Thursday, December 13, 2012

Pondering the Quilting

Save for a good pressing, the half-square triangle quilt is ready for borders which will be cut from the brown fabric. It may be some of the first reproduction fabrics that came on the market back in the 1990's. Do you remember Smithsonian's "Copp Family" antique quilt and the fabric line based on it? This brown floral is from that RJR Fashion Fabrics line.

In my experience, solving one technical problem in a quilt is just likely to lead to other problems later on. I decided early on to press all the seams open on this top to avoid the bulk that would otherwise crop up at these multi-seam intersections. I remember those kinds of seams causing problems during quilting. However, my default quilting strategy for an antique reproduction like this would be to stitch in the ditch. Oops - when you press seams open, you no long have a ditch to stitch in.

So as I stitched the rows together, I pondered just how I would machine quilt this top. And then I wondered how my readers might approach this problem. Do send me your ideas in the comment section. If I decide to use your suggestion, I'll send you a little something based on the leftovers from this project (which you may have to wait a bit to receive). Bear in mind that this is not a show quilt, nor an heirloom quilt, but a quilt I plan to use like a utility quilt so I'm thinking fairly basic quilting here. The squares are 3 inches and the border will probably be 8 inches wide. 


Susan Sawatzky said...

Sheila, could you do a shallow, long zig zag stitch over seams?

Wil said...

How about triangled shaped spirals within each triangle? Difficult to explainn without a sketch :-) The downside of this pattern is that you have lots of thread ends to get rid off.

June said...

Modify your stitch in the ditch (which would have complimented your very complex top) and do a quarter inch (or whatever is easy to measure on your foot) away from the seam, in straight clean lines. I think what you want is a clean geometrical line, enough to create texture without interfering with the complexity of the fabric and design.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Wil, I know exactly what you are talking about - you have reminded me that I found such a thing on a pre-1900 antique quilt (hand done of course) and it was easy to modify to machine stitching on the reproduction I made.
Susan, your idea is similar to one I am considering. Rather than using a zigzag, though, I thought about the serpentine stitch programmed into my machine.
June, you know me well. Straight lines on either side of the seam is what I feel is right, but I'm thinking of using a twin needle to execute them!

Thank you all for your suggestions. It has helped.