Thursday, April 2, 2015

Quilting Again - Thank Heaven! - original post date 3/2/14

One thing I have learned from this whole long drawn out moving and re-settling process is how much joy I get from quilting.  I could go into the why and hows of that but I know that for those of you who understand no explanation is needed and for those of who don't no explanation would suffice.

But while I was without my own Helga for four months (and missed her very much) I did get a chance to sew on my mother's Viking while I was staying with her. Her machine is about the same age I am. She bought it while my dad was finishing his PhD at Purdue and she paid for it mostly by teaching machine embroidery classes. This was back when machine embroidery did not involve software and was much more like free motion quilting or thread painting. Anyway, the machine is a rock. 40ish years later and it's still going strong.

My mom is an accomplished seamstress but hasn't done much quilting. Inspired by a certain daughter she decided she wanted to make a quilt for her first grandchild's wedding.  We chose something simple since we didn't have a lot of time. I had been wanting to try the giant star quilt tutorial at In Color Order and I loved this variation with the great borders at Diary of a Quilter. We also thought it would be fun to use Jake and Laura's wedding colors, which were midnight blue and sage green.

I have to say that this pattern is awesome for putting together a quick but impressive quilt and with Jeni Baker's great diagrams showing layouts for 8, 4 or 2 colors it's so versatile. We had a great time choosing fabrics and the quilt top went together quickly and fabulously.
I love the polish that the scrappy border adds to it. We took turns free-motion quilting the different sections. Each section has a different pattern with the whites all being a large stipple. My mom's machine embroidery skills served her well and she's on her way to becoming a great free motion quilter.
 The back is black and white sheet music. Particularly appropriate since both Jake and Laura are in vocal performance choirs at their college. The binding is an awesome, funky geometric fabric that has both the green and blue in it.  My mom wasn't sure about this one but I knew it would make a great binding. It keeps the quilt fresh and modern. And just makes me happy.
We split the backing up with a thick strip of bricks and a tone on tone black. The quilting shows up well on the black and you can see the various stitch patterns we used.

I didn't get exact measurements of the finished quilt but it turned out about queen size which is equivalent to a snuggle couch quilt for my 6'8" nephew. 

My sister wanted them to open the quilt before the reception so we could hang it behind the gift table. It looked pretty amazing since it matched all the wedding decor. My mom has decided to make this a tradition for all her grandkids.  She has quite a few of those so it's a good thing her machine is so immortal!

As for me, I've finally gotten Helga unpacked and settled in a corner of my bedroom. I'm making progress on my two matching quilts-in-progress.  And just to cheer myself up during a dismal week, I've started a new quilt. 

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