For our guild exhibition, we are allowed to show a maximum of four quilts. I always try to have four ready, as the number of quilts submitted has been declining a little. Visitors won’t want to come to the show without lots of quilts to see.

I often make a quilt for friends’ grandchildren as they approach the right age. I’m not sure what age that is, but about 18 months+ I believe. Sometimes it is a commission, and sometimes I thrust a quilt upon the unwary grandmother.

This is a non-commissioned quilt. The problem with commissions is that they are usually wanted at a certain time, and it usually doesn’t coincide with the exhibition requirements. This quilt will not be gifted until the exhibition is over.

A couple of years ago, I made a very small quilt (table-mat size) using Liberty of London Tana lawn selvedges, Liberty Grandiflora. See it here.  It was very appealing and I decided then that I would have a go at a larger size.

I used a piece of low-loft wool wadding as a foundation, and used the stitch-and-flip method to piece.

The procedure was a little slower than I expected. Another glitch was that the centre of the quilt started to bulge the further out I quilted. I think it had to do with the fabric ‘walking’ a little as I sewed, turning the straight seams into slight curves. It was not such a great problem as I got to the outer edges. It could have been that I was paying more attention.

The bulge was quite pronounced. I think you can see it clearly in the third pic.

When it came to quilting, I decided to use another full sized wadding of wool, and I inserted an extra circle in the centre where the bulge sat. That meant three layers of wadding for the centre – out to about the blue ring.

sandwich
Sandwiched using spray basting – three layers in the centre

I straight stitched quilting in a spiral starting from the centre. The spacing is not equal, but approximately 1/2″ – 3/4″ over all.

Trimming the sides into a rectangle was very difficult.  Using my large square  and longer straight rulers, I marked the cutting lines in soluble pen.  Each time, three times in all, when I came to the fourth corner, it was either not 90° or not straight.  I think it was because the quilting had gathered the fabric layers, and they stretched out when the ruler was laid on the quilt.

Eventually I pinned the quilt on my design wall and used a plumb bob to mark the vertical line at each side, ruled them with the pen and then trimmed. Then I rotated the quilt, lined it up at 90° to the bob and marked the vertical ends.

squaring sides
Third side squared-off and vertical. Now I will move the bob to the right hand side for marking.

This method worked very satisfactorily. I should have done it from the beginning as the plumb bob was bought for exactly this purpose. Another benefit was being able to minimise the wastage.

A serendipity of examining the quilt in all directions was that I decided I liked the landscape view best.

Binding on and done!

finished
Liberty Rose complete

I used a Liberty Tana lawn for the backing. The quilt has a lovely soft feel and drape.

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