Sew Saturday ~ ALYOF

My sewing goal for August on A Lovely Year of Finishes has been to quilt my practice quilt.  This is my first Free Motion Quilt (FMQ) and I hope it won't be my last.   It's something I want to master or at least try half a dozen quilts before deciding whether to pay somebody else to quilt for more or invest in a bigger machine.

My Button

I have a long way to go before I will be able to say I can FMQ.  It feels good to have this project done and under my belt with time left in the month.  One thing is sure, I enjoy making the quilt top more than quilting it together.  :)  At least for now.

It's not perfect, and that has been the hardest thing for me, but I kept reminding myself that this was practice.  There is no way to jump from beginner to perfect in one quilt.  It's just not possible.  I need to keep trying and work out the kinks.   I've been following Leah Day's motto not to rip anything out.  It would really be a waste of time on this particular quilt. 

Some of the quilt is "stitch in the ditch".  This helped to stabilize it for the rest of the quilting process.  It's something I will probably do again in other quilts, because it was nice to be able to pull the pins out after I was done and not worry about the quilt shifting too much.  I chose two different templates for my FMQing within the squares.

There is something very satisfying about having this project finished.  I still don't think it is good enough to give away to someone.   It's good enough to give to an animal shelter though, or let my kitty have it.   She was guarding the door to my sewing room last night as I was quilting.  Isn't she cute?  Do all cats love fabric as much as Sasha does? 

The binding on this quilt was actually the easiest part.  Can you believe that?  The fabric I used to piece the top was mostly cheap (old) fabric, and the 2 completed blocks were terribly "wonky" and not in a good "modern" way.  The quilting was challenging as I mentioned above, but the binding went together fairly easily.  Thanks in part to the great tutorial my new friend, Melissa, had on her blog Sew Bitter Sweet.  

Clicky to go to the tutorial

I followed her tutorial to use my backing as my binding.  The only difference is I used a straight stitch instead of a decorative one.  The one she used is super cute, but I was having "difficulties" with my machine and just wanted to get this project done!  (I broke 2 needles trying to do a decorative stitch before I realized I had the wrong foot on my machine.  DOH!)

It was a lovely day today, so I asked my son, Michael, if he would step outside and hold my quilt up so I could photograph it.  The wind made it difficult as did the shadows from the porch swing, but I love the big fluffy clouds in the sky behind him.  Thanks Michael!

Creative Blessings,
Heather North

P.S.  Now that I have finished this I plan on working on my Crazy Cat blocks for our SSMQG challenge.  Let's see if I can finish those too before August is done. 


Sally said...

Wow! Heather, I didn't know you quilted. So pretty, and I just love quilts. Sally

Sally said...

Wow! Heather, I didn't know you quilted, and I just love them. So pretty~ sally

Heather North said...

Thanks, Sally. I'm having fun getting back into quilting again.

Heather North said...

Thanks, Sally. I'm having fun getting back into quilting again.

mennikelly said...

Have you washed it yet? Sometimes that helps me feel better about my quilting imperfections as I don't notice them as much. Congratulations on your finish!

Heather North said...

No, I haven't washed it yet. I'll try that and see if it helps. Thanks. :)