Saturday, March 05, 2011

A tablecloth quilt?

IMG_1566
Back when my dining room looked like this, I had an idea.  I bought all these quarter-yard pieces to help me decide which fabric to use for my window shades.  What if I pieced a quilt from them and used it as a tablecloth?  It would redeem the waste of all the not-chosen fabric, and it would match, more or less, my dining room.  It did occur to me that I'd never made a quilt before.  But, I forged ahead, and this morning, I had this:

IMG_2674
IMG_2675
At this point in the post, you can add "inexpert" to any description of my quilting skills. For variety, you could use "beginner". I didn't take a class in quilting, or read a book. I did use some instructions from the Amy Butler website for the "Amy's Lotus Brick Path Quilt". I altered the instructions to make a quilt that was longer and narrower than a bed quilt, since that would fit my table. (Insert "inexpertly" here.) I'll admit that I now wish I'd made it one brick longer and wider. I didn't take into account the puckering that happened -- and might not have happened if I had pre-shrunk my fabric. I know better than to not pre-shrink, but the thought of all those quarter-yard swatches unravelling in my washer had me cowering. I'm still not sure I regret my decision.
Amy's quilt had pom-poms.
IMG_2677
Mine has tassels, which weren't part of my original vision. I love them.

I briefly considered a bound edge, rather than the envelope construction of the original pattern.  I decided to stick with Amy on this, because I like the look of the un-bordered bricks.   The quilt is machine quilted in the stitch-in-the-ditch method, down each vertical strip.  I backed it with a solid piece of cotton, sold wide for quilt backs.  If I had to do it again, I'd use a more color-full color than the almost ecru neutral I chose.  I used a thin cotton batting.

To close, I'll show some pictures of my first sewing ventures.  Here's my pop-over skirt, beloved and despised by all 4-H seamstresses of the 70's.
Pinsnneedles
I'm the one in the navy and white with glasses.
And here we are in the Harvest Festival parade, later that year.
Pinsnneedles_0002
You can be sure all fabric on that float was pre-shrunk. 

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

One Kind of Incentive

IMG_2652
I'm now in a hurry to finish the Flower Power Throw.  Because a couple of weeks ago, I bought the yarn for this:

It's the En Pointe Pullover, by Alice Tang, from Interweave Knits, Spring 2011.  Thanks to them for the photograph.

Everything about this sweater called to my spring-hungry eyes -- the graceful moebius twist, pretty color, sheer texture.  So, I'm being quite unoriginal and bought just the yarn the magazine used.

I've also bought a longer needle (did you know they make 60" needles???) for my throw, and more yarn.  I'm nearly halfway, and weighing the yarn on my rattle-trap kitchen scale (I have bad luck with kitchen scales), not to mention counting balls, revealed that my fears are probably well-founded.  Not enough.