Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Slippery Slope?

Heaven help me, I'm quilting.

Those of you who said that me getting a job at Hancock was a bad idea may have been right. See, people just keep buying all this cute fabric to make quilts, and put the idea of quilting in my head... But I wasn't sure about the idea of piecing a top. It sounds tricky, and I'm not sure I have the patience for lining up all those seams perfectly. I'm more of a "a man running for his life would never notice that mistake" kind of seamstress. But then I saw whole cloth quilting...

Fast forward to the day after Thanksgiving. I was working at Hancock (obviously), and there was a bunch of flannel on sale for $1.69/yard. I also have a nice little employee discount. I was simply unable to resist the cheap flannel. I bought a little over a yard of several prints with monkeys on them (baby quilts?), two and a half yards of a few solids... and two yards of one that I could see me making a quilt for myself from. (It's a bit lighter in real life than in the picture.)

There was also a sale on packaged batting... 50% off, plus my employee discount. So I picked up a twin size low loft batting... thingie. (Piece? Package?) Which happens to be the perfect size to use doubled in a quilt made from two yards of 45"-wide flannel. All told, the materials for this quilt totaled about $9.00. So, last night, I laid out my starry flannel on the spare bed, plopped down my batting, and topped it with two yards of matching yellow flannel. I used binder clips to keep it all lined up properly (hey, who needs special equipment?), and followed Mom's advice for keeping it square in the long run: I used dark thread and an extremely long running stitch to baste around the edges and in a grid over the whole thing. I happened to have some mustardy-yellowy-goldish thread that matches what's showing up as orange in the photo, so I grabbed that and started quilting. I'm currently outlining the stars by hand. We'll see how long I keep up the hand quilting--I may have to switch to machine quilting. I got about three stars done last night in the time I devoted to it, and I've got to say, it's pretty satisfying to see those little pillowy stars take shape. I love seeing them on the backside--my thread contrasts nicely with my backing fabric. They're far from perfect, but that's okay. That's what first quilts are for, right? Perfecting your technique?

Hmmm. "First quilt" kind of implies there will be more of them, doesn't it?