Sunday 24 August 2014

Of Course the Quilting Couldn't Go Smoothly

As I continue to plug away at my grey quilts, the plus quilt in particular seems to wish to cause as much difficulty as possible. After finally getting it pieced correctly and basting it (tell me, does anyone like basting?) I wanted to jump into the quilting. The problem was that I had not considered that a very dark back (a tone on tone Pearl Bracelet in shadow) combined with wanting to keep a crisp (Kona) white front meant that when I did a little practice on a mini quilt sandwich that had the same fabrics I would discover this:

I quilted very quickly, not carefully, hence the pulling on the edges where I went too fast. But the major issue is that the white Aurafil from the front of the quilt shows through on the dark back! Argh!
I researched some options and consulted my quilty friends. Friend A asked for further advice from Triangle Sewing in Guelph who suggested Sulky in smoke. A picked up the Sulky for me and then gave me her clear as well to see if anything would work.
Smoke and clear. What will work?

These are the brands in case you are interested.
I then did a lot of practice. A had also recommended using my walking foot to see if that would lessen the amount the thread pokes through. I tried many combinations, as you can see below:
The trick was for it to not muddy the white but not to be seen on the back.
Ultimately I decided to go with smoke in the bobbin and clear on top. And I opted to use a walking foot as per my friend A's suggestion rather than FMQ because when I tried with the other thread it kept snapping. I didn't want any part of that, let me tell you.

It went quite smoothly other than one incident:
That sucks.
I got a huge nest of thread that involved some seam ripping (which wasn't too bad) and cleaning out my bobbin case to find the culprit (in this case a small three inch piece of the clear that had somehow become lodged in the machine). I then got back to work and...
Finished! Well, binding sewn on the front and waiting for a marathon session of some tv show to get done, then a good wash to get out the fabric marker.
I was so relieved to be finished that I used my enthusiasm to baste my grey Pow Wow quilt! It has now sat for a week without being touched yet, though. I hope some sewing mojo comes my way to conquer that quilt as well!
If you are visiting my blog because of Jenn's recommendation from A Quarter Inch from the Edge, welcome! Visit again on September 1st when I will blog about my quilting inspiration and projects and recommend three more fantastic bloggers whom I think you should check out!



  1. I am visiting on Jenn's recommendation :) I just love your sense of humor! I have read back several posts and this quilt has been a PITA! I had a boss once a very long time ago say "Once a project starts to go south, it just keeps on going. Buckle up and enjoy the ride." LOL I have found this to be very true in quilting. Hang in there, you are almost at the finish line!

  2. Oh the pesky, pesky problem of dramatically different colours on the front and back... I've been in that situation more than once. What a pain. Way to go for persevering... I probably would have cursed and stuffed it in the back of the closet! I never would have attempted invisible thread... so brave! I do find that changing your needle size can help in these situations as well.