Recently I wrote about the quilt I started in 1990 for my sister.
As it turns out the top is almost done which, of course means the quilting comes next….ohhhhhh never done that before and I really don’t want my very first attempt to be on my sisters quilt. Let hers be my second attempt. What to do? What to do?
Welllll, it just so happens I have blocks that I won in 2001 from a guild BOM.
This is the way it worked; if you wanted to participate you made a block…or four…whatever. You got a raffle ticket for every block you gave in and at the end of the guild meeting they would draw for the winner of all of the blocks. It would appear that I won and subsequently put the jars (and additional fabric, some already cut and ready to piece) away safely, not to be seen for 12 years.
Perfect, I pulled these little suckers out and decided I would finish the Bug Jar Quilt, figure out how to quilt the thing and give it to charity. So I began
They were not all my style, they were not all trued up but I carried on
I had to piece some myself because I needed 20 for the quilt and there were not that many completed blocks in the bunch. Next I had to decide what to put between each row. I looked up other bug jar quilts online and the prevailing pattern had them as if they were sitting on a shelf…like in a pantry. Great, I thought, I’ll do that! I high-tailed it to my local fabric/craft store and found this Robert Kaufman gem (Imperial Collection) that I thought could be a fun wood-like compliment
Yeahhh, then I realized that if I did that the jars would appear to be floating above the shelf because in this pattern the jars have a big white strip at the bottom and unless I felt like ripping those off of 20 blocks and messing up the dimensions of my quilt that was not happening. Back to the stash (because I didn’t want to buy more). Low and behold I had this gem
called Backyard Baby by Patty Sloniger for Michael Miller. I must have bought it relatively recently because it is still being sold however I have absolutely no recollection. So I decided that I would fussy cut the rows and put them in between. Which ended up looking like this
I also added the border because it needed something
Now to baste and let the party begin!
Today? This is today? I’m so curious and excited. Are you basting with thread? Pin basting? (That’s how I did it, with the scoop-y pins, which made life very easy.) Using the curved roller clips to hold your quilt aside while you focus on on area? (I tried those and my quilt was too small so the clips went flying, scattering the cats.) I made a few mistakes along the way, which I’ll be happy to reveal to you so you can avoid them. Shorthand version: pull your bobbin thread through to the top so you don’t make a big, secret mess on the back that will surprise you when you’re ready to be delighted; be careful not to accidentally sew something to the back of your quilt, such as a little scrap of fabric (yes, really); if you are careless enough to sew that scrap, clip close to the sewn threads and just unravel it gently and you won’t have to take out the quilting. Lastly, if you feel like you should un-pick a row but don’t want to because you’ve come so far, go ahead and do it–it’s not too painful and you’ll be happier with the nicely quilted row. (I ran out of thread mid-row, tried to soldier on, made it worse, then un-picked the entire row and proceeded smoothly from there.) Is that way more than you need? I promise I won’t barge into your blog and offer advice willy-nilly–I just couldn’t resist. Can’t wait to see that completed quilt! xxx B.
Hi Beanie, thanks for the sweet words and wisdom. I pin basted on our garage floor which is finished with epoxy. It’s a nice big space, a little mopping and it’s good to go…although my knees were not always happy with it. I pulled the bobbin threads to the top and did a stitch in the ditch around every jar and on each side of the grey fabric, creating a lot of threads to hide. If I had it in me I might stipple between each jar but I don’t think I will. A little more quilting and it will be time to watch those videos on basting, of course I already have the fabric, a fun multi-colored stripe 🙂 I also made an extra basted sandwich for free motion practice that has become very handy and bolstered my confidence a bit. Feel free to barge in and add advise willy-nilly at will, I love it!
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