Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Charming Monster

It took me a few days to gird myself up with enough courage to tackle quilting the charm squares after I pinned it. No question at all, it's the biggest quilt I've ever done.

I started off with thoroughly cleaning out my machine. Get lint out of the bobbin area, oil it, new needle, wind up 8 bobbins. Hope I have enough thread!

If I haven't free-motioned in a while, I'll go for a little test run on a quilted scrap that I've had for at least a year. Just get some fabric you don't love, slap it together with some batting and jump start your free-motioning.

The tension was spot on this time, but you can see where I had some serious fights with my tension in the past. Naughty machine! :)

Here's the plan for the quilting. Broken up into 4 sections, meandering all throughout.

At the very most, I would be cramming 49 inches of quilt into the throat space of my machine. Sounds doable!

I did mention that I have a throat space of 7.75 inches, right?

I'd say it's crammed pretty good there. The batting was so fluffy and fully of air before it was quilted. I know some people suggest using clips to help hold the roll, but I haven't had much luck with the ones I bought from JoAnn's.

Before I start quilting, I try to remember to check the backing fabric. Too many times I didn't take a few seconds to make sure it was flat, and then much later I would discover that it folded over and I would have to get real friendly with my seam ripper.

The start is looking good. I can do it, I can do it, I can do it.

I marked the center of the quilt with a pin at the intersection, so I would know how far down I needed to quilt the quadrant I was working on.

Each quadrant takes 4.5 bobbins! So I expect 18 or 19 bobbins just for the quilting. Also, each section takes three hours to quilt. I found out that my butt can only handle 1.5 hours of sitting at a time. :)

The first quarter done! I couldn't believe how the quilting squished the batting into thinness.

I was also tickled pink that I didn't get any puckers!! Doesn't matter, if there was a pucker, it'd be there to stay.

I'm really not friendly with straight pins or seam rippers! ;)



Quilt Nut said...

you did great! i don't think i could have accomplished that without a pucker or two lol. have fun finishing the rest :)

Anonymous said...

You go girl. Good for you. I have not gotten the nerve to try this large of a project.

paula, the quilter said...

I have a large (king size) project coming up and have decided to divide and conquer! Because it is a rail fence, I planned on quilting it as 4 smaller quilts in a meander and then putting the quilts together in the quilt as you go method. Then it will be a snap to add borders on a king size quilt -- after all I will only be working on the edge and not the center.