Christmas, Both Early and Late

This time last year I bought the pattern and things I needed for the Fifteen Degrees Quilt. I don’t know why I fell for this design so hard, but whatever it was got me to spend £15 on a ruler than I’m not sure I’ll ever use again! I had also fallen in love with some Christmas fabric, so I decided to make myself a Christmas quilt.

All was going well, the top went together nicely, I loved the way it looked. I pin basted it and got to quilting. At this point, about 25 rows of straight stitching in, using a walking foot, the quilt top and bottom had moved so much I couldn’t carry on.  Basically, as I was sewing the quilt top was sliding down the batting slowly, something that has never happened to me before. I had been ignoring it for a while and telling myself it would be fine, but once the top went over the edge of the backing there was no way I could recover from that. I was so angry and annoyed, it was November for goodness sake, I should have been home free and had a finished quilt. I folded that puppy up and stuffed it WAY into the stash and then I sulked for a good long time.

I had bought poly batting as this quilt will be stored in a box for 10.5 months of the year and it seemed like the right thing to do. It is Dream Puff, highly recommended by a lot of quilters, and I had used my usual number of pins, so why it slid like that I really don’t know.

It got moved to this house in its ball of shame and I decided that over the summer I would sort it out. I unpicked all the rows of stitching, which took forever and a day. I thought I had some cotton batting the right size, but unfortunately I didn’t, so I used the Dream Puff again and ALL THE PINS I could find. I also did my straight line stitching further apart so I didn’t end up screaming at the walls half way through (it always takes MUCH longer than you think to do straight lines, stippling in much faster).

So, off I went with the quilting full of hope, and the bloody thing shifted again. The cursing was varied and extreme and went on for a long period of time. I did not want to unpick again, so I waited until it had shifted right to the edge of the extra inch I allow around the edge of my quilts and then I changed directions. This means that there are two rows on this quilt that are puckered, this always happens when you change direction like that when quilting. But I figured after washing the quilt it would be wrinkled anyway so it wouldn’t show, and it doesn’t really. I had to do that on both sides of the quilt (I start with a row down the centre and then work outwards to one side, turn it around and work outwards to the other side). Needless to say I will never be buying this batting again.

Finally though, I do have a finished quilt which looks like this:

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The fabric is called Hip Holiday and I bought a half yard bundle of it. The grey and white are Kona solids and the pink is a Bella solid, but it’s been so long I can’t remember the names (except for the white that is!).

The backing is the pink tree fabric from this range, I was going to use the cars with trees on their roofs as that’s my favourite print, but then I realised that this was already white enough so I went with bright pink instead, because nothing says Christmas more than hot pink…

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The bed picture is just to show the size of it, it’s going on the sofa, not a bed. The binding, which I don’t seem to have a good shot of, is scrappy from all the different prints. It’s funny how often a random binding matches up to the print it’s going next to.

So, now it’s done I really like it, I’m still angry at it, but I’m hoping when it comes out of the box on December 1st that I will feel better about it and have at least forgotten, I don’t think I’ll ever forgive the batting for what it put me through…

Since then I have made this month’s blocks for Do Good Stitches. These are a disappearing 9 patch and I don’t actually like what I came up with very much, I hope they work for the quilt as they fit what was asked for, guess they can’t all be something I love.

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I finished up a pair of socks yesterday, why on earth it took me three months to make these I don’t know, especially considering that the second sock took me less than a week once I got working on it. They are the AM Socks from the Sock Trio Ebook which is a free download (I want to do the other 2 pairs in the future). The yarn is Yarntopia Treasures Bamboo Cotton in Rhubarb. I’m not sure where the purple comes into rhubarb but the reddy pinks are spot on and I got over the green and purple striping after a bit.

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The ribbing is mirrored on each sock. They had the most bizarre toe I have ever worked, you did double decreases on only 2 of the needles, but it seems to work and looks ok, I will see how it feels to wear them though.

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And now, if we could have a moment’s silence for my 2.25mm sock needles that I have been using for about 10 years now. Not only are they blunt and bent but they are also bendy which makes them irritating to use and a new set is on the way to me now. Thank you needles for all your work and for the brief moment of heat you will provide when I use you for kindling in the wood burner.

And on….

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