did about hand quilting that time?
PS. I adore that wood cut print of AMH's also, it's stunning. Much like your quilt!

The Muse of The Day said...

I think that color-wise the flowered fabric goes perfectly with the place matts, but J. may have brought up a good question. What would happen if you didn't bind it? Would add to the look or make it look unfinished? Both options might work.
Your stitches in the quilt are beautiful - I love seeing hand stitching vs. perfectly made machine stitches. Carolina

Eva said...

Thank you, Carolina! :-) Yes, I will test-drive the mats without the binding and then see ... I'm actually having fun with the hand-stitching, I'm not sure if I can keep my deadline, though ... I guess it won't matter too much to our future godchild if it's finished after her Christening ...