12.08.2014

Quilt for Alabama Children's Home 2014 - Done!

Please, oh please remind me to NOT start a quilt during the holidays!  Talk about STRESS!
But I can say, this quilt is now complete, and it's a good thing because it needs to be in the mail to get to Gene Black, who is heading the Quilt Angel Project again this year for an Alabama children's home, before the Dec. 15 deadline.
In the last post about this quilt,  the top was pieced after using my new iphone's panoramic photo feature to take a couple of different shots of the fabrics, to determine color placement.

Then the frustration(s) began.  Having already prepped and pieced together cream-colored flannel from the stash for the backing, I noticed a small stain.... on the flannel.... the flannel I had pre-washed.  I knew the stain would not come out.  What to do..... what to do.  Aha!  The quilt label could be stitched over the stain (in the middle of the back) and become a 'design element'.  Yes! I quickly made a perfect 'heart' label using the embroidery feature on my machine for the wording.  The label on the left, photo below, turned out perfect and was immediately satin-stitched to the flannel, where I now began to worry about the integrity of the flannel fabric.  With every needle stitch, there was a hole.  It reminded me of a flannel pair of pajama pants I made for my daughter last year where, within a few washings, the flannel ripped.  Not the seams... not even at the seams..... but within the flannel itself.  Certainly not wanting that to happen here... trashed the flannel and started over.... which meant I could not use the perfect label either.  Thinking that while I had the label mojo going I'd go ahead and make another label, which turned out terrible - photo below, top right.  Third time being the charm, and an hour later, the next one turned out fine... photo below, bottom.  Some of my frustrations this day were shared on Instagram.
Now I needed a new back for this quilt, so a cream colored twin-size flat sheet was purchased from Wal-Mart for $4.97.  You can't beat the price, even though I so did not want to use a sheet with its 60% cotton/40% polyester content - but at this point I needed to be moving forward and there's plenty of fabric in the sheet so there's no worry about piecing the back.  There is enough sheet material left over to back another small quilt, so I made a note on the label for a reminder.
Then I realized I did not have enough Warm & Natural 100% cotton batting that I have used in every quilt I've made to date, and thought I'd purchased enough for this one.  I love that stuff!  But 'beggars can't be choosers', so to speak, so Fairfield's Soft & Toasty it is for this quilt as that's all my little local Wal-Mart carries.  I do not like it anywhere near as much as the Warm & Natural.  It seems flimsier and thinner.  But it is 100% cotton, and that's a good thing.
Now I had the supplies to cut the back and batting out......
...sandwich, using painter's green 'Frog Tape' to keep everything stable, and safety pin baste to prep for quilting.... all in one morning.  My knees were killing me.  Luckily, at 45" x 60", this is not a large quilt.  
The Bernina walking foot my husband gave me for an early Christmas surprise arrived just in time to use for quilting this quilt.  I have a 1230 Bernina and luckily Tom remembered my telling him a walking foot for my machine was $200 ordered through the local Bernina store, as he found they were selling for $300 online.
 An action shot below!  This walking foot set includes 3 different sole feet.  This one I'm using below, is for stitching in the ditch and has an edge-stitch attachment, which makes it oh-so-easy to stitch-in-the ditch.
The entire quilt was quilted with the wavy running stitch I used for the Bugs! Baby Boy's Quilt.  I felt no drag, nor pull, as the walking foot was stitching, and also found I did not need to stop and readjust the presser foot so much.
I am satisfied with the quilting results.
 Always have to include a photo of the binding!
With all the changes associated with the backing material and label, in the end blanket-stitched the label to one of the front corners.
Remember, this quilt will be going to a children's home in Alabama, so this is the handwritten note I'm including again this year.  It reads:  "I hope you like your new quilt.  It was made with love, especially for you, because you are special.  The top is 100% cotton, the batting (the middle part) is also 100% cotton and the back is 60% cotton/40% polyester.  It can be machine washed and dried.  If you look carefully, in one of the corners, you will see the stitched-in label created for your quilt, for you.  Merry Christmas! Love, (Mrs.) Lisa Spivey / South Carolina"
One last look....
....and it just came out of the washer and dryer!  It will be in tomorrow morning's mail to hopefully warm a little boy or girl who needs to feel a little 'special' this Christmas.  Now to finish that Alabama Chanin inspired top!
2013's Alabama quilt with all the links

8 comments:

  1. There's nothing like a deadline to keep you going despite the challenges along the way it must have been so frustrating to find the flannel was not up to the job and you did the right thing by replacing it. This is a lovely personal gift which I am sure will be very much appreciated.

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    1. You are not kidding about a deadline! Thank you Tracy!

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  2. It's so lovely and amazing that you got it done so quickly! And your note is so sweet too.

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  3. I agree with Tracy - a deadline and a promise to keep help to stop one from walking away from frustrating jobs. As well as create them in the first place! The things we do...

    I can quite understand your concern about the flannel disintegrating - and how disappointed the receiving child would have been - s/he has probably suffered lots of losses anyway. So you did the right thing - but isn't it so awful when these things happen, especially with multiple repeats to get things just right.

    A real labour of love. (we use u's in our spellings of some words).

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    1. That's one of the things I love about blogging, is getting to know different ways of spelling words! What was so frustrating, was that there for a moment, I thought I was a little 'ahead' - only to find I was 'behind'! The quilt is in the mail now and am looking forward to Gene's post when they are all delivered. It's fun to read what he has to say and sometimes he's able to do a short video for us.

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  4. Such a generous, loving thing for you to do . . . especially at this time of year, as you found out! The quilt turned out beautifully, including all the quilting you did on it. Are you liking your walking foot? And your dear husband for getting it for you? :o}

    Your experience with the flannel fabric reminded me of a quilt a fellow quilter made for a special sister-in-law a few years ago. The front and the back were flannel and she found the flannel "stretched" even as she was piecing it. But she persevered and found herself in a horrible mess when she tried to quilt it (on her machine) because of the stretching. She couldn't figure out what the problem was because it was good quality fabric and she had so much money in it that she felt she couldn't just dump it. Well, she had more patience than I would have and somehow finished it but actually labeled it, "The Quilt from Hell." Good thing her SIL had a good sense of humor!!

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    1. I do like my walking foot. I used the edge-stitch foot mostly for this quilt and it seemed to run through the machine with very little drag and pull. Boy, I'm really glad I switched out the fabric after reading the story about your friend! Thank you Mama Pea!

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Thank you for taking the time to leave a note.~Lisa

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