Friday, June 1, 2012

Two quilts and two processes

Longarming or domestic?  What's faster in the long run?  Which is easier?  Which do you like more?
Let's start with the part I like the LEAST when I think about both processes.  I cannot stand basting whether by needle for hand quilting or pins for using my domestic machine.  This little cutie was small enough I could avoid the floor and use the kitchen island.  The problem is that I can't secure the backing to the granite to be sure I don't get tucks.  Binder/alligator clips aren't big enough.  Painter's tape is like silly putty and pulls right off with any pressure.  I don't like the sticky-sticky tapes because they cause fraying.  So, I didn't secure the backing and adjusted when I quilted it.  More on that later.  Mr Iquiltforfun later suggested picnic table clips (hidden somewhere in the depths of the garage) and I think he's on to something.  We just have to find them for the next time!  Once a quilt is basted -- life gets easier and my attitude improves considerably.
This is the finished product (sans binding which I'll add today).  I used my little Janome Platinum Jem which is a bit small.  The Bernina just came back from getting cleaned on Tuesday and I couldn't bear to start out with a machine quilting project and fuzz her up again.  I'd like to just piece on her for a while!  Every time I machine quilt these days (baby quilts are my limit), I am amazed that I used to do queen sized quilts (straight line and mediocre free motion) on my domestic machine.  I stand in awe of those who produce works of art on their machines.  Amazing!  Kudos to you all.
Since I had committed a quilting faux pas and had not secured the backing, I was concerned I'd get tucks in the back if I had any looseness at all.  So, instead of cross hatching or quilting vertically and horizontally in any form, I did all the quilting in the same direction and tried to alternate from each end to keep it from pulling too much.  This is my "go to" quilting option when I want to do something a little playful and still have a bit of control.  I think it works fine with this quilt design and fabrics and more importantly -- it's done!
The twin was done when I went to Chicago and used my friend's Gammill, Sadie.  I use zippers for quicker loading and unloading and have finally figured out how to put them on.  I've been known to do those wrong and then have to take off the zippers and pin to the leaders anyway.  Pinning and I do not get along and I prefer not to bleed on the quilt if I can avoid it.  This particular quilt has a minkee backing and I knew it had to be done on a long arm or I would have been on the floor with T-pins if I'd had to quilt it at home and stretching minkee is a challenge on a good day.

I mentioned in an earlier post that this is the easiest quilt ever.  It's modified from Kim Schaefer's Cozy Modern Quilts and I simplified her directions to use strip piecing and reduced the 8" blocks to 6".  I literally made one top in an afternoon after church -- like in 2.5 hours and I'm not fast.  I had some of the strips cut but not many; so start to finish, it's probably 3-4 hours to make a baby quilt top if you've already ironed your fabrics (presuming you wash -- which I wanted to do with these brights to make sure there was no bleeding).

One is bound (striped binding on bias which is perfect but doesn't show up in pix) and will be delivered locally this week to a young man who I adore.  The other one will be bound this weekend and sent to Montana to another young man who is very special.  Both were high school friends of our son and there are nothing but good memories about both those young men.

I hope you're finding time to finish a few things so you can start all kinds of new and fun things!!!!  Jan

32 comments:

Heidi Staples said...

Looks fantastic! I love the color scheme!

FarahLin said...

Love the pattern and the quilts looks fabulous with those stunning colours!

Kat said...

Your quilt is really pretty, I love the colors. I also dislike pins VERY much. I can whip up a top in no time... but pin basting it together is like torture to me... as is the binding because it uses so many pins, too. I feel your pain!

Eileen said...

Very contemporary colors! I like it! Easy peasy to do up a baby quilt, isn't it?

Kristin said...

Love this...hate the pins...lol

quiltnlady said...

Love this quilt. I saw something similar about 1 yr ago with brights (Amy Butler) on a black background. I want to make this!

Peter said...

Very interesting blog. I just finished sewing together my first ever real quilt top, a simple jelly roll pattern, but I've been trying to decide if I should attempt to quilt it on my wife's sewing machine or take it to a long arm quilter. Can't decide if I want the whole quilting experience or not. Your blog has made me think a little more about doing it myself.

Bethany (Make Me A Quilt) said...

Very beautiful colors, I love the circles, very nice! I won't free motion anything larger than a lap sized quilt - it's impossible! The quilting in the center gets so messed up from the struggling and straining... a long arm would be a dream to have, but for now I'll just straight line quilt the big ones! :)

Izzy said...

Your quilt is lovely. I agree with you... pin basting is a major pain! I quilt on my home machine, but if the quilt is really big, I try to stick to some basic quilting.

Amanda said...

I love the fabrics. The colors are great and I love the circles on them!

Rebecca said...

What a fun quilt! Nice work!

Myra said...

What an adorable quilt! I love it! Your colors are great and the design is so fun. : )

Carolyn said...

The colors and design are great on this quilt. I am very happy when I can baste the quilt on the table and not the floor. I have a top and back ready to go for a larger quilt, but am dreading the basting on the floor, so many pins!

jamie said...

Ever tried basting spray? It has changed my life! I swear by it. No pins, no hand basting, and doesn't gum up my machine. Just a temporary hold to keep the layers secure.

Winnie said...

BEAUTIFUL quilt
I love the colors and the pattern
You really did a wonderful job

sewfrench.com said...

Great fabric. Looks like te shirt I'm wearing today, LOL! Do you recall who it is?
And I can NOT imagine machine quilting anything on the Gem! Kudo's to you! This looks fabulous!

Tiffany said...

I top in 3 hours! I love it. And it is so cute!

mtnquiltr said...

Very pretty quilt with lovely fabric. I'd like to know what it is too! I hate pinning, spray hasn't been holding, so I'm going to try those plastic tacks like you get on a price tag. Don't know how I'll like them!

The Thompsons said...

I LOVE the colors in your quilt. In the end, the quilting looks lovely, so I suppose that's all that matters. :)

Melissa Corry said...

Your quilt is beautiful and I love the colors you choose :)

ANudge said...

I think time wise they are equal because of all the prep work. So how did the backs turn out on these beautiful quilts. The quilting is great. Thanks for sharing!

Debbie said...

Great quilts and I agree with the comment about spray basting. I use it most of the time now and I do mostly hand quilting and it holds perfectly.

Sarah said...

Basting is also my least favorite part of the whole process but I now use basting spray and it works very nicely. No need for clips as I work a quarter at a time and it's repositionable at first.
Great quilting texture!

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

Once I get past the blocks I want to quit...grin. Thus way too many UFOs.

This is one happy quilt and I just love it!!!

Just Jaime said...

Beautiful colors and great job quilting!

Krysta said...

I am looking to start two twin quilts for my twin boys twin beds :) I love this pattern and the colors are great. Thanks for some inspiration!

wannabequilter.com said...

Gorgeous!!

Mary said...

Very modern. I have the exact same feeling about quilting. I now have an HQ16 but I sometimes still use the DM. I have no real skill there and it is so tedious.

I have had some major flubs on the HQ but getting better AND hubby likes to help me load it!

Beautiful work you do, either way.

moonlightsewing said...

It's a beautiful quilt. I love the blues and greens together. I recently assessed my fabric stash and found a LOT of blue and green. Since then, I've noticed that's what I gravitate toward in a fabric store. Even though I tell myself I should think about adding more warm colors.

Cathy said...

I use basting spray.. Hated pinning. Spray Is my friend!!! lovey quilt!!!

Beth said...

Lovely! Great colors.

Maria said...

Hi I'm over from sew many ways. Love your quilt. I find the colours so calming.