Washing my Baltimore. Yikes!

Last weekend was Thanksgiving in Canada and, like most people we had a super busy long weekend.  We had the family over…just 26 of us!  I cooked a huge turkey and all the fixins!  Hubby bought himself a new camera, so we headed north to Meaford and Thornbury to take some awesome photos and to get some apples.  Is it my imagination or are the leaves really spectacular this year?

I also had a few spare hours, so I decided it was time to bite the bullet and toss my Friends of Baltimore into the washing machine.  Let me explain why I did this.

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I am not sure if you remember this, but when I washed one of the borders, some of the fabrics ran (red and dark blue) which shocked and upset me.  I was shocked, because I am very careful about pre-washing all of my fabrics. Since I used all the same fabrics in the blocks as in the borders and this was the first time any of the fabrics had run, I was really puzzled.  I was upset because my quilt had very distinct red and blue splotches on the background.  I finished the top and had it quilted, knowing that one day I was going to have to deal with those darn splotches.  Well…that day had come!

I talked to Colleen from Elite Quilting who knows everything there is to know about bleeding fabric and how to fix it. Imagine the look of sheer horror on my face when she nonchalantly suggested I wash the entire quilt in the washing machine with Synthrapol.  It took more than a little coaxing on Colleen’s part to assure me that all of the bleed marks would come out and my quilt would not be ruined.

So I gathered my quilt up, added a whole bottle of Synthrapol, put it in the washing machine using the hottest water possible, crossed my fingers and prayed to the Quilt Gods.  I stood there for 40 minutes and watched the quilt go round and round.  I called Colleen for some support…twice!   This is a picture I took of the quilt spinning around.  You can see that Bruin is as concerned as I am!!

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I am not sure why I felt compelled to stand there and watch.  I stopped the washing machine and opened the door just to check up on it a few times.  I was very thankful that all looked good!

Once the washing machine stopped, I gathered the quilt up in a clear bag, and whisked it over to my husband’s shop where we laid it out flat on some tables to air dry.  I was so very thrilled to see that all of the marks had completely vanished and, more importantly, my quilt had not fallen apart!! Yes, so much to be thankful for!

I am also working away on a scrappy quilt designed by Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts called Trail Mix.  It is a great stash-buster.  Here are the strip pieced diamonds, which I am now going to go and stitch together!

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Tile next time…

Kerry

 

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A New Hoop and Other Fun Stuff!

Earlier this year, I treated myself to a new quilt hoop.  I have always hand quilted using a hoop, and I thought it was time to graduate to the kind of hoop with a base that tucks under my legs, which leaves my hands free to quilt.  I love it!!  No more aching shoulders and neck, because the quilt is supported with the hoop and not my arms.

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Today, we discovered that my hoop also can be used as the perfect hiding spot.  “Gee..has anyone seen the cat?”

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“Here he is!”  Sneaky!

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Last year I taught a Beginner Applique Class to a great group of ladies.  They wanted to continue to improve their  skills, so I am teaching them how to make a Baltimore quilt.  Pretty ambitious, I know!  But I have faith in them!  Yesterday was our first day.  We will meet once a month and work on various blocks while learning new techniques.  These are the fabrics I will be using for my blocks.

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Here is first block.  It is a variation of the Rose of Sharon block.

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First I started with the buds.  The buds actually are made of two layers of fabrics.

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Next, I added the leaves…DSCN6135

…and some more leaves and some bias stems.

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Next, it was time to stitch the flowers.  The flowers are also two layers, so I wanted to reduce the bulk before I stitched them onto the background.  First I prepped both layers.

Then I stitched the top layer onto the bottom layer.

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Next, I carefully trimmed the bottom layer of fabric away, cutting a 1/4″ away from the stitching.

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And finally, I added the flowers to the block.

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I am still working away on the third border of Sue Garman’s “Friends of Baltimore” quilt.  I have finished the right side of the vase and now I am working on the left side.

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Til next time…

Kerry