Thursday, May 26, 2016

Quilt Show Preparations

This week has been spent putting bindings, labels, and sleeves on the three quilts I've completed most recently.

This is the Ohio Stars quilt I made from last year's RSC blocks. The wavy red print you see is the backing fabric, not a border. I actually chose the binding fabric based on the colors in that print rather than from anything on the front.

Unfortunately you'll have to wait a bit to see pictures of the whole quilts. I bought a clothesline to hang big quilts from for photographic purposes but it hasn't been installed yet. The simple quilting James did on the Ohio Stars really makes the quilt special. He had the very devil of a time quilting the baskets quilt however.

We chose a simple pattern of a meandering line with loops so as not to distract from the baskets (and to avoid getting too involved in custom work!). But there were issues with thread shredding. He found a part that was rough and nearly worn through from all the quilts this machine has quilted over the years (to the best of my knowledge he's the third owner so far). Once he had that replaced things improved but there was still an excessive amount of shredding happening. In the end we came to the conclusion that the finish or the ink or whatever on the white on white prints I'd used around the baskets and on the back of the quilt was the cause of the problem. I used the off-cut of the backing fabric to bind the quilt and had a more challenging time than usual when it came to that hand stitching too.

Because it took so long to get these quilts off the long arm I've had to push to get them bound. They have to be turned in next Tuesday, with sleeves and labels. I try to remember to include a label on every quilt I make but I generally avoid sleeves. I make quilts to be snuggled under, not displayed. Allow me this opportunity to state categorically that I detest applying sleeves to quilts. Having said that, if the occasion - or the quilt - warrants, I'll do it.

If you find yourself in Skagit Valley the first weekend of June be sure to make time to stop by the Three Rivers Inn on Hwy. 20 to see all the spectacular quilts that will be on display. :- )


  1. I hear you on the hanging sleeve detail! It is just so anticlimactic. When I know I am making a wall quilt, I stitch it in with the binding. But,like you, I am usually making quilts to use.

    Nice quilt detail. It would be fun to see your show.

  2. I know exactly what you mean about the white on white prints. The thicker or denser the pattern, the more bits it creates, the needle holes are larger than usual and don't close up when you press, and hand stitching them is quite tough.
    I think I've only ever put a hanging sleeve on one quilt – Worldwide Friends – because it was always going on the wall - it just wasn't bed-shaped!

  3. I'm not crazy about doing sleeves myself. I do, however, love your quilt finishes. James really does a nice job on the quilts.

  4. Like you, I generally only put hanging sleeves on quilts to go in the show, and then they come straight off after. The exceptions were a couple of small wall-hangings for a baby's room.

  5. I like your Ohio Stars. I can't wait till you show us the whole quilt! I'll look forward to seeing your baskets, too.
    --Nancy. (ndmessier @,

  6. I have heard about the problems with white on white fabric too when it is used as a backing. Your quilt looks awesome though!


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