Sunday, August 15, 2010

Brown Bear Brown Bear What Do You See? I See a FINISHED QUILT Looking at Me!

Last weekend my little Kee-ku turned one.  I thought that the first year of Little Miss' little life went by quickly, but Kee-ku's . . . well . . . I blinked and it was gone.

For those of you who have been with me on this sewing odyssey since near the beginning, you'll recall this quilt top.  I started it before he was born in anticipation of his birth.  I (apparently naively) thought that I would actually finish it so he could use it as a baby.

The truth is, the quilt top came together rather quickly.  All of those bright and colorful fabrics took over my dining room table for a relatively short period as I dove headfirst into my first quilting project.  The issue came when it was time to sandwich it all together and just finish the thing.

I was terrified.

Now that I had spent all this time and money and effort putting this quilt top together I was literally freaked when it came to sewing all those quilting lines on top of it.  How the heck do you stipple?  Does one need to?  What do you mean, drop the feed dogs and just swirl the fabric around freestyle under the needle?  Do you realize how much TIME it took to make this thing?  What if the quilting makes it look terrible?!

So I sat on it.  For a year.

As the day of his first birthday approached I made a vow to myself that I would pull it out of hiding and finish the bugger.  I hemmed and hawed over the kind of quilting I would tackle and settled myself to just stitching her in the ditch and [maybe] if I was [possibly] feeling a bit brave I would quilt a little freehand around the animals.

Happily, I was able to accomplish both of those things with relative ease.  Honestly, I don't think I ended up having to unpick one stitch on the quilting.  I just went R E A L L Y slow.

The binding was another story.  I have previously made my own bias binding and, well . . . there's no way to put this delicately.  I HATED it.  Just such a super tedious process.  That was until I found The Dread Pirate Rodgers Continuous Bias Page.  This link probably saved my sanity and OH so very much time although I have to admit when it came time to actually cut the bias strip out I almost had a heart attack thinking I may have done the whole thing wrong as in her own words, "If you marked the intersections correctly and sewed the seam line correctly, you will be cutting in a spiral and end up with a lovely strip of continuous bias tape. If you messed up someplace, you will end up with worthless rings of fabric."

Worthless Rings of Fabric.  [shudder]

Thankfully her directions were SO accurate and amazing and even though I was a slight bit confused around Step 7 it all worked out in the end.

And so Kee-ku's little Bear Buddies quilt came to live the life it was always meant to live.

Happy Birthday, sweet boy.

****I'm linking up with some super fun parties this week.  Check them all out here. ****


Carol Davies August 16, 2010 at 9:43 AM  

I'm sure Kee-ku loved it and it will now be an heirloom he'll treasure forever! Good job, Skooks!

Melissa August 16, 2010 at 4:01 PM  

A beautiful quilt. My girls love that book.

Kathy August 16, 2010 at 10:04 PM  

Wow, that is one awesome quilt - you did a wonderful job, even if it took a while (I've had projects like that as well). Glad you found a good way to do bias strips (haven't seen that site, but have similar directions doing the same thing - works GREAT). Love seeing all the projects you are into.

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