Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I have a blanket! It feels so cushy and comfy!


So I have packed up my sewing machine, Cricut machine, and any and all quilting accessories and moved up to my mother's house. My son insisted on having his birthday party up at Grammie's. Thank goodness they have a recently evicted roommate, so I have an entire room dedicated to crafting! I'm so special. I spent a lot of time on the birthday invitations on my Cricut which look like??? trains. Duh. I have presoaked the batting for my quilt and had it shrunk a little I guess. I don't know, it looks huge so I'll have to cut it. Still contemplating on the best way to get it inside the blanket. Maybe I made the blanket way too small? Why would it not fit? Whatever. My husband is back at home busily building away at the most amazing and in-depth train bed one can imagine. By the time we come home, the entire bedroom will be transformed into a train wonderland. How cool is that? Really, really wish I could post pictures. I know my mom has a cord around here somewhere to do so, but she's been moving home office locations so it is currently missing. I, of course, forgot mine. At least I remembered all things quilting related so it may still be finished... hopefully on time! The party is Saturday!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Back is Done

So... the back is done! That about says it all. Diagonal squares are not my favorite. Running out of fabric mid blanket is not my favorite. Not being able to find the old fabric is not my favorite. But all in all, it worked out and looks swell to the untrained eye. The edges are already cut, so I guess that's next? Or the batting? I don't know. Perhaps it will come to me in a dream.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Fitting the Back to the Front

Does everyone suppose this is how the professionals do it?

I told you I was trying diagonal squares on the back. The patterned ones were quite fun to cut. By fun I mean not so much. The red ones are just normal cut squares. So anyways, I used my 9th grade geometery (thanks Mr. Keyserling!) to determine the hypotenuse (have no idea if that's the right term or spelling). a squared + b squared = c squared, right? This horrific math was used to determine how many squares I would need to meet my blanket dimensions. It's working! So weird, but it seriously is about right. Now I'm just laying it out on the front sheet so that I know where I can use the pieces of un-squares (it seems that cutting diagonal squares uses much more fabric, so add that to the fact that I NEVER measure prior to buying fabric and I didn't have enough - go figure!) and know where to sew another one and how big to make it and where to cut it. It will all work out in the end. I promise. I think.

Friday, February 4, 2011

I have begun!!

So I have gotten all the large squares of the front of my quilt sewn together! See, I keep calling it a quilt, but when I pick up a book on quilting, it is and will be significantly different than what I'm doing. I'm really just making a blanket out of squares. If you call it a quilt I'm probably doing it wrong.
Speaking of wrong, here's my first gigantic mistake. I had cut all my large sqaures 12x12. I had started it before a year ago, but had no real idea how to cut. They were 13x13 last year so that left me some room to play when I restarted this year. The deal with actual quilt cutting is that you must cut to near perfection and sew a perfect 1/4" seam, which means at the end of the day all your squares and corners and triangles or whatever else you cut match up. My squares from last year would have left me with a triangle shaped blanket I'm sure. Just horrible. Ok... back to my mistake this year...I cut my big ones 12x12 and wanted to use more of the discontinued fabric (cuz its in my train) so I decided to make the periodic smaller squares. I cut them 6x6... half right? Ha. So after I sewed them all together using my perfect 1/4" seam, guess what size that square was? Snap. Not 12x12 anymore! My whole thing will be off and I'm out of that fabric! I could have gone back and cut all my other ones, but if you haven't learned that I'm lazy yet, you will now know. I don't think so. I tried my darnedest to fix it by using a 1/2" seam on the big squares while piecing it all together. A real quilter would probably be grimacing right now.
I would assume that one is supposed to sew all the peices of the rows together and then sew them into rows. With perfection as discussed before, this would magically make a quilt. I learned quickly that my squares were still not cut perfectly enough and that my 1/2" seam here and 1/4" seam there made for some not so perfect sewing. I sewed most of the pieces one by one so that I could stretch the appropriate side just enough to get seams to match. Fun.
Anyways, bottom line... it don't look so bad! Moving to the back; and taking on diagonal squares! Oh ya, no large, boring single piece of fabric on the back of my quilt! Ha ha ha!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

My Amateur Quilting Project

So I decided a long time ago to make my son a train quilt. He loves trains. It was originally for his toddler bed when he was turning two, which puts me at just a year ago. This time it is for his big bed for when he's turning three. So, when I started it a year ago, I quit smack in the middle thinking, "wow, I really don't know how to quilt." I managed to make the train, but realized I had no idea how to make the blanket or put the train on it. So, I'll just take a quilting class. Fast forward to a year later, and I have finally done so. Quilting 101 at my local craft store was on Jan. 20. I could not believe how much there was to learn. I thought quilters were sewers that knew a little more. Wrong. They are quilters. I was so incredibly overwhelmed from that class. The first thing the instructor asked was, "Is there anyone who is not planning on taking Quilting 102?" Crap. Do I have to? Cuz I need to finish my train quilt by February 25th. Blank stares and cricket noises. Anyways, I learned how to cut that night. Very in depth. Had no idea. We didn't even get around to sewing our square together. Well, good thing I learned something cuz guess what yall? I still need to get a train quilt done by Feb. 25. Here goes nothing.