So I am testing the 'Blossoms' quilt pattern from Amanda Murphy Design (she has a ton of new quilt patterns coming out, and they are exceptional!). I made her Garden Paths quilt at the beginning of the month. I don't know if you feel this way ever, but I feel very frustrated when it comes to the actual quilting/binding of my quilts. The quilt tops are so enjoyable to make, but the rest I could just do without. I don't like wrestling all that heavy fabric through my machine, and the last couple of quilts, I just do the quickest and easiest quilting job, like the wavy-line quilting I used for my Heather Ross quilt. It's fine, it's just not the most visually-interesting.
So, with this quilt I decided to make my life easier. I will never be able to send a quilt off to a long-arm quilter, but I wanted to do something beautiful with this quilt. So, I quilted the small white petals (there are 4 per flower) to batting, so I would be able to make them look pretty, like this:
|96 of these babies|
Yeah, it was a lot of cutting out, both for the white fabric and for the batting, but worth the effort. Then, I assembled my blocks into groupings of 4 squares, to make one big 18"x18" block. The fabrics are from the Amy Butler Soul Blossoms line. I then attached this block to a piece of batting, and quilted in the 'Rain Drop' effect that I got from my friend, Kim.
If you're not familiar with the 'quilt as you go' concept, basically instead of assembling an entire quilt top and then attaching it to the batting/backing, you work in smaller pieces. So, in my example, I assembled a 18" x 18" block of the quilt, and then quilted it to a 20" x 20" piece of batting (just to account for any shifting as I quilted it). Working with a smaller unit allowed me to more easily turn the fabric through my machine, and I was able to quilt the circles in the 'Rain Drop' effect with ease. You assemble your finished units with 1/4" seams as normal, and when the whole top is finished, attach it do the backing in some way (I'm going to use stitch-in-the-ditch along the 18"x18" blocks).
|18" x 18" block...11 more to go!|
So, this project is technically a 'quilt-as-you-go' within a 'quilt-as-you-go'. I'm pretty pleased with how it's working out so far, and I know that in future I will definitely purposely look for quilt patterns that I will be able to do something similar to this, so I can skip the dreaded quilting.
If you like the look of this particular quilt, check out my Sew Alongs Summer Calendar, it'll be up for a sew along in August!