Quilter's Academy - Volume 2 - Sophomore Year

Vol 3 - Junior Year

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Yes, I'm still here - but not really working, well not quilting anyway.  I have however, made myself a little quilt just for the fun of it.

While all the shifting and sorting has been going on with the house move, I didn't want to work on any 'Harriet' projects, as they take a lot of focus and I just wasn't up for it.  Instead, rather than have nothing going on in the sewing room, I opted to make a 'quick 'n dirty' rag quilt.

Uh Oh.  Did I say quick?  Theoretically, it should have been a quickie, but being me, it turned into quite a project.  You see, the little quilt pillows are held together with applique.  The pattern suggested squares, which I thought a bit boring, so I used the heart template from Harriet's Applique book.  I used the only applique method I know (so far) which is to turn a tiny seam onto freezer paper.  I had 42 hearts to do - this took a LOT of time at the ironing board!  Days and days and days, whenever I found the time.

I did get a lot of practice using the blanket stitch though, and by the time I finished the final heart, I was getting pretty good at it!.  There was a problem with removing the freezer paper - each attempt to pull it out through a 2 - 3 inch opening, resulted in a lot of fabric stretching.  So much that I had to try to re-shape the hearts and re-sew them, easing in the stretched shape.  The result was pretty ordinary.  Finally, I simply cut the centre of the paper out before stitching the hearts on.  There is still freezer paper under the seams in the finished quilt.

Here it is......... a pretty little flannel lap quilt - ideal for these cold winter nights!

Flannel fabric with a wool batting - Hobbs 80/20. 

Down here in Tassie we are experiencing those cold mornings where the garden is white with frost, the car has a coat of ice, and a foggy mist is filtering through the leafless trees.  Very, very pretty, but oh so cold!  This cosy little flannel quilt with it's wool batting is made to order for winter.

Now that I see the finished quilt, I wish I had done it a little differently.  I'm tempted to make another, but this time twice the size.  I started with 9 inch squares and used 1 inch seams, so the blocks are now quite small.  Check out the back.........

It's kind of a reversible!

If I made it again, I'd use all those backing squares in the front, and a single colour for the back.  I'd free-motion quilt the bird squares, which is the focus fabric, and only applique every 2nd or plain square.  The heart applique covers up the bird fabric too much, which is a shame.  I'd have a much larger quilt for only a little extra cost. 

The applique covers up too much of that gorgeous bird fabric

Encouraged by the ladies at my quilting group, I chucked the finished and clipped quilt into the washing machine, then into the dryer.  I've never put a quilt into the dryer before, and was a little hesitant.  But it all came out fine.  I did expect a lot more fraying though - the 'raggy bits' have curled but not frayed.  I suppose they will fray up in time.

I've been a bit discouraged with my last Quilter's Academy project.  The grid quilting is awful and now, although I only have the borders to finish, which I am doing free motion, I can't seem to get up the enthusiasm to to it.  Procrastination is a terrible thing! 


  1. Wow Lesley! This quilt turned out beautiful. I love making rag quilts, and yes, they will fray more with each washing. Love the heart applique.
    I know what you mean about procrastination, I'm working on the Patriotic quilt, and if you recall that has the part about adding 1/8" to the strips- something is just not clicking right, and while I have some of the logs started, it must be me, and my old ways, but the 1/8" biz, while nice to have that to trim off, seems to be creating an extra step.
    I do hope to have it done by our 4th of July celebration, not sure, we'll see how much I get done today.

    I have to "steal" time to work on these projects, and I've also got a other gift projects to get busy on- so I do understand what you mean about "procrastination"-LOL!

    Again I think this turned out just lovely! Love the bird fabric- very pretty.

  2. Your rag quilt looks fabulous! The bird fabric is beautiful.

  3. Love the rag quilt! I've done two now - but have not done any applique. I do wash and dry them twice before passing them on to the recipient so that they get a good start on ragging nicely. I find that the second wash does make a difference. And, based on a tip from somewhere on the net - I go to the laundromat for the first wash so as not to clog my home machine with too much lint. ;)

    Cheers, K