Tuesday, April 25, 2017

No Scrap Left Behind!

I am celebrating with Amanda Jean from Crazy Mom Quilts as she kicks off a blog hop for her new book "No Scrap Left Behind". Amanda Jean is such a generous person and has freely shared so many wonderful tips, creative ideas and quiltalongs over the years. So when she publishes another book, I want to support her! As soon as I heard about the book I pre-ordered it and have enjoyed reading her new ideas and seeing her fabulous scrappy quilts. Click here to see the blogs on the celebration tour and enter the daily draws for free copies of the book.
With one week left to the finish line, my April UFO (which started with a Crazy Mom Quilts quiltalong!) has been pin basted. 
Only quilters can appreciate how much time it actually takes to go from a quilt top to being ready for quilting. The thread has to be chosen for the top and the bobbin, and the quilting design has to be figured out. The backing fabric has to be chosen, measured (and pieced sometimes) and pressed, the batting has to be cut and fluffed up in the dryer, and the quilt top has to be pressed. Then the layers have to be smoothed out, one on top of the other, and finally the pin basting can begin.
This quilt insisted that the quilting design had to be the spiral pattern, which is also something I learned from Crazy Mom Quilter Amanda Jean Nyberg from her tutorial here. I have quilted this design once before and remembered that the beginning of the spiral is a little tricky using the free motion foot, but when you change to the walking foot, it's a little easier. 

However, you are shoving half of the quilt continuously through the harp of your sewing machine, around and around, trying to keep the curves smooth. Shoving the quilt through the machine and repositioning it constantly means that your shoulders and hands will be aching, but it's the price you pay for leaving it to the last week and trying to finish it before the end of the month! LOL
Once you get to this stage of the quilting, when you are farther away from the centre of the spiral and moving to the outside of the quilt, it gets way more fun! There is less fabric to shove through and the curves are more gentle and easier to manage. I am lucky to have two large tables to spread the quilt out on when I am machine quilting and it holds the weight of the quilt (except the part that is on my lap, which in this photo is the top half of the quilt that is hanging over the front of the table).
An important spiral quilting tip - always make the spiral go clockwise, or the bulk of the quilt will accumulate to the right of the needle in the harp of the machine, instead of to the left of the needle and you will not be happy!

15 comments:

  1. I very much appreciate how much effort has gone into this quilt! It looks great and the spiral quilting is a great finishing touch. I'm glad you gave in to my gentle coercion and made a scrap vortex quilt!

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  2. This is such a fabulous scrap quilt. Great hint about going clockwise - i never would have thought of that!

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  3. looks great! I tried spiral quilting for a quilt once but took it out and started over again with a different design the center kept wanting to pop up like a tent - I don't know what I was doing wrong but I rarely machine quilt so it was me I know

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  4. How will a spiral design fit on a rectangular quilt? Can't wait to see.

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  5. what a wonderful scrappy quilt. Good luck with finishing it this week.

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  6. Such a perfect quilting design for the Vortex! Have fun swirling around this week.

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  7. your spiral is working so well, the quilt is looking so good love a scrappy quilt. Will look out for the book though last night whilst I could not sleep I promised myself no more fabric or books as I have house full and the books seem to get bought and put on the bookcase and are rarely looked at might have to break my promise now though!

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  8. Ohhh love it! You are so right...no scrap left behind, for sure!

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  9. I have her book and it is wonderful--hugs, Julierose

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  10. That is a lot of quilt to maneuver thru the sewing machine. One thing you forgot to list as a prerequisite before beginning quilting and one which can take a lot of frustrating time is setting the tension so the FMQ goes smoothly and evenly. AARRGGHH!

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  11. Haven't tried spiral quilting. MUST give it a try!!

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  12. I don't really understand what you are saying about spirals going clockwise or counter clockwise...I'll have to try it out and see what you mean.

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  13. Great tip. I really need to practice my machine quilting. I have gotten into the walking foot wiggle rut.... but hey - some quilts are getting finished! Love the Vortex. Good luck and maybe a massage as a reward when it is done?

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