Live and Learn, More on My Epic Quilting Journey

I started a quilt for my mother in the hopes of getting it finished for Mother’s Day. Life and other minor annoyances were not co-operative!

So I have maybe four squares left on the massive quilt I started  a year ago.  I started hand quilting  because the sewing machine I have is a loaner and I like to imagine I am a princess locked in a tower. 

I have learned a lot.

  • Bamboo batting is great for machine quilting but not so great for hand-stitching.  While I like the idea of bamboo, I also learned that it takes a lot of chemicals to get it so nice and soft, sort of defeating the whole purpose of buying a “renewable resource” that is more expensive.  It also tends to “beard”, have little bits come out with the needle, and it is not uniform in thickness in some places.  It was really hard to get the needle through.
  • Speaking of needles, you can’t just buy the cheap packet of needles from the Devil Store even if they say “quilting needles”on the package.  They are crap.( I call it The Devil Store for killing all the small local businesses, killing unions and buying crap that is cheap but marked up from the price they paid the “crimes against humanity sweat shops” that produce the crap, while attracting the type of shoppers who cram too much into everything, including those horrible stretch pants, I know because I have waited in line behind them…  If you buy them you will find they can’t be threaded by any thread larger than the kind used to sew fairy wings on.
  • There are videos that show how to hand quilt.  The nice lady on U Tube who gets five stitches on a tiny needle  is actually a magical being who uses fairy thread and fairy needles.  I am trying to find where to buy said items on line.
  • Which way you iron your seams is important. I should have had a plan when I started.  If I had a plan I would have known which way to iron my seams.  It is hard to get a needle through two layers of fabric and batting but even harder to get it through four layers.
  • An eighty year old woman who has been quilting all her life is not easily impressed.  I recommend hiding it from real quilters and only showing it off to the plumber, if he is a man and has large fat hands.  He might be impressed by your stitches.

I have realized that I am more of a “glue it” type of crafter.  In the journey of life I am a set designer, not director, or a writer.  I don’t build things that last but I do like a bit of splash!

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