I recently mentioned in Seasonal Anomalies – Crochet, Quilting & Dead Furry Things that I would attempt to make the Material Obsession Avalon Quilt by Kathy Doughty & Sarah Fielke.
It has been attempted and I now have a gorgeous home-made Avalon Quilt.
It's amazing what you can achieve in one weekend especially when you have been left to your own devices and it rains solidly for two days. I have provided a quick run through of the project.
Day 1– was spent choosing the layout and cutting fabric.
You may think that dealing with 12 blocks of fabric would be easy but I spent nearly two hours trying to get the layout right and I had help from my camera!
The rest of the day was spent cutting fabric and ironing. Neither of which I am any good at.
Day 2 & 3 – was spent piecing and sewing my blocks of fabric together.
This is my favourite part of a sewing project. There is nothing better than the satisfaction of watching your badly cut pieces of fabric turn into something useful AND wonderful.
To quote Col. John 'Hannibal' Smith "I love it when a plan comes together"
Day 4 – was spent adding the binding to the quilt.
I am going to put my hand up and admit that I didn't blind hem my quilt by hand. I know it's a kind of Quilter's tradition but I really didn't fancy doing a queen sized quilt.
I also didn't blind hem the binding onto my quilt by machine either, because I don't know how to. I lost my sewing machine manual a week after I got it and my replacement is in Dutch.
So I simply attached the binding by sewing along the binding on the top side of the quilt and again on the back side of the quilt.
Did I mention I am a lazy-productive?
As I have got my hand up, I might as well admit that I didn't do that fancy curly-wurly sewing across my quilt either. Apparently I need a 'walking foot' for my sewing machine and according to my badly translated Dutch manual I don't have one.
I am also a chicken.
I considered having a go but sanity prevailed (thank God) and I decided not to ruin an otherwise good effort. Just as well as I later found a side note in the back of my Material Obsession book that explained that the fancy curly-wurly sewing on their Avalon quilt had in fact been done a commercial Quilting machine?!
So here it is my Material Obsession Avalon (winter) quilt. The photo doesn't do it justice so you will have to trust me when I say it's really nice.
Use a digital camera to help choose your layout. Uploaded onto your computer, your photos will clearly highlight colour and pattern clashes.
Use your first cut to size block of fabric as a template. It will save on time and if you are rubbish at measuring (which I am) it will save you needlessly wasting fabric.
If possible use quilting safety pins to piece your work together. They are more managable than normal safety pins and make packing up at the end of the day easier.
Remember the top and bottom sewing machine threads do not have to be the same colour. You can match according to your fabrics. I was halfway through my quilt before I realised I could have used a different colour thread for the back-side of my Avalon quilt.
If you have never done the curly-wurly fancy sewing across a quilt, practice on a smaller quilt first.
Be ready to adapt your project at any time, you just never know.
Enjoy and remember that your quilt is supposed to look home-made.