Sunday, June 20, 2010

Quilt sandwich

I arranged my pinwheel blocks in 10 rows of 12 blocks each (above), resulting in a size of about 40 x 48 inches. I finished with a simple triple border—3 fabrics in borders ¾ inch, 2 inches, and 5 inches wide. (The border is shown in a close-up at the end of this post.) This added about 15 inches to the size of the quilt. I felt it needed to be bigger, but I ran out of steam making all those triangles!

Next came my “quilt sandwich.” I pieced the backing of brushed cotton—not as heavy as flannel—and cut Warm and Natural batting to fit the back (above). I build my quilts on my living room floor, which I wash first just to make sure there is no lingering bicycle grease—which, if you know my husband, you also know this is entirely possible. I taped down the backing, pulling just slightly to make sure there were no wrinkles or bumps.

I layered the batting, then the top, smoothing from the center out and using a ruler to make sure the top was straight (above). I used quilter’s spray glue, spraying each layer on the wrong side from the center outward. This glue is nasty stuff. If you use it, you will have to open windows and probably turn on the attic fan to get the fumes out of your house! The spray glue does the job for me—it keeps the layers of the quilt from sliding during machine quilting and washes out in water. But it also gums up the needle and seems to make the quilt sandwich slightly stiffer. I also pinned the layers together using brass pins and a grapefruit spoon (below) to help me close the pins. My quilt sandwich was then ready for quilting, which is what I have been working on for the past few days.

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