I've done some daring things with markers, tried all kinds and without fail, they have washed out of my tops. Not this time. Harriet does warn against using yellow markers, as they can contain sulphur, but I used orange. I tried a variety of colours to mark this top and orange was the only one I could see well.
I find it ironic that before quilting, I marked every block with orange chalk, and of course it rubbed off and was completly gone before I got to quilt it. I resorted to re-marking each block just prior to quilting it. After washing, using my usual method of cold water and a small amount of detergent, the orange remained firmly embedded in the quilting. I'll re-wash but I rather think I'm stuck with it.
Orange quilting was not part of the plan!
Again, I normally don't have a major problem with this, although I am still struggling a bit with the process. Trying to make this quilt square was a lesson in frustration.
I measured and trimmed 3 times and got nowhere. Here are the measurements in cms
1ST TRIM 2ND TRIM 3RD TRIM
- CENTRE LENGTH 1700 1690 1690
- RIGHT SIDE 1710 1690 1690
- LEFT SIDE 1700 1700 1695
- CENTRE WIDTH 1345 1340 1330
- TOP 1360 1350 1350
- BOTTOM 1355 1340 1340
The more I tried to square and trim, the worse things got till the figures simply made no sense at all. I gave up before I'd trimmed away most of the quilt!
My usual method - mark 1" below each red cornerstone
Join all the markings up with a single trimming line
Make sure the corner is square, and trim along the marked line
After giving this some thought, I think I know where I'm going wrong. I literally can't see straight. Most of the other quilts I've trimmed have a border or at least a seam line against which I can measure. Without this reference point, I can't lay the ruler straight. While to my eyes, it looks level, it isn't, the figures tell me that. I did actually try to use the lines on the cutting mat to get the quilt edges straight, but as they were on the outside of the quilt, and as the quilt wasn't straight, it didn't work for me.
This is what I ended up with...............
This is the best I could do, and I admit to cheating (pulling and coaxing the edges together).
Nope, not done yet. I used a 'nifty' binding tool to end the machined binding. So much more trouble than it's worth and the ends were too long to join properly anyway. I eased them in but ended up with a bit of a pleat. No big deal, I can live with that.
While hand sewing, I noticed 3 seams which weren't ditch-stitched. Easy fixed, but annoying.
The last thing is entirely my own fault and I'm glad it happened as I've learned yet again what not to do. Don't use the thread cutter on the machine! Harriet advises against this, but because I wasn't doing free-motion, I got lazy and used the cutter. I have these little thread ends all over the back of my quilt...
Originally the thread cutter was making neat, short trims, but after being poorly adjusted by a sewing machine mechanic (long story), the thread now cuts too long.
I started snipping while hand sewing the binding............ yup, nicked the backing didn't I.
There's a hole in your quilt dear Liza, dear Liza......... oh, and you can see here a seam which didn't get quilted.
To make the repair, I ironed over a bit of very light fusible interfacing (and finished the missing quilting).
Guess where I'm putting the label?
All in all, I'm rather over this quilt. I really liked the way it turned out and was looking forward to finishing it. The little problems are fixable, but I don't know if I can live with the orange chalk. Any suggestions?
Meanwhile I've been doing the windowpanes on the Card Trick quilt, with just the last round to go. This process has had a few problems of it's own. More about that next post.