I’m so happy with the way this turned out. I really liked every aspect of the creation and I think my friend will love it. I finished it over a week ago now, but have been too busy (working a lot, getting ready for vacation) to post it. Here goes:
The backing is an Ikea twin bed sheet that I bought last year for about $7. The prints are all Anna Maria Horner, primarily from Innocent Crush. The binding and window borders are Kona Berry and the sashing fabric is Quilter’s Only Solids in Tea Dye.
I was unable to free-motion quilt it, though that’s what I really wanted, because the tension on my machine is all messed up. I quilted it at our quilt guild sewing day a few weeks ago and was all prepared to dig in without practice or preparation when my friend Amy said, “Um, have you ever free-motion quilted before?” (answer: no) “Don’t you want to make a practice piece first?” In my mind there was no doubt in my ability to do it (mind over matter, you know, and a rare burst of confidence), I just figured I’d dig in and see what happened.
Thank God I had brought a baby quilt to practice on. I totally messed it up.
In fact, my hands were able to make the free-motion quilting movements and I was really psyched about that, but every once in a while I’d hear a “clunk” from my machine that sounded suspicious. Sure enough, when I turned over the baby quilt, there were huge amounts of thread that the machine threw out when it made the clunk noise. Either that, or it would just make little knots here and there. My friend Kait suggested turning the tension up to 9 (maximum) and see if that helped. It actually helped a lot, but then the machine had a death grip on my quilt so I had to dial down the tension just to remove it. I knew I couldn’t do the whole quilt that way.
I made a quilt sandwich from the remains of the bed sheet and practiced again.
You can see the front looks fine. Not great, but fine. The back looks OK too, but only at the bottom where I turned up the tension to 9. At the top you can see all the little knots that were created from the loose tension. I’m afraid that this problem isn’t going to fix itself, so I’m going to have to take the machine to be tuned up, or simply straight line quilt all of my quilts which isn’t a good solution.
In the end, the Kitchen Window quilting is diamond-patterned and really looks just fine. It’s not what I wanted but it got the job done and overall the quilt turned out really pretty.
By the way, I think I mentioned this before but it’s worth mentioning again, the Kitchen Window pattern is from The Practical Guide to Patchwork by Elizabeth Hartman.