Thursday, 4 September 2014

Sewing frenzy!

I had a weekend of sewing and worked really hard all day Sunday to try and finish the main part of my son's King size bed quilt.

As I mentioned in earlier posts it is too big for me to quilt as a whole quilt and I do need to keep the costs down, so I was not prepared to have it quilted professionally.  The solution was to make it in four quarters, quilt each quarter separately and then join it together and that is what I did.  I quilted each quarter 'in the ditch' but started and stopped each time ¼" from the edge.  Then I joined two quarters using a technique based on 'quilt as you go', but this is my variation so please don't blame me if it is wrong!!
Backing peeled back to show trimmed wadding/batting

I trimmed the top and the backing to size and then cut away the wadding about ¼". At this stage I pinned the two 'quarters' together and added a strip which you can see behind in the picture above. 

Pins at right angles are holding the seams together accurately (see previous post).  I machined these five layers together to give a perfect finish on the front!  No photo, just take my word for it.

On the wrong side I brought the strip over the seam and hemmed it in place and covered any small mistakes that I might have made!!  I would not admit this to my readers of course, but It has neatened the back up.

So the two halves were sewn together in this way and the quilt, though extremely heavy is almost finished.  

Meanwhile I went to smocking class and the lovely J showed us how to 'block' the smocking ready for use. I had to remove all the gathering threads from the middle leaving just the two outside lines (yellow thread).  It was pulled out to about 11 inches by 6 inches and pinned round the edges.  I then sprayed it with CLEAN water and left it to dry.  This will set it in place.

I am hoping to go onto the next stage over this coming weekend and will add further pictures.  Incidentally the smocking is pinned to a thick cardboard cake board covered in some old sheet.  If you want to use it as a small ironing board to take out to workshops etc, you can add some heat resistant wadding, but I am told this is not necessary, though I cannot confirm it.  I also use this as my beading board to stop them rolling everywhere.  This is such a useful piece of kit.

Finally, my little elephant, Nellie, that I made and I am very proud of, says she is being left out of all my photos and she wants to be on my blog:-

She sits on my bookcase and watches everything that goes on!  The pattern came from Tilda's Studio book and my granddaughters all wanted to keep her but I made her and she is mine for a change!!


  1. Isn't it funny how hard it is to let go of a cute toy with big ears!

    Smocking looks great. You can grab an empty fabric bolt to use as a blocking/ ironing board too.

  2. Look forward to seeing more of that quilt, the colours look wonderful. Great to see the smocking blocked properly ( you won't regret the time spent on blocking). Nellie looks like she is keeping an eye on everything and glad she gas joined in with blogging