So it turns out that the act of ‘quilting’ is both really good fun and a lot of hard work!
Once the quilt top is finished, the next stage in quilting is to layer up the backing fabric, the cosy wadding and the completed patchwork top. This is quite a difficult job to do on your own as you have to make sure that all three layers are lying completely flat before pinning them together. We helped each other ‘layer up’ in our class last week – I suspect Mr D will have to help me with this part in future! After making sure that there are no bumps or creases in the quilt layers, it was time to employ the curved quilting pins. Starting in the middle of the quilt and working outwards, I pinned the blocks, then the lattice and finally the border – making sure that the layers were smooth before inserting each pin.
Now the quilting could begin! For my first quilt, I am keeping it simple by using the “stitch in the ditch” method of quilting in the seam line.
It is really difficult to keep the quilting lines straight! I suspect this is a skill that will come with lots of practice! After quilting around the inner edge of each nine-patch block, I felt brave enough to tackle the border – even adding a decorative double-stitched quilt line.
You can see my walking foot attachment on my sewing machine in this photo. It is an essential for machine quilting, as little ‘feed dogs’ grab the top of your quilt and pull it through the machine. Without a walking foot, the backing fabric and wadding would pass through the machine more quickly than your quilt top, causing all sorts of upset – such as loopy stitching and creased fabric. After spending so much time carefully piecing together the quilt top, the last thing I wanted to do was create a quilt with loopy stitching!
Fortunately my walking foot appears to be quite easy to use and I am pleased with the results. I think the occasionally ‘wandering’ quilt lines give my first quilt some real character – and prove it is genuinely handmade!
So onto the final stage – the binding. Soon, I will have photos of the finished quilt for you. I can’t wait!
Mrs D xx