Thursday, January 27, 2011

Two More Gift Quilts

I gave two quilts for Christmas this year, both of them StormQuilts.  SQ#13 started off more or less on a lark, but as it developed I realized that it was both very warm and very wide, both qualities treasured by Mrs.5000.  So after I finished it in early December, it mysteriously disappeared until it emerged from under the tree.

It's very warm because it is batted with a quilt -- one of those dubious ones you see at home goods stores, "hand-made" under presumably dreadful conditions and from the cheapest possible materials.  This one, found in a raggedy state at "The Bins," was ideal for batting.

The quilting, which I don't have a good picture of, is straight lines down the tan and red columns and a simple curvy dealie that I made a template for down the green columns.  Making a template is pretty sophisticated, for me.

SQ#6, meanwhile, had been sitting for a long time on the "unfinished" shelf.  When I took it up to my sister's house for Thanksgiving to finish the binding, Niece#3 seemed to bond with it, so it turned into a Christmas present for her.

SQ#6 and SQ#7 are sister quilts, both built around a high-contrast central square medalian.  The two medalians are opposites, each made of four triangles cut from the same set of strips.

Whereas SQ#7 ended up square, SQ#6 is a more practical rectangle.  Not knowing quite how to quilt the area that had been tacked on to make it rectangular, I just reused the template I had made for SQ#13.  Voila!

The Specs

Serial Number: 53.13

Dimensions: 73" x 90"

Batting: Old commercially-made quilt.
Backing: Royal blue flannel.  (Although this piece had been sitting around the house for a long time, it was technically not scrap or salvage.   But, I wanted it to be extra-comfy for Mrs.5000, so I bent the StormQuilt rules).

Begun: September, 2010
Finished: December, 2010

Intended Use/Display: Gift blanket.

Serial Number: 53.06

Dimensions: 80" x 60"

Batting: Section of an old commercially-made child's quilt.
Backing: A dark green synthetic fabric, once a graduate school roommate's curtains.

Begun: January, 2009
Finished: November, 2010

Intended Use/Display: Gift blanket.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Unquiet Dreams

I finished Niece #2's coming-of-age quilt, officially titled Unquiet Dreams, back in early December, but thought it polite to hold off showing it here until Herself got a chance to see it.  She's had it for a few weeks now, so now it's ready for public inspection.

In terms of design (which I wrote about here) I think it's about as close to unique as you can get with parallel strips at this point in the history of quilting.  In terms of construction, it's a mitigated disaster.  You can tell that I had terrible problems with cutting on the bias and in getting my geometries lined up properly, and that great bowing in the lower left-hand corner would cost me my quilting license among some serious practitioners of The Craft.  The mitigation is that it was intended and received as a quilt for use; it is (despite its look and title) pretty soft and snuggly, with a very cozy flannel back.  A very cozy, cherry-red flannel back.

Along with the color palette, the quilting was to Niece #2's specs.  I used my own "doodle" style of free-motion machine quilting, which with a seam-spacing of a little under half an inch renders a very comfortable texture.  That the quilting is in the form of a single uninterrupted line of extreme convolution and length is also an invitation to the obsessive-compulsive in all of us.

The Specs

Serial Number: 58

Dimensions: 61" x 92", with unfortunate deformations.

Batting: Purpose made medium-loft, 50% cotton, 50% bamboo fiber.
Backing: Red mottled flannel.

Begun: September, 2010
Finished: December, 2010

Intended Use/Display: Gift.