Trials and Tribulations

I truly hate basting and the binding processes in quilt making. This quilt was a nightmare for so many reasons but I have learned a lot whilst doing it. (to balance this I will say that I love piecing and how all the patterns and colours work together!)

Things that have gone wrong and have learned:
– When I started piecing it I shredded the triangle bits. I learned to sew across the diagonal of the square and cut down the middle instead of starting off with triangles.
– I learned that when cutting up a charm pack to make blocks, lots of triangly pieces makes blocks smaller than those with lots of square bits and this then needs fixing with maths afterwards. I am NOT GOOD at Maths, so it’s a wonder I am in this business, frankly.
– Transferring an embroidery design to thick, stripy fabric is bloody difficult. Doing it freestyle makes your cat design look a bit frog-like. I do however have much nicer free embroidery writing than hand writing!
– Basting a quilt with spray mount is NOT THE SAME as using special basting spray. It makes your needles sticky-ick and then baby wipes become essential.
– Cleaning a drop loading bobbin mechanism is more complicated than the old fashioned type, it has many many many crevices it takes ages to get all that fabric fluff out.
– Check the back regularly so that you’re not folding the back fabric onto itself under your quilting (FAIL)
– Don’t free motion stitch on 0 tension, it looks baggy and horrible on the back and you’ll have to unpick most of it and start again.
– Use tough thread for quilting, but it doesn’t matter for piecing. THIS IS WHY YOUR THREAD SNAPS AND THE FREE MOTION DOESN’T LIKE GOING UPWARDS (biggest problem I had)
– Tough thread is super expensive but it is worth it. And you will run out of the colour you are using twice if you don’t buy more than you think you need.
– Seriously, I should go learn from a professional how to bind rather than learn from a book because I still have not mastered this skill and I still hate it. Though I am getting better each time, a little but always seems to break free and eludes me. And I am too lazy/time-poor to hand bind. This is probably half of the problem right there.
– Ultimately I have learned to go from a pattern that tells you how big finished things are going to be until I get a bit better., My imagination and ideas run away with me sometimes and I need to slow down. I am not a quilt genius yet!

But it’s done now which means I can move onto things I know I am better at. That and the mega quilt I need to finish in a week with some quilt as you go which is already going boobies-up and I’ve had to unpick once. I digress.

Here it is!

It that binding repair stitching you spy in the bottom left of this photo? Why yes, yes it is! Thankfully the only bit I had to do this time…



  1. Posted December 12, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I really must get around to trying my hand at quilting.

  2. Posted December 12, 2011 at 2:13 pm | Permalink | Reply

    looks great to me 🙂 i think you’re a little like me – an instruction ignorer!

  3. Posted December 14, 2011 at 10:01 am | Permalink | Reply

    It’s quite simply amazing.
    All keen crafters jump ahead of the instructions, you’ve done an amazing job! x

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