Monday, January 11, 2016

Slow Sunday Stitching 1/10/16

Well, over the past week things have been moving along.  The Janome went in for service....

You've heard of "empty nest syndrome"?  Well, I have "empty sewing table syndrome"!  The treatment?  Continue with the hand stitching adventures!  So it was on to the next project -- finishing my "High Stung +2" Christmas quilt.  After I had readied the machine to go into the service shop, I pulled the top out of its storage box.  Only then did I remember that I had never bought the backing for it.  Fortunately when I took the machine in, I found something I liked for it.  In the days following, I prepped it by piecing together two strips of fabric and adding them (by hand again) to one side of the backing cut to make it wide enough for the top and allow extra all around for quilting.  I also had to finish stitching the embellishments onto the top, adding a harness for the reindeer and some button "berries" to some of the leaves on the trees.  The only batting I had that was close to the size of the top was a crib batt so I had to "Frankenstein" some other scraps to it (also by hand) to bring it to the size I needed.

Working on this project is allowing me to do two additional aspects of hand work: hand quilting but also hand basting.  I know that often when I've seen people hand quilt, they hand basted their quilts so I figured this was the way to go.

This is not the first time I've done this.  Back in 2010, I discovered Sharon Schamber's method of hand basting a quilt.  She did a two part video on it that you can view here and here.  Back then I used her techniques to baste my "Flying For Cover" flannel quilt

Sharon says the process is faster than pin basting but I find it takes me about the same amount of time.  That might be because before she basted this way, she basted on the floor while I have always table basted.  While I do like the process, I can't do it for every quilt.  The barriers for me doing it with large quilts are that you need to have wooden sticks the full width of your quilt and be able to spread it completely out on a table.  I'm limited in my space to doing lap size or smaller quilts this way but I've found it to be a very, very effective method. 

I've still got some more basting to do before I can start the quilting.  I'll be linking this with the rest of the Slow Sunday Stitching crew over at Kathy's Quilts blog and checking out what others were hand stitching (or knitting or crocheting) this week.

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