"Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will."
Mahatma Gandhi

Monday, July 16, 2012


It sure feels like it's been a while since I've posted about a finished quilt.  Lots of X stitch and knitting, but not many quilts.  

It feels good to have one to post!  It's not that I haven't been sewing, it's that I've been sewing too many things at once and so no one thing was getting done.  Finally I got a hold of that madness and have finished the three quilts I had going at once, and am now working on the bindings.  

The first one I have finished is a gift for the great grandchild of a Pennsylvania cousin.  My husband's Pennsylvania family were all great quilters a generation ago.  Sadly, none of the children of that generation picked up the sport.  In a twist of irony, quilting has been brought back to this family by me, a city girl from New England.  

Although this quilt was great practice on accurate 1/2 square triangles, I wish I had done more with them.  There's so many and a twisting and turning of this one and that would have made for an interesting design.  Instead, I went for simple, and did end up with something very pretty, but a bit plain for my tastes:

I like the swirl design of quilting, as it adds some visual interest to the quilt without overpowering the simple design.  

The fabrics are a white on white tiny fan, and then the pastel polka dots of white on color and color on white.  

 The color on white polka dots, which are the top and bottom rows, do not show up at all in a photo, as you can see.  In person, they are very obvious and sweet.  

The quilting was done by a long armer who has done work for me in the past, but who I have not mentioned by name in this blog.  I sent her three quilts, and all were nicely quilted.  However, on this one the tension on the back thread must have been set poorly, as the stitches are flat in some areas, pulled in others, and in a few spots there is an inch of two of thread that is not attached to the front thread at all.  I do not know how that could occur, but it did.  

Additionally, she took it upon herself to wash this quilt and add a plain white binding.  WHAT?  First of all, I never, ever wash my quilts before I send them off, do you?  I'm interested in knowing people's preferences on that one.  I like to send them off shiny and new, and have the recipient enjoy the change that occurs with that first washing.  Also, her binding was very poorly done, and I am a very picky binder, with nice mitres and nearly invisible hand stitches 1/4" apart.  I like my bindings, they are like my final signature.  And, I had already constructed the binding strip of the color on white polka dot fabrics.  

I was a bit irritated but got over it and fixed what needed to be fixed and have it all set to send off.  


  1. I always wash my quilts...always want to see if there are any unexpected surprises....but I can understand wanting to send them off shiny and new.

    I would have been big irritated over the binding, and really irritated over the missed stitches...if nothing else she should have gave you discount on the quilting. Maybe she put the binding on trying to make up for it.

  2. Beautiful Angela. You do such beautiful quilting. I understand how you feel about the mistakes on your quilt. I think I would have to discuss it with her so that it would not happen again. As for washed or not - I would just love to get such a wonderful gift :)

  3. Very pretty quilt! I always wash my quilts before gifting. I had some problems years and years ago with clumping batting. It was entirely my fault. Quilting not dense enough.

  4. Hmmmm everyone is giving me food for thought and I do appreciate that! I'd not considered that something could go terribly awry on the first washing of a quilt---would I rather have that happen here in my home or in the home where the quilt lands? I'll have to consider that question. :) Also, since I have 2 dogs and 2 cats who help me with all of my sewing, perhaps a washing of a gift quilt would be the polite thing to do. Just because I don't notice animal hair on things doesn't mean others don't.

  5. Well Sis, you know I'm a washer. I always want to make sure it will be allright when someone else washes it and one time I had fabric bleed so I had to try and fix that. I'll convert you to a washer one of these days.

  6. Having a commenting problem, trying once more. It's gorgeous Angels, but I can't believe you were surprised with a binding you didn't order. Not to mention it had been washed. She definitely took liberties with your quilt that we're not hers to take and were unprofessional. I am annoyed along with you. But it is what it is, right? So you have to make your peace with it. Personally I would do that too, but I'd also tell her nicely how I feel and use a different long arm quilter in the future. I know how devastating it must have felt to put so much of yourself into this quilt only to find it was finished up in ways you would never have chosen. Imagine if a painter took a painting to be framed and found some finishing touches had been added to the painting itself in addition to the frame! Doesn't matter if you are a quilt washer and what kind of binding you were planning, Those are rightfully only your choices to make. A professional would never take those away frm you. OK, off my soapbox now. I'm not feeling as generous as you other commenters, but what's done is done so you will make the best of it. It it's still lovely!

  7. Looks great! Very baby-like...glad you were able to "fix" it & it's ready for gift giving.

  8. I totally forgot to tell you I love the quilt...I am still stunned that she put a binding on without asking...


Some day, I’d like the memory of me to be a happy one, I’d like to leave an afterglow of smiles when life is done. I’d like to leave an echo whispering softly down the ways, of happy times and laughing times and bright and sunny days.