Sunday, November 01, 2009

Grandmother's Flower Garden


I got this GFG from one of my clients. Her husband's grandmother hand-pieced it. And then the poor thing sat in the attic for years. It was so dirty.

I got some help from Lizzy in Adelaide, South Australia. She is a frequent contributor to the online quilting group I visit called Machine Quilter's Resource.

This quilt involved several firsts for me. It was pieced by my client's husband grandmother so she wanted to treat it with care. But the quilt was icky. It had been stored in a dusty attic for years. It had to be repaired and pressed. But I just could not press it with all that dirt in it.....so I washed it in the sink in a clear plastic tub. You know that murky water that comes out of your steam cleaner after you do your carpets? Well, that is what I saw after the first wash. So I washed it 3 times with 2 or 3 rinses in between each wash. I then put it in my (no agitator) washing machine for 2 more rinses and a spin. I laid it over the ironing board so it was not really hanging. When it was dry, I pressed it, finding 3 more spots in need of repair.

I used QD cotton deluxe batting. Yellow So Fine in the yellow circles and Pearl So Fine in the rest and the bobbin. I had 3 or 4 more places that i more or less darned as I was quilting. Thankfully, the backing was that red flower very busy 30 repro that hides everything. So I felt pretty good about the way it looked. It was a lot of work getting it repaired, washed, pressed and quilted. Yeah, I was patting myself on the back until I got about 17 inches from bottom. I ran out of backing. Doh. I had mounted it vertically instead of horizontally.

I called the LQS with a Quilting Emergency and they had the fabric cut by the time I got there. Thank goodness I have zippers. Of course, I had to remove the quilt from the bottom zipper; piece the additional backing with the correct orientation, add it to the existing quilt, press seams open and remount.

What an ordeal and a learning experience. Just when I think I have it figured out, I get humbled by some dumb mistake(s). Oh, and did I mention that I did not get the client's permission to wash the quilt. Nope.

I was shaking in my boots when I delivered the quilt. She was thrilled even after my confessions (repairs, washing, added backing).

Thank you Lizzy for this great design work.

1 comment:

Allison said...

I love this story!! Especially the part about mounting it the wrong way. I chuckled because just this morning I had to cut down the size of a fleece blanket because I had sewn the "right" side to the "wrong" side :p What counts is the finished product and yours looks lovely!

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My life has changed in the last couple of years - some bumps, I retired from quilting, and then I moved to Texas. I'm anxious to see what new adventures await me in the next phase of my life.

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Ramona, California, United States
I started quilting when a quilt shop opened in our little town in January 2004. I have been hooked ever since.

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This is called Fruit Cocktail

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