This project was kind of a beast as it's the largest quilt I've ever completed. It's queen-sized, or about 90 by 96 inches. There were a few moments during the making when I thought we were going to have to get a bigger bed, but once the quilting and trimming and binding was done it's just about the right size.
We have family coming to visit from Chicago at the beginning of July and I really wanted to offer them something nicer than our faded navy blue duvet cover. I had an idea of what I wanted and my friend, Jessica, came with me on a fabric-hunting expedition to ramp up my supplies. Then, as is my wont, I began another project instead, leaving myself with precious little time before D-Day.
Luckily I had earmarked the Carousel Lap Quilt pattern from Cozy Modern Quilts, by Kim Schaefer. This is a great pattern to use for a rush quilting job. The squares are large (the batik bits are 6 by 8 inches), and all the pieces are rectangular. Even better, the layout has the squares offset, so you really don't have to worry about matching corners or staying super tidy.
I finished this puppy in 10 days and I took time out to have gum surgery.
I quilted it on my Babylock, using a very useful tip I got at our recent quilting retreat in Eugene: beginning quilters should use wavy lines because that makes it look like you did it on purpose. I did a line of stitch-in-the-ditch down the sashing and then waved my way down the center of each square. Badda-bing, bad-boom.
When I finished my last quilt I decided that I preferred the look of hand stitched binding, so I planned to stick to that in future. This quilt, however, had about 7 miles of binding to apply and ain't nobody got time to hand stitch that before July 1.
So I stitched it to the front, wrapped to the back, pinned pretty carefully and used my stitch-in-the-ditch foot. And it came out pretty darn good. Gosh, I love that foot. I have a bunch of feet for my Babylock that I still don't really know what they do, but this foot is one of my all-time favorites.
Quilting is fun, but I'm ready to sew me some garments. One of our visiting family members is an 8-year-old who might want to join me. I have a pile of kid-print jersey sitting in a drawer upstairs that just might be the ticket.