Monday, 13 May 2013

Cheryl's Quilt- some progress

Well, took the quilt home and got some unpicking done...actually unpicked the whole lot as I got curious about what I would find. In case you missed this, I talked about the disaster around Cheryl's quilt HERE. She had it quilted by a longarm quilter and it was truly terrible, so we decided to take it all off and re-do it.

Quilt before binding came off
You can already see in the photo above that there is a problem with the you can see the body of the quilt is actually crinkling in the borders. In fact there is too much quilt...the whole thing produced a bit of a 1/2 inch fold on all sides...

So, off with the binding...

After binding was removed
Much better, but I think I was right ...the borders are not attached properly and the whole thing is wavy. Also, some suspicious fullness in the right upper part of the quilt, so my guess is, there is already a problem with the inner border.

The back
Now the back was interesting. I thought I could do some repair work around the seams, however that is only going to be possible along the major seams (I think).  The other thing I noticed is that Cheryl used at least stitch length 3- 4 to sew the seams. Just in case there are new quilters who read need to use stitch length 2 - 2.5 to sew the seams. Anything bigger then that is too loose and makes your whole quilt more fragile...initially I thought I might give this a rinse through however after seeing that, that is not going to be an option...

Washed the back instead and hung the batting outside to have some wind blowing through to fluff it up  a bit again.

Bit undecided now...I am thinking that the 2 borders need to come off. I measured it and there is some variation around the whole quilt (by as much as 1/2 inch and a little bit more here and there). I think we might be ok with the first pieced border...the centre, including the first pieced border, comes to about 55 1/2 inches all around. Once I take the other two off I could square the quilt top off and re-attach the other borders...I need this to be lying flat in order to stitch along the ditch around the major seams, otherwise this would become a nightmare to do (as it obviously did for the longarm quilter). Alternatively one could stipple over the whole lot and be done with it. While it would come out ok, the whole quilt would be crooked and I am risking major puckers all over the place as the top is bigger than the borders that surround it.

Ironed it a bit and trialled using some starch to get rid of the sewing marks...yep, that works fine and will help to stabilise the whole thing.

People probably think I am a bit crazy for doing this , but this is somebody's work and it would have taken some time to put together. The fabric is gorgeous and would not have been cheap. The design is beautiful and the whole quilt looks very nice even though some of the seams are not matching up. I am a seasoned does not take much for me to take of the borders and re-attach them a bit better (and no, it still will not come out perfect). I do think we should value some of our earlier attempts at quilting. I still got my very first quilt which looks absolutely hideous, but I still remember feeling thrilled to bits that I actually managed to put it together. With that in mind, I decided to tackle this...not exactly sure re the quilting. I will wait and see how this will turn out first.

Linking up to Anything Goes Linky Party at Stitch by Stitch



  1. You are so sweet to help her out with that. I know she's going to appreciate all of your help to preserve as much as possible of her original work. Well done!

  2. You are a star for rescuing this quilt, I am curious though, what will you do regarding the stitch length?

  3. Wow, you are a wonderful friend Karin and the quilt will be wonderful once it is all pieced back together correctly :)

  4. Such a good friend to be helping in such a big way! It's a nice quilt top. I wonder if you couldn't reinforce the seams by first stitching in the ditch and then echoing an 1/8 and then a 1/4 inch on either side of the seam.


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