Today this quilt top that Dorothy has been planning and working on since early May finally arrived. She purchased the angel blocks that will fill-in the outer border. All that is left is to decide whether to outline the angels in one or two lines and whether to fill-in between the blocks with the same small angel panto I will use for the center of the quilt. Without printing 12 angel blocks, I am trying to give an idea below of how it might look.
This quilt is going to Dorothy's son's wife, Anne, who loves to decorate her church for Christmas.
July 11: Quilt top arrived. If you think matching a red and white thread is easy, think again.
July 12: Finalized the IQ pattern.
July 19: Backing arrived. It is loaded. Changed the thread and reset the tension. Everything is now loaded.
July 21: Quilting. I find it interesting how the photos come out different shades. I finished quilting this as planned BUT it needs more. As I was working on the last row, Dorothy & I were talking about how the space could be filled in around the angels. It is just too floppy like it is. We started brain storming. Clouds like under the angels? Stars? Did a quick sketch (below) to illustrate & Dorothy liked the idea. Have two quilts lined up the next two days so on Tuesday I will reload this quilt and complete it by adding lots of white stars of various sizes.
July 22: Added a few pictures showing why stars are sorely needed.
July 23: Took and added pictures of the back of the quilt before adding the stars.
July 26: Started programming the stars into IQ pattern.
July 27-29: Kept adding stars to the design work I thought it would work.
July 30: Prepared the quilt & reloaded it. Started quilting the stars. Not dense enough.
July 31: Finalized the plan at 3:00 AM. Very intensive & time consuming work creating what I am now calling the free style stars. Each one was drawn, sized, rotated & spaced just so. The goal was to create a density similar to the center panto. Along the way, I learned the technique for carving out no-sew areas, a skill that will come in very handy even though I will not use it on this quilt.
Aug 01: Did enough to know the stars will work now and then removed the trapped thread.
Aug 02: APQS gave me the tip I needed to make finishing this project much more pleasant. When ever my machine stopped, the bobbin thread was breaking. I had to remove the bobbin case from underneath the machine, pull the bobbin thread out some or completely re-thread it, re-insert the bobbin case & bobbin back under the table & continue. After every star, this was just toooo much aggravation. Now it just stops, a tap on the screen moves the needle to the star & a final tap starts stitching again. I go back clip the threads between the stars but will leave the ones on the back for Dorothy to clip. Seems fair to me!! Now if I just don't run out of thread.
I don't get defeated easily but I am stopping on this quilt for now. For one, I don't think I have enough thread so I have some on order. For two, Dorothy is going to be out of town for about a week so I can't mail the quilt even if I finish. For three, a week of dealing with just the stars on this quilt is enough for now. For four, the quilt will not be needed until November. So I am taking a break, unloading the quilt & going on to something else for now. So much for intentions...
Aug 03: Finished row 2 and going on to row 3 and as far as I can before unloading. Just needed some sleep. Finished row three but before I did the needle jammed in the quilt. Fortunately no damage was done to the quilt & I just happened to be close enough to the power box to be able to cut it off with my foot while holding the machine steady. Whew! Never ask what else could happen. Finished row 4 without excessive difficulty.
Aug 04: Finished row 5 and started row 6. Will the thread last? YES! FINISHED!! Posted 3 before & after stars collages. Was it worth all the work? YES, every quilt needs what it needs. Perhaps not by hand but still one stitch at a time. In this case, one star at a time until all 326 were in place. Anne, enjoy it & may it bring joy to many this Christmas and for many to come.
What you didn't know before...I will quilt stars any day for Dorothy's cookies!
Oh, that is a glass cutting board.
A 3rd baby bear is under the Pyrex bowl--the better to keep all the cookies
It I sound a little intense when you call,
it is the espresso powder in the cookies.