My goal every year for a number of years has been to complete one of my PIGS (Projects in Grocery Sacks) every month. I’m so thrilled with my most recent finish. It’s a PIG, but not a very old PIG. I made the pretty quilt top a few months ago with fabric from Ann Kelle’s Urban Zoologie and Remix collections by Robert Kaufman. I really love the cute little kittens and foxes.
My colorful little quilt is adapted from By the Sea, a quilt designed by Janet Jo Smith in the McCall’s Quilting March/April 2017 issue. If you don’t find it at your local quilt shop, it’s available at quiltandsewshop.com in either hard copy or digital format.
I made the quilt so we could give our readers a baby quilt pattern (crib size) as one of our free baby quilt patterns to download. The quilt top had to stay at the office for a while but it went home about a month ago. And just like that … I had another PIG.
We have a Grace Q’nique 14+ longarm quilting machine and frame here at the office. We haven’t had it very long so we are all just learning. This baby quilt is only my second attempt at longarm quilting. I wrote about my first longarm quilting finish in an earlier blog.
Last week, I knew I had another turn at the Q’nique 14+ coming, so I needed to have a quilt ready to go. I generally piece my quilt backs and a pieced back can take me as long, if not longer, to make as the quilt top. Since I had several fairly large pieces of the fabric left from the quilt top, I decided I could make this quilt back quickly. In one evening, I had it done.
I loaded the quilt on the frame by myself in about 20 minutes. I used a piece of Warm 80/20 batting by The Warm Company. It was leftover from another project and cut a little crooked so it was just barely enough on one end. I was very careful when I placed it and it worked out fine.
I selected a quilting design from Quiltmaker’s Quilting Motifs Volume 8. I wasn’t going to admit that, but decided it will make everyone chuckle to see how different my quilting is from the original design.
It’s hard to imagine that I was trying to make this particular design when you see my quilting next to the printed design, but it’s okay. This is a utility quilt and a baby quilt at that. I imagine it will see its share of dog hair, grape jelly and other assorted things that a “fancy” quilt would not ever be exposed to. So if the quilting is less than perfect, I don’t see that as a problem.
Let’s look more closely at the quilting, though. Here is what it looked like at first (Photo A). I didn’t start with the base of the design on the long side of my setting triangle. As soon as I realized my mistake, I just started that area over. I’ll have to take out the extra stitches. (Click on the photo to examine more closely.)
And here is what my quilting looked like when I was nearing the end (Photo B). I can really see the improvement.
I took it off the frame and was thrilled. There is not a single wrinkle or pucker on the back. That’s sometimes a problem when I quilt on my domestic machine.
So here it is: bound and all done except the label.
That’s PIG #3 for the year. I have to tell you, though – I have taken two new PIGS home since last week. I think maybe I need to up my game and finish two a month instead of just one. Once upon a time, I’d run multiple machines at the same time. I’d have an embroidery project going on one or two machines and I’d be sewing on another. I think I need to see if I can make that work again. Part of the problem is a space issue. I had more space when I was doing that. I’ll work on that and see what I come up with.
In the meantime, my pretty little quilt needs a name so I can make a label. Then, it will be truly finished. I often struggle with names of my quilts. Do you have any ideas?
And now, until next time, happy quilting!