As they were all flying in to (and in two cases out of) Bordeaux, we took the opportunity to wander around what is, undoubtedly, one of my favourite cities. In recent years, there has been a big "clean-up" operation in the city, so the beautiful golden stonework of the Old City has been re-instated and you can see some of the results below. The clean-up operation on the Cathedral is still ongoing so the contrast between the cleaned up tower and the still to be cleaned main building is striking.
In amongst the trips to airports I did manage to fit in some sewing, although not the first projects of the Zakka-style SAL that I had planned! Over the last few years I have been patiently piecing together Dresden plate blocks in shades of yellow and gold for a Sunflower quilt. In the summer the SW of France is a blaze of golden yellow from the sunflower fields and it is lovely to see the rows upon rows of sunflower heads lifted to the sun, so my Dresden plates were to remind me of these when the sun is in short supply. The quilt top was pieced last Autumn, so this was my first chance to get the top backed and bound.
My small sewing machine had other ideas! The machine (and I) really struggled to cope with the backed quilt. The stitch length shortened as the speed increased, very frustrating, so the initial plan to outline machine quilt each sunflower was abandoned in favour of hand quilting. Much less frustrating to manage, but hard on the fingertips!
When I quilted the Circle of Geese cushion top that was basted with ordinary low-loft wadding there were no problems with the stitch length, so I can only assume that the puffiness of the wadding was the problem.
(See Megan's blog for the inspiration for this quilting)
Encouraged by the problem-free quilting on the cushion top and determined, however, to have the borders and sashing machine quilted I braced myself for another tussle with the machine. This time the main problem was that the top thread kept snapping! I was using King Tut thread for the quilting, which I had bought a while ago specifically for this quilt. I have never used this thread before but thought it was a reliable make. I ended up going out and buying some Gutterman all-purpose thread as the King Tut thread snapped so often that it was impossible to use. Has anyone else had any problems with this thread? I have bought the same make of thread to quilt my Almost Irish Chain quilt and I really don't want to start using it if I am going to have the same problems all over again!
After much muttered (bad!) language and several inadvertent tucks the quilting was eventually finished. It certainly doesn't bear any close scrutiny but it will definitely keep us warm at night when the temperature drops, which is what it is for.
As it is a Wednesday I can take pleasure in moving this quilt into the completed part of my WIP list and it is also my finished WIP for 12 WIP's in 2012, so another bonus to its' completion.
- Reindeer Cushion
- Shades of Green, Fleur Bleu, Checkered Heart and Orange cushions
- Orphan Block needle roll
- Pieced arc tea towel
- Yo-yo maker purse
- Padded hangers and tutorial
- Sew Happy QAL quilt
- Sunflower Quilt (My April WIP of 12 WIP's in 2012!)
- 6 blocks of FPPFTT completed
- 3 blocks of In Color Order HST BOM (up-to-date)
- (Almost) Irish Chain quilt now basted
- Zakka-style SAL (2 projects behind schedule)
- First border of teatime quilt completed, blocks calculated and fabric cut
- 4 blocks of NY Beauty QAL completed (2 blocks behind schedule)
- 6 blocks of Craftsy BOM completed (on schedule)
- Indigo, yellow and violet rainbow cushions
- Last block of Sampler quilt
- Amy Butler bag
- Bag Making Bible Fashionista Bag
- Dragon Bag
- Patchwork Block bag
- Christmas mini quilts
I am off to reply to the comments all the lovely readers have left on my blog whilst I have been away, so if you haven't received a reply now you know why (unless of course you are a no-reply blogger!) and then catch up on all that has been happening in crafty blogland
Linking up to Freshly Pieced's WIP Wednesday and Esther's WOW