Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Home Tours and Quilt Backs

As promised, I am here to talk quilt backs. First I want to share that I spent some time this morning updating my "Welcome To My Home" post. I decided not to "re" post it, but just leave it back in the archives. If you want to see the update, just click on the link. Those of you who read my blog regularly already know what every room in my house looks like ;) If you want to visit other home tours, visit Keeping The Home for a list of tours (at the bottom of her own tour).
Now on to quilt backs. WILL I EVER LEARN!!!!???? Maybe not. I always pick out backing fabric that is busy. Busy is usually pretty where fabric is concerned, but plain unbleached muslin is ALWAYS the best choice....at least for a hand quilter. Here is the back of my sister's quilt.
A gazillion hand quilting stitches and not one of them shows up! Sure you can see texture, but, oh my goodness, what a waste. I did the same thing with Emerson's quilt....
All that cross hatching and the back is just fabric...beautiful flower fabric, but any hand quilter will get what I am saying here. I have made this mistake more times that I can count. Every time I tell myself I will not do it again. On this little wall hanging (it is yours, Donetta) I used a pale yellow which did show the quilting.
Thankfully I did not make the mistake on the Pink and Brown, (which is back in the hoop once again).
Where I make my mistake is here....I go shopping for the back and end up looking for a coordinating fabric. Something that is pretty and seems to match the front. I pass by the best choices for a quilt back...unbleached muslin, and light solids. They seem boring, and they are!!.....until you get the quilting on it, then they turn into works of art!!! Maybe this will be the time I learn....I already basted the Peter Rabbit quilt with muslin on the back, and I have 3-4 other tops to be basted this year. I plan to use extra wide muslin for all of them!!!! What do you choose for quilt backs??

14 comments:

Milah said...

Thanks for sharing...this is a good lesson for all of us. We tend to pick pretty fabrics to back a quilt which ruins our handi-work. Duh....

Your house is very pretty. I know you work hard to stay on top of the cleaning but it does pay off. Thanks for the tour.

christine said...

Save your pretty fabrics for the quilt tops and let your stitches be seen for all to appreciate on the muslin.

Your quilting is absolutely beautiful and you are my inspiration to keep a quilt in my frame. I'm beginning to wonder if I'd get more done if I quilted in a hoop?

have a wonderfilled week!

Andrea Cherie said...

The back of your pink and brown IS gorgeous!! I think I would have the same problem when shopping...the pretty fabrics are just so much more fun to look at!

Guðrún said...

I agree the muslin is best and your quilting should not be hidden. I am not so much of a handquilter so my backs are usually busy.

Linda said...

Well you know I'm not a hand quilter, and probably never will be. I tend to use busy fabrics as most of the quilting I do I want to show on the front. Having said that I agree with what you've said about the hand quilting, such a shame it can't be enjoyed on a plain fabric on the back.
Love your new background, so much easier on these old eyes.

miniaturequilter said...

I like to use the extra wide backing fabric from Jo-Anns with a 40% off coupon. But i don't hand quilt my big quilts and I have to agree that white does show off your stitching better than the busy prints, but you can see the stitching on the front, and sometimes a colorful backing is good with kids-hides dirt stains, vomit, and anything else they do to it!

Niki RuralWritings said...

I will remember to choose a very plain background if I ever decided to hand quilt again. What a difference! Gosh you do quilt beautifully Bren....I know I keep saying it but it's true! And just to add about your home, which is lovely, when we were blessed to visit your family, your home had a wonderful feeling in it, I wish your readers could experience that!

Copper's Wife said...

I love the way your hand quilting looks on the solid fabric!! Exquisite!

Paula said...

You're absolutely right about backings for hand quilting!!!!

Love Bears All Things said...

I agree that muslin is best, especially for someone who hand quilts as beautifully as you do. I probably should stick to print that hides my stitches.
Mama Bear

Rose Marie said...

Years ago, I think we were all swayed into using co-ordinating fabrics for backing as muslin was just too plain. I agree with you about using plain fabrics for hand quilting .... our work shows up ever so well and in some cases our quilts can be reversed and suddenly there is a whole cloth on our beds. I find myself staying away from busy backing fabrics now and much happier about it. Your work is lovely and a joy to see.

Winona said...

Oh Bren, I do the same thing, time after time. I always seem to pick busy fabrics for the backing. I loved your last picture. The quilting is just beautiful. Winona

Michele said...

Your quilts are so beautiful! I really enjoyed visiting your blog :0)

Marilyn R said...

My friend was just talking the other day about using muslin for a quilt that she is going to be hand quilting and I thought of you! When I machine quilt I sometimes want to hide the stitching if it isn't even etc. so busy fabric is important. I agree with you though, hand quilting looks best on solid fabrics!