Sunday, February 21, 2016

Slow Sunday Stitiching 2/21/16

Just a (semi-)quick update post because DH, our boys and I will be heading out to catch a mid-day showing of "Star Wars:  The Force Awakens".   We're all big Star Wars/Sci-Fi fans but haven't been able to coordinate all of our schedules to go see the movie until now.  Need to catch it before it leaves the theaters!!

High Strung +2 is in the final throws.....

I am now heading into the last two sides with the final two lines of stitching.  To make this go a little faster, I've been stitching the outer border with two needles at a time.  Needless to say I'm anxious for a finish!   

These last two lines of stitching are being quilted in my lap.  When I worked on the red inner border during the week and the first two lines of stitching in the final border yesterday, I did those with the quilt in the hoop.  At first I was frustrated that hooping the full quilt meant I was only able to stitch a small section at a time because the border would be positioned at the lower and  narrower end of the hoop instead across the widest part in the middle.  Then I remembered my "hoop cap"!

I made this back in 2008 when I first purchased my hoop.  At the time I had plans to make a doll quilt for an aunt who collects dolls and I really wanted to hand applique and quilt it.  However, I was so nervous about trying both techniques that I didn't even attempt to learn them until two years later (details here and here).  And yes, I did also finish the doll quilt that year too (details here, here and here).

So how did I come to know about a "hoop cap"?  I started subscribing to Quilters Newsletter when I started quilting in 2002 and from the beginning have purchased sets of back issues when I came across references to interesting articles that are in issues before I starting subscribing.  In the June, 1996 issue (#283), Carol Matthews had an article titled "Hoop Caps".  The idea is that you could secure the edges of the quilt to the cap and then hoop the cap and the quilt together allowing you to quilt the edges across the widest part of the hoop.  Made perfect sense to me even though at the time I read it, I had neither a hoop or nor a hand quilting project in mind.  However, I filed the information away for that "If I ever..." moment.  

When I finally did purchase a hoop, I immediately made one.  This is a very easy project that only took me couple of hours to complete.  Carol's instructions call for using pre-quilted fabric but I actually used some muslin I had on hand and leftover batting and quilted them to make my own "fabric" for the project.

In keeping with the "hand work" vibe, when the borders are finished, I'm going to do something I rarely do:  I'm going to attach the binding by hand!  I've made over 80 quilts and I've only hand stitched the binding down on three of my previous handquilted projects and the edges of  another quilt because it had clamshells inserted between the quilt edges.  When we come back this afternoon, I'll cut the binding and tomorrow I'll attach it to the front by machine to be finished on the back by hand. 

Regarding the initial attaching of the binding, there's another exciting (and new) thing that will happen:  look who'll be doing that work:

Yesterday, when I took a break from stitching, I was able  to also finally service my Featherweight machine and get her in working order (hence why the borders aren't already finished!!).  I'll have a more detailed post about that in the next day or two.  Attaching this binding (that's the fabric sitting on her bed) will be Fanny's (that's what she has been christened) maiden stitching voyage with me.  I'm so excited to see how she does!

So that's it for me (yeah, I know, never truly a "quick" post).  Later today and tomorrow, I look forward to checking in to see what everyone else is doing over at Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching link up.  Join me over there and check out all the beautiful hand work being done this weekend and may The Force be with you!


Quilter Kathy said...

A brilliant idea the hoop cap! I can totally see how that would be helpful!
And love Fanny! Enjoy!

Carla A Few Of My Favorite Things said...

I made one for my 14 inch hoop and it's a life saver. I bought a bigger hoop for my stand a year or so ago and really need to make one for it also. Getting close to a finish is always fun Enjoy your stitches today.

Karen said...

I purchased a ready made version of your hoop cap many years ago. I don't know if they are still available. Seldom have used it. I should dig in my quilting supplies and see f I can find it.

The Cozy Quilter said...

I have never heard of a hoop cap before but see that it would be very handy when quilting borders! thanks for sharing this idea!

Nancy said...

Your quilt (what I can see of it) looks warm and welcoming, cuddly and comfortable. The idea of a hoop cap is new to me but when I get to the edges of quilts I sometimes baste a strip of fabric -- sheeting I've set aside for that purpose -- to the edge of the quilt. It's always worked but your hoop cap may be a little simpler. I hope your Fanny does a great job for you.
--Nancy. (ndmessier @,