Monday, September 27, 2010
What, Me Quilting?
It's 6 am, and I'm ironing.
What is wrong with that sentence? EVERYTHING.
Let me back up. Why am I ironing? There's no point trying to hide it anymore. I was...I was...quilting. Oh, the shame of it! I have strategically avoided everything near quilting for years. It's my mother-in-law's chosen craft, for starters, and I don't want to step on any toes. (Don't I have enough crafts?) There's the problem of straight lines and me being the least perfect match since Sid and Nancy. And the not insignificant fact that I know nothing of quilting.
It all started with a blanket. (doesn't it always?) We had one of those machine knitted blankets on our bed, the kind you can purchase at any Target for 14.99. It's our summer blanket. However, this summer it had become a mess. Something to do with pugs jumping up on it, and jumping off of it, and their little curly crochet hook claws dragging huge holes in it.
It was time for a new summer blanket. Of course, a new knitted one was right out. So was microfleece. (Dan hates the texture.) Regular fleece was a possibility, but I work with fleece all the live long day. I longed for something different.
Enter the idea of the thin quilted blanket. Of course, I wasn't calling it a quilt then. I was still in denial. My thoughts were: I had fabric. I like to use what I've got. Why NOT make a giant quilt? (I'm four and a half months pregnant. This is as much thought as I've put into anything lately.)
Everything went really well for awhile. Hundreds of little squares were carefully cut, and then carefully stitched into long strips. I even used the seam guide things on the sewing machine! And there was ironing. Lots of ironing. I was doing everything right. As far as I knew, anyway.
Things started to go awry when those long strips needed to be attached together. Not a single one lined up with another. Despite the hours of careful, painstaking cutting and piecing, it appeared that every "perfect" square was a slightly different size. Sometimes a very different size. I still don't know how this happened. Clearly, there was to be no reconciliation between me and straight lines.
What could I do but continue? I hate unfinished projects, so I plowed on. Many hours later, the finished quilt top, while hardly perfect, was actually sort of charming. (I have a huge tolerance for imperfection.) But now what?
Stay tuned for part two...the finishing.