I am expecting 3 guests tomorrow when Diana Trivette comes to pick up her quilts. Linda Campbell is Diana's niece and my very first customer. She is coming with Diana and bringing her mother, Betty. I understand Linda has two quilts of her own for me to do. Will post pictures when I get them. This is the second of the two.
Feb 27: Linda wanted white on top and back until I found pale shade of blue called Water Lily which matches Light Turquoise for the back. She knows she wants a detailed border (I found a tractor border after she left) and a panto for the middle. We are stumped on what to use for now. Adorable fabric! This will be so much fun to do. While I can find tractors and bulldozers, etc., it finally dawned on me DUH these are tractors moving snow. I think I will put Sandy to work on an original design. And...she said YES to doing it.
Mar 16: Sandy & I have been working on the IQ design all week. I think we now have a plan. Note: Linda made her quilt top side borders 50% wider than her top and bottom borders which is why we are letting the snow spill over on the sides to make up the difference. If the diagram is any indication, this seems to work just fine.
Mar 28: I had a bit of a time trying to figure out how to deal with this backing with a border since they were not even all the way around & the quilt top needed to be centered more or less with the back. I hope I got it right! That is what has taken me so long to begin loading. Loading the quilt now. Loaded at 9:45 PM. Had to align the top and backing. I can only hope it will be straight enough.
Mar 29: I am going to do something different when quilting this. Since it is custom quilting & the side borders are complex (not easy to split every 15 inches/roll of the quilt), I am going to quilt the top border, the center row by row and then the bottom border. I will then unload the quilt and turn it sideways, reload and do the two side borders. This may change the way I do custom borders from here on. We shall see.
Just now posted first pictures. I have been working on this for hours with nothing to show for it as I fine tuned exactly where the pattern would sew on the quilt. Custom work is painstaking work to be sure but usually worth the effort.
Got the top border and 4 of 6 rows done on the center.
Mar 30: Finished! (last two rows of the center and the side borders.
I am expecting 3 guests tomorrow when Diana Trivette comes to pick up her quilts. Linda Campbell is Diana's niece and my very first customer. She is coming with Diana and bringing her mother, Betty. I understand Linda has two quilts of her own for me to do. Will post pictures when I get them. This is the first of the two. Will use white thread on top and bottom.
Feb 27: We selected thread and IQ pattern and even programmed the quilt while Linda was here. These butterflies in this bright and happy quilt are appliqués.
Mar 20: Preparing to load, i.e. ironing. I didn't notice until I started ironing that these butterflies and fabrics are covered with peace symbols and hearts. Very pleasant to work with. Now ready to load (after lunch). Now quilting. Sorry I cannot get the stitching pattern to show up in these photographs - the thread is getting swallowed up by the fabrics which is what one wants on a quilt like this. Oops! I made the design too large to fit in the allotted space. The first row fit only because it was incomplete but not the 2nd row. That is when I discovered my error. I had to back track, undo & reprogram the pattern. Will start again Thursday.
Mar 22: Quilted. Must get a better photo in the morning.
Feb 24: Roberta's quilt came today & it is absolutely stunning. The backing is solid navy. Now Roberta, you can share the history of this quilt. Email me or just post a comment. I am wide open to suggestions for a quilting pattern. I am thinking something curvy &/or meandering to balance all the straight lines.
Mar 14: Loading... IQ is programmed...Loaded...Basted...Quilting...Quilted.
On the way out the door Friday morning (Feb 17) to buy a replacement PC for the one that went dead Thursday night, UPS greeted me with a large box I wasn't expecting. I didn't recognize the sender. When I opened it I was surprised to find not 1, not 2 but three quilt tops, backings, instruction sheets, printouts from my Price Quote Estimator Tool and corresponding checks. I had a return address but no phone number and no email address. With urgent computer problems I was not able to search for a phone number until this morning. Thus I met Celia. I will let her tell you what happened from her end. (Read her comment.) All is well. And there is plenty of time to get everything done. Celia has agreed for me to do her quilts after the ones I am already expecting even though hers are here and the others are in route. Thank you, Celia. Still laughing here! What will happen tomorrow? Dare I ask!! LOL
Now for what everyone comes here to see--beautiful quilts!!
Puppy Dogs Quilt
Mar 05: Celia selected her IQ design.
Mar 06: Preparing to load (i.e. ironing out the shipping wrinkles)
Mar 07: Loaded...Basting...Quilting...Quilted!
Mar 05: Celia selected her IQ design.
Mar 08: Preparing to load...loading...quilting...quilted.
Rose Garden Quilt
Mar 05: Celia selected her IQ design.
Mar 09: Preparing to load...loading...basting...quilting...quilted.
Back on Dec 19th, just before Christmas, I first heard from Becca regarding a large family project. Joan & I have now contracted to do a set of three t-shirt memory quilts for her mother, Margaret, and the daughters, Becca & Allison. The goal is for each one to have a quilt that is sized to fit at least a double bed. Joan will design and piece the quilt tops & I will longarm and bind them. Work will begin in mid-January.
Feb 12: This weekend, Becca was in Greensboro with her mom. Margaret. They got all the shirts selected and organized for Becca's quilt.Feb 20: Margaret will mail Becca's shirts to Joan this week.Feb 23: Joan received Becca's shirts the same day I received Margaret's quilt.
May 01: Joan will ship today - oops! I must go out of town.
May 04: Joan will ship today. LOL
May 09: The quilt top is here. Joan, this is so pretty & so beautifully pieced. Another masterpiece. My hat is off to you for this is NOT an easy quilt top to make. I invite you to share just what all is involved in making a memory quilt from well worn t-shirts. I need to prepare the backing & get this loaded while Becca is selecting her IQ pattern. I have been warned to be super careful when/if I must iron any of this so I am going to try to avoid it.
May 10: Decided to hold this until June and continue my May break from longarming.
May 18: Becca made her final choice of Modern Squares for her IQ pattern.
June 04: Binding is ready.
June 05: Backing is ready.
June 11: Loading.
June 12: Quilting.
June 13: Still quilting...
June 14: Still quilting...so many memories, so many years, so much work -- worth it to take my time on this. QUILTED! Now on to the binding.
June 22: Squared the quilt to prepare it for binding. The binding is attached. Hand work is all that is left to do.
July 05: Hand binding & thus the quilt is finished. Will ship tomorrow.
02/18/2012: Original plan. Didn't like Quilting Treasures pattern so I made my own. It has been modified many times to fit the constraints of the fabric I have on hand.
10/10/2013: Last night while rocking on the porch late at night, I was thinking about this quilt. Would I keep it? Would I give it away? Would I sell it? I have pondered these questions many times.
Now I know what I will do. My daughter is THE Little Engine who always could, does and always will know that she can do whatever she makes up her mind to do. She is my inspiration, ever my purpose and the one person I most admire. My life is what it is because of her.
I will make this & dedicate it to her. Along with a copy of the book this will be hers. NOW I am motivated to finally piece it.
Making the Quilt
Oct 13: I thought I had the top all planned out 20 months ago but today I realized that four of the images are not Little Engine That Could blocks. If anyone wants a couple of Puff'n Toot &/or The Chocolate Train panel blocks, let me know. I won't be using them.
Piecing & Quilting
Nov 18: I have a few minutes so I have pressed the fabrics and started cutting and piecing. Decided on some version of the 9-block. Center of pinwheel blocks are done. The tricky part is that the image blocks ar 10.5" x 11.5". Think I have a plan that will work. We'll see.
Nov 19: HA! By oversizing the red triangles around the pinwheel blocks, I can trim them down. Added blue borders to panel blocks. Trimmed all blocks to the same size. Ready for sashing & then borders. Plan change--just don't have enough red to make the diamonds but have just enough of the blue toss to use there.
Nov 20-22: Completed piecing. Had to omit side red borders so the top & bottom train borders would fit. This top surprised me that it turned out as large as it is.
Nov 24: Train With Trees plan proposal
Dec 14: Train Tracks plan proposal
Dec 15: Prepped. Loaded. Quilting. It will take 36 minutes to quilt each row. That gets a WOW! Quilted in one evening.
Dec 16: Squaring and then attaching binding.
Dec 24: Bound & wrapped for giving tomorrow.
A certain granddaughter will be very happy on her March birthday! Nancy needs her quilt complete with binding in mid-March.
Feb 24: Nancy's adorable quilt arrived today from California via UPS.
Feb 27: Have Nancy's pattern selection posted. Loaded the thread and adjusted the tension. Cut the batting (and went ahead and cut it for all the quilts in house that need Warm & White).
Feb 28: Backing & batting are loaded. IQ is programmed. Next ironing and then loading the top.
Feb 29: Quilted. Next I need to prepare and attach the binding.
Mar 01: Squared the quilt and prepared the binding
Mar 02: Attached the binding. Started hand binding.
Mar 03-04: Still binding...
Mar 05: Finished. Will ship when the snow melts enough for me to get out safely.
Feb 06, 2012: Purchased the set of six 7" panels--small but exquisite!
Jan 01, 2016: Planned the quilt top.
Jan 02: Purchased the sashing & border fabrics--ladybugs, lavender & silver.
Sep 18, 2016: Gave this little project to Amalie, a lady I met who talked about her dream of quilting one day. Figured this was a good way for her to start. In less than a month she disappeared from my life as quickly as she came so I may never now what becomes of this project in which I have invested so much heart & treasure. I am trying to contact her hoping I am wrong.
Yesterday morning, once again Diana called and woke me up! LOL. I'm glad she did. After finishing her backing on one quilt, she brought two over to the cabin. One is a disappearing nine patch like her previous quilt & the other is one of those where the fabric needs no piecing, just quilting. Together we matched thread and selected quilting patterns. On the purple and teal quilt, King Tut Arabian Nights is perfect. For the other, I am expecting a spool of So Fine Pearl any day that matches the top perfectly and Bottom Line Statue is perfect for the back. So the plans are made & now all I need is time!! It's around here somewhere just need to find it! LOL
In the comments, you will learn that the gorgeous backing fabric "is F756 DECO DELIGHT designed by Fabric Freedom in London, England. These are my granddaughters favorite colors, I made it as a weeding gift." I have added some link there including one to the entire line.
Feb 11: Prepped (ironed/steamed) and ready to load. Oops! Need to widen the back first!
Feb 12: Loaded.
Feb 13: Basted, programmed & ready to quilt. Interruption after interruption has been the norm around here but alas I have both quilts programmed and this beauty ready to start quilting first thing in the morning. May just turn off the PC and the phone to ensure no more show stoppers.
Starting Over--Deleted the old pictures
While I have been taking apart Diana's quilt, she has been taking apart a quilt top.
Do you remember when you did not (know any better) trim and square your complex blocks before piecing them together? I sure do. It was Diana's turn. She has now joined the club! Meanwhile she is rejoining her blocks into a much less "friendly" (waving) quilt top.
This is a very good thing! LOL
Feb 21: Tip: This top is 80x88. To keep from using more than two vertical sections of backing fabric & to widen it for longarming, I added a 3" strip to each side for Diana. Since this will be trimmed off anyway it is a very handy way to lengthen or widen the backing. Save those scraps of fabric and those strips you trim off your longarmed quilts for just this purpose. The strips I used here came off the excess backing from one of Joan's quilts she didn't want. It isn't good for anything else but it sure has come in handy twice now.
Feb 22: It was my intention to finish this quilt yesterday or die trying. I died at 4 AM after contending with the same mysterious situation I had before beginning in the same location. What's a longarmer to do? Call Kelley, call APQS, call any of the wonderful support experts I know and try to figure out what is going on here. And now you know. LOL We all concluded it is the "friendly" quilt syndrome that is at play here. To stop all that "waving", I am applying the spray starch, steam and let dry method. This causes the fabric to draw up just enough to lay flat. I can also smooth out any waving left by adding some batting scraps under the roller at those points to take up the slack. It should then quilt smoothly with consistent tension.
Feb 23: Quilted.
Feb 13: Programmed this second quilt while programming the first one.
Feb 23: Got the backing and batting loaded. Still need to load the top & thread.
Feb 24: Quilted.
Feb 02: The highlight of my search was discovering The White House just three hours away in South Carolina. I drove down Thursday (Ffeb 02) and spent a couple of wonderful hours with Cyndi Andrews. What a host she is! She tells me she has been friends with Jim & Jan since way before they became famous. Her shop was the Shore's residence for 17 years before becoming the shop it is today. What a wonderful & dangerous place to visit. Now I just need to get a group field trip together so Cyndi can entertain us using her famous chef skills. I did a lot of online shopping before discovering The White House. Oh if I had only known. All their fabric is $6 yard when one goes to the shop. Online they have to sell it for $9/yd. These pictures are of the magnificent quilts there in the shop & of items I bought from Cyndi.