Sunday, May 20, 2012

Long Overdue

Wow!  It has been over a month since I posted last.  I am sorry I was trying to get to a certain place in my quilting so I would have something to say besides just the "I'm busy quilting" post.  Well I hit a dry spell and really had to take a few days off from my quilting.  So I kind of vegged for a few days just playing solitare while listening to audio books.  After spending 5 mor more hours a day hand quilting I really needed the break.  So it took me a little longer to get to the place I was trying to get to  but last night I finally made it!

I can now say I am at the half way point of the quilt if you don't count the border  I have quilted two rows of hearts and two rows of sashing.  I now have two rows of hearts and one row of sashing to do before I begin the borders. Not to bad for having started the actual quilting only in March.  It's been just a little over two months since I started.  But I still wonder if I will be pushing it to complete the quilt by October which was my original goal.  Still I'm going to keep pushing forward.

So without further ado here are two pictures of the quilt up to this point.  For the most part I am happy but there are things I would change/fix if I could.  I've learned a lot from this quilt and I'll have to write about that some time.  But for now...Here it is...


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Update

Well I wasn't able to complete that pinning process because I ran out of pins.  Who knows I may be over pinning now but I'm trying to make up for not pulling the backing tight enough when I pinned in the first place as well as the fact that I quilt with the fabric really loose so I need lots of pins.  Oh and that white marker of mine ran dry so I guess I will have to get a 4th one. 

In the mean time, I have completed 1 row of hearts that is 5 hearts plus a row of sashing.  The sashing part is the hardest because there are so many turns and the quilt is so big.  I love it and think it is beautiful but oh what a pain that part is. 

Today I started and completed another heart and am now starting on some sashing.  My goal is to have it completed by my birthday in October.  My prayer is to be able to take it to Texas and deliver it in person to my aunt so I can see the expression on her face when she sees the quilt for the first time.  Yes she is trusting me completely with this project.  The designing was all mine and all she has seen at this point is what a few of the hearts look like.  She is planning to wait until it is done to see the whole thing in person.  I sure hope she likes it.

I'll take some more pictures soon.  But it is hard to see the progress in the pictures.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

More hearts and Pins

I spent today making cookies and marking more hearts to the quilt as well as adding more pins.  I've heart they should be about 2 or 3 finger spaces apart and well they are now!  :-)  I have more to pin and it already has nearly 1000 pins in it.  If anything shifts now it is beyond anything I know how to deal with.  LOL 

More marking and pinning tomorrow and then back to quilting. 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Slow But Steady Wins The Race

Not a lot to report.  Today was a slow day on the quilting because I just felt burned out.  I nearly have 1 out of 4 rows done and about 1/2 a row of sashing (row's in between the heart row's) done.  I just feel like it is coming along so slowly.  But I do quilt about 6 hours a day on a normal day.

I am finding that I have to go back and remark things such as the hearts that are traced with the white iron out pen.  I also need to take some time and go back and add some more pins into the quilt.  Can you believe that 700 pins weren't enough?  Well I had heard that you should pin a hand width apart and now I am learning that it should be 3 fingers apart for machine quilting and 2 fingers apart for hand quilting especially if you quilt with a loose hoop like I do.  So I need to go back and add some more pins.  While I'm doing that, I am also retracing some of the hearts I traced when I first started.

I also tossed around rather to quilt the hearts with the natural thread I am using or to use a color like the heart color.  I've finally decided to use a color similar to the heart color.  So I went back and bought about $25 worth of thread to have all the colors I would need.  Now mind you I have no clue what I'm going to do with all this thread when I am done quilting.  I don't know if I will ever need some of these colors again.  It is hard to say.

I'll post some pictures when I finish the row along with the row of sashing.  That will be in a week or so.  Until then God Bless.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Quilt Update

The updates on the quilt don't seem to come as often these days since I'm doing the hand work now and that work is so much slower.  At this point I have quilted two and a half hearts and have 17 and a half to go. I've also crosshatched two name blocks leaving 14 more name blocks to crosshatch as well as quilted just over half of one of the sashing (between the row) strips.  There are 3 of these strips and each one runs most of the length of the quilt and they take a while to stitch because they have a lot of design in them and that takes a while.  Right now I am working in the center of the quilt and I work my way to either the top or bottom of that row and across to the sides on the row.  This is done to hopefully keep out any gathers or bunches in the back fabric.  I have come across some puckers of sorts in the back but I think that is due more to the type of batting and the fact it gives a more antique look.  But I am trying to watch really closely to eliminate any unsightly gathers.  Other than that I thought I would share a few pictures with you.

Me pinning the quilt.  Funny I am wearing the same
dress in the picture of me pinning Angels quilt.

One of the hearts after quilting.


Another heart after quilting


Sashing quilting.  The blue is the marker for the pattern
It does wash out.


Showing the difference of before and after of quilting


Close up of before and after of quilting


Another closeup

And that is about all for now.  Back to quilting I go.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Review of Barnetts Laptop Hoops

I have been trying out different hoops from Barnett's Laptop Hoops still trying to find just the right one for me.  Harry Barnett is such a nice guy to work with.  He has been very patient with me on my search for the right hoop and I'm sure I haven't been the easiest of customers  :-).  I really like the craftsmanship, it is absolutely wonderful on these hoops and stands.  And to be honest I was quite surprised at how sturdy they are and how well built they are.  You couldn't ask for a better more sturdy hoops.  Even my husband has said the craftsmanship is excellent.  Harry has several options of bases you can choose from as well.  I have chosen his new product, the bean bag base.  It has a lazy Susan in it so that it can spin.  While I like the sit on base it just doesn't work for me since I only wear dresses and because I quilt from my recliner.  So it's the bean bag for me.   My hoop is the 14 inch square hoop.  I have tried both the round and the square hoops and while both are excellent I think I like the square frame for the way it hold my quilt while I'm quilting and keeps it square and it gives me just a tad more room. So if you are in the market for a good quality quilting hoop look over the website  http://www.laptophoops.com/  You'll be glad you did.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Progress Report

Well I'm actually quilting it.  And so that I don't get ahead of myself I'm surprised I'm not remaking it  (more to come.) 

Would you believe it took 2 days and about 665 pins to baste the quilt?  Yep that's right 665 pins.

Now here's the story on why I thought I would be unpinning all those pins and remaking the quilt.  After I had everything marked and pinned I started quilting.  I was SO DISAPPOINTED when my needle would hardly go through the fabric and would bend and one actually snapped into 3 pieces.  For some reason there is something about the main fabric that makes it nearly impossible to quilt.  I was ready to give up and start all over because my thumb was so sore and I wasn't getting anywhere with the quilt.  I started trying different sizes of pin and most had such small eye's that the thread would break when I was trying to thread it (with a needle threader of course)  Well the next day (yesterday) I decided to try once more.  I finally found that if I only took 2 or 3 stitches on the smallest needle I could manage to thread, then I could quilt the quilt.  I can't say this is going to be easy because so much of this quilt is that light hard to quilt fabric, but I think I can do this.  So I've been going along slow and steady but you know what they say about the turtle.  I guess I would rather be a turtle that a quitter.

Until next time...God Bless!