Diamonds Jubilee Bargello Quilt- finally completed!
|Diamonds Jubilee bargello quilt completed... and kitty approved as well! :)|
The actual quilting of this monster took quite a number of hours to do and a whole lot of muscle, too! (I estimate about 40 hours to quilt and add the edging.) The quilt dimensions are 104" by 105"inches, almost 8 1/2 feet long and wide.
I had to roll the entire quilt up tightly in order to feed it through my sewing machine. I used a series of free motion designs on it, starting at the centre with one of my favourites, a vine of leaves joined together from the top of the quilt all the way down to the bottom. I put safety pins along the edges of the blocks where I wanted to quilt in order to keep from wandering off during the free motion quilting.
|Bargello quilt all rolled up showing back fabric|
Next I re-rolled the quilt on the kitchen floor and re-pinned the "path" to be quilted. Then I sewed a butterfly design along the left side of the leaves running down the centre . Again I re-pinned and re-rolled the quilt the other direction, sewing a similar butterfly design to the right of the leaves.
I went back and forth like that, sewing various designs down the quilt, but always matching the designs on the right and the left each time. It wasn't as easy as it sounds, as the quilt weighs about 20 pounds and I had to sling it over my shoulder and drape it on my computer chair so it wouldn't get hung up on the edge of the table too much as I was trying to sew. I had to stop and start many times to re-position the quilt, but tried to do the restarts as unnoticeably as possible. I tried to stop at a seam line each time and because the Bargello has over 3000 pieces in the top, it wasn't that difficult.
In the end there were only a few places where I was unhappy with the sewing and took the stitches out to re-sew the design. The red/ orange batik outer border of the quilt has large veiny leaves on it so I decided to go with the pattern when I quilted that. I free-motion stitched around many of the leaves on the border to keep to the design which was already there.
I also tried out a new design. I got an inspiration from a flower on the front of my photo album and figured out a way to make that design in a continuous manner all the way down the quilt.
The edging worked out well, too. I wasn't sure what I was going to use for the edging at first, but one day I was in the local quilt store in town and I saw the exact brown fabric that I had used in part of my quilt. Great! Because this quilt already has 11 different fabrics (not including the back) I really hadn't wanted to introduce a new fabric, so that was perfect!
I did some estimating in my head and figured out that I would need a minimum of 30 inches of fabric (at 42 inches wide) to make enough strips for the edging. It had to go all the way around the outside of the quilt, with an added 3 inches at each corner and 6 inches overlap at the end, (plus figuring in 1/4 inch seam allowances at both ends of each fabric strip....) Well, the length of the edging worked out to be approximately 445 inches long!
I like to cut my fabric strips 2 1/4 inches wide, then fold them lengthwise with right sides out; press well ( with help from cats!) and sew the raw edges along the raw edge of the quilt sides. The time consuming last part is where you have to flip the edging around to the back of the quilt, and hand stitch it all the way around! ( I usually do that part while I'm watching TV in the evenings.)
Then I washed the quilt in the machine on 'cold' and dried it in the drier on medium heat. Then, voila!!! It was done and now sits on top of our bed to be enjoyed all night long! :)
|Paper pieced "Signs of Autumn" quilt|