A generous donation was made to our local quilt group of a number of kits from a collection called French Cottage. Each kit made one block. Our program chair brought them to a meeting, and asked for volunteers to make the blocks. I think there were a couple of dozen block kits, and I took two to complete at home.
Starting out, I made the half square triangles called for in the spools block. Then I squared them up, and laid out the design with the other precut pieces. This went really fast, having die cut fabric pieces helped keep the blocks uniform. All I had to do was sew with my quarter-inch foot to keep the seam allowances even.
I pinned sections together, and chain pieced to save even more time.
Then I did the same thing with the second block kit.
Two blocks done. I took these to a meeting a couple of months ago, and turned them in to Marti. She was allowing a bit more time for the rest of the blocks to get finished.
Fast forward to last month, when I participated in a sew-in after the last meeting. We were putting together yet more block kits that were donated to us. Sewing as a group is always fun, yet my machines were not cooperating. My portable broke, and that was right after the longarm went wonky. When Marti showed the French Cottage quilt all assembled and ready for quilting, I convinced her to let me quilt it. I wanted to see it through, since I had made a couple of the blocks, but even more so, I wanted to show you all something wonderful. Here is the completed top laid out on the floor. Notice anything?
Here’s another clue, this is the top loaded on the longarm. The batting was provided by the Warm Company, Warm and White. They are so generous and supportive of our charity quilting program. No affiliation, just a happy customer.
Another view, figure it out yet?
It has not only borders, but sashing as well. The wonderful thing is that these were all properly done and this top is absolutely flat. There are no puckers, C cups, D cups, pleats or ruffles. Just look at the top corner, heaven.
Quilting went quickly as there was no steaming, easing or messing with it. I just quilted from one side to the other, stitched down the edges and went again. What I thought would take four or five days quilting in my spare time took just three. When I got to the bottom, the sides were still straight…
and the bottom was just as flat as the top.
The quilting pantograph I used has a trefoil motif, kind of French inspired, and it has them going in opposite directions. It also interlocks with the rows above and below, making a medium density that should hold up well to washing. It is called Wrought Iron by Willow Leaf Designs. It is quilted in Superior Glide Thread with Bottom Line in the bobbin.
Of course I have to show you at least one of my blocks, LOL! This quilt is for Elizabeth House, a local hospice.
The fact that this quilt has about a dozen different people with that many different machines doing the blocks makes it even more amazing. Just look at the blocks, each one has a border, then then whole quilt is sashed with cornerstones and another border. Yet, it is absolutely flat, flatter than ANY quilt I have ever made myself or quilted for anyone. I will tell you, this is all because of the person who assembled it, Marti. She asked for the blocks back uncut, so she could square them up herself. She then measured and cut the block borders, sashings and the outer border, and then applied them the right way. It made this quilt a joy to quilt, and I will be delighted to do any quilt for her anytime.
So, the moral of the story is no matter how many borders you have, your quilt can be absolutely flat too, if you use the right technique of measuring and cutting. See my tutorials at the top under Quilting Basics for more information and how-to articles.
P.S. Today is the last day to order from Primitive Gatherings with the discount. The 20% discount online code is: Carolina This code expires at the end of today, August 25th and is good for any wool order excluding the following items: wool bundles, wool charms, specialty dyed wools (meaning customer picks color and texture) unless a full yard is ordered.