Sunday, August 31, 2008

Whatcha been up to, Girl? Where ya been? Well, Life got a little crazy. One of the things I did since last we blogged, was to go to a retreat in California with my guild in Oakland. I was too lazy to take my sewing machine, so I took this quilt, where I finished 3/4 of the binding. I like to blindstitch the binding on by hand, so it does take a minute or two. It took a few hours last night to complete it.

This quilt is called Ramblin' Rose with Guacamole and Extra Salsa on the Side, and it was designed by Marti Michell. The floral fabric with the black background is the Ramblin' Rose fabric, and it was also designed by Marti. It was quilted on a longarm by Melinda Fulkerson, who also taught the class. I didn't love the fabric, but I wanted to learn the kaleidoscope technique, and it was easier to do that with Marti's fabric and directions than trying to start from scratch. Marti is a genius - it is amazing the way everything fit together perfectly. You should try her templates!

There are a few blocks that don't line up as well as I would like, but I'm going with the galloping horse theory on those. The galloping horse theory in quilting is that if the mistake can't be seen from a galloping horse, then don't worry about it. The point being not to obsess over the small stuff. I will rip a seam out in a heartbeat when it's wrong, but I decided to let these go. So what had happened was, I have my Bernina set to sew a scant 1/4 inch seam - the needle is moved one stop over to the right from center. I don't even think about it any more. Halfway through this quilt, I had to take my baby into the shop because she was skipping stiches (funny story that...when I took the machine in, the woman asked if I had changed the needle recently, the implication being that it was skipping because the needle needed to be replaced. I told her I had, and actually it had started skipping right after that. When I got the machine back, the technician said that I hadn't pushed the needle all the way in. Amazing how that works! "It started right after I changed the needle.") I had to use my backup machine while she was in the shop, which wasn't set up to sew a scant 1/4 inch, and which I completely forgot about. So the blocks that are off are the ones that aren't a scant 1/4 inch. Scant being the operative word in that sentence.

This quilt is for my Aunt Dot, my Mom's sister, who taught me to sew. I remember her teaching me like it was yesterday, and she doesn't remember it at all. Some of my favorite and happiest childhood memories center on my Aunt Dot. At one point in our young lives, my Mom and Aunt Dot lived together. She had three kids, Mom had two, and we all lived in a two (maybe three) bedroom house together. I only think three bedrooms because I can't imagine all those people in two bedrooms, but my memory is two bedrooms. Her birthday is Saturday, and I can't believe I actually have completed something on time for the actual event!


Melinda said...

I love that you have a blog and I can keep up with you between trips to the quilt shop. You did a great job on your quilt and it was fun to quilt it.

Regina said...

Thank God for the Aunt Dots in our lives! Your posts always make me so reflective. I have been kicking around the idea of making a quilt for all of my mother's siblings. My childhood memories are so entwined with their care and guidance, they all shaped who I am today. I think I will take that idea off the shelf and turn it around a bit more in my mind's eye.

I have never done any of Marti's patterns but my friend Stevie has all of her books and templates so I have a local source if I wanted to try my hand. What do you think of the One Block Wonder book?