Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Ask Me #1

Recently on my facebook pages I posted this:

I got a bunch of questions.  Good ones, ones that would be better answered in person where I could use my arms and you would understand much better, and others that really need a long, detailed answer with photos.

Oh, and the pretty cool... that's coming up later.  I'll share when I can (you know that)!

So, back to the questions, I promised I would answer some of those questions here on the blog.  So today's lucky question goes to:

Great question!  Now please remember that my answers to these questions are just that... mine.  They do not necessarily mean that is the ONLY answer, it's just the way I do, or would do, something, and they are totally my opinion, there are probably a million other opinions on the same subjects.  So with that being said...

There are a lot of factors that determine "enough" quilting whether for a bedcover or a show quilt.  Time, cost (if it were client work), what the quilt actually needs, etc.  People tend to think that bed quilts need less quilting than show quilts.  I beg to differ.  Show quilting is a totally different breed than bed quilts.  Show quilts are rolled, packed with tissue paper, bubble wrapped, and generally babied as they tend to be of high value.  Bed quilts, well, they are meant to be used, loved, thrown in the washer and dryer, and generally abused.

I'm going to share some pictures (and thoughts) on one of my early quilts.  It was a BOM sampler and used high-quality quilt shop fabrics.  It was finished in 2005 - well at least that is what the label tells me -- wow, have I come a long way with my  labels - they are so much cooler now!

In the following picture you'll get a general idea of the quilting in the block areas -- simple quarter-inch echo of the basic shape.  Not much quilting right?  Well look how saggy all that unquilted fabric is.  What you probably can't see in the picture is how thin (abused) that same fabric is.  You'll notice the red setting triangles, they are a medium meander, and they aren't sagging so bad now are they?

Again, the unquilted areas show major signs of wear and tear.

Look at the difference in this photo -- the unquilted area (beige) again saggy, loose, and thin.  The meandered fabric is holding up much better.

And of course, saving the best (or worst) for last -- the areas with more quilting survived and wore much better than the large unquilted spaces.

Now remember, this was (still is) a bed quilt -- it spent probably 5 years on my bed and was washed weekly.  No special love, it was made to be used.  Hindsight being 20/20 I would have quilted the crap out of this! If it were a seasonal-only quilt -- you know, used only at Christmas -- it would probably still be as beautiful as the day I finished it, but with all that use it has seen better days.  No worries, it still gets used on those rare chilly nights here in Florida when you need an extra quilt or two.

Don't forget, send me questions and I'll do my best to answer some!  I'm kinda' having some fun with this!


  1. For Client quilts, do you tie off and bury knots and threads on every stop and start?

  2. When using several different colors, to you constantly switch threads as you sew or do you quilt the entire quilt in one color and then re-roll for each new color?