I only have three days left of the year to wrap up my 2013 posts… and it’ll take exactly three posts to wrap it up! This post will be about the quilts made for Christmas presents. *note: this is a rather picture heavy post!
I spent the last four weeks furiously sewing away, trying to get all of the homemade presents finished in time for Christmas. I wasn’t truly thinking ahead when I decided that three of the Block Of the Month’s I was participating in would become Christmas gifts. I panicked early in December knowing that I only had 19 days in which to finish the quilt tops, make backs for them, baste, quilt and bind them. Add to that the fact that I didn’t realize I would come up one quilt short in my gifts, I ended up having to make a quilt top the second week in December and add that to my create a backing/baste/quilt/bind list. I decided to do The Secret Garden QAL by Amy Gibson/Craftsy that has been on my To-Do list since August.
I was able to finish the last quilt with less than 19 hours remaining before giving it to its intended recipient. Whew! It was close! I ended up having to machine sew the binding on to two of them, due to lack of time. I meant to machine sew the binding on the last quilt, but sewed it on “wrong”… which meant I needed to hand sew it to the back. Turns out that was the best thing anyway. The quilt was the “Among The Stars” BOM from The Fat Quarter shop, and it has an heirloom quilt look to it. The hand sewn binding really looked nicer on it, despite nearly running out of time.
The other two BOM quilts that I did (and gave as gifts) were the SkillBuilder BOM by Alyssa of Pile O’ Fabric, and the Sugar Block Club by Amy Gibson of Stitchery Dickory Dock. I truly learned a lot sewing along with the BOM’s this year, and have joined up with both Alyssa and Amy again for 2014 BOM’s. (BTW, if you’re interested in learning about the 2014 Skillbuilder BOM, click here. And for the 2014 Sugar Block Club click here.) Alyssa expressed surprise at my having given away my Skillbuilder quilt. It WAS a lot of work, and a lot of learning, but giving away these quilts was of greater joy to me than keeping them. The people I gave the quilts to this year are incredibly special to me, and I love them very much. I hope they get to enjoy them for years to come, and that the quilts hold up to the years of use!
I like to make pieced backings to go along with the quilts. I am not good at designing quilts on my own, but for some reason am confident in my creation of quilt backs. Possibly because I know that it’s just a “back” so there are “no rules”. The only back that ended up being whole-cloth was the Among The Stars. The Sentiments fabric by Three Sisters for Moda had a beautiful floral piece with lovely birds on it, and it seemed to be perfect as an heirloom quilt back.
One other thing I did was to quilt a decent-sized heart onto the quilts. That was Mister’s idea… to use as a “signature” of sorts on the very special quilts. Unfortunately I had already shipped off the Skillbuilder BOM quilt to Ashley when he mentioned this idea, so hers does not have a heart on it. But, hers does have a lot, and I do mean A LOT, of densely free motion quilting on it, and a lot of fmq designs I had not done before. Hopefully she won’t look too closely at it! 🙂
I find it pretty amazing that I completed four quilts in about three weeks’ time. I plan to finish more quilts during 2014, rather than doing only BOM’s that bring me right up to the end of the year. 2013 was about learning the basics of a new craft, and now I’m ready to start expanding upon that basic education! First up in 2014 is to tackle the Modern Quilt Guild Riley Blake Challenge!