Sunday, 2 April 2017

Sunday finish: Triple Irish Flower Quilt

An extra finish for this week as I didn't have photos of the completed quilt ready for last Friday. Today was a beautiful Spring day so I managed to find time in between bouts of gardening to take some pictures. The magnolia looks wonderful, though it is starting to drop its petals, and everything else is green and fresh. This little quilt feels fresh for Spring too.

I have been pushing on with my quilting over the past few weeks, off and on,  and am glad I have been able to quilt this small quilt which I find I blogged about in July 2014! Here is the link to that post. 

You can find the details of the quilt and the Moda Bakeshop tutorial link in the old post, but for now I am going to feature the quilting rather than the piecing details. Some of the photographs are of the back of the quilt because the quilting lines show up better on that side.

All the quilting was done with a walking foot on my Juki. I started with the crosshatching through the 'chain' to stabilise the layers. It was a little fiddly because I wanted to keep the 'roses' clear of quilting lines, so I had to stitch around them and ended up with quite a few tails to tie in.

I then ditch quilted on both sides of the inner border and cross hatched the pieced border, not in the ditch but across the tiny 1" squares, missing out every other square so the lines are 2" apart. This was much less stressful and more of a statement than trying to ditch stitch so many small squares. No ends to tie in here - I quilted in a series of V shapes on and off the border, alternate lines of squares. 

I then outlined the yellow centre of each rose. Natural/light cream Mettler quilting thread was a good match throughout, better than white which I think might have been too stark.

I could have put my usual parallel lines in the inner border but felt that the floral character of the quilt called out for something more flowing: I used an oval template to create a chain of leaves, marked with a blue pen.  Easy to quilt in a series of sweeping curves along the length of the border and then back on the opposite direction to complete the design.

The empty spaces one always ends up with in an Irish Chain design really do need some fancy quilting, but I wanted to use the walking foot. I used two oval templates which I made to fit the space and marked the design with a washable blue pen so that it was easy to follow accurately.

Yes, it did involve a fair amount of turning the quilt, but this is a fairly small quilt (60" square) so it wasn't too bad once I got into a rhythm. I am really pleased that I made the effort as I feel it honours the spirit of the original Thirties quilt which you can see in the Moda Bakeshop recipe post.

Having used a blue pen for the marking I made sure I finished the quilting fairly quickly so that I could immerse the whole thing in cold water without delay to remove the ink. 

I am not mad keen on this form of quilt marking because of the risk of setting the chemical and leaving a nasty brown stain - heat is the main culprit so one mustn't risk inadvertently leaving the quilt in the sun or by a radiator, or putting it through a hot wash. Cold water first and then a spin and line drying removed every trace so I feel safe now, and the quilt has crinkled up nicely. 

Last couple of photos and I am done.  Thank you for visiting my blog and taking the trouble to read to the end.  I hope you have had a lovely weekend and are rested and ready for the week ahead, whatever you have planned.

PS Needless to say, I haven't done anything with my Lemoyne Star diamonds made with the scraps (see old post referred to at the beginning of today's blog) - I wonder how long it will be before I am able to blog about finishing that WIP!

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