Friday, January 23, 2009

Bias edges HELP!

Here's a block from my Christmas Sampler; I'm half done. For some reason I decided to not backstitch, leave the threads hanging and tie them and hide them later. I don't mind doing this for this quilt but I can't see doing it for a customer; it takes a verrry long time. I'm not through with the quilting yet; but I needed a change and I'd quilted the top and bottom borders. I'll put the headers onto the sides of the quilt and finish the borders and the remaining sashing and blocks soon. I'll get all the threads tied off first;
I've learned my lesson about threads on a quilt. Here's is my story about leaving threads hanging;

Stacked Bricks Story
(The photo doesn't show the colors true; the sashing is a very dark navy). I started this quilt during a class taught by Pat Bishop (I think). During class we exchanged the bricks and end pieces. I LOVED the way it looked, still do, and was taught a valuable lesson on sewing with bias edges.

When I got one strip sewn together I hung it over the bedroom door of our first home; then when the next strip got done it hung over the door and I gave them a few tugs to get them to hang straight.... Oh, my word; one of the strips grew 8 inches from hanging on my door. I really had to work extra to repair the damage I'd done. I'm very careful now with bias edges;
  •  starch heavily,
  •  no tugging,
  • no pulling,
  • no hanging, and 
  • do staystitch the edge if it isn't resewn immediately.

I had a group baste the quilt; it was basted on a frame and was very stable; I did my minimum quilting; in the ditch of the sashing and border, then I bound the edges and lay it on my bed to see how it looked. It fit the top of our king sized water bed and I thought it looked great. I left it there for ...YEARS? at least a long time. It was years before I finally finish quilting it on my domestic machine. I started it in 1989 and finished it in 2001. (It was not on my bed all that time though.) When I finished it and was admiring it my 4th child told me how much she hated that quilt. I had left the basting stitches in and whenever she climbed on the bed she'd catch her fingers and toes on the long threads. I just thought it interesting that she didn't even notice it's beauty; she noticed it's practicality.
Unfortunately fitting the top of a king-sized water bed does not make it the right size for a conventional queen mattress. So what do I do now? 

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