Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Work In Progress Wednesday - Well I Never!

Michael Miller quilt
So, I decided to take a break from all the hand ties on my Meadowsweet Living Room Quilt last weekend by beginning the hand quilting on my Granny Square Quilt.  I threaded my needle with some nice white perle cotton, grabbed my quilt, settled into my favorite chair and then realized something.......I have NEVER ever hand quilted a quilt before.  Seriously......the quilt shop girl has never done hand quilting before....and I didn't even realize that I didn't know how to do it until I sat down and tried to do it! 
Scrappy pastel granny square quilt
Well...I started hand quilting it anyway, it looked absolutely awful and I tore all the stitches out.  I can't even begin to tell you how bad the stitching looked.  I didn't even take a picture of it because it was so bad and I take pictures of EVERYTHING!  Seriously.....Emma could have done a better job at hand quilting....
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Then I thought I'd jump over to the Hooterville Quilt for a change of pace.  It's at the stage where I just need to applique the wool beaks and feet onto the owls using the blanket stitch.  Can you see where this is going yet?  Yup.....I realized I have NEVER ever done wool applique before.
Pink and Green Hooterville quilt
Sooooo.....I've been spending some time practicing hand quilting on a mini "quilt sandwich" I made and I've been practicing my blanket stitch on some scraps of orange wool felt.  And then I just went back to doing the hand ties on the Living Room Quilt.  Oh....and I learned a little something about hand ties this weekend too.  I wish I would have just started by doing hand ties in the corners of each block, removed the safety pins, put the binding on and then continue to add ties after the quilt went into "circulation."  I'm doing TONS of ties and it's taking FOREVER and I'm now considering each row that I finish a huge accomplishment!
So here are my current stats......
Finished Projects:  ZERO!  But I've done 3 of the 8 rows on the Living Room Quilt!
Active WIPs:  4

Back Burner WIPs:  4
Ready To Go:  13
Must Make:  6
New Projects:  Zero
Forgotten/Abandoned Projects:  ???

Fingers crossed that I'll have some fabulous progress to show you next week!

Happy Sewing,

P.S.  Thank you so much for all the sweet comments about Cassi Cat.  I'm happy to report that she continues to do GREAT and she celebrated her 18th birthday on June 16!


Anonymous said...

Hand quilting? You just DO it! I have never quilted with embroidery thread or Perl cotton, but with quilting thread you just go for it! If done with love it will be fabulous! Not so sure I can say the same about my first attempts at machine quilting!

Amanda said...

My goodness woman! That is a million ties! It looks absolutely great though. Good choice of finishing method.
I'm a hand quilter, my advice is just keep at it, it gets pretty easy. And really once you wash it it will look great no matter how your stitches look.

mom said...

first of all, emma looks adorable and as your back up quilter - i know she will do well. i hand quilted decades ago - i will try to find the smaller one and show you when you are over. but it IS really odd that you never thought about the fact that you didn't know how because you had never done it before. might suggest going back to being a veterinarian!!

Suzanne P. said...

Wow! Your hand tying looks great - nice and puffy looking like an old comforter I had when I was younger - I loved that comforter so this is more of a compliment than it sounds....

I've hand quilted before -- I didn't really see that there was much difference between it and regular/heirloom sewing - just more layers. Keep the stitches even and small - about 10 to an inch is considered really good. Harriet Hargrave's books cover this some.

I have never thought about using perle cotton to quilt - I buy quilting thread from my local Hancocks - it is stronger than regular sewing thread and it doesn't lose its sheen from being pulled through all those layers or pill up like I think perle cotton may have a tendency to do. Be sure and post about how that goes and how it looks when you do it some more. If you have a lot of luck with it then I may want to try it.

I enjoy your blog - bright and cheery and reassuring in that I tend to have a lot of WIPs and don't seem to make as much progress as I would like. I have over a dozen projects in waiting (not started but kitted); those that are started and have been set aside for a while - probably about ten or so. I have to finish a few things every once in a while or my husband beefs about what I spend on my needlework habit.


Missy Shay said...

I recently had a dear friend teach me how to hand quilt. I wrote it up on my blog. Be sure to watch the videos at the end. I hope this helps!

Teresa F. said...

I love your ties. The quilt is looking great. About hand quilting, I've tried it before and I can assure you it's very difficult but once you start you will love it.

Julie said...

I love those owls! Where did you get the pattern? I'm with you on the hand quilting. I've tried it twice. Once was a total failure and the other time was quick and easy but it was a baby quilt so much smaller. It wasn't fabulous the second time but it was good enough to get the job done. I love all the ties and I think it is a total accomplishment to finish each row!

Patti Shanks said...

Good for you for trying new things! Your hand tied quilt is amazing.

Amy said...

Once you try and quilting it is very relaxing, I soft quilt, which is without a hoop or frame. I tried once using a hoop,pft., was ard to handle. Good luck I am sure you will do great!

Alicia said...

Hand quilting? You just DO it! I have never quilted with embroidery thread or Perl cotton, but with quilting thread you just go for it! If done with love it will be fabulous! Not so sure I can say the same about my first attempts at machine quilting!