Thursday, August 14, 2008

Part of the Process

It never seems to fail, that anytime there is a process to something worthwhile, there is always a step that is less than enjoyable. In the process of quilt making, for me, that less than enjoyable step would be basting! It is also a very important step and needs to be done correctly. I always mark my tops first, and the SBS was no exception. I did 2" cross hatching, instead of 1"...it was more than enough...a cute girlie looking design in the sashing, and a border of interlocking hearts. I will quilt around each part of the actual girls too, but there is no need to mark that.
I pieced the backing and pressed the seam open. I use my kitchen table with both leaves in it to do my basting. For you non-quilter's, here is the non enjoyable, but very necessary step. I lay out the backing fabric wrong side up....Next comes the batting. I cut the backing and batting the same size, about six inches larger than the quilt top all the way around. All the wrinkles need to be smoothed out. Not as easy as it sounds.Once the wrinkles and creases are smoothed, you lay your quilt top on it all making sure it is even and smoothed.Now you baste. I have huge basting needles, but the important part is the thread. There is a very old tale about the color of thread used to baste a quilt. I can not remember them all, but I do remember that a quilt basted in brown thread is not a good thing....something about the recipient being a spinster or a widow...anyway I also remember that purple thread brings with it blessings. Now I do not believe all that, but I have made it a tradition within myself to baste all my quilts going to other people in purple. I baste my own in whatever color I have available.I use cheap thread to baste. I baste baby quilts and smaller with a 6" grid and anything bigger than a baby quilt, I baste with a 4" grid. I did a 6" on Emerson's quilt.A couple of hours (and a break) later, and the quilt is in the hoop!It is a relief to get to this stage. Every time I see Rachel she seems to have dropped more and more. I am working hard to have this quilt ready for Emerson, but I know she has Niki's afghan to keep her warm too!! Did I tell you she is in birthing position, head down and the doc even said she had dropped since last visit 2 weeks ago. We are praying that my son will be close enough to make it home when the time comes, or better yet, Rachel will go into labor on the weekend when he is already home.
I have actually done some housework too. (It has not all been fun and games!) I did declutter my cupboard that holds our coffee cups. In the before pic you can see the mugs stacked on top of each other on the bottom shelf. These are the only mugs we use. The ones on the middle shelf match our dishes, but we never use them.After a little rearranging and a nice wipe down, the cupboard is clean and organized.
Well, it is almost 10 and I need to get my bedtime routines going. Tomorrow is a day at home and one of housework and quilting. I am loving every minute of it!!!

21 comments:

Milah said...

Oh you are good! Those stitches are amazing...just perfect. I have a feeling you'll get this done on time.

Mindy Pfohl said...

Looking wonderful! I'm just amazed! Milah is close... maybe I should come for a quilting lesson... what do you think Milah? :) Thanks for sharing your work Bren... oh and the cabinet looks great!

Idaho Quilter said...

i'm happy to see sunbonnet sue is still alive and well, that is my least favorite part too, and your stitches are wonderful.

dot said...

What a great baby quilt. She is a lucky little one.

Copper's Wife said...

Though I am not (yet) a quilter, I do understand about basting. It seems like such a big extra step when I'm sewing something, but skipping it in layered pieces results in disaster.

Your hand stitching/quilting in the last picture is just exquisite!

Dani said...

Wow, your quilting is amazing!

It's looking great!

Niki RuralWritings said...

Oh it looks so good!!! I love the quilting.

Praying Bud's and Emerson's timing will be perfect!

Hugs,
Niki

The Quilting Pirate said...

wow, look at all those mugs!! You must be the house to stop at for good coffee!! :)

Yah for starting to quilt...your stitches are incredible!!

Sweet P said...

Great tutorial in basting a quilt! Thanks for sharing.

I see you decluttered another place. I haven't done any decluttering this week. I need to get something done soon. I'm falling behind.

Angela said...

I love SBS. Cannot wait to see her finished.

Donetta said...

Good Morning! Your girls look so 3 dimensional. I love the quality of it. I think that purple sounds just right to enjoy the fine stitchery after. I love color and it I have to unpick one (as in basting) it might as well be my favorite. I am so excited that your grand daughter is growing and thriving and soon you will hold her in your arms. It will be an amazing day!
Thanks for the big hug the pain is gradually subsiding.

Su Bee said...

That is the sweetest most perfect quilt for a new little lady! What do you use to do your marking? It looks very fine but still easy to see.

Guðrún said...

Yes the basting, not my favorite either. Your quilting is just beautiful.

Sue said...

Your SBS came out just gorgeous, Bren, I knew it would :) How wonderfully enjoyable it will be to work on this one for your new little lady.

Sarah said...

I love your SBS quilt! Emerson will have a lovely heirloom. I am sure she will cherish it always! I will be honest... applique frightens me! You did a beautiful job, Bren!

One Christian Mom said...

You sure did get a lot done in one day!!! The quilt looks wonderful.

Brenda said...

I cannot believe the amount of TLC that goes into each quilt. They will become family heirlooms.

Winona said...

Bren,
This quilt is looking wonderful. I, too, am wondering what you use to mark with. I have chalk pencils, colored pencils, a purple pen that usually disappears before I get it done, and a blue pen that disappears with water. I am not really satisfied with any of these. I also think I will go back to basting instead of using pins. I too, dislike the basting. Oh well. Thanks for the tutorial on getting the quilt ready. I enjoyed reading it. Your cabinet looks great. Have a great evening. Winona

Vanessa said...

Great pictures to describe basting!

Jan said...

Your SBS quilt is wonderful and those tiny quilting stitches--they look great!

Angie said...

I my gosh, I can't believe I didn't comment on this post! Bren, this quilt is amazing ... the time it must've taken to do it say a lot. You're a wonderfully talented woman.