So I took the plunge and just got in and started quilting. Like the Teddy quilts in the previous post, I started “Meander Quilting”, (my handy quilting bible, “The Quilters Ultimate Visual Guide” told me that this is like stipple quilting but farther apart) from the centre, outwards, in columns.
I created the quilt sandwich with the same basting spray that I used on the little ones – Helmar’s 101 Quilt Basting Spray. The beauty of this method of creating the quilt sandwich is that you do not have to tape down a taut backing (something I always seem to have difficulty with). You lay out the three layers and fold them back, half at a time, to spray first the backing (which you smooth the batting onto) and then the batting, (which you smooth the quilt top onto). If you find any wrinkles, you can iron the sandwich to remove them. The spray bond, if applied correctly, holds well over months (I’ve tested this), but I do pin the edges of the quilt, just in case :-).
The last time I had used this spray on anything larger than a wall hanging was about 3 years ago, and this time I was presented with a dilemma – where to spray. Due to over spray and ventilation issues, the spraying needs to be done outside. The little ones fitted on the concrete path outside, but I no longer had an empty deck to work on to spray the larger ones (we now have an outdoor setting). Luckily I had a brainwave, the trampoline.
The backing fabric pretty much covered the mat, and as it washes out in water, (rain) I was not too worried about a little over spray on the springs. So I sprayed and smoothed away on Saturday evening, and had the quilt ready to go on Sunday.
Here is my slightly comical setup. I was trying to create an area around the machine that was on a similar level to the stitchplate. It was better than nothing! So I rolled the quilt and gave it a burl.
Sadly, as I quilted the first column, I hit a snag (metaphorically speaking), and there was just a small amount of inaudible muttering going on in the kitchen of Chez M.P. While the backing was well bonded to the batting, the quilt top was not. I think the breeze was a little stronger once I got to spraying that layer, and not enough had landed on the quilt. I returned to the trampoline to spray some more, which sorted that problem out once and for all. For those that are interested, previously, the main trouble I have had with this quilt spray is when the spray does not mist properly due to the nozzle being damaged or blocked (I have had one can with a damaged nozzle that I had to return).
Anyway, I managed to quilt 5 columns before a trip to the local swimming pool dragged me away from the machine, and I think I am getting a bit better as I go. I have not managed to make it back on the machine since then, and my kids are not the only ones keeping me away. Some of the blame should be laid here…………………
I love reading with a passion, and Robin Hobb is one of my favourite authors, ( Guy Gavriel Kay and Diana Gabaldon being two others). While her work is classified as Fantasy, which might put off a lot of people who may have experienced formulaic fantasy pulp, she writes with such humanity about people who have human frailty and failings, as well as the heroicism you would expect in a book like this. I am up to book 3 out of 6, two trilogies about the same delicious characters. Even reading it for the 4th or 5th time, (by my estimate) it can still make me cry – a strong measure of any book by my standards.
What’s your favourite?
PS. I wonder if I will ever get quicker at writing my posts – It takes me ages! Sorry if I owe you a reply to an email or comment, I need to hit the hay tonight. I will drop you a line soon, I promise.