Monday 20 August 2012

From K - The Quilt that Started an Obsession

One of the posts that I love reading most from other quilt bloggers is the story behind their first quilt. It's often this first quilt that leads to a lifetime of sore backs, nimble fingers and a whole lot of handmade goodness. I thought this might be as good of a time as ever to share my first quilt story.

Fresh of my honeymoon in the fall of 2009 I came home to the best news of all, I was going to become an Aunt! I don't actually know what first put the idea of making a quilt in my mind, but whatever it was, that first tiny iota of a thought led me immediately to the Internet. I found a local quilt shop that offered an intro to quilting course and before I knew it I was signed up and heading to class.

I didn't know a thing about modern quilting, what fabrics to pick, or how to read a pattern, so on the guidance of the instructor I bought all my fabric from the remnant fat quarter section (doh!).

Knowing that it needed to be gender neutral I went with a natural colour pallet. I had originally wanted to do yellows, greens and blues but the instructor talked me out of it (something about jaundice babies looking bad on those colours - except the quilt I made is lap sized and meant to last years so why I listened I don't know!).

To make my very first quilt top, I used a Bento Box pattern and considering it was my first time sewing in almost 10 years, I was thrilled with how it turned out . Using a rotary cutter and self healing mat made for a very quick prep job, and simple chain piecing helped bring this quilt together very quickly.

 Since I had purchased only fat quarters to make this top, I didn't have quite enough fabric to make a borderless quilt that would meet my desired finish size. To solve the size dilemna, I added both a narrow and wide border to frame in the quilt top.

Since this quilt top had a lot going on, I tried to bring some cohesion by choosing one of the bento box fabrics for my backing. When I added the wide border to the quilt top, I simply choose the exact same fabric from the backing, but in a different colour.

I straight line quilted this top using a 24x8.5 inch ruler, a water soluable pen, and the bento box shapes as a guide. After I machine sewed the binding on I heaved a huge sigh of relief when I held the final product. This quilt had a lot of heart sewn into it and I was just the first step in what I know will be a life long obsession.

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